Curb appeal is just as important for commercial facilities as it is for homes. A stylish and clean façade can attract new customers, and decorative outdoor spaces allow for expanded customer engagement. And after the sun goes down, curb appeal – and safety – are even more important.

One way to enhance both of these aspects at your operation is commercial outdoor lighting. From building entrance to pathways, patios and beyond, CM Gates & Barriers can you help you create a unique solution that’s safe and stylish.

How to Setup Commercial Outdoor Lighting

Exterior lighting design can change the way people view a business, and make it more welcoming, even after hours when customer traffic dissipates. It may seem like an overwhelming task, but paying attention to these details will pay off in the end. 

Without a doubt, start by making sure your business signage is properly illuminated so the public knows who and where you are. This might include a stacked street sign with multiple businesses from the same plaza listed together, or it could be a monument sign with your manufacturing company logo alone. Either way, make it matter by making it memorable. You’ll likely need building signage too, perhaps backlighting around a logo. 

After brand lighting is taken care of, determine what areas and building or landscape features you want to highlight. Then consider what fixture design style matches your company brand and building aesthetic. Choose the fixtures that best fit the bill and fill the spaces you need. Finally, select the bulbs that give you efficient and expressive illumination. 

If you already have fixtures in place, you might just need to update your bulbs. Energy-efficient LEDs consume 75 percent less energy, potentially lowering your energy bill. Plus, these bulbs last on average 24 years longer than incandescent bulbs. It’s a hassle-free way to bring new life to your exterior.

Benefits of Commercial Outdoor Lighting

Improve Security

Outdoor lighting is not only a way to wow your customers, it’s an important tool that can help protect your business. 

Motion-activated light fixtures could deter a potential burglar or vandal because they only turn on when someone moves beneath them. These can be attached to a building, a tree or elsewhere. If you’d rather not wait for motion to kick on the light, use LED flood lights with photocells (also known as “dusk to dawns”). Flood lights distribute a broad light across a large space, and photocells automatically turn on the fixture when it’s dark — meaning they run dusk to dawn. Think high-elevation pole lighting like a parking lot or downtown area.

Car dealerships, landscapers/nurseries, and other businesses with valuable items outside 24-7 likely have additional security concerns. Vibrant, layered security lighting helps make it difficult for intruders to hide from security cameras. So even if they do steal something on your property, a well-planned lighting design allows for clear video evidence to help police capture them.  

If your commercial operation includes garages, utilize above-bay fixtures for after-hours vehicle return or key drop. Or, if your facility requires an entry code for third-shift employees, give them a bright entry light near the door. These and other security lighting details will help protect people, property and vehicles. 

Attract Attention

Sometimes, you have a message you really want people to see. It may be as simple as “OPEN”, or as detailed as a daily specials menu. Whatever it is, the only way people will see it at night is if it is lit up. At night, your customers’ eyes are naturally drawn towards areas of light. So if your sign is less bright than the other lights around it, it may go unnoticed. But if your sign is brighter than the area around it, eyes will naturally be drawn toward it.

Depending on the type of sign you have, the lighting you will need varies. If you have a large sign that is high up and meant to be seen from some distance, try direct up lighting or downlighting. That means placing bullet lights at the top or bottom of the sign, standing out a foot or more, and pointing right at the sign. You can think of that as classic billboard lighting.

If you have a smaller sign meant to be seen from closer, you don’t want the lighting to be overwhelming. Sandwich board signs should be easy to read when you stand in front of them. Too much light would be blinding. A small downlight is fine. Alternatively, you could place it in an area that gets some ambient light from your general area lighting. Another fun option is to decorate small signs with rope lights. They provide a surprising amount of light without a lot of glare and they can be wrapped around the edges of a sign.

Commercial Outdoor Lighting can be Efficient

Intelligent or programmable lighting can help to boost the operational efficiency of businesses. For example, lighting can be controlled and monitored from a mobile phone or laptop, even if the person is hundreds of miles away. There can be huge energy savings gained and this can help businesses that have sustainability goals.

If we look specifically at LED lighting, there are a number of benefits that make it a smart choice:

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