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Competition amongst businesses has and will continue to be prevalent. However, in this day and age, a new type of business rivalry has emerged thanks to the introduction of online stores and online shopping. With this “virtual store vs. physical store” rivalry ceasing to slow down, brick-and-mortar stores need to find ways to surpass the others. This is accomplished in a variety of ways (visual design, layout, etc.), but an underrated component is retail store lighting.

Lighting is crucial in that it has a meaningful impact on our moods. When it comes to retail, it highlights the quality of products and architectural elements. Additionally, it constructs virtual spaces. Evidently, this affects the way we feel in a space and our assessment of a product.

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The importance of retail store lighting

While it may not seem like it, retail store lighting plays a major role in its merchandising strategy. Successful retail lighting will make your store easy to navigate and well-illuminated. Furthermore, by highlighting certain products, it will build up displays. It has the power to influence how people shop and even how they feel about a business.

Some of the most common reasons as to why lighting is important for businesses include:

  • Establishes a mood: The lighting will determine the store’s overall ambiance, which in turn will aid in shaping the customer experience.
  • Captures the attention of customers: A space with proper lighting makes for an inviting atmosphere that will draw customers into the store.
  • Guides customers through the store: Lighting up displays and product areas will attract customers’ eyes and motivate them to engage with the products.
  • Plays a role in the overall shopping experience: Good illumination is essentially the foundation of the store. A lack of good lighting will result in your store not being visible. Moreover, any other merchandising applications will go to waste.
  • Dictates the length at which people will shop: Customers’ visibility and whether or not your lighting arrangement encourages exploration are key factors in maintaining high engagement.

The different types

To create a cohesive lighting scheme, you need to layer four distinct types of lighting: task, accent, ambient, and decorative.

  1. Task: Task lighting helps provide light for a purpose or task. This includes lighting up the fitting rooms, the register, and office spaces.
  2. Accent: Accent lighting highlights key areas and/or specific products, thereby emphasizing their importance. Accent lighting guides customers to these products or areas by boosting their visibility.
  3. Ambient: Ambient lighting is a store’s primary lighting source. It is the backdrop on which other types of lighting are layered and provides the customers with a pleasant environment. It should reach all corners of the store.
  4. Decorative: Decorative lighting refers to lighting features that focus more on aesthetics than purpose. It can help embellish your space or add to the storefront’s ambiance.

Emphasizing brands

Modern retail lighting options have a major role in boosting brand strategies and provide an extra medium of communication. For instance, retail cosmetic stores put most of their higher-end products on illuminating shelves. Doing so emphasizes and outlines the packaged product.

Highlighting products allows the customers to single out certain products from other merchandise. Additionally, lower shelf accent lighting and other architectural elements help to catch the eyes of casual shoppers.

Dramatic lighting can amplify the attractiveness of certain products, thus further encouraging consumers to buy them. Various retailers are utilizing lighting in their brand strategy because these lighting systems have top-notch quality. They encompass lighting consistency pertaining to stringent adherence to specifications.

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Arranging retail store lighting

The most important thing about store lighting is proper planning. Take into consideration the wide variety of available options when organizing retail store lighting. Volumetric lighting will cast a wide cone that will provide effective general lighting. It is important that product displays and floor layouts sustain versatility. Because of this, a lot of designers opt for either adjustable recessed lights or track lighting.

When arranging a lighting scheme, think about the different needs. What are the requirements of the space? What are the locations of the light fixtures? Moreover, are there too many randomly-placed fixtures throughout the store? If so, this could create visual chaos. Be aware of both the amount and the placements. In addition, avoid lighting products similarly because varying brightness levels will further accentuate certain products.

Lighting greatly impacts every facet of the retail experience. Therefore, one must consider lighting when designing a retail store. For BUILD IT’s design consultation services, contact our office near you. Also, to learn about how to boost sales with store design, check out Retail design tips that increase sales.

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