Ranking at the top of Google is one of the best ways that self storage operators can increases their new tenant acquisition and drive up occupancy rates. Leveraging Google Ads can be a great way to immediately get traffic and leads from Google.
However, Google Ads may not work for every storage facility and if not managed properly, your ad campaigns will typically lead to sub par performance. We will break down the tactics you can leverage to make sure your Google Ads campaigns actually drive more NOI and don’t end up as just an expense.
Table of Contents
- Set up your account structure to match your storage facility locations.
- Utilize location targeting for a 3 or 5 mile radius around your facility.
- Incorporating offers and promotions in your ad headlines can incentivize new tenants booking a unit.
- Linking your Google My Business to your Google Ads account increases your visibility with location extensions that show your ad in the map pack.
- Remarketing allows you to target different stages of the buying process and capture users who have viewed your location but not actually booked a unit yet.
Modern tenants are discovering storage facilities in their local area directly from Google search results. Without a robust online presence, you’re virtually invisible to a significant segment of potential tenants. However, with an ad appearing at the right moment – just when your potential tenant is using Google to find an ideal storage facility near them, you can capture that demand and boost your occupancy.
Overview of Google Ads for Self Storage Facilities
This is where Google Ads comes into the picture, revamping your digital strategy and helping you dominate the search results. The importance of ads, particularly Google Ads, is undeniably vast for self storage businesses. Besides driving immediate results, offering a wealth of data about your customers, and being highly customizable, it provides a competitive edge, making your storage business outshine competitors.
But managing Google Ads isn’t as simple as ‘set and forget’. To tap into its full potential, you need a strategic approach tailor-fitted to the self storage industry. There are nuances in setting up your account structure, utilizing negative keywords, prioritizing location targeting, crafting compelling ad copy, all aimed at reaching customers who are closer to you and are actively searching for a local storage facility.
As experts in self storage Google Ads, we have not only recognized these nuances but also effectively used them to minimize costs and maximize returns for storage businesses. If you’re a self storage operator struggling with ineffective digital marketing, here’s a quick rundown of what Google Ads can offer:
- Increased Local Visibility: Google Ads help your business show up in the local search results, increasing the chance of customers finding your storage facility.
- Boosted Traffic, Clicks, and Conversions: Google Ads directly attracts higher site traffic, improving the potential for new tenants to book a unit.
- Full Control over Ad Budget: You can increase or decrease your ad expenditure, based on your ROI.
- Measure and Analyze Results: Google Ads provide detailed reports that let you evaluate the effectiveness of your campaign and make necessary tweaks for better results.
In this article, we will delve deeper into how you can leverage Google Ads specifically to boost your storage facilities NOI.
Understanding Your Audience: The Unique Needs of Self Storage Customers
Let’s pause for a moment and consider a key factor that will guide our every decision – your tenants. As the popular adage goes, “Know thy customer,” and it stands true even in the realm of digital marketing.
People turn to self storage services for various reasons. They could be moving houses, downsizing living spaces, or simply needing seasonal storage. It’s crucial to understand these unique customer needs and preferences as they play a significant role in shaping your Google Ads strategy.
Let’s take, for instance, a parent downsizing their home after their children have moved out. Their storage requirements and emotional triggers will be different from those of a college student needing a place to store their belongings over the summer break. By understanding these unique customer personas, you can tailor your Google Ads to address these needs effectively. This understanding will not only lead to higher engagement but will also improve conversion rates.
Segmenting Your Audience for Better Targeting
By dividing your target audience based on their specific needs and characteristics, you can create personalized ad campaigns that resonate more effectively with potential customers.
For instance, if you notice a segment of your audience that frequently searches for ‘climate-controlled self storage’, you can create a targeted Google Ads campaign highlighting this feature of your service. Similarly, if a significant number of queries come from parents downsizing their homes, you can tailor your ads to address this specific need.
Implementing an Effective Google Ads Strategy for Self Storage Businesses
Setting Up Your Account Structure: Matching Your Account to Your Storage Facility Locations
The first step to an impactful Google Ads strategy is setting up your account structure to align with your self storage facility locations. This involves creating separate campaigns or ad groups for each of your locations. By doing so, you can customize your ads, keywords, and bidding strategies to cater to the specific demands and competition levels of each location.
Quality score is critical to making sure you pay the lowest possible cost per click and having a dialed in account structure is one of the best ways to increase your quality score. The key to quality score optimization is making sure each campaign, ad group, keyword, ad copy, and landing page combination provides the most relevant and best experience for the searcher.
Prioritizing Location Targeting: Reaching Customers 3-5 Miles From Your Storage Facility
With most self storage tenants preferring a facility close to their location, prioritizing location targeting is essential. This can be done by setting up multiple location targeting in your Google Ads account. For instance, you can set a radius of three and five miles from your facility. This approach not only helps you reach potential tenants within a convenient distance but also provides insights into customer behavior at different distances, allowing you to optimize your bids accordingly.
