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Retail Lighting Tips for Holiday Shopping

This holiday shopping season will look much different for brick and mortar retailers than it ever has before. With the consideration of supply chain challenges and the rise of e-commerce, retailers need to increase foot traffic and boost their bottom line. These steps include marketing and merchandising, but now more than ever, customer experience is front and center.

Lighting helps provide the backdrop for the first impression for visitors. Studies have shown that the right lighting upfits can increase sales by 12% with a strategic approach.

From Outside In

Retail businesses need to showcase their name during the busy holiday shopping season. You can use LED lights to draw attention to your location and keep important branding (like logos) top-of-mind for customers, setting you apart from the competition. 

When curb appeal, landscaping, and hardscaping are a big part of your building’s design, you can use lighting in these spaces to show off your investments. Great lighting design can also offer a more photogenic space, perfect for the current state of image-forward digital marketing trends and “Instagrammable” areas.

Let LEDs Set the Mood

Once you have your customers’ attention from the outside, continue that same branding as they walk through the doors. Use your merchandising plans as a blueprint for lighting upfits, showcasing items in ways that help customers find what they’re seeking.

Just as with traditional lighting, you’ll find several types of fixtures, temperatures, and LED lighting colors to set the tone for shoppers. Break up your lighting for different effects in different store areas; for example, think about how the lighting in retail spaces like jewelry stores or supermarkets can make or break a sale.

Layer LEDs

Think about dividing your retail lighting into “layers” to help you manage any layout challenges. 

  • The overall lighting in your store is ambient lighting, and this is where you want to focus your energy on creating an authentic atmosphere. Usually, the most prominent lighting source or fixture that puts out the most light is considered ambient.
  • A “spotlight” effect is called accent lighting, and it can draw attention to high-ticket or popular items in your store. You can also use it to point out important signage about sales, return policies, new product offerings, and more.
  • Even with ambient and accent lighting, you may still have shadows or dark areas lurking in corners, which may cause customers to miss seeing some of your products and hurt your bottom line. This is where high-activity lighting comes into play.

Upgrade ASAP

There was once a time not long ago when the phrase “retail store” was synonymous with “fluorescent,” but that’s quickly changing thanks to the evolution of LED lighting. Innovations mean that you have endless options for color and temperature and LED-compatible fixtures that add to store decor.

If your store doesn’t have LED lighting yet, or you have just a few bulbs installed, it may be time to make the switch and upgrade everything. While this can present business owners with some up-front costs, the energy and cost savings you’ll see will make it worthwhile.

Think About Art and Design

Along with the technicalities of using LED lighting in your retail store, add a splash of creativity into the mix. Use multiple sources and fixtures throughout your store to create a dynamic that keeps customers interested in your products. That said, don’t cram your space with as much lighting as possible, thinking it helps shoppers. Larger areas can use backlights for ambiance and high-activity lighting to emphasize certain products or sections of the store.

LEDs Keeps You Safe, Too

Where do you keep your extra inventory? In a dimly lit back room? What about a warehouse with a layout that’s constantly changing? Along with adding aesthetic appeal to your store’s showroom, LED lighting can also provide wayfinding and safety for employees who check on stock.

Don’t neglect alternative entrances, loading docks, back doors, and emergency exits. LED lighting in these areas of your store is vital to keep both employees and customers safe (and your business protected from code violations and liability) in the event of an emergency.

From the front of your store to the back employee entrance, your retail business depends on LED lighting to help play a large part in your retail success. Before making any upgrades, you should start with an energy audit from our team of lighting experts to understand the best plan of action. Contact us today to get started!