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When a company finishes the plan for their tradeshow booth, one would think all the heavy lifting is done. But in actuality, that’s when the heavy lifting begins.

Shipping, transportation and storage are part of the big picture when a company is looking to keep down the overall cost of a tradeshow booth.

Storage West Self-Storage is a facility that not only caters to tradeshow personnel, but understands the unique needs a tradeshow staffer needs to meet throughout their calendar year. Storage West is a regional storage facility located in four states: Nevada, California, Arizona and Texas.

One of the features advantageous to exhibitors is shipping and receiving support services in which a storage facility can accept and place into storage various types of assets, literature, equipment, booths and other presentation materials, so when booth staff arrives at their destination, all of the materials are already in that city, ready to assemble at the tradeshow.

The low to moderate expense of storage in a unit that is 10 feet by 10 feet or larger is less than many of the commonly used types of storage options, especially if an exhibitor has multiple tradeshows in one city each year.

“We’re not going to give our first month away for free or a dollar like a lot of storage facilities – and like what we used to do – and when we stopped doing that the type of renters we attracted changed,” said Don Willis, director of sales and marketing at Storage West. “We found a better set of renters would rent from us when we weren’t giving our first month away for free or a dollar.”

Storage West has a total of 48 locations with 11 in Arizona, 22 in California, 13 in Nevada and two in Texas, one of which is currently under construction. There are also selected locations that cater to RV storage. There are five locations in Arizona, nine in California, three in Nevada and one in Texas.

One of the perks at Storage West is the Business P.A.S.S. Program: Package, Acceptance, Storage and Service. Benefits of the program include package acceptance from shipping services, such as UPS and FEDEX, that can now deliver to the storage unit without requiring the renter’s presence. When receiving an incoming shipment, Storage West will give the delivery driver the key and grant access to the storage unit.

There are several things to consider before deciding to store at a self-storage location. Among them are the obvious concerns of safety, security and quality of management. But also consider hours of access, how access is regulated, if 24 hour access is an option, indoor/outdoor temperature when relevant as well as the individual locations, stability and that of the chain operators.

“The second thing we found is that if we keep our properties immaculately clean and we have established certain security standards that it has the people we don’t want to rent from us not to rent from us,” said Willis.

When asked about temperature control and “air-cooled units,” there are no industry standards, so renters need to be clear on what it is acceptable for what is being stored.

“Since there are no industry standards, you need to get the definition clearly defined with each storage facility you are considering. You don’t want to overpay for air cooled or air conditioned units if you don’t need them,” said Willis.

Some states, including Nevada, have taken some steps in this area by defining when an operator can use the term ‘climate control’ in advertising.

“The other thing is we have a very aggressive referral program. We have what we think are some of the best renters in the industry. And those renters in turn refer really great renters to us,” said Willis. “All of our managers are active in the community, active in businesses around them. They work with real estate offices, work with moving companies. The people we work with and network with us know what kind of renters we have.”

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