Get organized with utility shelving
Whether your shelving will need to support a small selection of frequently used products or the entire inventory of a distribution center, some research now can save you a great deal of money in the future. General commercial shelving won't do for industrial environments—heavy goods will require exceptionally sturdy shelves, and shelving must be resilient enough to handle the prodding of warehouse machinery. Utility shelving does not come cheap, so you will want to make the right investment from the very start. Begin by determining the type of shelving that will be best suited to your business and learn some tips to find a good deal.
Industrial shelving can be constructed out of wood, metal, wire or plastic—the material you choose will depend on what is being stored and how much weight the industrial shelf will need to support. Generally, metal shelving is sturdy and suited to the products in industrial environments, and the frame should be able to support the contents without the need for side panels, which may affect accessibility. Wire shelving will be the lightest in weight and won't collect dust or debris, but especially heavy products like liquids should be stored on heavy-duty metal shelves.
Warehouses and distribution centers will get the most from their space with pallet shelving, which is a vertical shelving system that allows for packages to be organized and stacked up to the ceiling. The inventory is typically accessed with forklifts and other automated equipment, and you can add accessories like rack guards and wire mesh decks for more safety and support.
Find the Right Industrial Shelves
Whether you need basic shelving to organize your office or pallet rack systems to hold and protect a huge inventory, you will find a variety of units to choose from. You'll save money in the long run if you can anticipate how your inventory will grow in the future. You may want to start with a basic single unit that allows you to easily add onto it as your storage needs change, or else you can have a customized shelf made to satisfy an atypical workspace.
Shelving can be expensive, but you may be able to get a good deal if you purchase your shelving from a major company that has a large amount of stock. You can expect to pay around $500 for a four-foot vertical metal rack, while a horizontal sheet rack will likely cost around $1,000. If you want to save even more money, consider buying used industrial shelves. You should be able to request a quote online, but you may need to consult with a sales representative in person to get an accurate quote for your unique workspace. Take some time to consider exactly what you need your shelves to do—buying the right type of shelves is more important than finding the cheapest deal.