When shipping large items on a pallet, you can usually use a shrink-wrap machine to wrap that item and ship it securely. However, this may not always be the best choice for your item in particular or for your shipping needs. A wood shipping crate can still be a better option for some shipping needs; note when this might be true so you can choose the right option for your company and for the materials or items you're shipping.
When the item might tip
When shipping items like motorcycles or delicate machinery that may tip during shipment, keep in mind that shrink-wrap won't help to keep that item upright and in place. Wood shipping crates can be fitted with straps that attach to the item and hold it and with slots in the bottom that fit wheels, a small machine base, and the like. This will keep your item upright even when on the road and through standard jostling that it's sure to experience during transit.
When the item has small, delicate parts
Shrink-wrap is not necessarily tacky but it does cling to the item around which it's wrapped. When you pull that wrap off, it might pull or tug on small, delicate parts and these could then come loose. This is something to consider for machinery, computer equipment, and the like. It can often be better to use a wood shipping crate that is filled with Styrofoam or that you can use with bubble wrap or another material that won't cling to your shipment and potentially damage it.
For recycling and reuse
It can be difficult if not impossible to reuse or recycle plastic wrap, whereas wood shipping crates are very easy to reuse if you invest in quality crates. Often their walls come apart from the base so you can stack and store them easily. You can also recycle wood shipping crates if they ever get damaged. This makes them a more eco-friendly choice than shrink-wrap.
When shipping the same item repeatedly
If you ship the same item repeatedly, you can have wood shipping crates custom made to fit that item securely. You then don't need to take the time or have the expense of having each item shrink-wrapped; a piece can slide into a slot inside the crate that will keep it secure, or you can have a crate made with several slots for securely shipping more than one item at a time. This can mean paying less for your shipping material and packing them more quickly than the time it takes to wrap them.