We recommend setting up both a 3 mile radius and a 5 mile radius around your facility for location targeting as the first step. From there you can analyze the data and see if the ROI is the same for both 3 miles and 5 miles and make the adjustments to make sure you are maximizing your results.
Crafting a Keyword Targeted Campaign To Capture Customers Moving to a New Location
A keyword targeted campaign can help you capture customers who are moving to a new location. These customers may search for terms like “storage in [new location]”, even if they’re currently outside your target area. By creating a campaign targeting a wider area and refining your keywords to include your location, you can effectively reach these potential customers and convert them into booked units.
Including Offers and Promotions in Your Ad Headlines: Incentivizing New Bookings
Including offers and promotions in your ad headlines can significantly increase your click-through-rate and conversions. Whether it’s a discount for first-time customers or a special offer for long-term bookings, such incentives can make your ads more enticing and help you stand out from the competition.
The goal of these offers, is to get tenants in the door as part of a long term revenue management and growth process. After tenants are acquired, you can systemically increase their rent to increase your NOI. It is important to analyze how long your tenants stay at your facility on average for this tactic to be most effective.
Using Automated Bidding Strategies: Optimizing Your Campaign’s Performance
Automated bidding strategies can help you optimize your campaign’s performance. By letting Google’s algorithm adjust your bids in real-time based on the likelihood of a conversion, you can maximize your return on investment and save valuable time.
We like to start out with maximize conversion bidding to try and get as many leads as possible. After the lead flow is strong, we refine the bidding strategy by adding a target CPA (cos per acquisition) to try and lower our cost per lead and increase our return on ad spend.
Linking Google My Business to Google Ads: Increasing Visibility with Location Extensions
Linking your Google Ads to your Google My Business account is another way to amplify your presence. It unlocks location extensions, putting your self storage facility directly at the top of the map listings. This makes it easy for potential customers to find you and ultimately increases your visibility on Google Maps and in the local pack on the search results.
The map listings are one of the highest converting areas of the search results for self storage facilities.
To make the most of Google Ads, it’s vital to track and analyze performance regularly. This includes monitoring phone calls from Google Ads, tracking click-through rates, and how many new tenants are acquired through your campaigns. The data gathered helps you tweak your ad campaigns for optimal results.
Utilizing Negative Keywords: Optimizing Ad Targeting by Removing Irrelevant Searches
As part of your Google Ads strategy, it’s crucial to utilize negative keywords. This helps to filter out irrelevant searches, preventing your ads from appearing for unrelated terms. For instance, terms like “computer storage” or “cupboard storage” can attract the wrong audience and waste your ad budget. Therefore, by setting these as negative keywords, you can ensure that your ads target the right audience: those looking for self storage solutions.
It is important to log into your account on a weekly basis and continually add new negative keywords to make sure you are not wasting any of your ad budget.
Setting Up Remarketing Audiences: Targeting Different Stages of the Buying Process
Remarketing is a powerful tool that allows you to tailor your ads based on a user’s past interactions with your website. By setting up multiple remarketing audiences, you can target users at different stages of the buying process, from those who have just visited your site to those who have already shown interest in a specific storage unit.
We like to setup a remarketing search campaign that is focused on people who have visited of your specific location pages but did not book a unit. This allows us to get in front of those potential tenants if they go back to Google and search for storage facilities again.
If your ad budget is high enough, we can test launching a remarketing display campaign or a performance max campaign to get in front of potential tenants on Googles other platforms like YouTube, Gmail, and the display network.
Tracking Phone Calls on Your Website
Lastly, tracking phone calls on your website can provide valuable data on ad performance for each location. By using call tracking, you can understand which ads and keywords generate the most phone calls, allowing you to optimize your campaigns and improve your return on investment.
Call tracking recordings can give you good data on what might be preventing your potential tenants from booking a unit online on your website. Having a seamless booking process on your website is critical to converting the most leads and getting the most out of your Google Ads campaigns.
By implementing these strategies, you can create an effective Google Ads strategy that not only reaches your target audience but also drives up occupancy rates and grows the NOI of your self storage business.
Is Google Ads or SEO More Effective For Acquiring Tenants?
When exploring the effectiveness of Google Ads versus SEO in acquiring tenants for self-storage facilities, it’s important to understand the distinct advantages and limitations of each approach.
Pros & Cons of Google Ads
Google Ads offers immediate visibility and targeted reach. By leveraging PPC advertising, self-storage businesses can appear at the top of search results for specific keywords, ensuring that potential tenants see their facilities first.
This immediacy is crucial, especially in markets with high competition. However, this visibility comes at a cost. Google Ads operates on a pay-per-click model, meaning each visitor’s click incurs a charge.
