Ensuring your stores attract passers-by is one thing, but for those consumers already in the shop, delivering a pleasant shopping experience is a whole other matter altogether. 

To put it simply, if your retail environment does not look the part, it will not leave a lasting impact on the shopper. This could in turn lead to the consumer leaving the store without purchasing anything or, if they do decide to spend, it could put them off returning in the future.

So, how do you go about making your stores a more pleasant place to be? Modernisation is key for all retailers, especially when you consider the changing shopping habits of people and the way they go about purchasing items. 


The good news is that there are plenty of steps retailers can take to modernise their stores. This could be anything from refreshing the store with new branding, integrating some form of digital screens, or the use of effective lighting. Here, we focus on the latter, speaking with specialist in this area to learn more about the options available to retailers.

Exceeding expectations 

Perhaps the best place to start is to look at some examples of how retailers have been using lighting to give their stores a fresh, more modern look. The Leroy Merlin Strefa Wnętrz store in the Polish capital of Warsaw worked with technical lighting solutions specialist TRILUX on such a project. 

Opened in 2010, the Leroy Merlin Strefa Wnętrz store opted to push ahead with an effort to update its lighting design to meet contemporary standards and norms. Collaborating with TRILUX, new lighting was installed throughout the store to help freshen up and, importantly, modernise the environment.

The core objective was to infuse the interior with a distinctive showroom feel, while at the same time highlight key product groups. With this, TRILUX elected to use its E-LINE NEXT LED continuous line system as the main solution.

The Leroy Merlin Strefa Wnętrz store opened in 2010

A notable challenge was the ceiling’s intricate aluminium structure, housing over 720 light elements. However, TRILUX was able to devise fully customised luminaires with special micro prismatic shades to replace the existing T5 sources, complemented by JUNO projectors with innovative drop-shaped lenses. 

LIMBA and TUGRA luminaires further enhanced the lighting concept and illuminated green islands of plants, elevating the interior’s aesthetic appeal. In addition, TRILUX used the LiveLink intelligent lighting management system to allow for intelligent control of the lighting infrastructure.

Karol Czich of Leroy Merlin hailed the project as a major success. He said: “The first stage involved a comprehensive site visit to assess the existing arrangement, followed by meticulous design work to select luminaires and implement a sophisticated control system.

Leroy Merlin Strefa Wnętrz in Warsaw worked with TRILUX on a major modernisation project

“We’re delighted to have exceeded the investor’s expectations, solidifying our partnership and advancing our common business objectives.”

Efficient and cost effective

More good news for retailers when it comes to lighting is the vast array of solutions that are on offer, with new products coming to market on a regular basis, opening up more options for them when it comes to refreshing and modernising their stores.

Luxxbox, an international designer of acoustic and flexible solutions, recent revealed details of several new solutions, using the LEDucation event in March to showcase these to the wider market. Among the new acoustic lighting fixtures from the company are illi Bon, Sierra, Stalik, and Kurtain.

Starting with illi Bon, this has been designed as a smaller companion to the illi, with the company billing it as an “effective acoustic and lighting solution”.

“This mini pendant boasts a captivating array of soft PET outer gills, offering powerful sound absorption and direct illumination in a compact form, and packs a punch in both function and style,” Luxxbox said. 

LuxxBox bills its new illi Bon product as an “effective acoustic and lighting solution

Also new from Luxxbox is Sierra, a fixture that it said seamlessly blends contemporary design with exceptional noise absorption. Sierra comes in a seek cone form, which is crafted from recycled PET material and effectively absorbs sound waves. The solution also features a high-performance dimmable LED light source with a glass diffuser that the company said provides ample lumens while remaining energy efficient.

Elsewhere, Stalik is an elongated cylindrical fixture offers illumination and sound absorption. Supplied to users in a modular form, Luxxbox said Stalik’s linear formations and captivating radial arrangements allows users to create stunning visual centerp ieces that seamlessly sculpt both sound and light. Stalik is available in three heights and an extensive array of 77 wool colour options.

