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Lighting Guide for Retail Stores

When setting up a retail store, you want to make the space as inviting as possible to potential customers. Additionally, you’ll need to display your merchandise in a manner that best suits its presentation. And, of course, you must ensure that the space allows your employees to work productively.

Besides choosing shelving, furniture and displays, probably one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make — or series of decisions, to put it more accurately — has to do with your retail store lighting design.

To some people, it may seem like lighting for retail stores is a simple afterthought. However, thinking like that could cause you to miss out on substantial revenue. Recent studies show that the right lighting plays a significant role when it comes to shoppers remaining in stores for longer periods of time and being more inclined to make purchases while there. One retailer even reported a 12 percent increase in sales in one of its stores that was equipped with a new lighting system.

Types of Lighting

While you’re undoubtedly best served by working with a retail lighting design specialist like our team at Illuminated Integration, the following list should help you familiarize yourself with the basic types of lighting employed by most retail stores:

  • General/ambient lighting: This solution is the overall or main lighting source for your store. While it might seem like the first thing you’d select, it’s actually smarter to wait and decide on your general lighting scheme last, after choosing the rest of the lighting on this list. That way, you know how to light any missed spaces and corners.
  • Task/high activity lighting: Typically associated with dressing rooms, service desks, checkout areas and entrances, task/high activity lighting is high-performance lighting that ensures both employees and customers can clearly see everything they need to while they’re in your store.
  • Accent lighting: To bring attention to shelves, products, artwork, displays and other important spots in a store, accent lighting is often used. It’s most commonly installed as track or can lighting fixtures.
  • Decorative lighting: Decorative lighting is all about emphasizing your brand, which is why a high-end jewelry store might have a chandelier hanging noticeably by its entrance or a specialty auto parts store might opt for a neon road sign.
  • Contrast backlighting LED: Since you can’t possibly spotlight every item you put on display, contrast backlighting — especially with highly adjustable LED lights — is a brilliant way to draw attention to entire shelves worth of goods. It’s also a great method for lighting lower shelves and more out-of-the-way displays without casting shadows that could otherwise discourage shoppers from exploring.

Illuminated Integration: Your Trusted Retail Lighting Specialist

Collaborative by nature, Illuminated Integration supplies full-service audio, visual and lighting (AVL) solutions to retailers and projects of all sizes. We’ll listen closely to your needs and design lighting systems you can count on to meet and exceed your expectations.

Contact us today to learn how our lighting team can help make your retail space a visual delight for all who visit and shop there.