Keyword Glossary

Short definitions to help you understand the AI and software landscape in the Self Storage industry.

🧠 Artificial Intelligence


AI stands for Artificial Intelligence, which refers to the simulation of human intelligence in machines that are programmed to think and learn like humans.

Example in Self-Storage

AI can be used in self-storage facilities to optimize unit allocation, automatically monitor security cameras, and even assist customers through chatbots for reservation inquiries.


Automation involves the use of technology and machines to perform tasks without human intervention.

Example in Self-Storage

Automation in self-storage can streamline the booking process for rental units. Through an online platform or mobile application, prospective tenants can seamlessly browse available units, view detailed specifications, and reserve or book a unit instantly.

Automated systems can then generate access codes or digital keys for the tenants, allowing them to access their rented units without the need for manual check-ins or paperwork. This not only accelerates the rental process for tenants but also reduces operational overheads for the self-storage facility.


Bias refers to the presence of prejudice or favoritism in data or algorithms, leading to unfair or skewed outcomes.

Example in Self-Storage

If an AI system used to determine unit rental prices is biased, it may discriminate against certain customers, charging them higher rates based on factors like ethnicity or location.

Machine Learning

Machine learning is a subset of AI that involves training algorithms to learn patterns from data and make predictions or decisions based on that learning.

ML is like teaching your computer to be as smart as a pet parrot but without the incessant squawking.

Example in Self-Storage

Machine learning algorithms can predict occupancy rates. This can help self-storage facilities optimize staffing and unit availability.

Automated systems can then generate access codes or digital keys for the tenants, allowing them to access their rented units without the need for manual check-ins or paperwork. This not only accelerates the rental process for tenants but also reduces operational overheads for the self-storage facility.

Deep Learning

Deep learning is a subset of machine learning that utilizes neural networks with multiple layers to solve complex tasks.

Example in Self-Storage

Deep learning can be used to improve security by recognizing faces or license plates in surveillance footage at self-storage facilities.

Neural Network

A neural network is a computational model inspired by the human brain, designed to process information and make decisions.

Example in Self-Storage

Neural networks can be used in self-storage for image recognition tasks, such as identifying inventory items in storage units.

Natural Language Processing (NLP)

NLP is a branch of AI that focuses on enabling computers to understand, interpret, and generate human language.

Example in Self-Storage

NLP can be used in customer service chatbots to understand and respond to inquiries from prospective tenants about storage unit availability.

Training Data

Training data is the dataset used to teach machine learning models by providing examples for them to learn from.

Example in Self-Storage

In self-storage, training data might include historical rental data, customer feedback, and facility occupancy rates used to train pricing prediction models.

Reinforcement Learning

Reinforcement learning is a machine learning paradigm where algorithms learn by interacting with an environment and receiving feedback in the form of rewards or penalties.

Example in Self-Storage

Reinforcement learning can be applied to optimize the management of self-storage unit availability and pricing to squeeze more revenue out of your facility.

Supervised Learning

Supervised learning is a machine learning approach where models are trained on labeled data with known outcomes.

Example in Self-Storage

Supervised learning can be used to classify customer reviews of self-storage facilities as positive or negative for sentiment analysis.

Unsupervised Learning

Unsupervised learning is a machine learning approach where models analyze data without labeled outcomes, discovering patterns or groupings.

Example in Self-Storage

Unsupervised learning can help identify customer segments based on their storage needs and preferences. For instance, certain prospective tenants may look for short-term storage solutions during transitional life events such as moving or downsizing, while others might seek long-term options for preserving valuable collections or seasonal items.

Reinforcement Learning from Human Feedback (RLHF)

RLHF is a technique that combines reinforcement learning with human feedback to train AI models more efficiently.

Example in Self-Storage

RLHF can be used to fine-tune algorithms for autonomous robot assistance in self-storage, ensuring they learn quickly and safely. For instance, when a robot is tasked with organizing or retrieving items from storage units, initial human feedback can help guide the robot's actions to be more efficient or delicate with fragile items.

Command Response Model

A command response model is a system that understands and responds to specific commands or queries.

Example in Self-Storage

A command response model can be implemented to allow customers to make reservations or check unit availability through voice commands or messaging apps.


Transformers are a type of neural network architecture used for various natural language processing tasks.

Example in Self-Storage

Transformers can enhance the accuracy of chatbots and virtual assistants used in self-storage customer service, making interactions more seamless.


GPT, or Generative Pre-trained Transformer, is a type of transformer-based model known for its text generation capabilities.

Example in Self-Storage

GPT can generate informative and engaging content for self-storage facility websites and marketing materials that speak to the needs of tenants and specific customer segments.


 LLM stands for Language Model, a type of AI model trained to understand and generate human language.

