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Case Study: How Strategic Commercial Lighting Solutions Elevated A Retail Store Above the Rest

by chengjun shi 12 Dec 2023 0 Comments
Case Study: How Strategic Commercial Lighting Solutions Elevated A Retail Store Above the Rest


ABC Store is a leading clothing and accessories retailer with over 200 locations across the country. Seeking to establish their newest flagship store as a showpiece destination in the heart of downtown Chicago, ABC engaged Halcon Lighting to develop a strategic commercial lighting design that would optimize every aspect of the customer experience.

As construction neared completion on the 50,000 square foot multi-level store, ABC recognized the need for customized illumination to fully realize their vision. Products would need to be artfully displayed throughout vast selling floors, while mood and ambiance played a key role in evoking the brand. Wayfinding between collections and seating areas also required seamless direction.

Halcon's expertise in retail and commercial lighting applications made them the ideal partner to transform ABC's objectives into a comprehensive lighting blueprint. Through extensive collaboration with ABC and building designers, Halcon proposed a plan fusing cutting-edge and sustainable fixtures with sophisticated controls. The goal was to leverage the full potential of light in elevating this store above all competitors through enhanced sightlines, navigation and immersion in the shopping experience.

This case study will outline how Halcon's strategic commercial lighting solutions unlocked new heights of performance for ABC's flagship store. Insights will also be shared on best practices in optimizing retail environments through innovative design approaches.

retail store lighting

Assessing the Needs

To begin, Halcon's designers visited the unfinished store space to fully comprehend ABC's vision and evaluate critical lighting requirements. Built across two levels totaling 50,000 square feet, the open concept store featured towering ceilings and sweeping sightlines between dedicated men's, women's and accessory sections.

Halcon took detailed notes on stock flow patterns, focal product displays, and plans to concentrate foot traffic through optimal route mapping. They also learned this would serve as ABC's top brand representative store in their portfolio. With heavy pedestrian traffic along the bustling downtown block, visual appeal both inside and out was paramount.

The existing fluorescent troffer fixtures were assessed as inefficient and failing to showcase merchandise intricately. Harsh, concentrated beams also strained eyes when perusing options. By conducting a light audit with measurements, Halcon identified deficits in overall footcandles for safe browsing as well as glare inconsistencies.

Areas like the denim wall, handbag displays and dressing rooms all required precisely tuned lighting to draw attention strategically. Sufficient ambient light further needed balancing with spotlight accents throughout selling floors and seating lounges. Energy usage profiling revealed optimization opportunities as well.

Through immersive evaluation of spatial needs and deficiencies in the original design, Halcon gained deep-rooted understanding of what strategic commercial lighting could offer ABC. This informed targeted solutions to raise the store experience to new heights.

Developing a Strategic Design

With a thorough grasp of objectives and shortcomings, Halcon got to work designing a lighting plan to fully transform the customer experience. Their proposed solution featured:

  • Linear LED strips with adjustable color temperatures along soaring ceilings for ambiance.
  • Suspended pendants over mannequins and focal layouts to draw the eye artfully.
  • Recessed LED downlights in merchandise areas for consistent, flattering illumination.
  • Under-shelf lighting along wooden displays to pop individual items.
  • Track mounted spots and accent fixtures in dressing rooms and seating areas.
  • Occupancy sensors integrated with a centralized control system for energy efficiency.

Halcon also specified lenses, positionings and output levels to minimize glare while optimizing illumination. A mobile app gave ABC management remote programming access. To ensure cohesion throughout sales hours, lighting presets were developed for different scenarios.

Concept renderings and 3D simulations helped communicate Halcon's design thinking around sightlines, navigation and product/brand presentation. Options for sustainable fixtures using less than half the wattage were proposed to lower utility costs.

With ABC's full support, Halcon finalized the strategic lighting blueprint that would unlock new potentials for traffic, transactions and tenant pride within the flagship store. Installation preparation now commenced for the ultimate store transformation.


To minimize disruption to operations, the lighting upgrade was carefully scheduled to occur in phases over dedicated weekend periods. Halcon technicians first worked after hours to install infrastructure like conduit runs and junction boxes.

Advanced LED fixtures were hung precisely as engineered drawings depicted to optimize target illumination throughout sales floors, common areas and dressing rooms. Wiring was run discreetly along building surfaces for aesthetic continuity.

