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A lot of logistics professionals use the terms warehouse and distribution center interchangeably. Some of them even say that “there is effectively no difference between a warehouse and a distribution center”. So, how different is a distribution center from a warehouse? Let me tell you upfront that they are as different as a modern 21st century supply chain is from a traditional supply chain.
The traditional warehouses are not completely fit to cater to this new supply chain rule and this led to the evolution of static warehouses into distribution centers. Now that you know the context, let me tell you the exact difference between a warehouse and a distribution center:
You now know the stark difference between a warehouse and a distribution center and how the evolution happened over time. Does this mean that warehouses no longer exist or they don’t serve any purpose? You will be mistaken if you believe that. Warehouses still exist and serve a purpose. A good example would be how inventory is pre-built months in advance to meet the high seasonal demand and is stored in typical warehouses before being sent to a distribution center for customer service. However, the importance of warehouses in supply chain has gone down and the distribution centers have now emerged as the nerve centers of the modern supply chains.