Friday, 28 June 2013

The Box Storage Squeeze

A number of QVM traders are finding the reduction in offsite box storage space a real problem and it may be time they considered their options.

Most traders store their storage boxes on their stalls and have immediate access to their contents during the trading day. However, a considerable number of traders choose to take advantage of off-site storage facilities thus giving them more space on their stalls to display stock. Many of these traders have been able to locate their boxes near their stalls so they still have ready access to the stock left in the boxes. A case of having your cake and eating it too.

There has been a steady progression in cleaning up box storage. For years boxes were stored in public areas near toilet blocks for instance but now they can only be left in designated areas like M shed. The problem is that space previously used to store boxes is now required for retail use. The market is becoming more professional about maximising the retail offer with prime corners being converted to retail space and new precincts like String Bean Alley.

Finding off-site storage has become a bit of a lottery and certainly an inconvenience. Many traders will have to make new arrangements. Here are some tips.
1.    Store your boxes on your stall. Yes, this is an obvious solution. You may have to adjust your racking but that is a one-off and if you keep stock in your boxes it may prove convenient for immediate access to replacement stock.
2.    Use your boxes for display. A number of traders use their boxes as a convenient display option. Shelved boxes are great for displaying shoes for instance.
3.    Use under table space. It is difficult to claim you don't have space for storage if the area under your display tables is left empty. Box hire operators are now able to supply table size boxes that double as storage and display tops. Again, a number of traders use this arrangement and save on table hire.

Trader need to look seriously at locating their storage boxes on their stalls, particularly if they operate in the deeper stalls and have vacant under table space. For the rest, the lottery continues.