Types and Advantages of Pallet Racking Systems

(Please feel free to watch our video instead of reading)

If one can use a room to store an inventory, we can call it as a warehouse. The size, shape etc. may vary from one warehouse to other. But, what makes a warehouse professionally different is exactly how the process happening within. The profit is always directly proportional to the effective utilization of available resources. There are many aspects to be considered while designing a warehouse for business. How to calculate the space in a warehouse, how to place the numbering in the racks, how effectively a picking should happen etc. are already discussed in our previous blogs. Through this blog, we are focusing on Pallet Racking System where we discuss about the different techniques to arrange the inventories in a rack for an easy and quick access. The Pallet Racking System can be classified mainly as 6 types. 1. Selective Pallet Racking System 2. Double-Deep Pallet Racking System 3. Drive-in/Drive thru Pallet Racking System 4. VNA (Very Narrow Aisle) Pallet Racking System 5. Push-back Pallet Racking System 6. Gravity Flow Pallet Racking System The given image gives you an initial idea of how these are being classified in terms of overall performance.

Selective pallet racking system This is the most commonly used racking technique and obviously, the most cost effective one. This has less cost per square meter to store the inventories, but only upto an extend. This can also be one of the most expensive types when it comes to more than 3000 or 4000 racks at a time. This stores one item at one slot as given in the figure. So, main use of this type is the direct access to each inventory that makes it 100% selective.


  • Structure Costs is less

  • Easy installation and configuration

  • Better stock rotation

  • Easy order picking and 100% selectivity

  • Direct access to inventories

  • High density storage

  • This can be used in conjunction with all types of trucks

Suitable for Customers:

  • FMCGs

Double Deep Pallet Racking System This is almost similar to Selective Pallet Racking System but, where it differs is the two decks of inventory in one slot of the rack. This requires specialized pallet handling equipment and the most common forklift used here is the reach truck.


  • Around 30% more capacity than Selective Pallet Racking System

  • Less expensive comparing with Drive-In Racking, but increases capacity by up to 30%

  • This might not require high number of homogeneous pallet types

Suitable for Customers:

  • Place where Drive-In Racking are not possible

  • Better Density and Better Storage - maximum cubic space

  • Reduces aisles space increases cubed space utilization

Drive-In and Drive-Thru Pallet Racking System:

Drive-In Pallet Racking System: This loads and retrieves from the same side, creating First-In-Last-Out (FILO) inventory retrieval organization.

Drive-Thru Pallet Rack Systems: This loads from one side and unload from the other to create First-In-First-Out inventory retrieval (FIFO)


  • Density Storage is much more ; maximizing cubic space

  • Reduces aisles space further increases cubed space utilization

  • Maximum pallets stored per cubic meters than any other storage systems

Suitable for Customers:

  • Bulk goods of the same type

  • Best for cold and chill storage applications

  • Perfectly suitable for seasonal goods

Very Narrow Aisle (VNA) Racking System: Here, pallet racks are placed very closer each other, than other pallet racking solutions. VNA is one of the best methods of increasing pallet storage within a given area and it utilizes the advantages of selective racking. This type demands a special fork lift that reduces the aisle space by a certain percentage compared to other traditional fork lifts. VNA aisles are usually 6.6 feet wide, providing nearly 40-50% more floor space than a selective pallet rack system.


  • Better stock rotation

  • Perfect order picking and 100% selectivity

  • Rapid handling

  • Increased space by an additional 40-50% over Selective pallet Racking System

  • Uses guide rails or wire guidance for fast movement in aisle

  • Maintain FIFO

Suitable for Customers:

  • Need a super flat floor

  • FMCG

  • Different categories of Goods

Gravity Flow Racking System:

This type of rack of typically a downward-sloped storage conveyor. This allows all the subsequent pallets to move into the forefront, once the preceding item is removed. So, this type known as First In First Out (FIFO) racking.


  • Up to 50-60% less floor space than conventional pallet racking

  • FIFO provides automatic stock rotation

  • Dedicated load and retrieval faces mean only two fork truck aisles are required

  • Better speed of operation within the warehouse

Suitable for Customers:

  • Need first-in first-out principle

  • Drinks industry

  • Only two fork truck aisles are required, one for loading and one for retrieval.

Push Back Pallet racking systems: This allows pallets to be stored on either side of an aisle, that further gives you higher storage density than other forms of racking. Let us put an example here. Suppose when the second pallet comes in, it push the first pallet back and rests on the middle cart. Similarly, the 3rd pallet pushes back the first 2 pallets and rests on the bottom cart. When unloading the push-back rack, the sequence is reversed.


  • High Density Storage- maximizing cubic space - Not Aisles

  • Quick easy access to different size of pallet types

  • Pallet automatically presented at the rack pick face

  • Reduces truck travel distances, and cuts cycle times

Suitable for Customer:

  • Food Distribution

  • Manufacturing

  • Third Party Logistics Facilities

  • Automotive

  • Pharmaceuticals

Our software helps you to streamline your Warehouse Management Process!! Please send your questions/doubts to us and we will call you!

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