The Benefits of Exterior Design for Businesses

Inocencia Blewett

We’ve helped thousands of homeowners with their curb appeal since launching brick&batten. However, we’re seeing more and more demand for a side of our work that we don’t talk about as often: exterior design for businesses. Our expert designers have been putting together renderings and resource lists for small business […]

We’ve helped thousands of homeowners with their curb appeal since launching brick&batten. However, we’re seeing more and more demand for a side of our work that we don’t talk about as often: exterior design for businesses. Our expert designers have been putting together renderings and resource lists for small business owners since the early days. And there are myriad reasons why a company with a brick-and-mortar presence would want to invest in a facelift for their façade. Read on for a few of them, as well as some of our suggestions for business owners.

Our goal at brick&batten is to help you make your exterior dreams a reality. There are myriad decisions to make when giving your property a makeover. That’s why our exterior design service exists — to help you envision the updates you want to make before you commit. Plus, we give you a clickable resource list to help you source the materials and design elements we recommend. It’s a big investment, and we want to help you do it the right way the first time around!


Before and after of a bridal boutique's new curb appeal

Good Exterior Design Increases Sales

For retailers with a storefront, the business’s exterior design can have a huge impact on the number that matters most: sales. In fact, experts estimate that 70 percent of first-time sales are based on curb appeal. Of course, you can’t sell to someone who hasn’t walked in the door.

This leads us to the next question: Which dimensions of curb appeal directly impact sales? Or, to put it another way, how does one create an exterior design for businesses that will lead to increased revenue?

Fortunately, we have an answer backed by research.

The CCIM [Certified Commercial Investment Member] Foundation conducted a comprehensive study that identified the three most important factors in exterior design for commercial real estate: architectureatmosphere, and authenticity.


Before and after of an old library converted to a Celebration of Life center

Architecture

The property above was a library and was purchased with the intent of revamping it as a funeral home event center. The building had interesting architecture, but the owners wanted to make it feel more upscale and modern, and less commercial.

Adding in natural materials like wood and stone, as well as camouflaging the commercial garage door to blend in with the siding, nixed the generic-1970s-commercial-building feel. Gorgeous new windows and doors as well as stylish and functional lighting modernize the look. Finally, updating the walkways and bringing in some container plants dresses things up.


Before and after of the entrance to an inn

Atmosphere

Atmosphere matters in most businesses, but especially in the hospitality industry. The owners of the inn pictured above wanted to provide their guests with a better first impression at reception. Our designers created this welcoming space that, importantly, still melds well with the rest of the property. We added in signage with a retro feel and lighting to match. The latter is key for those late-night check-ins!

Before and after of a restaurant blueprint rendered in off-white

Next, in the exterior design above we brought the flat sketch of a restaurant to life. This cool, understated look puts all of the attention at the center: on the signage and the large, arched front door. It seems to say, “Come on in!”


Before and after language center design

Authenticity

As customers and patrons, we have certain expectations when we approach a business. Does that building look like a [store, restaurant, office building]? Will the interior match the exterior?

The language academy above was originally a residence. Now think about how you might approach a home differently from a business. At the former, you’d ring the doorbell or knock before entering, giving the homeowners a chance to prepare for a guest. However, when you walk up to a business, you often just open the door.

The exterior design goal was to make the property still feel warm and welcoming, like a home, but to make it clear that it was a place for learning and welcome to visitors. We didn’t want to ignore the building’s authentic bones — just change the vibe. Clearly visible signage was a necessary addition. The wide walkway extending to the street also encourages students to walk right up to the front door. Lastly, it’s amazing how a fresh coat of paint can enhance an exterior!

Before and after of a restaurant with a rustic modern exterior design

Another example of a business owner who wanted to convey authenticity in their exterior design is the proprietor of the neighborhood tavern above. This great spot sits off of a major route and is therefore highly visible. In the before photo, you may have guessed that it was a tavern, but it wasn’t immediately clear. The new exterior design fixes that issue with prominent signage and functional exterior lighting.

Additionally, the owner was looking for clean lines. We delivered on this request with beautiful and hardy building materials: a metal roof, wood cladding, ashlar stone siding, a cable porch railing, a modern porch awning, and James Hardie vertical siding. Not only does their new exterior design look fantastic — it’s also easy to maintain and should last for decades to come.


Before and after of an office building with a refreshed exterior design

Other Factors Impacting Exterior Design for Businesses

We’ve completed exterior designs for businesses ranging from commercial office buildings to dentist’s offices. No matter what type of commercial property you own, there are a few factors you should always keep in mind.

  • Cleanliness
  • Maintenance
  • Safety and accessibility
  • Signage and lighting
  • Landscaping (we recommend working with our partners at Tilly Design)
  • Convenience
Before and after of a dentist's office with a modern exterior design refresh

Before and after of a revamped attorney office

Exterior Design for Businesses Is Worth the Investment

We’re frequently touting the benefits of our services for the value of our clients’ homes. And it’s true, curb appeal makes a big difference when homeowners are looking to sell. But for commercial property owners, investing in exterior design for their businesses can have a huge impact on the bottom line. Whether it’s encouraging more foot traffic, bringing in new renters, or professionalizing your practice to attract more patients, a revamped building exterior can help grow your business.

As business owners ourselves, we know how important it is to put your best foot forward, no matter where and how your brand is represented. Let us help you with this slice of the pie. Get started today.

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