Do you become frustrated from trying to keep the area surrounding the back door neat and tidy? Entrances can be one of the most difficult challenges in a home’s organization. The typical doorway often becomes a drop zone for backpacks, jackets, purses, shoes, mail, keys, and more. In other words, it’s a mess. If you’re tired of navigating a minefield of “stuff” every time you enter or exit your home, it may be time for a new organization strategy. It needn’t be difficult. Organizational bliss can be yours. Use these tips and learn how to design your own entryway wall organizer.


Most families primarily use their back doors to enter and exit their homes. And many of them have a closet next to the rear entrance. So why is this area so chaotic? It’s messy because the space isn’t being used to its best potential. The generic closet doesn’t cut it in most cases. You need to address the specific organizational needs of your family with this space. A custom entryway wall organizer is a better way to go. And it doesn’t necessarily need to be large. But it does need to tackle the unique storage requirements of your household. You probably need organization for coats, shoes, backpacks and purses, mail, keys, small electronics, and more. But where can you find something like this? Design it yourself! Then, use it to get the entire family on track to a more organized life.

9 Back Door Organization Tips & Entryway Wall Organizer Ideas:

1. Remove the closet.

Mudroom organizer with 5 cubbies, built-in baskets, and shoe shelves.
Mudroom organizer with 5 cubbies, built-in baskets, and shoe shelves.

A closet next to the back door can suffice for some families. However, if you’re reading this article, chances are it’s not working for you. Remove the closet and install mudroom organizers instead. Put them into the same spot where the closet once stood. A mudroom locker system offers more functionality than a traditional closet. And there are no hangers. That’s why it’s a more child-friendly solution than a closet.

Mudroom organizers offer better, more family-friendly storage all around than a closet. Children will rarely use a hanger for their jackets, even when the clothes rod height is dropped to their eye level. Mudroom organizers, on the other hand, use hooks and shelves instead of rods for clothes storage. That’s because most kids will hang up their coats on a hook even if they avoid a hanger. It’s just easier for them. Schools have known this secret for years. And backpacks can be hung on hooks as well. And there are more benefits. Most mudroom organizers include integrated seating as a bench below the coat hooks. Shoes go on shelves below the bench. Plus, there’s often room for a basket above the shoes to hold accessories like mittens, garage door openers, face masks, etc.

2. Include plenty of hooks in your entryway wall organizer.

Hooks and coats installed as part of an entryway wall organizer.
Use Hooks like these for coats as part of your entryway wall organizer.

No entryway wall organizer is complete without a selection of hooks. In fact, you can never have enough hooks near your back door. If you don’t have space for mudroom organizers, be sure to include a cleat (a 2 x 4 piece of lumber will suffice if you can’t find a cleat) with hooks for jackets, purses, and backpacks. Find a section (or sections) of a wall that is empty and can accept a row of hooks. Use screws to secure the cleat to the studs of the wall. Put one screw into every stud. This will provide support for your hooks. Your hooks can then be placed at roughly five-inch intervals along the cleat. You don’t have to worry about the weight of a heavy backpack pulling the hook out of the drywall because the cleat is secured to your home’s studs.

3. Add an entryway shoe organizer.

Mudroom organizers with built-in shoe cabinet.
Consider mudroom organizers like these if you have a lot of shoes. The built-in shoe cabinet, in addition to standard shoe shelves under the bench, offers plenty of opportunities for footwear storage near the entrance.

Shoes and boots are the number one bane of entryway organization. No one wants family members to track dirt into the house. That’s why removing shoes at the door is common practice for most families. But it creates a lot of disorganized clutter at the door. So what do you do with all of those shoes? Get a good shoe organizer of course! It’s your only hope of taming your back door clutter. Entryway shoe organizers usually take the form of shoe shelves. If you have room, build a whole closet dedicated to shoes. That way you can keep your everyday footwear out of the bedroom closet and near the door where it is used.

However, there are other worthy shoe solutions if you are tight on space. Mudroom organizers always include a few shelves for storing shoes and boots. This is one of their improvement over the traditional closet. If you have a lot of shoes to organize near your door, consider a rotating shoe rack. The 360 Organizer® can accept up to 200 pairs of shoes in a 40-inch x 40-inch corner. Cover your shoe rack with doors to conceal its purpose.

