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Advantages of Using Carton Flow for eCommerce Fulfillment

Carton Flow Tracks Storage Solution

The eCommerce industry has always thrived on speed. But will it be able to keep up with customers’ expectations of speed moving forward? 

According to a study by Santa Clara University's Retail Management Institute, most eCommerce brands and businesses are falling short of their shoppers' preferred fulfillment speeds - and it's costing them sales.

The average eCommerce fulfillment process takes five days or longer. Meanwhile:

  • 90% of eCommerce shoppers said delivery should be five days or less
  • 62% said three-day shipping should be standard
  • And more than a third (38%) expect delivery in two days.

The same study found 56% of abandoned carts could be traced to fulfillment speed mismatches, highlighting the severity of this misalignment. So what should eCommerce brands do?

Considering a space-saving solution like carton flow to better optimize your eCommerce fulfillment operation is one piece of the puzzle that can make a big impact. Let’s explore the topic further.

SpanTrack Carton Flow Beds

Understanding Carton Flow Systems

Carton flow systems, also known as gravity flow, flow racking, and roller racking, are a dynamic storage solution that uses gravity to automatically move products through the order fulfillment process. Carton flow racks enhance fulfillment operations by:

  • Streamlining replenishment
  • Improving space optimization
  • And supporting speedier and more efficient order picking — an essential benefit for eCommerce businesses.

Rollers or wheels allow goods to smoothly and securely progress through the order fulfillment process. At the same time, strategically inclined shelves aid the pull of gravity with a gentle slope, ensuring effortless FIFO rotation, convenient access for pickers, and streamlined replenishment. 

Carton Flow Improves Order Picking Efficiency

Carton flow systems can improve every order picking outcome — from accuracy and productivity to travel and search time. Densely packing static warehouse shelves may help space optimization, but it significantly impacts visibility and accessibility for order pickers. Carton flow racking systems improve picker accessibility and visibility immediately upon installation. 

Carton flow racks’ high carton visibility and automatic replenishment at the point of pick ensures goods are always within your pickers’ “golden zone”, reducing worker strain and improving efficiency. Restocking also sees a boost in efficiency, since carton flow racks can be restocked from the back as picking continues in the front. Finally, carton flow’s space-efficient design allows you to store more SKUs in the same amount of space. Thus, travel time and search time are significantly improved by condensing the overall footprint of the order picking operation. 

The Benefit to Your eComm Business: The benefits of carton flow racks on order picking efficiency are significant in the eCommerce omnichannel fulfillment space. Carton flow systems have been shown to increase operational efficiency in eCommerce omnichannel fulfillment environments by as much as 75%!

Carton Flow Increases Storage Capacity

Carton flow systems also significantly increase warehouse storage capacity by optimizing space utilization. Carton flow racks’ automatic replenishment empowers fulfillment operations to finally capitalize on the full depth of their industrial shelving space, instantly expanding capacity. 

This increased storage capacity allows warehouses to store more products in the same footprint, while still improving picker accessibility. The flexible and customizable nature of carton flow racking systems also makes it easy to build storage systems that adapt to a wide range of product sizes and weights.

The Benefit to Your eComm Business: Increased storage capacity means more inventory and SKUs can be onsite and ready for transport, improving order cycle time and setting the stage for faster delivery. 

Carton Flow Enhances Inventory Management

Inventory management can also be upgraded by implementing carton flow systems.

Carton flow racking systems’ rear-loading, front-picking design promotes automatic adherence to first in, first out (FIFO) best practices. As pickers remove goods at the point of pick, the carton or goods stocked directly after said goods will slide to the front to prepare for picking and clear space for restocking in the rear.

The improved visibility of inventory levels created by carton flow racking systems also simplifies inventory management and transforms restocking into an efficient and intuitive process.

The Benefit to Your eComm Business: Carton flow systems minimize the risk of product expiration or obsolescence. They also offer improved visibility of inventory, which streamlines monitoring and restocking and leads to more efficient and timely inventory control.

Carton Flow Streamlines Order Fulfillment Processes

The combined benefits of carton flow systems leads to comprehensive, multifaceted improvements to your order fulfillment process. 

Improved order picking outcomes, expanded storage capacity, simplified inventory management, and effortless integration with other efficiency-boosting assets like automated conveyor systems and robot pickers makes carton flow systems the perfect upgrade for streamlining the entire order fulfillment process. 

The Benefit to Your eComm Business: Reduced order cycle times means happier customers and more sales. In a time when consumers are making their desires clear and most eCommerce businesses continue to miss the mark, streamlining your order fulfillment with carton flow systems can provide a lucrative advantage.

Carton flow SpanTrack wheel bed warehouse

UNEX’s Carton Flow Solutions 

UNEX offers multiple space-saving carton flow solutions. 

Our SpanTrack Lane and SpanTrack Wheel Bed solutions are designed to maximize space utilization and storage capacity, minimize strain on fulfillment workers, and improve productivity and accuracy on the pick floor immediately following installation. 

SpanTrack Carton Flow RollersSpanTrack Lane

SpanTrack Lanes are durable, customizable carton flow rollers designed to drop directly into your existing pallet structures. 

SpanTrack Lane is capable of supporting a wide range of carton weights and sizes and eliminates hang-ups by supporting top-notch carton speed, stability, and security with 300% more product contact than competitors. 

SpanTrack Lane reduce picker strain with automatic carton replenishment, easy restocking, and ergonomic and customizable end treatments.

SpanTrack Universal Wheel BedsSpanTrack Wheel Bed 

SpanTrack Wheel Beds are made-to-order carton flow beds that maximize storage space and carton throughput using your existing pallet racking. 

Ideal for irregularly shaped products of multiple sizes, UNEX’s carton flow beds provide industry-leading flexibility, space optimization, and order-picking enhancements. Industrial build quality and engineered-to-order specifications ensure SpanTrack Wheel Bed holds up to heavy activity for years to come.


Work with the Carton Flow Experts

Implementing carton flow systems in your eCommerce fulfillment process is one of the fastest and most affordable ways eCommerce brands can catch up with consumers' lightning-quick delivery demands. 

If your eCommerce fulfillment process could benefit from enhanced efficiency, maximized storage capacity, improved inventory management, and shorter order cycles, investing in a carton flow system should be at the top of your to-do list. To learn more about UNEX’s carton flow systems, contact us today!

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