How Self Storage Can Help You Manage Your Retail Inventory

Store owner in retail storage space

No one ever said running a retail business was easy.

From managing employees to worrying about overhead to keeping up with general building maintenance, there’s a lot to worry about.

And there’s your inventory, which includes not only your retail products but also your supplies. When you were starting out, you might have been able to keep this stuff in your garage, but now that you have an actual store, things are getting tougher to manage and it’s time to start thinking about finding commercial storage space.

That’s why we’ve put together this list of business storage solutions you can use to make your inventory easier to manage.

80 20 rule1. Remember the 80/20 rule

If you’re not familiar with that rule, it works like this: 80 percent of your sales typically come from 20 percent of your merchandise.

Therefore, it’s important to keep these items front and center and not hidden away in a storage space. You can reserve that space for the rest of your merchandise, provided that it’s close at hand. That way you can access them upon request or ship them out as needed while still keeping your retail space clean.

2. Invest in outside storage space

Storage spaceAt a certain point, however, you might find that you have more inventory than you have room to store things. When this day comes, moving these things off site to a self-storage unit might be the easiest, most cost-effective answer.

Commercial storage units offer things like climate control and added security while costing substantially less than what you’re paying for retail space or what you’d pay for commercial warehousing space.

Drive-up storage is ultra-convenient for ease of access as well as loading and unloading.  Being able to get to your inventory quickly and easily makes rotating in and out of your retail location much more efficient.

Flexibility is also key.  Month to month leasing arrangements provide maximum flexibility as you only lease units as you need them.  Meaning, lease multiple units during peak storage times and quickly downsize when your storage requirements dictate a smaller footprint.

In fact, considering the cost difference it is easy to make a case for moving your retail inventory to a commercial storage unit and minimizing your commercial retail space. The annual savings from cutting your retail space by even 10% could be significant. Obviously, retail businesses selling larger products would benefit the most from this strategy – think mattresses, furniture, etc.

Woman checking inventory3. Know what you have before you move

Before you start moving inventory to your new commercial storage space, take stock of what you have. Taking apart your current inventory in storage without proper planning and lists can result in confusion and that can lead to lost time and lost products.

Take note of anything in your inventory that might be especially valuable or that needs climate control and store them accordingly.

It might also be a good time to get rid of inventory that’s out of date or that isn’t selling. There’s no reason to pay to store items you know you won’t use.

Reading map of commercial storage spaceOnce you’ve begun to store your retail inventory off-site, there are a few ways you can make things easier on yourself and your staff:

  • Make a map – Creating a map of your commercial storage unit can help you outline where things are and how traffic should flow in and out.
  • Make sure you have room to work – It’s one thing to load up a storage unit with things you know you won’t need for months or even years. But if you’re storing important inventory, give yourself some space so that you can safely get in and out of your commercial storage unit and shift things around as needed.
  • Think about access – Who will have access to your retail inventory storage unit? If your business has several employees, you may want to designate a chosen few who are responsible for storage-related tasks.

Is your business running out of space? Delta Storage can help. We’re a leader in commercial storage solutions, with law firms, contractors and wholesalers all calling on us to store their paperwork, merchandise or supplies.

We offer extended hours and 24-hour access, alarmed units with high definition security camera, climate-controlled units and tax benefits for business accounts.

Contact us today to speak to a sales associate and learn how Delta Storage can give your business room to breathe and grow.