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There is a misconception among business owners and commercial property owners that curb appeal is exclusive to residential properties. It’s mainly because the term is more commonly used in residential real estate sales. However, curb appeal is just as important for commercial properties for the same reasons.
A shopfront or a building that looks run down, dirty, or ill-maintained creates a lousy impression on passers-by and potential visitors. A study found that people are less likely to enter a store or building when it looks untended. When you keep on turning away possible customers because of your dirty façade, you miss business opportunities, which could drain your long-term bottom line.
What Are the Benefits of Commercial Curb Appeal?
Curb appeal, in its simplest definition, is the attractiveness of a property and its surroundings. The residential property market often uses it to determine or negotiate a house’s selling price. In commercial real estate, business owners capitalize on curb appeal to attract more people to their shop.
Better First Impression
When people pass by your retail space, their eyes will immediately drift to imperfections or aesthetically pleasing features. The latter creates an excellent first impression, especially if you are a new business in the area.
If customers are on foot, they see the type of sidewalk pavers you have and their condition. They will also look at how clean the building’s exterior is and if it looks like you’re maintaining it properly. If they are in their car, they’ll see and experience your road and parking lot.
All of these shape their impression of your business. By enhancing your curb appeal, you give them a reason to stay and enter your establishment.
Enhanced Trust and Credibility
When a commercial space has a low curb appeal, it creates distrust in people. This is because they expect business owners to keep their buildings clean, organized, and well-kept. Signs that prove otherwise — dirty and cracked windows, old and faded signage, damaged pathways – point to unprofessional business management, which makes customers assume this is also how you deal with your clients.
By enhancing your curb appeal, you avoid this assumption. You also create simple ways to build credibility and improve trust between you and potential customers. When they see that your exterior reflects your interior space, they become confident that you’re a business worth pursuing.
Improved Internet Searches
These days, most people will look up an establishment online before going to it. When your exterior space is not well taken care of, photos of it online might turn potential customers away. With approximately 80% of people using search engines to look up information on businesses, you risk missing out on valuable opportunities when they see something they don’t like.
By enhancing your curb appeal, you can take high-quality photos of your establishment and upload them online. These images are a determining factor on whether or not they decide to visit your business. Although it might seem superficial, it is necessary, as people are careful in choosing which places to visit.
Higher Sales Transactions
Although retaining loyal customers is essential, the one-time visitors to your establishment can still result in sales. However, they will not enter a place that does not look warm and welcoming. An ill-lit or dirty exterior will only raise suspicions, causing them to skip you in favor of your neighboring shops.
By enhancing your curb appeal, you improve your chances of increasing your monthly sales transactions. Even if a customer will only buy from you once, their business is still valuable. Alternatively, getting more people to enter and explore your establishment allows you to perform sales pitches, resulting in customers who will return for future transactions.
How to Improve Your Commercial Curb Appeal
Enhancing your building’s curb appeal requires more than keeping it clean and tidy. However, the improvements you take on should begin with what you need and be followed with elements that will complement existing features.
Consider the following suggestions to help you decide on what to do for your commercial space.
Repair and Repave Your Pathways
Pathways, or the sidewalk, experience significant wear because of time, weather conditions, and foot traffic. It’s common to see small holes on the surface, chipped-off sidewalk pieces, and weeds in between cracks. Aside from being an eyesore, these types of damage can become tripping hazards for anyone who uses your pathway.
Inspect your path and determine how bad the damage is to identify which ones to tackle first. Hire a professional to repair the damage and to avoid DIY mishaps that might cost more to repair. Additionally, consider asking the same company to repave your pathway to improve its performance and appearance.
Repair and Repaint Your Parking Lot
Much like your pathway, your parking lot experiences significant wear. In addition to your customers’ vehicles, this space endures the weight of delivery vans and trucks. Any significant damage to this surface can become tripping hazards for people and bump risks for vehicles.
To determine what you need to do specifically for your parking lot, inspect it for cracks, holes, and chipped-off pieces of asphalt. For these types of damage, consider repaving the surface with concrete. Concrete provides several advantages, including water and chemical resistance, durability, and cost-effectiveness. Once this is done, paint on new stripes and way-finders.
Power Wash Your Façade
Cleaning the façade of your establishment regularly, such as sweeping the floor and washing your windows, is vital to maintaining curb appeal. But typical outdoor conditions will lead to dust, dirt, and grime accumulating on your façade. These are not something you can scrub away with a sponge and cleaning solutions.
Consider renting or investing in a power washer. It’s a useful tool that will remove all dirt, grime, and dust from your façade, leaving you with clean walls. Take time off to carry out this task every month. Doing so will keep the dirt light and easy to remove. Also, check the walls to see if they need a fresh coat of paint to keep them neat and attractive.
Install New Signage
Your signage is essential to your business. It informs passers-by who you are and helps customers find you quickly. Over time, your signage will likely fade and become dirty. When cleaning it is no longer enough, consider replacing it with a new one.
Installing new signage gives you the benefit of updating this feature. If you were using a painted board before, consider getting an LED sign to make it more eye-catching. A new LED sign allows you to flash eye-catching messages throughout the year, such as sales announcements, promo deals, and season’s greetings. LED signage is also bright, making it easier to spot in gloomy weather or at night.
Add or Replace Lighting
Commercial curb appeal applies to how well the place embodies a sense of safety and security. Most business owners make the mistake of depending solely on the light of street lamps and other buildings to save on costs. However, this keeps potential customers from perusing their establishments in the evening because of the insufficient lighting.
Today, there are different types of LED lighting available for commercial properties. Whether you want subtle illumination or bright and decorative lights, you can choose from various lighting designs. What’s important is that you install them in areas that get the least amount of light to brighten your exterior space, making it look and feel safer for people.
Invest in Professional Landscaping
Your newly-paved pathway and freshly-painted parking lot can look unattractive when the greenery surrounding them is not maintained well. Weeds, wilted flowers, and brown or bald spots in the grass can significantly lower your curb appeal. Aside from being an eyesore, they make you look careless and unprofessional.
Hire a professional landscaping company to handle this area of your curb appeal improvements. They can install new grass and plant fresh flowers to enhance your commercial establishment. A beautifully landscaped exterior will help your business stand out on a busy day. It also creates an inviting atmosphere that encourages people to enter your store.
K&E Flatwork: Your Partner in Better Commercial Curb Appeal
Improving your commercial establishment’s curb appeal is a worthwhile endeavor, especially since it will help you future-proof your business. The better your exterior space looks, the better chances you have at attracting new customers. However, taking on any improvement projects can put you in a financial bind. Start with what’s necessary, such as roadwork. By improving something everyone uses, you make it easier for them to visit your establishment.
Let K&E Flatwork help you with our professional paving solutions. Let us handle your parking lot and pathways for a smooth and safe surface for your customers and staff. Our team is ready to help you find the right solutions for your space.