Landscape Lighting Business OpportunitiesOutside Contributor
There is one statement you can make with confidence about working in the landscape industry – there are plenty of specialized segments you could focus on to grow your business.
Landscape lighting is an awfully good choice to consider.
Before you even consider how to make landscapes and architectural just simply beautiful at night, take a look into some of the larger macro economic trends you might consider when doing a PEST Analysis for this product category. A PEST analysis is basically an overview of the political, economic, social and technological factors to consider when looking at new business ventures or ideas.
One of the key drivers of the landscape industry over the past 30 to 40 years has been new home construction and the acceptance of outdoor irrigation systems to maintain and sustain landscapes. A combination of the housing crisis, severe droughts in several parts of the country, and the trend toward multi-family homes has put the irrigation market into a different mind set.
What does this have to do with landscape lighting?
The changes underway in the irrigation industry are impacting the revenues of manufacturers, distributors and contractors. Outdoor irrigation systems have the public’s attention for the amount of water being used, and irrigation systems are becoming smaller and more focused on low volume and drip irrigation systems. Parts of the landscape design, which used to be sod and landscape beds, are now being installed with hardscape features, native plant material and other site furnishings. The general public still wants to enjoy their outdoor areas, but those outdoor landscape designs are changing to meet new realities of the industry.
A couple of the largest irrigation manufacturers today have acquired lighting companies and are working hard to grow those businesses. In the last couple of years, LED lamp technology has become the primary choice for landscape lighting systems, literally bringing computer technology to the garden. Landscape lighting as a category is in an excellent position for continued growth in the landscape industry despite restrictions and public concerns over how much water can or should be used for outdoor landscapes.
Next, consider the demographics involved in the opportunities for landscape lighting growth. Lighting, like irrigation services, can grow substantially by targeting existing homes and business. But consider the differences between the two product categories for a moment. Irrigation will absolutely benefit from people retrofitting their irrigation systems to more efficient systems, but lighting is a product category, which may have greater revenue opportunities, and quite frankly lighting provides benefits for the owner all year! After all in many parts of the country, people aren’t concerned with their irrigation systems November through March.
Political and Social
While most landscape industry professionals may not think about the Dark-Sky movement, it is and can affect the outdoor landscape lighting industry. You might not have heard about the International Dark-Sky Association but this organization primary concern is outdoor light pollution. A growing number of municipalities and states have implemented codes that may affect outdoor lighting systems. As with any project, you will want to make sure you always check your state and local codes.
As landscape industry professional, besides knowing your local codes on lighting, you will want to take into consideration what some would consider light trespassing as it relates to your design and installations. A quick visit to the US Green Building Council page on Light Pollution Reduction is worth your time.
Through thoughtful design and installation practices, of not only the lighting, but the landscape itself, the landscape industry can maintain and grow its presence in outdoor landscape lighting. Those that will profit and benefit the most will be those who become outdoor lighting practitioners.
Outdoor lighting for the landscape industry is just a tiny fraction of the worldwide lighting industry. Look at the list of over 600 exhibitors in 2015 at Lightfair International, which claims to be the world’s largest annual trade show for architectural and commercial lighting. Lighting is such a huge product category that there is constant innovation and product development. The innovations and developments will only bring more opportunities for integrating landscape lighting into emerging control systems, smart home technologies and more. There is a lot of money behind developing new technologies for the lighting industry, which will have a long term positive impact on lighting. You might even enjoy just seeing how many phone apps are available at Lightsearch.com.
The technology and the knowledge required for landscape lighting has been rapidly increasing over the past several years. To really be able to profit and prosper education and training are going to be a must. landscape lighting business opportunities
The landscape lighting industry for our landscape industry is just in the early stages of its potential development. Will the current landscape industry professionals carry the torch forward, or will it become the domain of the electrical contractor? There is a lot of money to be made for the professionals who are willing to make the efforts necessary.
For the landscape industry professional the good news is that you, your landscape designer or landscape architect still owns the relationship with the end user for almost everything on the landscape site.