Example in Self-Storage

LLMs can assist self-storage facility managers by summarizing customer reviews and feedback, helping them make data-driven improvements.


A prompt is a specific instruction or query given to an AI model to generate desired responses.

Example in Self-Storage

Using a prompt, you can instruct an AI model to provide information on unit availability or answer customer questions about storage options.

Prompt Engineering

Prompt engineering involves designing prompts that effectively guide AI models to produce desired outputs.

Example in Self-Storage

Prompt engineering can help improve the accuracy and relevance of AI responses when prospective tenants inquire about self-storage pricing.


Hallucinations in AI refer to situations where models generate incorrect or fictional information.

Example in Self-Storage

If not properly trained, AI models used in self-storage may produce hallucinations, leading to inaccurate unit availability information.

Generative AI

Generative AI refers to AI models and techniques that can generate new content, such as text, images, or videos.

Example in Self-Storage

Generative AI can create realistic 3D visualizations of storage units, helping customers visualize their potential storage space.

LLM Agents (Auto GPT, Lang Chain)

LLM Agents are AI models, like Auto GPT and Lang Chain, designed for specific language generation tasks.

Example in Self-Storage

LLM Agents can be used to automate responses to customer inquiries about self-storage unit sizes, features, and rental options.


AGI, or Artificial General Intelligence, refers to AI systems that possess human-like intelligence and can perform a wide range of tasks.

Example in Self-Storage

While not yet achieved, AGI could potentially revolutionize self-storage by managing all aspects of facility operations, from customer service to security. This could result in many unmanned self-storage facilities that operate autonomously.

Chain of Thought

A chain of thought in AI refers to the sequence of reasoning or decision-making steps taken by a model.

Example in Self-Storage

AI systems can have a chain of thought when determining the best unit allocation strategy based on tenant preferences and overall availability.

Convolutional Neural Network (CNN)

CNNs are neural network architectures designed for processing grid-like data, such as images and videos.

Example in Self-Storage

CNNs can be used in self-storage security systems to identify suspicious activity from facility visitors captured by surveillance cameras.


Fine-tuning is the process of further training a pre-trained AI model on specific data to adapt it to a particular task or domain.

Example in Self-Storage

Fine-tuning can be used to make a pre-trained language model more knowledgeable about self-storage terminology and customer queries.

Foundational Model

A foundational model is a base AI model on which more specialized models can be built.

Example in Self-Storage

A foundational model can serve as the starting point for developing an AI system that manages self-storage reservations and unit assignments.

General Adversarial Network (GAN)

GANs are AI models composed of two neural networks, one generating content and the other evaluating it, used for tasks like image generation.

Example in Self-Storage

GANs can be employed to create realistic 3D models of self-storage units for marketing and visualization purposes.

GPU (Graphics Processing Unit)

A GPU is a specialized hardware component used to accelerate the processing of graphics and parallel computing tasks, often used in AI training.

Example in Self-Storage

GPUs can be used to train machine learning models that optimize self-storage facility operations more quickly.


Multimodal AI systems can process and generate content in multiple modalities, such as text, images, and sound.

Example in Self-Storage

A multimodal AI system can analyze both text and images in customer reviews to provide more comprehensive insights into self-storage facility performance.

NeRF (Neural Radiance Fields)

NeRF is an AI technique for 3D scene reconstruction from 2D images.

Example in Self-Storage

NeRF can be used to create 3D visualizations of self-storage facilities based on 2D floor plans and images. This can enable customers to explore the space virtually via a website.

XAI (Explainable AI)

XAI refers to the practice of making AI systems more transparent and understandable, especially in their decision-making processes.

Example in Self-Storage

XAI can be applied to self-storage pricing models to provide tenants with clear explanations for how rental rates are determined based on factors like unit size and facility location.

👩‍💻 Software General

API (Application Programming Interface)

API stands for "Application Programming Interface." It is a set of rules and protocols that allow different software applications to communicate and interact with each other.

Example in Self-Storage

A self-storage booking website may use APIs to seamlessly connect with online payment processors and make it easy for customers to reserve units.

ARR (Annual Recurring Revenue)

ARR, or Annual Recurring Revenue, is the total revenue a business expects to receive from subscription-based services or contracts on an annual basis.

Example in Self-Storage

Calculating ARR for a self-storage facility involves adding up all those steady monthly rental payments that roll in year after year.

ACV (Annual Contract Value)

ACV, or Annual Contract Value, is the total revenue a business expects to generate from a customer's annual contract or subscription.

Example in Self-Storage

The ACV in the self-storage industry represents the annual income generated from long-term rental agreements with tenants.

B2B (Business to Business)

B2B, or Business to Business, describes transactions and interactions that occur between one business entity and another, rather than with individual consumers.

