Self-Storage Shift: Welcome to Storage-by-the-Bin

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Self-Storage Shift: Welcome to Storage-by-the-Bin

The self-storage industry is continuing to grow by leaps and bounds. Fancy management systems, new online trends and new marketing tactics are taking center stage. There are several new start-ups in the self-storage industry that are making waves. Efficient and tailored for the individual who doesn’t need an entire storage unit, there’s a new choice in town: The Storage Bin.

This trend turns a new chapter in the self-storage market, which usually focuses on climate-controlled units and other types of storage units. Available in 3 cubic feet increments, three companies in particular have taken off and made a huge impact in this trend. One of the main advantages is that they pick up, deliver and offer the convenience of interacting via cell phone. This is a huge change in the way things are done, and gives consumers viable options to house smaller items at a competitive cost. With the advent of social media, the word has gotten out very quickly, and these companies are also expanding their operations to additional cities. The insurance requirements for these types of storage bins does not necessarily carry the same level of liability protection that is a necessity when renting a larger unit.

Four start-up companies have stood out in this expansion: Boxbee, Clutter, Storrage and MakeSpace have created a following in this niche market, and continuously grows. Boxbee started in San Francisco, but has since expanded to New York City. Their containers are 2x1 and can be obtained at $6 a month. New York prices are $9. While pick up is free, the company makes their biggest recoup on investment with the retrieval, which is $15 per month and $2 per box. 

Clutter is tech savvy and has their own iPhone app. Based in Los Angeles, they are also trying to expand. Their service used to have bins at just $10 per month but now offers the option of filling a small cargo van for $100 per month or a large cargo van for $200.

MakeSpace is another competitor based out of New York and currently controls the market share in the area. One of the perks of using this company: they take photographs of your items and put them in an online database for customers. Their slogan, which is quite catchy, is “Never visit a storage unit again.”

With this new trend becoming very popular in major cities, how will this affect the current market of self-storage facilities? For individuals who do not have a large amount of items to store, this may become the trend of choice. Students may take advantage of this option over getting an entire unit, especially if their footprint will be small. Competition in the self-storage industry is fierce, but there will always be a demand for units with a variety of options.

Increasing and marketing partnerships, such as moving company aggregators and self-storage facilities working together to provide additional options that aren’t on the table will have to become a part of the new business model for the future.

Allaire Williams

About Allaire Williams

Allaire is a professional writer for the Self Storage Blog and specializes in SEO content marketing.