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You've Got Mail (and More Money)! Creating Self-Storage Profit With a Pack and Ship Store

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Your print-shop offering can be as simple as a copy machine customers can use or as complex as design services. Most operators fall somewhere in the middle. The majority of locations offer to print a wide range of products for customers, for example postcards, business cards, brochures, letters, fliers and posters from pre-designed files.

mailboxes for rent is another profit center you can include as part of a pack and ship center. You can purchase a bank of mailboxes for a one-time fee that will pay for itself for years to come. A small mailbox will cost customers approximately $20 to $25  per month. A medium or large mailbox would increase in price from there.

Most stores offer a variety of add-on options for mailbox services such as text or e-mail notification and large-package storage for customers who rent a mailbox. These services save customers time and money, eliminating the need for them to check their mailbox every day.  Most pack and ship stores will have 75 to 150 mailboxes available for rent.

Other offerings to consider including in your pack and ship store are notary services, passport services, fingerprinting, greeting cards, fax services, computer workstations, shredding services, digital scanning, impulse items, office products, binding services, laminating services, stamps, electronic postage and money orders.  All of these items help drive traffic to a well-equipped pack and ship center and increase the bottom line.

The pack and ship concept isn’t for every storage operator, but it can greatly benefit facilities in high-traffic areas. At my company, the model has tripled our in-store traffic counts and benefited the self-storage side of the business. To get more information, you can start with several reputable franchises that specialize in this industry, including The UPS Store, Goin’ Postal, Safe Ship, The Mailbox Stores and Postal Connections. I wish you the best of luck with your research and hope this information will point you in the right direction when choosing your differentiating factor.

Kevin Bledsoe is a district manager of York, Pa.-based Storage Asset Management Inc., which provides full-service management, consulting and website-development services to self-storage owners on the East Coast. For more information, call 717.779.0044; visit .

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