Example in Self-Storage

Self-storage providers often engage in B2B partnerships with moving companies to offer special storage deals for their customers.

B2C (Business to Consumer)

B2C, or Business to Consumer, are transactions and interactions between a business and individual consumers who purchase products or services.

Example in Self-Storage

A self-storage facility's B2C strategy involves creating user-friendly websites and marketing campaigns to attract individual customers seeking storage solutions.

Churn RateB2C (Business to Consumer)

Churn rate is the percentage of customers or subscribers who stop using a service or product during a specified time period.

Example in Self-Storage

A high churn rate for a self-storage facility might mean it's time to improve security or customer service to keep tenants happy.

Virtual Management

Virtual management refers to the administration and oversight of business operations, including self-storage facilities, through digital platforms and remote tools.

Example in Self-Storage

With virtual management tools, self-storage owners can oversee their facilities' operations and monitor security cameras from anywhere with an internet connection.

CRM (Customer Relationship Management)

CRM, or Customer Relationship Management, is a strategy and technology used by businesses to manage and analyze customer interactions and data throughout the customer lifecycle.

Example in Self-Storage

A CRM system for self-storage helps facility managers track customer interactions, from inquiries to payments, to provide top-notch service.

CSM (Customer Success Management)

CSM, or Customer Success Management, is about ensuring customers achieve their desired outcomes and derive value from the products or services they use.

Example in Self-Storage

A self-storage CSM strategy might include sending helpful tips on organization to customers or anything else to make their storage experience a breeze.

Data Migration

Data migration is the process of transferring data from one system, storage location, or format to another. This often takes place during software upgrades or transitions.

Example in Self-Storage

When transitioning to a new software system, data migration ensures that all customer records and rental histories come along for the ride.


Deployment refers to the implementation and launch of software, applications, or systems for use in a specific environment or context.

Example in Self-Storage

A successful software deployment at a self-storage facility means everything from online reservations to security systems are up and running smoothly.

IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service)

IaaS, or Infrastructure as a Service, is a cloud computing model that provides virtualized computing resources, such as servers, storage, and networking, as a service.

Example in Self-Storage

Self-storage businesses can utilize IaaS to access cloud-based infrastructure for managing their websites, databases, and security systems.


Integration involves combining and connecting different software applications, systems, or platforms to enable them to work together seamlessly.

Example in Self-Storage

Integrating your self-storage management software with your website and payment processing streamlines the rental process for customers.

LTV (Lifetime Value)

LTV, or Lifetime Value, is the estimated total revenue that a customer is expected to generate over the entire duration of their relationship with a business.

Example in Self-Storage

Calculating the LTV of a self-storage customer accounts for their long-term rental history, showing the revenue potential over the years.

MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenue)

MRR, or Monthly Recurring Revenue, represents the predictable and recurring income a business receives on a monthly basis from subscriptions or contracts.

Example in Self-Storage

MRR includes the monthly rental fees collected from self-storage tenants, providing a stable income stream for facility owners.

PaaS (Platform as a Service)

PaaS, or Platform as a Service, is a cloud computing offering that provides a platform and environment for developers to build, deploy, and manage applications.

Example in Self-Storage

PaaS offers self-storage businesses a ready-made platform for hosting their websites and applications, saving time and effort.

SaaS Metrics

SaaS metrics are performance indicators specific to Software as a Service (SaaS) businesses, measuring key aspects of software usage, customer engagement, and revenue generation.

Example in Self-Storage

SaaS metrics can track the usage and performance of self-storage management software, ensuring optimal functionality for facility owners.


Scalability refers to the ability of a system, software, or infrastructure to handle increased workloads, users, or demands without compromising performance or functionality.

Example in Self-Storage

Scalability in self-storage software allows facility owners to add more units, tenants, and features as their business grows.

SLA (Service Level Agreement)

SLA, or Service Level Agreement, is a formal contract that defines the terms, expectations, and commitments between a service provider and its customers, including service quality and availability.

Example in Self-Storage

An SLA guarantees that your self-storage management software provider will maintain the system's uptime and performance, ensuring uninterrupted service for your facility.

Subscription Model

The subscription model is a business model in which customers pay a recurring fee at regular intervals, typically monthly or annually, to access a product or service.

Example in Self-Storage

Self-storage software providers often offer a subscription model for their services, allowing facility owners to pay a regular fee for access to their platform.

UI/UX (User Interface/User Experience)

 UI/UX, or User Interface/User Experience, encompasses the design and usability of software, applications, or websites to ensure a seamless and satisfying interaction for users.

Example in Self-Storage

A well-designed UI/UX for a self-storage website ensures that customers can easily navigate and reserve units, creating a pleasant experience.


Upselling is a sales technique aimed at persuading customers to purchase additional products or services beyond their initial purchase or subscription.

