candle in the dark

A well-lit business is like a beacon in the night. Even if you are not open it is a chance to be seen, to be noticed, to be placed in the minds of potential customers. Does your business need outdoor lighting at night, even if you are not open? Well, here are a few facts to consider based on information from the 2015 National Safety Council’s report on lighting at businesses as it relates to safety and crime, and a 2013 US Bureau of Statistics report on commercial lighting as it relates to small businesses.

  • 45% of people surveyed stated they first saw a business at night, even if it was not open.
  • At a speed of 35-45 miles per hour, a business will be seen for an average of 15-25 seconds by cars passing by on the road.
  • Businesses with lit signs and outdoor lighting are remembered by passing cars 1.5 times more often than just those with lit signs and 8 times more often than those without even lit signs.

So, not even talking about safety issues, having lighting outside when you are closed is a very good idea. People have to see a company logo and average of 12-23 times before they begin to recognize it as a brand (depending on which study you listen to). Your company has a chance to get product or service recognition with every car that passes by on the road. Every time someone drives by your business it is a chance for you to show them where you are.

Added to that fact is a reduction in potential liability. A well-lit parking lot and business is less likely to be broken into (22% lower chance of break-ins) and less liable to have people loiter in the parking lot after business hours (It’s no fun to lurk if everyone can see you). Overall criminal activity increases by an average of 12% with poor or no lighting outside the business. This can be crime against your business or people using your parking lot for other purposes (kids drinking, muggings, etc.). There is a further 18% less chance of random accidents with proper lighting.

When you look at the pros and cons, lighting your business even if you are not open at night starts to make a lot of sense. You can get name recognition from cars passing by. You can reduce the chance of being broken into. You can reduce the possibility of criminal activity around your business and you can reduce the potential liability from accidents on your property. But that is not all of it, because outdoor accent lighting can make your business stand out. With an aesthetically pleasing lighting design we can create a ‘feel’ to your business. Cool greens, vibrant blues, clear whites, all of these can create a perception in the mind of potential customers.

Think of it this way, which business are you more likely to go to? A tastefully lit business that looks ready to do business even in the middle of the night or a place with a neon sign out front and some flood lights on the loading dock and side door? People passing by will form an opinion based on what they see. At night, what they see will be the lighting design that you have.

What do you want people to see about your business?


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