When faced with a huge empty stockroom, storeroom or small warehouse space, finding the most effective and efficient way of fitting it out with shelving is paramount to securing the storage capacity you need.
Plan for perfect shelving
Before starting your project, draft out a simple sketch or plan. If it’s a small area you don’t need to any elaborate plans, although precise measuring is a must. For a larger space you will need more detail or you might want to enlist the assistance of a specialist designer. Either way, getting a plan together will outline how you can maximise your space, make better use of corners or low ceilings, and allow for clearance room and accessibility. You may need to consider pipes, electrical points and sockets too, so this is good way to recognise and negotiate around them.
Masking out your layout with tape on the empty floor will give you a clearer view of reality as well as showing up any imperfections in your plan before the purchasing stage. Walls often aren’t as straight or cleanly angled as they appear so when you have measured, masked and measured again, you are ready to determine the width, depth and height of the shelving that you can accommodate.
To choose the best shelving for you start with the weight of goods you need to store. All shelving systems have a maximum weight capacity, or UDL (Uniformly Distributed Load). In shelving terms, this is the load capacity per shelf. Shelving systems that use chipboard shelves tend to offer the higher weight load bearing with the added benefit of being more competitively priced too. If you’re not sure about UDL and shelf-load ratings, read our simple guide here > and double check your new shelving is right for your business needs.
Another thing to determine your choice might be the ability to change the shelf heights. If your stock rotates constantly, or your storage requirements are likely to change frequently, the facility to adjust heights, add or remove shelves could prove useful to you. Providing you with shelving areas that really are fit for purpose and regulated to suit your stored goods for maximum usage.
Shelves that take the load
Durability is also a prime factor to consider in hard wearing and somewhat dustier or grimier environments. Most quality shelving is constructed of either powder-coated or galvanized steel. This is ideal for the wear and tear, knocks and bumps it’s likely to encounter as well as being anti-corrosive and easy to keep clean.
If you are in the fashion retailing or distribution business, holding stock for apparel needs a completely different approach. Garment Racking provides the volume hanging space necessary to keep fashions flat, crease-free and readily available when refilling the shop floor, or for simple grouping of clothes ahead of onward distribution.
Stacking, organising and labelling
Smaller items may need boxing or bagging up and labelled accordingly. For multiples of miniatures consider stackable, plastic storage bins with a front opening. These come in a variety of sizes so are perfect for collections that you may need to delve in to grab one, two or a few on occasion. You can neatly stack related items on top of one another using your shelving depth to its greatest extent.
Labelling is the corner-stone of any orderly and smoothly-run storeroom, stockroom or warehouse. Keep your system clear and simple to understand and inform all members of staff how to keep it that way.
Magnetic Shelf Label Holders can take printed labels inside and can affix simply to the shelving. Use on each level and print arrows of the direction to signify exactly where your label relates to. This is far superior to handwritten labelling which can be unclear or become illegible over time. Take the time and investment into making your labelling easy to read and use so less wasted time hunting for items or taking down the wrong choice of product.
For more useful shelving information take look at our Shelving & Racking Guide and for a full list of fantastic shelving for warehouses and storerooms, please take a look at our Industrial Shelving range.