Order picking is a warehouse process that is heavily dependent on speed and accuracy to be carried out successfully. The efficiency of your picking operation can have a direct effect on order delivery times and customer satisfaction. To optimize your picking operations for high efficiency, it is important to choose the right picking system and equipment for your business. In this article, we will specifically focus on how to select the right picking cart for your operations.
For more information about the different types of equipment you can use to improve the efficiency of your operations, read our article: Operating an eCommerce Warehouse: Maximizing Efficiency with the Right Equipment
What are Warehouse Picking Carts?
Warehouse order picking carts are used to move items between different locations in a warehouse. They can be used in any warehouse or backroom operation for stocking, picking, and transporting inventory. They come in different designs but generally could be described as lightweight, open containers on wheels. Some picking carts have several containers, whereas others may have shelves.
The benefit of using picking carts is the ability for employees to pick and move items at the same time, resulting in fewer trips and a reduced need for workstations. It is also less physically demanding to move items on carts.
Factors to Consider When Selecting Picking Carts
Using the correct type of carts for your business can help speed up picking processes. There are several factors to consider:
Type of Products
Evaluate the types of products you have in your inventory, including their weight, shape, and size. Order picking carts come in different sizes and load capacities. Some may have additional shelves or containers to accommodate more smaller-sized products, while others have fewer, larger shelves for big and bulky items.
Ease of Access
Different picking carts may have different access points. For example, open frame carts allow access to products on all four sides while others may have 2 or 3 open sides. For operations with quick turnarounds, easy access can improve efficiency. On the flip side, semi-closed carts offer more protection for products.
Same or Multiple SKUs
If you have products with different SKUs that need to be picked at the same time, using a cart with several tiers of shelves or containers can help separate items. You will want to consider the range of products that get picked most commonly before deciding on carts.
Order picking carts have different features and accessories that can be used to make them fit your business. One of the common accessories used with carts is bins and totes. These are great for separating different items and organizing small parts.
Different Types of Picking Carts
Picking carts come in many different options and can include wire, plastic, or steel shelving. Wire shelving carts minimize dust buildup and increase visibility whereas stainless steel carts are more durable and non-corrosive. Plastic carts are a lower-cost option for lighter products.
Stock Picking Carts
Stock picking carts can be made from steel, resin, or wire and come in various formats. A lot of times they will have an additional container to hold a clipboard, barcode scanner etc. They also come with several tiers of shelving to sort different products.
Also referred to as service carts, utility carts are a versatile option. They are usually very light and easy to move. Utility carts can be steel or plastic depending on the use. They most commonly have two tiers of shelving with different heights of clearance between the shelves.
Also known as truck carts, these types of carts are generally used for heavy items with a flat bottom.
If you have smaller products and many different SKUs, batch-picking carts may be a good fit for you. These types of carts have several levels of shelves. Plastic bins are placed on the shelves to sort products into groups.
It is also common for a warehouse to have several different kinds of carts. If you carry a lot of different types of products, or your inventory varies seasonally, you may want to consider investing in several different designs of carts. By choosing the right picking cart for your business, you will be able to improve efficiency and cut down on order processing times.
Low-Profile Hopper Carts
Low-profile hopper carts are built low to the ground to easily fit under low clearance equipment. They are designed similarly to utility carts in that they have four casters and are moved using a handle. Although mostly used for transporting waste products, low-profile hopper carts are versatile enough to carry products and parts.
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American Storage & Logistics Has Picking Carts In Stock
American Storage and Logistics has been a leader in new, used, and refurbished warehousing equipment for over 50 years. We have all of your warehouse needs from carts to shelving to storage bins in stock, and ready to ship! If you are in the mid-Michigan area near Grand Rapids, Lansing, Kalamazoo, or Battle Creek, you can purchase carts online and pick them up at our warehouse the same day, or get them delivered to your location as soon as tomorrow. Many of our products are also available to ship nationwide via UPS.
We also provide design and consultation services. If you need help with your order just give us a call at 866-690-5392 or contact us on our website!