S1: The race for warehouse space – and automation

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The drivers/demands/behaviours changing this area of retail

For every extra £1bn spent online, a further 775,000sq ft of warehouse space is needed to meet the new demand. Online sales continue to rise. 2020 was an unprecedented year; UK ecommerce grew by 35% compared to the previous year, according to IMRG. 2021’s more normal trading still resulted in online growth of 2.7% which, when compared to 2019’s pre-pandemic figures, shows as 39% growth. Overall, ecommerce is expected to account for half of total non-food sales by 2025 as consumers continue to buy more online.

The current state

Online retailers and 3PLs are increasing their warehouse capacity as existing sales and forecasts puts pressure on space. Companies selling automation solutions are seeing unprecedented demand as projects that were put on hold during the pandemic have been reinvigorated and new enquiries land.


Implications

  • Enabling and managing future growth
  • Increased efficiencies and faster throughput of orders
  • Improved services to customers, such as later order cut off times
  • Increased pick accuracy
  • Increased agility

Discussion points in the podcast

Is warehousing keeping up with ecommerce growth?

How do you build a warehouse plan that encompasses scalability?

What are the implementation risks?

Where are the biggest gains with automation?

What are the latest developments?

Click here to listen on PodBean (coming soon)

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