With hundreds of customers traveling through your grocery store every day to find the aisles and items they need, adequate lighting is a must. However, working with a lighting expert to optimize your stores’ lighting can have a massive, positive impact on your customer experience and sales. Below we’ll discuss the factors that contribute to lighting quality, the risk of having poor or unreliable lighting, and the seven benefits of working with a lighting expert to optimize lighting at grocery stores.
Factors that Contribute to Lighting Quality
As a store operator, you must consider multiple factors when developing the lighting at your stores. These factors include lamp life, system efficiency, lumen maintenance, color rendering and appearance, daylight integration and control, light distribution, points of interest, cost, system control and flexibility, and more. Address and optimize these factors to create the best experience for your customers.
Risk of Poor or Unreliable Lighting
Grocery store goers often have a “go-to” store for their weekly shopping needs, which most stores strive to be. However, with so many options within a given neighborhood, your store must stand out and give customers a compelling reason to return each week. Poor lighting is an immediate red flag to a customer, implying that a store is outdated, underfunded, or is not concerned with providing a welcoming environment. Without proper lighting, your store runs the risk of being passed up by your competition and losing out on thousands of dollars in sales every week.
The 7 Benefits of Working With a Lighting Expert
1 Highlight Products With a Bright & Natural Light
With enhanced lighting, you can effectively highlight the products on your shelves and in your various departments. In addition to proper light levels, you will also want your lighting to have a natural feel. This way, your products, particularly meat, produce, and bakery items, appear fresh and retain their natural colors. High-quality lighting fixtures can offer this throughout your store by creating a consistent CRI (Color Rendering Index). The higher the CRI, the more natural your products appear. A lighting expert can help you select the fixtures with the ideal CRI for your stores.
2 Create a Comfortable Shopping Environment
With bright and natural-feeling lighting, not only will your products appear fresher, but your customers will feel more comfortable and will likely spend more time at your store. In most cases, if customers feel better and spend more time at the store, they will spend more money. A lighting expert can help you create a comfortable shopping environment for your customers at all of your locations.
3 Direct Shoppers to Specific Items & Departments
Qualified lighting experts know how to use lighting to direct your customers to the specialty departments within your store, like produce, deli, seafood, bakery, wine, and floral. They also can help you use lighting to point your customers to items that are on sale. Strategically directing customers through the shopping experience allows you to showcase goods that become impulse purchases and distinguish your store from the competition.
4 Create a Consistent Experience Across Stores
At whatever location your customers visit, they expect the same familiar look, feel, and experience as their “home” store. Without this consistency, you will have customers avoiding specific locations and overloading the ones with the best experience, causing certain stores to suffer. Lighting experts can help you create a consistent and familiar experience across all of your locations.
5 Reduce Lighting Heat Near Perishables
One drawback of bright lighting in your store can be the creation of excess heat. This heat can speed up the decay of perishable items and counteract the work your fridges and freezers do to keep foods cold. Ultimately, this can lead to more wasted food and higher energy costs. A lighting expert can help you discover what fixtures and lighting design will fill your store with rich, natural light without excess heat.
6 Lower Maintenance & Energy Costs
Your store demands bright, natural lighting to attract customers and increase sales. But, if that lighting is costing you an arm and a leg in maintenance and energy bills, the juice may not be worth the squeeze. A lighting expert can show you how to minimize your lighting maintenance and energy costs while maintaining the quality of light throughout your stores. This way, you can increase sales, decrease costs, and maximize profits.
7 Increased Sales
All of the benefits mentioned above can help your store increase sales. But, in addition to these reasons discussed above, scientific research has proven that high-quality lighting can increase sales at grocery stores. In 2010, Dutch researchers lit half of a supermarket with high-quality LED lights, the other half with traditional fluorescent lights, and then monitored sales on each side for 21 weeks. The LED-lit side of the store sold 2% more products per customer during the study. Lighting experts can help you select and install the right LED lights for your store to reap the benefits found in this study.