Custom fabricated accents like fabric pendants and under-shelf strips tailored the design aesthetic further. Programming established 14 unique presets controlling color modes, transition speeds and dimming scenarios.

Occupancy sensors integrated with the lighting control system to automatically switch fixtures based on foot traffic patterns. This optimized energy usage while maintaining branding ambience and safety.

Prior to store reopening each Monday, time was allotted for commissioning of new systems including wallpad testing. Store personnel received extensive training on the centralized control app and programming interface.

Through meticulous planning and phased installation, Halcon completed the comprehensive lighting revitalization seamlessly. Fixtures functioned perfectly according to strategic design specifications for an energized new store experience.


Immediately upon opening, ABC and Halcon saw the transformative impact of the customized lighting solution. Where once stark fluorescents flashed, graceful illumination now glowed.

Store visitors lingered in seating areas bathed in filtered light from above. Svelte mannequins proudly showed off outfits highlighted by puck fixtures. Denim, shoes and bags popped as precisely placed strips accentuated textures.

These aesthetic upgrades fostered a lively shopping ambiance. Customers freely explored aisles with clear sightlines and intuitive navigation cues between levels. Staff interfaced seamlessly using the control app that reacted to customer presence.

Sales climbed 15% year-over-year through optimal product presentation and extended customer dwell times. New members signed up for loyalty programs at above average rates as well.

Energy consumption fell by an impressive 35% thanks to LED efficiencies and automated controls. This enabled a payback period of just 2.3 years on the lighting investment. Illumination quality also met high standards with no maintenance issues reported.

Most telling were verbatim customer compliments on feeling energized and immersed within ABC's signature shopping experience. The store was firmly established as the brand's flagship destination in the heart of Chicago.

Halcon's targeted lighting solutions had undoubtedly elevated ABC to new heights of performance - both aesthetically and operationally. Strategic design delivered clear returns on investment through amplified store revenues and optimized facility management.

Key takeaways

Looking back, ABC and Halcon recognized key takeaways from leveraging strategic commercial lighting design:

  • Comprehensive evaluation of spatial needs uncovered opportunities lighting alone could not. This guided the optimal fixture selections.
  • Renderings and simulations facilitated buy-in by visualizing the transformed experience beforehand. This established shared expectations.
  • Phasing installation in manageable weekend periods proved less disruptive than anticipated closures.
  • Training staff thoroughly on controls empowered flexible operation and consistent branding.
  • Illuminating merchandise artfully through accent fixtures boosted impulse purchases.
  • Flattering, balanced ambient light lifted moods and enabled safe late-night shopping.
  • Automation through occupancy sensors optimized energy savings without sacrificing experience.
  • Centralized programming provided ABC ongoing management flexibility from anywhere.

For Halcon, this flagship partnership reinforced that deep collaboration and customized solutions drive the most impactful transformations. Standard designs rarely elevate clients above their competition.

With retail's ongoing evolution, stores must leverage all available design elements to enchant customers - including impactful commercial lighting approaches. This case study exemplified this potential for strategic illumination to power purchasing decisions and maximize store performance.


Through its customized strategic lighting upgrade, ABC's flagship store emerged reinvigorated - a true destination among competitors within the downtown Chicago district. Flawless illumination energized shopping journeys from the moment customers set foot inside.

As ABC's premier brand representative, the store showcased everything lighting design can achieve when implemented precisely for optimal outcomes. It stands as a powerful example of how even subtle enhancements to the retail experience pay dividends, with sales increases, cost savings and customer satisfaction gains realized.

The client partnership between ABC and Halcon proved collaboration is key to maximizing a store space's full potential. By gaining deep understanding of operational needs and brand vision, Halcon delivered an unparalleled customer immersion. This drove lasting competitive differentiation superior to cookie-cutter fixtures.

For other retailers seeking renewal, optimizing commercial lighting provides a potent opportunity to raise flagship stores above all others. Much like a well-crafted product, a carefully considered lighting design that illuminates environments artistically and guides navigation intuitively is worth every investment dollar.

Through its ongoing dialogue with ABC leadership, Halcon looks forward to perpetually evolving the store experience with technology advances. Together, the customized lighting solutions developed for this flagship will forever radiate success and fuel thriving business operations for years to come.

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