Defaulting customers that leave behind a storage unit full of unwanted items, are a genuine potential nuisance and risk for storage operators and removal companies. We spoke to Grant of iBibOnStorage about this issue and why they are exhibiting at the 2022 show.
iBidOnStorage launched in September 2020 in the UK and September 2021 in Europe and has since sold over 2,000 auctions and has more than 10,000 registered bidders. We have sold auctions throughout the UK, Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Spain and Germany. We have approximately 400 storage facilities registered on our platforms including brands such as Access Self Storage, LoknStore, Storage King, Safestore, Lagerbox and Pelican Self Storage to mention a few.
Defaulting customers that leave behind a storage unit full of unwanted items, are a genuine nuisance and risk for storage operators and removal companies. It requires the storage unit to be sold, emptied and cleaned as quickly as possible to minimise the loss of income, and with as little risk as possible to the storage operator.
The iBidOnStorage team with over 50 years of self storage experience, recognised the requirement for a dedicated storage auction platform to mitigate the risk of selling unpaid storage units and developed iBidOnStorage. It offers a simple and straightforward mechanism to sell abandoned storage contents, while mitigating the industry risk at the point of sale, which in turn ensures bad debt is easier to manage and through a targeted audience, improves recoveries.
Benefits to the self storage industry
The platform has benefited the industry by providing a transparent solution for all storage operators to sell their abandoned storage units. This has helped alleviate what we believe is the riskiest element of operating a storage business, the point at which a decision is made to sell customers personal goods. Total transparency means that should the need arise, iBidOnStorage can assist the Seller to obtain every detail of the auction including the fact that the market set the sale price.
The iBidOnStorage platform’s other advantages include:
- Sellers can downloadable an auction summary report that shows every detail of their sold auction. This report proves the market set the price achieved and that the operator attempted to secure the best possible price.
- Sellers are in complete control of their auctions and set their own auction parameters. List auction starting prices, dates and modify auction contents.
- Sellers can retract an auction at any time so if a customer pays, the seller can delist an auction at the click of a button.
- The platform is simple to use, meaning auctions take seconds to list.
- Faster clearance of unwanted goods (winning bids have 72 hours to collect at their cost) so units can be re-let to paying customers again.
- ‘Soft-close’ meaning the bidding continues till the very end/highest bid before the auction closes (2 minutes are added to the auction every time a bid is made in the last 60 seconds)
- A mandatory cleaning deposit is included to ensure all goods are taken from the unit.
- It is not eBay, so we know exactly who our bidders are and can target them with direct campaigns.
- We can integrate into storage operators existing self storage software or we can provide an open API so they can perform custom pulls of our data into your own reporting.
- We advertise through automated emails to targeted bidders (in the same vicinity as the seller) as well as through all social media channels.
- We sell nothing but storage unit auctions, minimising the risk of auctions going unnoticed or unfound on websites that sell everything from cars and boats to electrical goods and fine art.
Why are you excited to be at the Movers and Storers show and what do you hope to gain from exhibiting?
The storage sector is one of the most interesting and dynamic sectors and because it is relatively new, there are plenty of opportunities to grow in the sector or become a new participant in the industry. It’s our first time visiting and exhibiting at the show, and we are very excited having spoken with various industry leaders about the size of the show as well as the networking opportunity to learn from and share ideas. The show attracts a large, quality audience which is ideal for showcasing our product and meeting potential partners to either grow our business or introduce new customers to our business which will help streamline their operations and mitigate their operational risks.
How the initiative meets the industry need
The platform offers our Sellers the benefit of a public auction which is the preferred method of sale when it comes to selling customers goods. This is because it evidences that the market set the price secured for the goods, not the storage operator.
Furthermore, iBidOnStorage has helped the industry consolidate the sale process, allowing it to effectively adopt its own standard practice, which in turn will go a long way towards protecting the industry if an individual business was ever legally challenged.
How the initiative reduces costs or increases income
- Better prices are achieved through a larger, targeted audience. We now have over 9,000 registered bidders on the platform and 13,000 Facebook followers.
- We minimise possible litigation costs. Once it can be proven that market value or as close to market value as possible was achieved, it is unlikely that litigation will be pursued.
- We sell over 95% of the auctions listed.
- We pay our sellers within 24-72 hours of the auction closing. Feedback from our customers was that using other auction companies, it would take up to 8 weeks and sometimes longer, to receive funds.
- Replace a non-paying customer with a paying customer. We can provide automated offers to winning bidders if they want to store the contents they have won on auction.
- We charge no admin fees, no collection fees and expect no ongoing commitment. We just charge a commission on the successful sale of a unit.
Come and say hello
We are on stand D4 and really keen to meet you and discuss how we can help support your business going forward.