Commercial Storefront Renovations Ideas

An inviting store front can stop a customer in her tracks.
An inviting store front can stop a customer in her tracks. (Image: Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Your commercial storefront is one method you can use to advertise your store. When you begin renovations on the store, consider ways of making it inviting to customers or methods for attracting the target market. In the book, “The Everything Start Your Own Business Book” Judith Harrington advises standing out, yet fitting in with the rest of the business in the area.

Big Display Windows

For a retail store that has lots of goods to display, large windows or a windows-only approach to the storefront renovation project give you the opportunity to showcase the items you have for sale. You can create full themes in the store’s display windows. Large windows also help police that patrol the area keep an eye on your store during the hours that you’re closed to make sure no one has broken in and is stealing anything.


Walkways guide people. Guide them into your store with a paved walkway. Cover it to protect them from all weather conditions. An awning can be decorative, purposeful or both. Put the store name on it to help you stand out in a crowded shopping plaza. Awnings can be functional as well by keeping the sun from blazing into your store making it uncomfortable for shoppers or increasing your cooling bill. Retractable awnings can be closed during the winter to allow more light and sun into your store.


Themes can be a big part of the atmosphere in a store. Toy stores use bright colors and playful lettering on their storefronts to be inviting to children and their parents. If you’re in a shopping plaza, you may be restricted at how far you can go with the theme in your storefront design, but if you’re in a stand-alone store, and local zoning codes permit, you can use towering pillars for your Roman antique shop entrance, an antebellum porch-style outdoor eatery for your country bakery or have your customers walk into a big hamburger if you are burger joint. Create themes with paint choices, brand related cartoon statues, props, and vintage design structures.

Doors/Automatic Doors

Changing the doors can give a store an entirely different look and feel. The customer’s shopping experience can be changed just by adding automatic doors or revolving doors. Grocery stores designers use big automatic doors because they want their customers to leave pushing carts full of groceries. Hotel architects choose revolving doors in part because it sends that message that customers are welcome back any time but the premises aren’t so open that anyone can walk in. It is a false sense of security, but it sends a mental message. When deciding on your entrance, determine what psychological message you want to send to your customers.

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  • “The Everything Start Your Own Business Book: A Step-by-step Guide to”; Judith B. Harrington; 2010
  • “Storefronts & facades, Volume 7”; Martin M. Pegler; 2001
  • “Building Change-of-Use: Renovating, Adapting, and Altering Commercial”; Dorothy Henehan; 2005
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