5 Tips on How to Maximize Warehouse Space Utilization

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There are several reasons why a warehouse might not be used to its full potential. For example, it can run out of space due to overbuying products. Also, companies may sometimes buy new products and bring them to their warehouses without disposing of the old ones. If your warehouse business requires hiring non citizens, an EB-3 visa can be a great option for your HR needs.

The demand for certain products increases or decreases over time, so the amount of those goods in the warehouse should change accordingly. Poor space optimization can lead to a major loss in profit and an over-capacitated warehouse.

There isn’t one universal solution for maximizing a warehouse’s space utilization, but there are several steps you can take to use its storage potential fully. So let’s check them out.

1. Use the Vertical Space

Rather than placing your goods next to each other, try using your warehouse’s vertical space to increase floor space. Before doing that, find out if there are any regulations you need to check before you place your goods vertically. For example, some new buildings have Easily Suppression Fast Response sprinkler systems, so if you have those, make sure your storage layout doesn’t disrupt their function.

This method of stacking your goods on top of each other can help you organize them by how fast they come in and out of the warehouse. Place the slower-selling items higher than the ones that sell quickly.

Although you may not have known about it until now, you can hire a professional to help you maximize your vertical storage space and improve storage operations. Here’s more info.

To make use of the vertical space in your warehouse, in most cases, you’ll need racks. Here are some of the most commonly used rack types for warehouse storage:

  • Carton flow racksare great for first-in, first-out goods, like food and drinks. These racks have leaned panels that push the older goods first, so they are the first ones to go out.
  • Pallet racksare the most common warehouse racks. Using a forklift, you can quickly move them around the warehouse, depending on the variety of goods in the storage.
  • Cantilever racks don’t have frontal columns, which gives them much more horizontal space. They are excellent for storing lengthy goods, such as pipes, lumbers, etc.
  • Mezzanines serve as platforms that give extra storage space. In other words, it’s a storage level above the ground floor. However, make sure the ground floor can handle it.

2. Calculate Your Warehouse Space Utilization

You can’t assess how much space you can utilize if you don’t know the precise size of your warehouse. So, you need to measure it. To calculate your warehouse’s storage capacity in cubic feet, multiply your total square footage of usable space by your facility’s clear height.

Having underutilized space in your warehouse could be a total waste of your warehouse’s potential. The same goes for overcrowded warehouses.Usually, the facility is considered out of space if the percentage of the used storage goes to 85%. It’s best to avoid going above this number because it might slow down the speed at which goods come in and go out of the warehouse.

Besides calculating your warehouse’s space utilization, you can also calculate your current space utilization. For this, you should include the size of your inventory in the equation, which you can find in your Warehouse Management System (WMS).

To do this, divide the capacity of your products by the total storage area, and multiply by a hundred to get the percentage. You can use logical sections instead of WMS—just figure out how much space each row occupies (using percentages) and divide by the number of all units in your storage.

3. Organize Your Inventory Better

Organizing your inventory will mostly depend on the size of your warehouse and the types of goods you are storing. For example, you can classify your goods by their size and keep items that are the same or similar in size together.

If some items are smaller or larger than the rest of your inventory, keep them on different racks. Not only will you save space, but you will also have a better-organized space in your warehouse.

You should consider categorizing your goods by their Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) so you understand how they move through the warehouse. Some items cannot stand on the shelves for too long or need to be refrigerated.

Also, keep in mind that some items sell more than others. The usual practice is to put the higher-selling products in more easily-accessible places.

4. Narrow the Aisle Width

Make sure the isles in your warehouse aren’t too wide. If you narrow them down, you’ll save a lot of space.

However, don’t bring the racks too close to each other, as you might make the movement through aisles more difficult and potentially slow down the operating efficiency. The aisles should be wide enough for forklifts to move freely.

5. Use the Floor to Its Full Potential

Because of its accessibility, the floor is an excellent solution for storing goods that sell quickly. Just make sure to keep it clean and tidy. Any debris or old inventory left on it might be a safety hazard to your employees.


Utilizing your warehouse’s space to its maximum can be quite a challenge. If you want to do it right, there are a few things you can do.

First, use vertical space as much as possible. Second, consider using mezzanine levels and other creative storage solutions. Lastly, organize your inventory in the best way possible.

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