Outdoor lighting plays a big roll in how your customers and the public see your business. Putting careful thought and a little science into your outdoor lighting choices will benefit your business in many ways.  In this short article we will cover the basics that can result in:

  • Increased traffic through your door
  • Improved security and safety
  • Improved business and brand image
  • Improved property value
  • Lower electricity bills

Outdoor Lighting Helps Your Business Get Noticed

Whether a potential customer is walking, biking or driving past, you want your business to be noticed, not just blending into a collage of walls and doorways like your competitor across town.  

Digital and traditional signage should be chosen with your potential customer in mind.  Are they walking past on the sidewalk, or do you need to be noticed from two blocks away? Will most of your customers be driving by when they see your storefront for the first time?  Do you experience the most traffic at night, or during daylight hours? Answering these questions will help you determine the best outdoor lighting and sign requirements for your business.

Pay particular attention to the size of the characters on any signage.  A good, common guideline is to use 1” of lettering height for every 10’ for good, easy viewing in a short period of time.  As a minimum, use 40% of this size.  Larger letters have a greater chance of catching the eyes, especially from a moving vehicle. 

Outdoor Lighting Makes Your Business Safer

When your customers arrive, you want them safe and able to see ramps, steps, doorway thresholds, and any tripping hazards. It is recommended that bright, directed lamps be used to illuminate walls from as high above as is practical, and somewhat out from the wall.  Walls and features can also be lit from foot level, from across the sidewalk if access there is possible.  Doorways and walkways should be illuminated from above door level.  Directed focus is recommended to avoid glare in people’s eyes.  Glare reduces visual acuity, is psychologically off-putting, and can endanger drivers and pedestrians.  So, get your light on the subject!

Outdoor LED Lighting Can Save Your Business Money

To achieve the lowest energy cost, use LED (light emitting diode) lamps.  These use less than 20% of the electricity that an old incandescent lamp does, for equivalent light output.  

Here is a potential savings scenario: 

1000 watts incandescent, used 16 hours per day 356 days per year at $0.11 per kwh = $642

200 watts (probably less) LED lighting used in the same manner = $128, saving $514.

LED lamps are available in different “color temperatures”.  We won’t delve deeply into that, but color temperature relates to the warmth or coolness of the light.  Briefly put, use a color temperature of 4000 to 6000 degrees for good safety on those walkways, and the same for the security of back entrances.  This is a white that is quite bright.  If there is a wall, sign, door, or feature you’d like to look “warmer”, use LED lighting in the 1800-to-3000-degree range.  

There are even LED lighting fixtures that are field adjustable – the color temperature can be set on-site after installation in order to dial in the mood. 

Do You Need Outdoor Lighting Installed or Repaired for Your Business?

OHM can help. Contact OHM Electrical Contracting today to get started.