Discover how the right lights boosts customer engagement and reduces utility bills.

Key Takeaways:

  • Combining efficiency and aesthetics is key to successful store lighting
  • Modern retail lighting designs are varied and flexible
  • Smart lighting saves money, impresses customers, and helps the environment

Commercial lighting has two jobs: accentuating the store and its contents while not being a burden on operational costs. Mismanaging this balancing act might cost retailers customers and income. Let’s explore how retailers can develop lighting that saves money and create strong brand ambience.

The importance of lighting in retail spaces

Strategic retail lighting and customer experience are inseparable. Your identity and products can influence the light profile you create. Consider Apple stores: always brightly lit with lots of bulbs illuminating shiny products in reflective displays. It’s dazzling, futuristic, and cool without being cold. It also helps prevent theft!

Contrast this with the soft ambient lighting of a Starbucks, where warm illumination of products and seating contributes to an atmosphere of cozy, unhurried comfort. Big brands understand that leveraging retail lighting means combining efficiency with engaging aesthetics.

Designing with efficiency and aesthetics in min

Efficient power-saving lighting begins with drafting designs, then starting electrical work. This may simple entail inserting new bulbs into existing fittings. Other spaces require installing new fittings or retrofitting old ones, particularly those incompatible with LEDs.

Investing in necessary electrical work is unavoidable to achieve your desired designs. It also makes the store more efficient and aesthetically pleasing space when a broad spectrum of light colors and strengths are possible.

Well-planned lighting does more than look good. Studies show that color temperatures influence shoppers’ moods. For example, blue lights not only look cool (in both senses of the word) but can also invigorate shoppers, while warmer tones can make people stay longer in certain areas.

Advancements in energy-efficient lighting

LED bulbs are extremely energy-efficient and cost-effective. They burn longer, save money, and are more resilient than fluorescent or incandescent lighting. LEDs now incorporate direct-current chips that make them smaller while increasing their lighting power.

Fiberoptic lighting comes in flexible strips, freeing them from fixed fittings. Retailers can bend and shape lights freely. The bulbs are typically standard LEDs, although the most recent advancement in this area is also used: organic lighting-emitting diodes (OLEDs).

OLEDs are thin, flexible material which, unlike standard LEDs, contain organic carbon-based compounds. These produce light levels and colors that exceed standard LEDs especially in producing soft and diffuse illumination that mimics natural light.

Solar-powered lights are powered independent of the grid by storing solar energy, so power persists even during dim weather. Though very environmentally friendly, solar energy isn’t always effective because some retailers don’t have sufficient space for the necessary panels.

Ultimately, all these lighting methods save energy and provide similar benefits. The differences lie in where and when they’re used, particularly with systems adding a time-sensitive elements to lighting.

Smart lighting systems for retail

We mentioned earlier how bright lighting deters theft. You’ve probably seen empty stores with their lights still on overnight. This prevents criminals and helps law enforcement quickly spot unwanted guests, but it’s far from energy efficient.

Smart lighting systems reduce the negative financial and environmental impact of after-hours lighting. For example, criminals can still be thwarted and law enforcement aided when motion-sensing lighting is installed. This activates only when unscheduled in-store activity is noted, while burning less energy and costing less.

Motion-sensing lights also save energy on retail storerooms, staff rooms, and inventory areas where lights are often left on. The Internet of Things (IoT) makes other wireless lighting solutions like daylight sensing possible. This can work well for stores that use a combination of sunlight and standard lighting; their interior light levels will gently increase as exterior conditions get darker, saving energy and money.

Modern systems offer many manual options for enhanced control across the four retail lighting  categories. Multiple colors and light intensities allow precise ambience, empowering stores to project the desired atmosphere and brand character. Purely decorative lighting is likewise possible.

Directed functional lighting for tasks and accents is also possible. Task lighting illuminates changing rooms, checkout zones, and other customer service areas, while accent lighting draws attention to areas or items retailers want to highlight. Different lighting effects can be tried out in every part of a store to help retailers project unique colors and intensities.

Benefits of automated lighting systems in energy management

Sustainability and cost savings define today’s lighting. LEDs use 90% less energy than other bulbs and need to be replaced less often, meaning stores use less power and don’t require constant replacements.

They also radiate less heat compared to fluorescent and incandescent bulbs, which release 80% and 90%, respectively, of their heat. This means energy efficient lighting helps create a cooler, more comfortable environment requiring less AC; more money saved!

Energy efficient lighting can be analyzed long-term to amplify its benefits. Calculating ROI starts with knowing how much power you were using before the new installations. Do this by scheduling a commercial energy audit prior to contractors starting work.

This shows how your current lighting contributes to overall energy expenditures. This data can be compared to utility bills received after new lighting has been installed to show any savings.

Call UES for expert lighting installation

The potential for greater savings and increased customer engagement is reason enough to review your lighting. Balancing energy efficiency with aesthetics takes careful planning and spending, but it’s a worthwhile investment to spotlight your store. Serving the retail sector is one of our specialties at UES, so call us at 954-792-5444 or use our contact form today for a free quote!