Whether you sell clothes, automobiles or home appliances, switching from artificial lighting to daylight could help you grow your business. Many of the world’s biggest retailers have found that natural light doesn’t just make their stores look better – it also increases sales, revenue and customer retention rates.
Sound too good to be true? Think again. From leading retailers like Wal-Mart to tiny local businesses, thousands of retailers have made daylighting one of their priorities for 2014. Read on to discover seven reasons your sales-focused business should use daylighting to its advantage.
Daylighting increases sales by up to 40 percent
Did you know that daylighting could produce a significant increase in the amount of sales your business makes? A 1999 study commissioned by the Pacific Gas & Electric Company found that daylighting produced a 40 percent increase in total sales.
The study analyzed a total of 108 retailers, one third of which used artificial light on its own and two thirds of which used skylights. When two otherwise identical stores were compared, the naturally lit ones had uniformly better sales figures.
All leading retailers are investing in natural light
Your competitors are investing in daylighting. Why aren’t you? Leading retailers like Wal-Mart and Target have made natural light one of their key priorities for the next decade, largely due to its significant sales benefits.
As well as increasing total sales, daylighting allows large retailers to scale back their environmental impact. Take the lead and become a responsible retailer by switching off your artificial lighting and installing a daylighting system.
Natural lighting results in better customer loyalty
A 2003 report (Integrated Energy Systems: Productivity and Building Science) for the California Energy Commission Public Interest Energy Research Program found that customers were more likely to return to stores that were lit using daylight.
With retail competition growing every quarter, any additional reason to encourage shoppers to return to your business is a good one. The report also discovered that natural light also improves employee retention rates in the retail sector.
Daylighting can save you thousands every year
Does your business spend thousands of dollars on utilities every month? Many of the world’s largest retailers have significantly reduced their monthly energy bills using skylights and other daylighting systems.
Pacific Northwest grocery chain Larry’s Market reduced its utility costs by 20% per month by installing skylights and energy efficient lighting. The company claims this is the equivalent of a $20 million increase in annual sales.
Natural light makes products look more appealing
Have you ever wondered why photographers prefer natural light? It’s because it has a positive aesthetic effect on people, environments and objects. Products in sunlight tend to look better than products lit by artificial interior lighting.
In the mid-1990s, Wal-Mart experimented with natural light by tracking the sales of products stored under natural light and those stored under artificial light. The retail giant found that products sold significantly better when placed in naturally lit areas.
Shoppers respond to the warmth of natural light
Shoppers buy products for a wide variety of reasons. Sometimes they’ve carefully researched a product and compared to its competitors. More often, they buy it on impulse or because it looked appealing and interesting in the store display.
Whatever the reason, shoppers respond to the warmth and comfort of sunlight in any environment. By making your store more comfortable with natural light, you can enjoy a greater level of interest from customers and improved sales figures.
More customers visit naturally lit retail stores
Half of the retail marketing battle is won in getting customers into your store. By keeping your entrance brightly lit (using natural light) and sunny, your store will look more welcoming and appealing to shoppers.