Commercial Awnings for Businesses
Commercial door and window awnings for your business are the "face" of your business, so you want it to be eye-catching and welcoming to your customers. With all the advertisements and signs on a busy street, you want your business to stand out, and a large, colorful awning is a great way to accomplish that.
Custom graphics or lettering on the awning can help further in establishing your business identity, and your awning color and style choices can convey the "mood" of your establishment to your customers.
Special effects such as backlit awnings can be very effective in catching a customer's eye. Backlighting behind your business awning is not just for businesses open at night — just because you are not open does not mean your customers will not drive by.
Zoning and Code Restrictions
The size and shape of your storefront window or door awnings may be dictated by local building zoning codes, and some laws will require fire resistant or flame retardant awnings. Be sure to plan your awnings based on what is allowed by your area building codes, so that you don't waste time researching an awning or canopy which turns out not to be allowed by your business zoning codes. Some zoning laws, particularly in designated historic districts and high-end retail areas, may even dictate allowable awning colors, styles, and the size of graphics and lettering. Find out what is allowed, then start deciding what works best for your business awning needs.
Benefits of Storefront Window and Door Awnings
Commercial awnings for storefront windows provide numerous benefits for your business. A long awning with good projection away from the building will provide shade for more hours of the day, and will better protect window shopping customers from rain blown in by the wind. This in turn makes it more attractive to window shoppers to window your windows, rather than moving on the windows of your competitor down the street! A shorter, steeper awning with less projection will be less expensive to install, while still providing many of the benefits of larger awnings. Any awning over a window will provide at least some shade, and all can be eye catching and can improve the appearance of your business.
Commercial entranceway awnings or canopies expand your business space and help to keep customers comfortably shaded and protected from rain while they open or close umbrellas, fish for car keys, or just shake some water off clothes and shoes. Some business locations lend themselves to a large projection awning over the driveway, allowing customers to keep their cars dry during rain. In other cases, a large area commercial awning over the business entranceway works well.
Large Heavy Duty Awnings for Porches, Decks, and Outdoor Seating
Businesses that have large areas to cover, such as porches, decks, or other outdoor area seating, will want large, heavy duty awnings, often with clear roll up side curtains or screens. Large area awnings or canopies must have a strong frame to resist winds or carry heavy snow loads, and should be made of the most durable materials. See Awning Materials and Construction for information on available options in state-of-the-art commercial awning construction.
For special awning or canopy applications such as band shells or large porch or patio outdoor seating areas which are not attached to any building, aluminum awning support poles and cables become a problem. To minimize lost space and potential hazards, self-supporting clamshell canopies or special outdoor awnings such as Shade Sails can be a great choice.
Whatever size and shape of commercial awning fits your needs, you want it to last a long time and maintain its appearance without fading or fraying around the seams. Check the life expectancy and warranty of any acrylic, vinyl, polyethelene, polyester, or canvas awning or canopy before buying, and find out who will be responsible for warranty work. Ask awning installers for a list of previous jobs and references, and inquire with your local Chamber of Commerce and Better Business Bureau about potential contractors before you sign a contract to buy a new commercial awning for your business.
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