While this can lead to quick tenant acquisition, it requires a continuous budget to maintain visibility and can become expensive over time, especially for highly competitive keywords.
Pros & Cons of SEO
On the other hand, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a more gradual, long-term strategy. It focuses on optimizing a website to rank higher in organic search results. This involves creating valuable content, ensuring the website is user-friendly, and building a strong online presence.
The primary advantage of SEO is its cost-effectiveness in the long run. Once a website achieves a high ranking, it continues to attract potential tenants without the ongoing costs associated with paid ads.
Additionally, SEO can build credibility and trust, as many users perceive organic search results as more authentic than paid advertisements. However, achieving a high ranking can take time, and there’s no guaranteed placement like with paid ads. Working with an established self storage SEO agency can be one of the best ways to higher a higher probability of SEO success.
Utilizing the Combination of Google Ads & SEO
Both Google Ads and SEO have their unique strengths for acquiring tenants in the self-storage industry. Google Ads provides immediate visibility and a quick way to attract potential tenants, albeit at a higher cost. SEO, while slower to show results, offers a cost-effective, sustainable approach that can build credibility and attract tenants in the long term.
The choice between the two depends on the specific goals, budget, and if you are in lease up. Often, a balanced approach that combines both methods can be the most effective strategy to maximize tenant acquisition and drive the lowest cost per lead over the long term.
Analyzing Competitor Ad Campaigns: Gaining Valuable Insights and Opportunities for Differentiation
As the digital marketing landscape becomes increasingly competitive, it’s more important than ever to stay one step ahead. Analyzing your competitors’ ad campaigns can provide valuable insights that can help you refine your own approach and identify unique opportunities for differentiation.
Learning from the competition
In the self-storage industry, it’s not uncommon to find businesses with similar offerings. However, the way these offerings are presented in advertising can vary dramatically. By analyzing your competitors’ ad campaigns, you can identify their unique selling points and gaps in their offerings. This understanding can help you position your self-storage services as a more compelling choice for potential customers.
Learning from the competition is not about copying their strategies, but about innovating and creating ad campaigns that capture attention and drive conversions. This involves consistently monitoring the performance of your competitors’ campaigns and learning from their successes and failures.
Refining your targeting strategies
Competitor analysis can also help you refine your targeting strategies. By looking at your competitors’ keyword targeting, you can adjust your own keyword targeting strategies to better reach potential customers.
It is important not to simple just copy every keyword your competitor is bidding on as you don’t know if those keywords are leading to tenants for them. Some companies utilize Google Ads as an awareness tactic regardless of if they see a positive ROI. Whenever we add a new keyword to a campaign, we watch the performance closely and determine whether we should remove the keyword (if it doesn’t perform well) or scale the keyword (if it does perform well).
Refining your targeting strategies
There are several tools available that can aid in your competitor analysis efforts. Platforms like SEMrush and Ahrefs can provide comprehensive data about your competitors’ ad performance. These insights can be used to optimize your own ad strategies.
Taking action on insights
Once you’ve gathered insights from competitor analysis, it’s important to take action. This could involve tweaking your ad copy, adjusting your targeting strategies, or even rethinking your overall ad campaign strategy. The goal is to use these insights to create more effective ad campaigns that resonate with your target audience and drive conversions.
Analyzing competitor ad campaigns is a crucial step in creating effective Google Ads strategies for your self-storage business. It provides valuable insights and opportunities for differentiation, helping you to stand out in a competitive market.
Measuring Success and ROI: Using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for Optimizing Ad Campaigns
We believe that every decision should be data-driven. That’s why it’s crucial to keep a keen eye on the performance of your Google Ads campaigns. Measuring the success and return on investment (ROI) of your self storage Google Ads is not about vanity metrics but about understanding which elements of your campaign are driving results and which ones need fine-tuning.
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for Self Storage Google Ads
To measure the effectiveness of your self storage Google Ads, you need to regularly monitor specific key performance indicators (KPIs). These KPIs provide insights into the performance of your ad campaigns, helping you make data-driven decisions.
The three primary KPIs for self storage services are cost per lead (CPL), cost per rental (CPR), and overall return on ad spend (ROAS). Monitoring these metrics helps you understand which aspects of your campaign are working and which ones might need improvement.
Cost Per Lead (CPL) measures how much your business spends to acquire a new lead through your Google Ads. It’s calculated by dividing the total ad spend by the total number of leads generated. This metric helps assess the cost-effectiveness of your ad campaign in generating new leads.
Cost Per Rental (CPR) goes a step further by examining how much it costs to convert those leads into actual customers. By dividing the total ad spend by the number of booked units, you can gain insights into the efficiency of your ad campaign in driving actual booked units.
Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) is a measurement of the profitability of your Google Ads. It’s calculated by dividing the revenue generated from the ad campaign by the ad spend. A higher ROAS indicates a more effective campaign.
Tools for Tracking Ad Performance
Google provides comprehensive tools for tracking and analyzing your ad performance. Google Analytics and Google Ads offer a wealth of data about your campaign performance. These insights can be used to fine-tune and optimize your ad strategies for better results.
Google Analytics provides in-depth insights into your website traffic, user behavior, and conversion rates. It shows you which Google Ads campaigns are driving the most new tenants and also allows you to compare how Google Ads is performing versus other channels like organic search.
Google Ads, on the other hand, offers granular data about your ad performance, including impressions, clicks, conversions, cost per click, and more. It provides real-time metrics, enabling you to make quick adjustments to optimize your campaigns.
Looker Studio allows you to visualize data from Google Ads and Google Analytics inside of one cohesive marketing report. These visualizations can help you gain insights from your data more efficiently which can lead to faster changes being made based on the data. The next level to Looker Studio reporting is also combining SEO data to see how your search marketing efforts are performing as a whole.
By understanding these KPIs and utilizing Google’s tools, you can make informed decisions about your Google Ads campaigns. Regularly reviewing your ad performance allows you to refine your strategies, allocate your budget more effectively, and maximize your ROI. Whether it’s tweaking your ad copy, adjusting your bids, or optimizing your targeting, every decision should be backed by data.
At Asset Growth, we are experts in analyzing and interpreting these metrics. We don’t use reporting simple to say what is working, we dig through the data to determine what adjustments can be made to our campaigns to drive more NOI.
We work with self storage businesses to build and manage effective Google Ads campaigns, leveraging data to drive growth and success.
Should You Hire an Agency or Manage Your Google Ads Yourself?
When it comes to managing Google Ads for self-storage businesses, the decision between hiring an agency or opting for a DIY approach hinges on several key factors, including expertise, time investment, budget, and the scale of your operations.
Benefits of Hiring a Marketing Agency
Hiring an agency is often the preferred choice for businesses seeking professional, expert management of their Google Ads campaigns. Agencies bring a wealth of experience and a deep understanding of how to maximize ROI through targeted ad campaigns. They have the tools and the processes to identify the most effective keywords and craft compelling ad copy that resonates with the target audience.
Additionally, agencies can continuously monitor and optimize campaigns, adjusting strategies based on performance data to ensure the best possible results. This level of expertise and ongoing management can be particularly beneficial for larger self-storage companies or those in highly competitive markets, where the nuances of Google Ads can make a significant difference in tenant acquisition.
Downsides of Hiring an Agency
However, hiring an agency comes with a cost. For smaller self-storage businesses or those with limited budgets, the expense of an agency might be prohibitive. In such cases, a DIY approach to Google Ads can be a viable alternative. The main difference is instead of investing money, you will need to invest your time to make this approach work.
With a variety of online resources, courses, and tools available, self-storage business owners can learn the basics of setting up and managing their own campaigns. This approach allows for direct control over the advertising strategy and can be more cost-effective, as it eliminates the need for agency fees.
However, it requires a significant time investment to learn and manage the campaigns effectively. Additionally, without the same level of expertise as a professional agency, DIY campaigns may not be as optimized or effective, potentially leading to lower ROI.
Which Option is Right for you?
The decision to hire an agency or manage Google Ads in-house should be based on the specific needs and resources of your self-storage business. If you have the budget for it and prefer to leverage expertise for potentially better results, an agency is a sound choice.
Conversely, if you have a tighter budget, are willing to invest time in learning, and prefer direct control over your campaigns, the DIY route might be more suitable.
In either case, the goal is to drive up occupancy and increase your NOI through the Google Ads campaigns.
The Impact of Google Ads on the Success of Your Self Storage Business
As we wrap up our discussion on Google Ads strategies for self storage businesses, it’s important to emphasize the profound impact these strategies can have on your business success. Through strategic use of Google Ads, you can not only increase your storage facilities visibility on Google, but also attract high-quality leads, boost your occupancy rates, and ultimately, increase your Net Operating Income (NOI).
At Asset Growth, we understand the unique challenges and opportunities in the self-storage industry. We’re committed to helping you build a lead generation asset that you own, so you don’t have to rent your leads from aggregator websites and 3rd party vendors. Our tailored marketing strategies are designed to help you gain a significant edge over your competitors.
Remember, while Google Ads are a powerful tool, they are just one part of a comprehensive digital marketing strategy. Incorporating SEO and content marketing in conjunction with Google Ads can further amplify your online presence and drive exponential business growth. In order to get your cost per lead down, utilizing a combination of SEO and Google Ads tends to be the best long term tenant acquisition strategy.
If you have any questions or would like to learn more about how we can help you grow your self storage business, don’t hesitate to contact us.