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The ‘New’ Supply Side USA: Five Questions With Company President and CEO James Hawley

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5. What is the future of retail and self-storage? More green products?

Self-storage retail is always developing. We went through years of trying to sell everything someone would need for every task relating to moving and storage. What we found is the basics do best and provide the best ROI. Current programs are simple: streamlined and effective.

We also found sites selling humidity absorbers in the desert, lock de-icers in Florida and other items that made little sense. These issues are taken care of with our Store of the Community approach. Through our website, we can customize a program that allows operators to limit what a manager can order and even provide an electronic signoff. Ultimately, we see in-store scanning and inventory programs to allow more visibility to what’s on hand and what’s moving.

We’re certainly seeing the development of more green products, rental solutions and packaging-recycling programs. Think about how much product ends up in landfills after a move or season of storage. Protective packaging is a huge contributor to the waste stream. Green products are not only better for the planet, they’re big business, and the companies that capitalize on them will do well.

We fully intend to develop green initiatives in all markets we serve.
“Creating Retail Excellence” is our mantra. We’ve come through a rough time this past year, but are now poised to serve those customers who value excellent retail programs, one-stop shopping, great service and innovation. It’s a goal, not a destination, as we constantly work to improve our customers’ businesses.

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