Finally, Kurtain has been inspired by the flow of drapery, offering a soft, flowing wave effect that gently absorbs ambient noise. 

“Crafted from luxurious Camira Blazer wool, Kurtain adds a touch of sophistication and warmth to a variety of settings,” Luxxbox said. “Beneath the stunning lampshade, a high-performance, dimmable circular edge-lit LED panel offers exceptional lumen output. For added versatility, Casambi Bluetooth dimming, POE, and tunable white lighting are also available upon request.

Luxxbox said its Sierra fixture blends contemporary design with exceptional noise absorption

“Luxxbox’s acoustic lighting solutions have helped architects and designers illuminate interior spaces while eliminating noise that’s both efficient and cost effective. The company’s versatile fixtures have been applied to hospitality, retail, education, office, and high-end residential settings around the world.”

Catalyst for success

Having seen how some retailers are using lighting to modernise their stores, how can others follow with similar projects? Mark Shortland, managing director of retail lighting specialist Shoplight, has some words of advice. He said while we should not underestimate the difficulties involved in keeping 100, 200 or even 300 stores looking modern and in keeping with the latest iteration of a brand, the neglect of a brand’s physical stores can be quite dangerous.

“From poor maintenance giving a store an unloved feel to the lack of the latest innovations that create great experiences or allow customers to use the store for returns in an efficient way, if stores are allowed to decay, the damage to brands can be huge in brand reputation and financial costs,” Shortland said.

“The decision on when to refit stores is usually complex; the determination of payback period is important, and it is not always clear what if any increase in sales will be achieved through a store refit. Coupled with this, lease terms play a huge part in the decision-making process and sometimes, the landlords desire to incentivise lease extensions with financial contributions to help with store refit costs.

“That said, the modernisation of retail stores is crucial in so many ways. Whether it be brand positioning and the perception of the brand amongst its customers, the ability to create a positive experience by the retailer which may extend across platforms or the importance of an improved financial performance, store modernisation can be the catalyst for success for many retailers.”

With this, Shortland said lighting can play a huge role in the modernisation of stores. He said if a retailer was to invest in one thing only when modernising a store estate, lighting delivers the biggest impact of all.  

“With efficient, high performing LED technology issues such as improved colour rendering, contrasting light levels where appropriate and dramatically reduced energy costs can be achieved,” Shortland said. “Stores can transition from one where multiple failures are visible and light levels are flat and homogenous, to spaces that appear vibrant, dynamic and expressive, drawing customers into the space and encouraging them to explore and purchase.”  

Shoplight said lighting can play a huge role in the modernisation of stores

Shortland went on to say that while full-store refits are the best solution to deliver all of this, if budgets are tighter, lighting alone is the best medium to take the most positive and impactful steps – and Shoplight is well positioned to support with its range of solutions.

Among the latest offerings from Shoplight are its new biopolymer products such as NORT GS, Colt Bio and the soon0to-launch, Raider Bio, which are 3D-printed from biopolymers and made in the UK. Shortland said these deliver huge reductions in carbon emissions through manufacture and transport, helping to address demand for more sustainable materials.

“Consumers care about these things and retailers are choosing to use initiatives like this to demonstrate to their customers how they share their concerns about the planet and are doing all they can to mitigate the impact their business has on the environment,” Shortland said. 

“The circularity of these products through our buy-back scheme is also important to brands who increasingly dislike the waste products of their day-to-day business ending in landfill.”

Shortland went on to say that it is not just about material choice and manufacturing base, with an increasing number of retailers are choosing Casambi Bluetooth lighting controls within Shoplight’s products to deliver simple, easy-to-use lighting scenes that can allow a space to change over the course of a day, reflecting how their customers might use the space.  

“This is particularly prevalent in homewares and F&B brands, where demand in retail space change throughout the day,” Shortland said.

Shoplight solutions were recently used for modern lighting at HOP in London

While the term “modernisation” may strike fear into the hearts of retailers, given the cost of carrying out such processes, simple changes to lighting can have a major impact on both the look and feel of a store. Working with experts like Shoplight and following the example of others, included those featured here, can help bring your shops into the modern market.