Racks are an essential component of warehouses. They help organize merchandise, maximize the storage capacity of the facility, and facilitate internal processes, among other benefits.
But not all warehouse racks are the same. In order to multiply the productivity of your warehouse and the profitability of your business, you need to select the right racking system. But considering the number of options currently available, this may sound like a challenging task.
To make things easier for you, we are here with a few helpful pieces of advice that will allow you to pick the best one for your warehouse.
Tips to Help You Select the Right Warehouse Racking System
Consider the below-mentioned tips to find the perfect raking solution for your warehouse:
1. Allocate a Budget
The primary step you need to take when planning to invest in a racking system is to set a budget. Allocating a budget will enable you to use your existing resources wisely to maximize ROI. Furthermore, it helps you understand how much capital you can use at the moment.
While setting a budget is important, leave some wiggle room. Be ready to spend a little extra if you find a racking solution that can support business growth.
2. Cost of Racking System
There are different types of racking systems, each with a different price tag. The cost of a warehouse racking system will vary depending on aspects such as the size and capacity of racks, the material of the racks, the height of the facility, etc.
Remember, the price will also include the cost of the racks, designing the floor layout, the labor costs of installing the racking system, etc. Unfortunately, expensive solutions do not always mean the best, and vice versa. So conduct thorough research and find options that are economical and offer the most value to your business.
3. Define Your Storage Needs
Every business is unique, so before you put money into a racking solution, understand the type of storage your business needs. Common aspects include the quantity, size, weight, and accessibility of your inventory.
For example, drive-through racking systems are ideal for businesses in the food and beverage industries. They offer dense storage solutions that allow storing merchandise in bulk and support FIFO (First In, First Out) inventory management.
At times it may not be easy to decide which racking system is suitable for you. A professional warehouse racking specialist can help you select the ideal one that matches your needs.
4. Assess Durability
High-quality racking systems don’t come cheap, so you want to choose something that lasts a long time. Plus, you want to make sure it withstands wear and tear as well as the load of your merchandise.
Therefore, it only makes sense you assess the durability of the racks and other shelving components. This ensures you not only invest in a racking solution that has the maximum lifespan but is also a safe choice.
5. Load Capacity
For obvious reasons, you should know the load capacity of a specific racking system before buying or installing one in your facility. After all, you want the racks to withhold the load of your merchandise without compromising on the structure of the racking system or the safety of your employees.
But besides this, the beams, shelves, uprights, and braces all must have the same load capacity. The whole racking system can collapse if even a single component has a lesser load capacity than the other components.
6. Availability of Floor Space
You want to pick a racking solution that optimizes the floor space and storage capacity of your facility. So aim at picking a racking system that helps increase storage density.
For instance, a mobile storage system consists of movable racks. That means aisles can be compacted together, allowing you to increase the number of racks in your warehouse. This not only expands usable floor space but also improves the existing storage capacity of your warehouse.
7. Forklift Accessibility
Select a racking solution that offers greater accessibility to merchandise. If you utilize machinery such as forklifts to access items, make sure the aisles are wide enough for them to maneuver in and out while carrying bulky loads.
8. Consider Versatile Racking Solutions
Your warehousing needs can change over time. So look at versatile options that accommodate business growth or downsizing.
A versatile system allows you to reconfigure racking components so you can use the same equipment for different uses and pallet sizes or if you relocate to another facility. So this type of racking system allows you to create a more efficient and productive warehouse.
9. Study Product Flows within the Facility
Your inventory is moving constantly throughout your warehouse, from the receiving dock to storage racks to the shipping area. So choose a racking solution that does not hamper the product flows. In fact, you need to opt for a system that saves valuable floor space. More importantly, it facilitates the movement and management of your inventory.
Racking solutions such as FIFO (first-in, first-out) and LIFO (last-in, first-out) are based on different product flow models. So ensure to opt for one that aligns with the storage needs of your businesses and facilitates inventory management.
10. Think About Custom Solutions
Custom storage racks are the ideal solution for your racking needs. They are designed to fit your budget and the layout of your warehouse. More importantly, they cater to the product flows of your inventory, optimize accessibility, and streamline internal processes.
Moreover, with the right type of shelving for your products, you can improve the vertical storage capacity of your warehouse.
Find the Right Racking Solution
Choosing the right type of racking system allows you to use the space and organize your products more efficiently. However, keep in mind that your racking system is only one of the features you need to consider to run a profitable warehouse.
You should also analyze the layout of your warehouse, implement technology, and optimize warehouse productivity, among other things. This will enable you to boost profits and improve efficiency.