4. Don’t forget a place to sit down as part of your entryway design.

Small mudroom organizer.
This small mudroom organizer doesn’t take up much room. Located near the door to the garage, it packs in a lot of organization. Included are hooks for jackets, a cushy bench, overhead cabinets, and a lower cabinet with shoe shelves.

Seating is important to entryway design. This is especially true if you expect people to remove their shoes. It adds a welcoming element as well as practicality. There are many ways to include seating in your entryways. It doesn’t have to be large. You don’t need to make seating the focal point of the entrance, but have it available. Mudroom organizers always include an integrated bench under the hooks. But even if you don’t have a mudroom organizer, consider adding a bench near the door. A boot box, similar to a toy box but more heavy-duty, can be used for both seating and shoe storage. It’s a simple concept. You sit on top. Shoes go inside. This can work especially well if you’re tight on space and kids love it.

5. Entryway key organizers can help.

Revolving hook for keys and jackets that mounts under a shelf.
This revolving carousel hook for keys and jackets mounts under a shelf. It offers three hooks.

Keys are one of the most misplaced items for most people. But they don’t have to be. Get in the habit of always leaving them in a certain place when you enter your home. (And this place should not be your pocket unless you want them to end up in the wash). A handy hook, basket, or drawer near the entrance usually works best. It can be discreetly located as long as it is convenient enough so that you’ll use it consistently.

If there are multiple adults in the family with keys, a key organizer may be needed. These racks hold numerous keys so that if you ever have to move the cars around in the driveway, you know where to find the key. Again, the rack can be discreetly placed. In fact, telescoping belt racks can be mounted under a shelf as a convenient multi-key solution.

6. Consider a wall mount mail sorter for papers.

Wall-mounted mail sorter and cleat with coat hooks for entryway.
Add a wall-mounted mail sorter and cleat with coat hooks to the entryway. It will help keep back door clutter at bay.

Paper clutter can be overwhelming. However, in this digital age, most papers should be scanned and filed electronically. Even children’s finished homework assignments and grades can be scanned this way. It will get rid of a lot of the paper. But what about mail? If you’re like most people, you might not act on your postal mail every day. But you don’t want to lose it either. Pay as many of your bills online as possible and use a mail sorter for the ones that get paid the old-fashioned way. A wall-mounted mail sorter to organize the incoming mail for each person in the family can make the mail sorting easier. And it relegates the responsibility of each person to take care of their own mail.

7. Baskets and bins are best for small accessories.

Your entryway wall organizer should include room for small accessories. A shelf with a basket or bin makes an excellent organizer for gloves, face masks, hand sanitizer, and other essentials you’ll want to grab when leaving the house. Keeping these things organized near the door increases the likelihood that they won’t be accidentally forgotten. If you have enough space, include a separate basket for each family member. That way your child’s Switch won’t get misplaced with your wallet and vice-a-versa.

8. Keep a bulletin board near the door.

Mudroom organizer with bulletin board above countertop.
This mudroom organizer sits near the back door. Use the desk-height countertop with a bulletin board above for posting notes and keeping schedules straight.

In addition to keeping track of possessions, your entryway wall organizer can also keep schedules straight. Include a small bulletin board near the door for this purpose. You are more likely to use a pushpin when you’re in a hurry than typing something lengthy into your Google calendar.

9. Add an electronics charging port.

Built-in cabinet charging station for USB and other small electronics.
Install a built-in cabinet charging station like this one. It offers a USB port and a regular electrical outlet for laptop computers and other small electronics.

Multiple places to charge small electronics are a must in every modern home. Include one near your entryway so that you’ll never forget your phone because it was left in the charger. It’s guaranteed to be used on a routine basis. If you have a large family, you may want more than one.


Ready to design your own entryway wall organizer?

Use these tips to come up with a plan for your own entryway wall organizer. Hooks, shoe shelves, a bench, baskets or bins for small items, a key rack, mail sorter, a bulletin board, and an electronics charging port will all help with back door organization. Include them in your design. If space allows, consider mudroom organizers as a way to combine all of these elements into a single, custom solution for your home. And if you need design help, feel free to contact the professionals at CLOSETS.COM for help.

Entryway Wall organizer
You can design a simple entryway organizer. This one sits between the back door and the kitchen of this home.

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