What Are the Most Popular Types of Warehouse Shelving?

Depending on your business, the type of warehouse shelving you choose is integral to your budget as well as the organization and flow of your products. Being able to find shelving that installs easily, is durable, and affords some flexibility shouldn’t have to be a frustrating process. We can help you easily find warehouse shelving that suits your warehouse and products.

There are many different styles, designs, and makes to choose from, so finding the best warehouse shelving can be a difficult task for a business. There are a few options that are considered industry standards;  here are the five most popular warehouse shelving types in use today. Today, this shelving is used in retail as well as warehouse settings. Check out the most popular warehouse shelving systems below:

Warehouse Shelving – Top 5 List

Whether you’re dealing with small parts storage or just need to make sense of a backroom retail space, you can accomplish quite a lot with the right type of shelving.

Below, you’ll find some common shelving styles we often carry here at East Coast Storage Equipment.

1. Steel Shelving

steel shelving

is one of the most common and popular types of industrial shelving.

Steel is inexpensive and robust — among many other durable features.

This makes steel shelving highly-cost effective. Regardless of whether you purchase new or used steel shelving, this type of storage equipment can take the brunt of whatever you need to organize and store without bending or collapsing.

Steel shelving systems are normally best for products that are small or work with carton storage systems within a warehouse. This is because steel shelving can provide both normal floor units or high-rise shelving systems for bigger warehouses.

Steel shelving finds use in all kinds of storage environments:

  • Inventory storage
  • File storage
  • Auto parts storage
  • eCommerce storage
  • Non-perishable food storage

When choosing steel shelving, you’ll also want to consider whether you’d prefer the clip style or the (more outdated) nut-and-bolt set-up. 

Clip-style shelving uses compression clips to make shelves height-adjustable while offering a sturdy foundation for even the heaviest materials. Clips are considered easier to manipulate than the nut-and-bolt style, which requires tools to adjust.

2. Rivet Shelving

rivet shelving

Compared to steel shelving, rivet shelving is just as durable and versatile. 

In fact, rivet shelves are known for their high load capacity, making them suitable for storing heavy items. However, it’s crucial to check the specific load capacity of the shelving unit and ensure it meets your storage requirements.

With no bolts and clips, rivet shelving is one of the easiest warehouse storage systems to assemble and can efficiently scale for large warehouse storage needs.

This makes rivet shelving a very common type of shelving for facilities that want to store heavier objects.

Rivet shelving can leverage different types of shelves, too. Warehouses usually have the option of particle board or wire shelves. Wire is often preferred because it can endure most types of temperatures and weather — a perfect choice for cold storage environments

Rivet shelving is also more adjustable than, for example, nut and bolt steel shelving. This allows for highly customizable systems that can help you maximize storage on the warehouse floor.

3. Wire Shelving

wire shelving

When you need better visibility within a shelving unit as well as optimized air circulation, then wire shelving is a great option.

Just note wire shelving sometimes is not as durable and strong as steel or rivet shelving. But it can still handle a good amount of weight without issues.

Wire shelving makes the list as one of the most common types of shelving that warehouses can utilize. This is especially the case for warehouses that need better sight lines for products and want less dust collecting on the shelving units. 

Wire shelving also finds use in:

  • Retail — perfect for displaying and organizing merchandise.
  • Healthcare — to store suppliers, medication and equipment.
  • Hospitality — the preferred choice for housekeeping and maintenance storage.

This type of warehouse shelving is also one of the easier types of units to assemble for both smaller and larger-scale warehouses.

4. Bulk Rack Shelving

Bulk Rack Shelving

Despite its name, bulk rack shelving isn’t really “bulky” at all. 

Rather, it’s a light-duty shelving that fits easily into smaller spaces. Durable and boltless, bulk rack shelving is easy to assemble and disassemble for one-time uses.

Here are a few things you should know about bulk rack style shelving:

  1. Bulk rack shelving is for light to medium-sized loads.
  2. This shelving type offers access from all sides
  3. Bulk racking systems can manage hand-stacked materials, boxes and bins.
  4. For facilities with limited storage space, bulk rack is a great choice.

It’s also a great option for hand-stacking materials for flexible storage as some bulk rack shelving accepts caster wheels. This makes moving shelves from one place to another painless.


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5. Clipless Shelving

Clipless Shelving

Clipless shelving, like Lozier S-Series “backroom” shelving, has become a go-to option for all kinds of storage applications, from retail backrooms and warehouses to residential garages and basements. 

Its adaptability allows it to accommodate a wide range of items and sizes.

Generally constructed from shelving components like steel bracing and particle board, the absence of clips or hardware simplifies the assembly process, making it quick and easy to put together or disassemble the shelving unit without the need for specialized tools.

Though they are lightweight and easy to maintain, clipless shelves can hold an impressive 500 to 700 lbs, depending on the base shelving unit.

Understanding Your Shelving Options with East Coast Storage Equipment

Now that you have a better understanding of the types of shelving, it’s time to find a reputable supplier.

East Coast Storage Equipment is your go-to choice for all things storage and material handling equipment. We carry a huge selection of industrial metal shelving to make outfitting your facility easy.

We also offer a broad selection of services like consultation and equipment installation to help your businesses grow. Get in touch today to learn more about your shelving options.


February 19, 2020

Good article!

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