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Self-Storage Profit Think Tank: Ideas to Generate More Add-On Revenue

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A second idea was to offer calendars, particularly those locally made. This is a great go-to item  around the holidays, as you’re tenants are on the hunt for calendars. "A friend has created a beautiful calendar with each month featuring a local artist," geraldine1051 says. "I have already bought one for the office."

Another great item for any holiday is greeting cards, which junior member jsnstorage makes and sells on occasion. "I thought about making a line of them to announce a new mailing address or 'we're moving' for tenants," she says. "I also send cards to tenants from time to time, and make the Christmas cards we send out from the company. Just a little personal touch."

Fuel to Drive Up Sales

Senior member Lisa T says if she could sell anything in the world, it would be two-gallon containers of gasoline. With a store in the middle of a six-mile stretch of road with gas stations at either end, she says, "You would be surprised at how many people run out of gas because they don't know the road and just assume they can ride on the fumes a little while longer. At least once a day I have someone walk in the office asking where the nearest gas station is (three miles either way), or see them pushing their car down the grass on the side of the road.”

Other Ideas

Some other notable ideas from the ISS poll include Red Box DVD rentals, which received the highest number of votes (19 percent), drive-thru car wash (15 percent), car-rental company (12 percent) and lottery tickets (10 percent).

In an ideal world, what would your facility offer? What are your hobbies and strengths? The dream is your space to shine—and you never know, you might just hit on something attainable. After all, someone created mattress bags and dish-packing kits. Stay creative. Stay positive. Keep dreaming.

Molly Bilker is a sophomore journalism major at Arizona State University (ASU) in Phoenix. She is part of ASU's Barrett Honors College and completing a minor in Spanish. She comes from an arts-focused middle and high school with a creative-writing background. She actively participates in the arts, including creative writing, guitar and vocal music, theater, photography, ballroom dance, drawing, and film. To reach her, e-mail

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