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6 Storage Solutions For Business Expansion

smart storage solutions business expansion

Proper storage is an essential aspect of any business, especially if it operates mainly by selling all sorts of goods or merchandise. For one, it allows you to preserve the quality of products which may lead to better customer satisfaction. It also makes inventory a lot easier to deal with. Moreover, a storage solution should help you keep tabs on the company's equipment. 

However, it's worth noting that most storage solutions take time and money to put up. Therefore, a mistake can cause heavy financial losses, even more so for a business that currently has expansion plans in mind. Although, using companies specializing in storage such as Seaside Storage may be worth it. 

One such mistake is choosing a storage solution that's unsuitable for your business needs. Not only will you be wasting money, but you're also making it harder for your workers to use them too. If that's your biggest problem at the moment, these six storage solutions may prove to be quite helpful as a reference. 

1. Cabinets And Lockers 

Typically, when you enter a company's warehouse, you'll often see shelves, racks, or even flooring used for storage. You'll rarely see a cabinet or locker in the warehouse, but that doesn't make them obsolete. In fact, they're the simplest type of storage solution out there. 

Nevertheless, cabinets and lockers do a pretty decent job in storing all sorts of merchandise. Furthermore, it’s comforting to know that they offer relative security. You'll also find that the contents are safe from external conditions such as moisture, extreme heat and cold, and humidity, all of which can affect the quality of your items. This is one of the main advantages of cabinets and lockers over other storage solutions. 

But what makes cabinets and lockers an interesting choice is the fact that they come in various shapes and sizes. Hence, you can modify the design to fit the goods your business handles. For example, if your company handles paint, you can design the cabinets to be taller than usual so that you can pile up your stocks. For these reasons, cabinets and lockers are said to be a popular choice among companies. 

2. Pallet Racking 

Pallet racking is said to be one of the most commonly-used storage solutions by businesses for their warehouses. It makes use of steel frames to create a foundation where you can stack and store belongings on multiple levels. At the bottom of each material are pallets or skids that serve as a support for the stored goods. 

Pallet racking is widely popular mainly because it takes up minimal space yet still stores vast volumes of items. Much like cabinets and lockers, it's possible to adjust the width or height of the racking, although there are limitations. 

Contrarily, racks don't provide the same level of security as storage cabinets. The goods are still exposed to external conditions. While there are security measures, the merchandise can accidentally fall off the racking system and get damaged. 

Be that as it may, its minimal space consumption makes it an excellent storage solution, especially if your aim is to store as many goods as possible with only a limited budget. One can say it's the perfect option for expanding businesses. It's also worth noting that pallet racks come in different types: 

• Selective 

This is the most popular type of pallet racking for storage. It's where each rack has a relatively long distance from one another, which allows workers to quickly pick up a pallet from both sides without unloading others. The name comes from the fact that you can select which ones to unload without bothering other pallets. 

• Double-Deep 

Double-deep racks are basically two selective racks placed side-by-side. That means if you want to take out a particular pallet, you must either unload the one at the front first or go to the other side. Either way, it makes unloading a lot more of a hassle. But since it makes full use of the space, it often increases storage capacity by a considerable amount. 

• Drive-In 

Drive-in pallet racks, also known as drive-thru racks, are designed so forklifts can enter the rack and load or unload pallets of goods quickly. It's the ideal option if your merchandise isn't the type to stay in the warehouse for long. For example, if you handle perishable items, they most likely would leave the warehouse right after procurement. 

• Cantilever 

Cantilever got its name as it uses cantilever beams to support its arms, allowing it to store heavy and long materials that you normally can't place and keep in regular pallets. 

• Carton Flow 

Carton flow racks consist of slanted racks that often have rollers or wheels. These components allow gravity to do its work and move the pallets of goods from the back to the front where you can unload them from the rack and into the forklifts. 

• Multi-Tier 

For businesses with a warehouse building with high ceilings, multi-tier racking is the way to go. It renovates the entire floor and converts it into a rack consisting of multiple tiers, hence the name. With this system, to get a particular pallet of goods, you must first get into the floor where it's in using the newly built stairs and take it from there. 

If you decide to choose racking as your storage solution, you must also take your time selecting which type you'll select. After all, despite belonging to the same category, each of the abovementioned examples has diverse designs which allow for different applications. And as stated earlier, you don't want to pick a design that isn't suitable for your storage needs. 

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3. Shelving 

Shelving is similar to racking, except it doesn't make use of pallets to support the weight of the goods. Instead, the shelves are made of durable steel frames, while the actual shelves are thicker than usual, typically as thick as skids or pallets. Each shelf often consists of several rows and columns, storing goods side-by-side and/or back-to-back to save space. Moreover, just like racking, there are several types of shelving for storage. These include: 

• Static 

As you may already know, shelves usually are pieces of furniture that you can place anywhere. However, static shelves are those that you install in place. This provides stability to the structure, making it more secure as it means they can’t fall off even with excessive force applied to it. They're similar to what you usually spot in libraries. 

• Mobile 

Mobile shelves are the opposite of static shelves. They're attached to carriages on wheels that can slide across a predetermined floor track, allowing you to position the shelf in a specific area within the warehouse. This type of shelving system for storage often consists of a turn handle that'll enable you to move the shelves to the left, right, back or front. 

4. Mezzanine System 

The mezzanine system is relatively similar to multi-tier racking in that both use floors to serve as storage. That's also why this storage solution is often called mezzanine flooring. 

For your reference, mezzanine is a term that pertains to the practice of taking a portion of the building and installing in it an extra floor that doesn't extend to the ceiling. 

The mezzanine system's main benefit is that it doesn't take up much space in the building as it only uses the newly installed floor, while at the bottom of it, you can add other types of storage solutions like the ones above. This allows you to make use of the height of your building, much like multi-tier racking, rather than only its square area calculated by the length and width. 

5. Wire Partitions 

As the name suggests, a wire partition is a storage solution that uses wires, particularly woven wire mesh, to create a rectangular box where you can store goods. 

It's often seen in prisons as security enclosures, but it's also a popular choice as a storage solution by businesses. That's because it offers a relatively high level of security, which means goods contained within the partition are somewhat safe from harm. However, unlike cabinets, wire partitions don't protect the goods entirely, as they're still exposed to external conditions like heat. 

Wire partitions are often used in conjunction with other types of storage solutions, particularly cabinets and lockers. With such a combination, you can maximize the protection of your stored offerings. 

6. Smart Warehouses 

If you're not exactly tight on budget, you should also consider converting your regular warehouse into a smart warehouse. That means you'll add all sorts of machines that automatically perform tasks, making inventory and storage a lot easier to deal with. 

Examples of technologies for your smart warehouse include robotics, radio-frequency identification, Internet of Things, and artificial intelligence. To bind them all together, you’re going to need a highly dependable warehouse management system. 

A smart warehouse boasts incredible levels of efficiency and convenience, but they're also relatively difficult to implement for budding companies as it requires a lot of money upfront. 

Wrap Up On Smart Storage Solutions

While it's true that you have several options to choose from for your business expansion's storage, it's not something you can decide on without putting much thought into it. You must consider both the type of goods your business handles as well as the specifications of each type of storage solution in order to choose the right one. With that said, this article should come in quite handy to help you with your decision.