OpenTech customer gleans the advantages of a self service kiosk
PHOENIX, Arizona – August 18th, 2010 – OpenTech is pleased to announce that Dave Morris, owner of Viking Storage and 24/7 Storage in Idaho is realizing the savings a kiosk is bringing to his businesses. Morris started his venture into self storage less than two years ago with 24/7 Storage in Nampa, Idaho, a facility that was built in 1985. The facility had no security or gates – just an 80 year-old lady that lived in a trailer on the property with several dogs and took customers by appointment. It was run down, said Morris. I bought it, painted it and installed some modern technology.
As a contract pilot on Gulfstream 550s that fly all around the world, Morris knew that this facility needed to be automated. So, he added gates, security cameras and a kiosk. “It’s phenomenal,” said Morris. “I can monitor everything while I’m on the road.” In one year, Morris nearly doubled the facility’s occupancy rate to 85 percent. “I’ve had zero break-ins because of the signage and the cameras and let’s face it – how much security is an 80-year-old lady going to provide?” he added.
His early success encouraged him to invest again, and he added Viking Storage in Middleton, Idaho. Because the Middleton facility was only four years old, the only upgrade that was needed this time was the kiosk. The occupancy has jumped to 65 percent in just a short amount of time. Morris averages 20 new renters per month and rarely needs to step foot onto the property.
“This is the perfect set up for me,” said Morris. “I don’t have employees and I rarely have to talk to customers. And – Megan is nice. Customers are no longer at the mercy of the dog lady,” he added.
Morris is pleased with the automation of his facilities and customers love having the flexibility of access to rent and pay for their units at their convenience. He also tells other owners that if you are going to install a kiosk – to leave it alone. “You can’t be out there – people tend to take the path of less resistance – they want someone to hold their hand,” said Morris. “If you’re not there, then they have to use the kiosk and they get through it very easily.”
The kiosk also has helped Morris bridge the gap with his Spanish-speaking customers. “I don’t speak Spanish – and I lost business because of that – now, the kiosk answers all the questions,” said Morris.
Morris estimates that he has saved nearly $40,000 per year through this technology and by not utilizing the yellow pages for advertising. “Customers tend to rent in a four to five mile radius,” said Morris. “Why would I pay for advertising coverage that reaches people who will never rent from me?” He figures that he would have to rent eight units full time all year long to pay for the ads, so Morris prefers to get exposure through good community relations. Most recently, he purchased new sneakers for the local high school’s girls’ and boys’ basketball teams.
As Morris’ business continues to thrive, so does his goal for adding more facilities built on the same automated principles. “This is my back up plan,” said Morris. “And it’s going beautifully.”
OpenTech Alliance, Inc. is the leading developer of innovative self-storage solutions. The company products and services include 6 models of INSOMNIAC Kiosks ranging from $4,900 to $18,000, INSOMNIAC Live! call center services and the INSOMNIAC Self Storage Network for online storage reservations. OpenTech products and services improve customer convenience, reduce operating costs and increase revenues for self-storage facilities. For more information or to see an online demo, please visit www.opentechalliance.com or call (602) 749-9370.
OpenTech Alliance, Inc.
NOTE TO EDITORS: OpenTech Alliance, the OpenTech logo and INSOMNIAC are trademarks of OpenTech Alliance, Inc. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners. INSOMNIAC is protected by U.S. patent number 5,946,660.