Example in Self-Storage

Facility managers can use upselling techniques to offer customers add-ons like insurance coverage or packing supplies when they rent storage units.

Cart Abandonment

Cart abandonment occurs when an online shopper adds items to their shopping cart but does not complete the purchase, leaving the cart "abandoned."

Example in Self-Storage

In the self-storage world, cart abandonment refers to potential customers who start the online reservation process but don't finish booking a unit.


GDPR, or General Data Protection Regulation, is a European Union regulation that governs data privacy and protection, including how businesses handle and safeguard personal data.

Example in Self-Storage

Self-storage facilities must comply with GDPR regulations when handling customer data, ensuring their information is protected and used responsibly.

CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost)

CAC, or Customer Acquisition Cost, represents the expenses incurred by a business to acquire new customers, typically including marketing and sales costs.

Example in Self-Storage

 Calculating CAC helps self-storage businesses determine how much they spend on marketing and sales efforts to gain each new tenant.


Retention refers to a business's ability to keep existing customers and prevent them from switching to competitors, often achieved through excellent customer service and value delivery.

Example in Self-Storage

A successful self-storage facility focuses on tenant retention by providing excellent service, security, and convenience, ensuring customers stay for the long haul.

CTR (Click-Through Rate)

 CTR, or Click-Through Rate, is a digital marketing metric that measures the percentage of users who click on a specific link or call-to-action. It is often used to evaluate the effectiveness of online ads.

Example in Self-Storage

Monitoring CTR helps self-storage businesses gauge the effectiveness of their online ads and website content in attracting potential tenants.

CPC (Cost Per Click)

CPC, or Cost Per Click, is a digital advertising metric that represents the price paid by advertisers each time a user clicks on their online advertisement.

Example in Self-Storage

Self-storage facilities running online ads pay a CPC when potential customers click on their ads, driving traffic to their websites.

CLTV (LTV/CLV – Customer Lifetime Value)

 CLTV, or Customer Lifetime Value, is the total expected revenue a business anticipates from a customer over the entire duration of their relationship with the company.

Example in Self-Storage

Self-storage facilities calculate CLTV to understand the potential revenue generated by a customer throughout their entire storage journey.

🏢 Self Storage

FMS (Facility Management Software)

Also referred to as PMS (Property Management System), but we prefer FMS.


An auction is a public sale event where goods or properties, including self-storage units, are sold to the highest bidder. In self-storage, auctions are typically held to sell the contents of delinquent or abandoned units.


Autopay is a payment arrangement in which a tenant authorizes automatic deduction of their rental fees from a designated bank account or credit card on a recurring basis. It ensures timely rent payments without manual intervention.

Customer Experience

Customer experience (CX) encompasses all interactions and impressions a tenant has with a self-storage facility, from initial contact to ongoing interactions. Positive CX is crucial for tenant satisfaction and loyalty.


A lease is a legally binding contract that outlines the terms and conditions of renting a self-storage unit. It specifies details such as rental duration, payment obligations, and tenant responsibilities.


A lead is a potential customer or tenant who has expressed interest in renting a self-storage unit but has not yet completed the rental process. Leads often come from inquiries or website visits.


A lien is a legal claim or hold placed on a tenant's stored belongings as collateral for unpaid rental fees. Self-storage facilities may enforce a lien to recover unpaid debts through auction.

Lien Letter

A lien letter is a formal notice sent by a self-storage facility to a delinquent tenant, informing them of the facility's intent to enforce a lien on their stored belongings if unpaid rental fees are not settled.


Overlocking is a practice in self-storage where a facility manager secures a tenant's unit with a padlock or overlock when rental fees are overdue. This prevents access until payment is made.

REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust)

A REIT is a real estate investment trust that owns and manages income-generating real estate properties, including self-storage facilities. REITs often provide investors with dividends and tax benefits.

Rental Agreement

A rental agreement is a legal contract between a self-storage facility and a tenant, specifying the terms and conditions of storage, including rental rates, unit size, and facility rules.

Revenue Management

Revenue management involves strategic pricing and occupancy optimization techniques used by self-storage facilities to maximize rental income. It considers factors like demand, seasonality, and unit availability.

SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

SEO is a digital marketing strategy used by self-storage businesses to improve their online visibility in search engine results. It aims to increase website traffic and attract potential tenants.

SSA (Self Storage Association)

 The SSA, or Self Storage Association, is a trade organization that represents and supports the self-storage industry. It provides resources, advocacy, and industry information to facility owners and operators.

Square Footage Occupancy

Square footage occupancy refers to the measure of how much space within a self-storage facility's units is currently rented or utilized by tenants. It helps assess the facility's occupancy rate and revenue potential.