Warehouse - Term Overview

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A warehouse is a space destined to the deposit and / or the commercialization of merchandise. Depending on the geographic region and context, the term can refer to different types of establishments.

For example: “I'm going to the warehouse to buy noodles, I'll be back in a few minutes”, “The company announced that it will increase the capacity of its warehouse in Santa Marta”, “The government is concerned about the security of the military warehouse”.

In some countries, a warehouse is a place that is used to store goods. In this case, warehouses are part of the supply chain, serving as a warehouse before the goods are taken to their destination. There are also warehouses where spare parts, machinery and supplies of different kinds are kept.

In these warehouses, which are found in factories and stores of various categories, the following processes usually occur:

* Reception of the goods to keep. At this point, it's essential that the people in charge know in advance that they will receive a shipment, and know its content in detail, which they must control before signing to finalize the procedure;

* Placing the items on the corresponding pallet racking, a metal structure intended for the storage of merchandise located on a plastic or wooden frame, among other materials, called a pallet. The order of the merchandise cannot be arbitrary, but must respond to a previously established organization so that all employees who have access to the warehouse can find it quickly;

* order preparation. This is also known by the term picking, in English, and it's the step that tests the degree of attention that has been paid to the placement;

* Expedition, the last essential process within a warehouse, since the goods arrive sooner or later to be claimed. Here the work of those in charge of the warehouse is articulated with that of the transporters, who may or may not belong to the same company.

For Latin Americans, warehouses are stores for the retail sales of basic necessities, specially food. In this case, a warehouse is similar to a market, although with smaller dimensions and a smaller variety of products available to buyers.

These stores can be self-service (the consumer takes the products they want and then pays for them when they arrive at the checkout) or they can have a seller (the grocer ) who is responsible for reaching the products to the buyer.

Towards the end of the 1990s, small independent stores and many other businesses, such as video stores and clothing stores, began to suffer the inevitable international expansion of the large chains. While consumers can find many benefits in having access to many products and services at affordable prices, little by little globalization has been dimming the brightness of each city, to replace it with a marquee that is recognizable throughout the world.

Stores that have multiple goods of different classes and that have a large area are called department stores or department stores. People, in these places, can buy everything from food to clothes to decorative objects and household appliances. Typically, department stores belong to the same company, unlike shopping centers made up of many stores belonging to different companies.

Some department stores offer a very pleasant environment, with luxurious facilities and a seemingly inexhaustible variety of products and services, to give visitors the feeling that they have everything they may need; however, prices aren't usually their forte, which is why bargain hunters still prefer specialty stores.

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