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E-Commerce and online shopping puts pressure on distribution and warehousing says Phil Chesworth, MD of Midland Pallet Trucks

The predicted online commerce spend for UK residents in 2013 is expected to hit around £92 billion, and e-commerce sales across the globe are growing by almost 20% every year. More than 80% of the online population has bought something using the internet, placing huge pressure on everything from manufacturing plants to distribution centres in a bid to provide all paying online customers with exactly what they want. Predictably for many, this means that workplace equipment such as pallet trucks and manual stackers must be up to the task at hand, and must be able to carry out their duties in prime condition to ensure that the staggering amounts of orders are met.

Phil Chesworth, Managing Director of Midland Pallet Trucks, the UK’s leading supplier of manual handling solutions, says, "The emphasis on e-commerce and online shopping has placed extra pressure on businesses which rely on distribution centres and warehouses to create and distribute their products. These workplaces need to be permanently at the top of their game, providing high-quality goods in short spaces of time to ensure that goods are distributed in a timely manner. The equipment used in this process is crucial to its success, and apparatus such as pump trucks and manual stacker trucks are some of the most relied upon elements in the process."

In order to speed up working processes and get orders processed much more quickly, pallet trucks with high-load capacities are recommended. They make the entire system of receiving, packing and distributing parcels much more efficient for distribution centres across the country. For a small business, adding one or two of these to the fleet will dramatically scale up the speed at which orders can be processed, and larger companies with larger budgets can add trucks with even further specialist capabilities to improve their operations. Weighing scale pallet trucks remove the need for employees to cart their orders all the way to a designated weighing area, whilst traverse pallet trucks can navigate down narrow aisles rather than having employees skirt the edges of a warehouse to reach their destination.

Manual stacker trucks are also crucial in warehouses and distribution centres, as they help to make better use of space by stacking products vertically rather than taking up valuable floor space. These types of trucks are important in speeding up the entire process of fulfilling online orders, as they lift skids and dies quickly and allow for the efficient storage and retrieval of orders from higher shelves.

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