If you own a retail or grocery store, you know that shopping carts are essential for making sales and improving the customer experience. That said, keeping track of these assets presents a challenge. After all, carts must regularly move in and out of your store to optimize the shopping process. Even with standard security measures in place, your carts can easily get damaged, vandalized, lost, or downright stolen.
Protecting your investment isn’t your only concern when it comes to managing your cart, either. You must also consider how many carts can reasonably fit on your property while ensuring that there are enough for all your patrons.
Without proper storage methods for your carts, your store can become disorganized in more ways than one, and your bottom line will take a hit. First, carts may obstruct your parking lot and foot traffic, hurting your sales and reputation. Second, you may not be able to account for your carts in this mayhem. Third, customers may have no idea where to place their carts after using them, making things even more chaotic. And finally, your carts will get beaten up faster than they would if they had been properly stored and organized.
So, if it’s not abundantly clear already, your store needs to invest in solutions for shopping cart storage. Here we’ll outline seven shopping cart storage solutions that will cut back on clutter, streamline your business, and protect your assets.
1. Interior Cart Corrals
Businesses that have a good number of carts on hand should consider investing in shopping cart corrals inside their store if space allows. These are properly fitted metal bars that cordon off a certain number of carts (however many can fit) to prevent them from rolling away or blocking people and objects. Cart corrals also typically include clear signage that lets customers know where to place differently sized carts.
While you can’t guarantee that every customer will return their cart to one of your interior corrals, you can hire staff to gather stray carts and place them back inside the enclosure for simple storage and easy access.
2. Exterior Cart Corrals
You might also install cart corrals outside, in your store’s parking lot. Exterior cart enclosures give customers and staff a place to temporarily store carts before they’re brought inside. To protect you carts from inclement weather, consider investing in covered shopping cart corrals. These feature a canopy that minimizes the amount of rain or snow that lands on your carts while they’re outside.
3. Overflow Storage
It’s obviously important to have enough carts on hand for your customers. But having too many carts can lead to unnecessary clutter and get in the way of your operations. Still, some days, especially near the holidays, may result in an increase in shoppers, and therefore an increase in shopping carts.
To prepare for these busy periods, it’s a good idea to invest in overflow storage solutions. This may require annexing space to store a surplus of carts so they’re readily available for deployment when needed. Keeping an extra stock of carts away from your primary shopping areas allows you to maximize space where it’s needed and guarantee that your shoppers will always have a cart for them.
4. Portable Folding Shopping Carts
Simply put, shopping carts take up space. This is required if they’re to hold a load of groceries, after all. But how much space should a single cart occupy? This depends not only on the cart’s size, but also its flexibility.
With portable shopping carts and/or folding carts, you can provide customers with vessels that can open up when needed and then close flat when stored. These versatile carts serve their function while saving tons of space. Large quantities of these portable carts can be stacked without getting in the way too much. Plus, customers might purchase portable carts of their own so you don’t have to worry about storing another one anyway.
5. External Storage Units for Old or Unneeded Carts
As you continue to run your business, some of your cart supply will inevitably deteriorate. Even if your carts remain in working condition, you might replace your old shopping carts with newer, sleeker models to maintain your brand’s image.
So, what should you do with those old carts? You might sell them, donate them, recycle them, or throw them away, of course. But if you want to keep the good ones just in case, you can always rent or purchase an external storage unit for these outdated carts. Then, should you need them for whatever reason, you have a backup supply at the ready.
6. Multipurpose Storage Solutions
If you’re like most other retailers or grocers, you offer shopping baskets to your customers in addition to carts. These baskets require their own storage solutions. As it turns out, your carts can actually serve as storage tools themselves, housing baskets inside them to save space. Of course, in order for this to work, your carts and baskets must be specifically designed for this purpose.
7. Secure Technology Solutions
Finally, storing your carts is a moot point if you can’t keep them on your property to begin with. To prevent theft and keep carts from getting lost, invest in security solutions like smart sensors and self-locking wheels. These technologies will help ensure that your carts don’t go beyond the perimeters of your parking lot so they can easily be retrieved and properly stored.
If it’s time to purchase new shopping carts for your business, make sure you have the proper storage solutions in place to protect your investment.
Good L Corporation delivers innovative shopping cart and basket solutions for retailers on a global scale. From a stack of custom shopping baskets or a fleet of custom shopping carts to replacements that supplement your existing shop supply, Good L Corp. can configure the right carryall strategy to boost your retail business. Let’s get started! Contact us today for a no-pressure sales quote.