Gridwall vs Slatwall: Which One Should You Choose for Your Store?

Gridwall and slatwall are both modern shop shelving designs that can be of great benefit to your retail store. However, each one has distinct advantages and may be the more suitable option for your retail space. If you’re thinking about refitting your store but haven’t given too much consideration to which type of shop fitting system to go with, this short guide will hopefully make things clearer for you.

The differences between gridwall and slatwall

Gridwall and slatwall designs have similarities and differences. Both are functional vertical units that add much space to the shop floor. They can come as wall fixtures that fasten onto any sturdy shop wall surface, and they are also both available as free-standing gondola units which are ideal for creating additional aisle space in stores. Both offer greater flexibility than you get with conventional shelving. Not only can you attach standard shelves to units but you can also use a variety of metal accessories to create hangsell displays. With both types, you can change displays in minutes by sliding or clipping the accessories in and out of position.

However, there are key differences in design. Gridwall units consist of a criss-crossing grid mesh of thin wire strips onto which accessories clip into place. They are very lightweight and mobile. Slatwall units are heavier, consisting of horizontal panels separated by aluminium-lined grooves into which accessories easily slide in and out of place.

Which product is best for you depends on your individual retail needs.

Best for durability

Both gridwall and slatwall are durable designs that can last for a long time if you look after them. However, slatwall has the edge when it comes to sturdiness and standing the tests of time. It’s made of more solid materials and is thicker and heavier in its design. This means that it has a heavier load-bearing capacity and can display larger, bulkier products as well as smaller, lighter goods. Gridwall units are more suitable for items of small or medium weight and size.

Additionally, slatwall looks more like a permanent fixture in the store and fits in nicely with most decors. So, if choosing something that is going to see you through the ages is a key factor for you, slatwall is the wisest choice.

Best for affordability

Gridwall wins out here. It’s the cheaper of the two products while not sacrificing too much in terms of what it offers. Other than not being able to accommodate heavier items, gridwall systems offer pretty similar display capabilities to slatwall units. You can use the same array of metal hangsell accessories. This makes gridwall shelving great for retailers who are on a budget or just starting out. Because gridwall is lighter and slightly smaller than slatwall, it is also cheaper to ship and transport, which equates to additional savings.

Best for attractive design

When it comes to visual appeal with shop fitting systems, slatwall has the edge over pretty much all products on the market. Its sleek design, complete with neat, symmetrical, evenly spaced horizontal panels, works brilliantly in a wide variety of retail spaces. It has proved popular with all kinds of outlet including electronics stores, clothing stores and sports stores. The slat panel system blends in well with all store environments and allows for a well-organized and eye-catching display of goods. Slatwall units come in various different colors and styles, so you can choose the one which best fits the vibe of your store.

Best for flexibility

Due to its lightweight structure and general easy of use, gridwall has the edge in terms of out-and-out flexibility. If you want something that you can move around your store with ease or pack up, transport and reassemble elsewhere, then you can go wrong with gridwall units. You can transform a wall-mounted gridwall display into a free-standing gondola unit in minutes by attaching it onto a base and legs. Units can also easily fit into most vehicles so they can be great for pop-up stalls or market stall spaces where you might need to pack away your goods at the end of each day.

Best for multi-range stock display

Both systems are highly versatile, however slatwall offers a slightly wider range of possibilities when it comes to stock this display. This is because it can accommodate heavier loads, so you can fill up shelf space with bigger products or attach thicker hangsell accessories such as garment rails. You can also use a wider variety of attachments such as laptop stands, angled magazine display stands and acrylic dump bins which aren’t always as suitable for use with gridwall units. This means that you can mix up your displays, e.g. between traditional shelves, hangsell displays and acrylic containers, which is great for the likes of newsagents, chemists and hardware stores.

Best for convenience 

If you’re looking for something that is first and foremost hassle-free and saves time, the gridwall could be the choice for you. Both slatwall and gridwall systems offer a lot when it comes to convenience, but gridwall scores highest in terms of ease of assembly and ease of maintenance. You will only have to give it a brief wipe down every so often to keep it looking neat and, because of the simplicity of its design, not much can go wrong with it so you won’t have to spend much time fixing damage or rectifying problems.

Gridwall or slatwall: which one should you choose?

Whether you ultimately opt for a gridwall or a slatwall display depends on your own particular needs and priorities. If you’re looking for something functional yet highly affordable and will get the job done with a minimum of fuss, then you’ll probably be better off with gridwall units. If you care more about the aesthetics of your store, or are looking for a permanent product that will last you a good many years, then it’s worth investing in slatwall displays.

If you want to check out a fantastic range of gridwall and slatwall fixtures, or any other shop shelving or accessories, get in touch with Shopfittings Direct on 02 9608 5122, email us at or visit our Sydney showroom. We supply premium quality and affordable fittings to retailers all across Australia.