Slotting: A Place for Everything

Slotting in a warehouse optimizes the location of each SKU based on unique product characteristics, size of the warehouse, labor efficiency and replenishment requirements.

Slotting supports the movement of SKUs, whether fast or slow moving. It also improves throughput so that customer orders can be delivered on time. Effective slotting can also reduce product damage, improve worker productivity, and speed fulfillment.

Slotting is the process of allocating products (SKUs) to locations in a warehouse according to business rules and product characteristics. Effective slotting requires an understanding of a company’s business and goals, taking into account the physical size and aspects of the warehouse, current and future material handling equipment, SKU makeup, seasonal capacity changes, worker skill and customer service levels.

In the slotting process, each SKU must be assigned the proper location in the correct storage media, at an appropriate access level in the optimum warehouse zone. High velocity SKUs are better handled in A-frames or pallet positions because of the increased need for replenishing inventory. Slow movers can be stored on static shelving. In automated processes, medium velocity products are suitable for carousels or AS/RS. If not slotted properly, a warehouse can suffer from decreased throughput and efficiency, resulting in unmet customer service levels and higher costs.


According to Edward H. Frazelle, president and CEO of Logistics Resources International, “Less than 15 percent of the items in a typical warehouse are slotted correctly. Consequently, most warehouses are spending 10 to 30 percent more per year than they should because the warehouse is improperly slotted.”

To help you keep costs at a minimum, UNEX provides a powerful slotting tool, SKUBE, that tracks and analyzes product movement, then suggests locations for SKUs. UNEX also offers storage medium for fast, medium and slow movers – from flow racks to static shelving and everything in between. Proper slotting reduces product touches, increases inventory turns, improves picker performance by reducing travel time, and drives throughput because pickers know where products are located.

Make sure you have a place for everything with proper slotting analysis and storage products from UNEX.