Over the past decade, after first experiencing a decrease in mobility rates in the U.S. population—which dropped to a record low of 11.6 percent, according to the U.S. Census Bureau—the moving and storage industry has begun a slow turnaround. While some people move state to state or city to city, most people are still only moving short distances, often under 50 miles. Moving and storage companies have also been irked by the rise of the Internet and given a bad name by various Internet companies duping unsuspecting customers. However, like other industries, the moving industry is addressing these challenged head on by incorporating new technology and innovations into their services to better meet customer needs.
Online Booking Services
While there have been some companies setting up online and tricking customers, there are companies that have cropped up to bring a new degree of credibility and transparency to the moving industry. The websites are reviewed by existing customers, giving users the assurance there’s no fraud involved. Customers can also access immediate price quotes using calculators and agree rather to a flat rate than and estimate of services and then are able to book directly through the website.
Moving & Storage Software Solutions
Like all other industries these days, the moving and storage industry is starting to incorporate software to streamline company management. A variety of new software exists that allows companies to use fully integrated accounts that are capable of handling the large loads and the extensive logistic data that large movers must keep track of. The most helpful moving software also includes the ability to access all the stored information via mobile and tablet devices, offering a degree of flexibility and convenience for workers and customers alike. There are also several web-based client access products available that help keep movers and customers connected.
Moving Pods Add Extra Convenience & Flexibility
Instead of going for the traditional route of packing up the boxes and throwing them in the moving truck, many companies now offer the convenience of portable moving pods, says Door to Door Moving. The moving pods are dropped off by the company at the desired location, where the client can fill them and the company will move the pod to the next location. Size, durability and construction vary from company to company, but the idea is the same. What makes this a great option for many people is the flexibility and convenience. There’s no need to rush through the moving process: the pods can stay where they are until the client needs them to be moved to the next location. Unlike moving trucks, which are usually one to two day rentals that require everything to be done at once, moving pods give individuals moving peace of mind and no hassle. Just make sure that the person moving has all the necessary permits for the moving pod, both in the city the individual currently lives in and the location to which he or she will be moving, suggests the Seattle Department of Transportation.
Diversification of Services
The challenges to the moving industry simply mean that companies can no longer continue to act in the ‘business as usual’ manner. In light of this many companies are expanding into further services, offering entire strategic planning for people or businesses relocating, be it locally or on the global scale. According to the owner of one moving service, Pamela Muller, in a New York Times article, they “oversee every aspect, from the initial strategic plan to seeing that every box is unpacked.” Because relocation is often very stressful and difficult to time for today’s busy population, offering such complete services gives these moving companies a leg up on competition. New services like relocation counseling, mobility management programs, destination services, and household good movement management reshape the industry in a whole new way.