Is Your Parking Lot Turning Your Customers Away?
Your parking lot tells visitors and potential customers a lot about your business.
Clearly designated parking spots, clean surroundings, and a smooth parking lot surface provide a positive first impression of a competent company that cares about its customers.
On the other hand, cracked pavement, potholes, faded pavement markings, or trash, often send a message of disorganization—or worse yet—complete indifference.
So how do you make sure your business is sending the right message when visitors pull into your parking lot? Here are some tips to make a solid first impression that keeps customers coming back again and again.
Signs It’s Time for Parking Lot Striping
Faded or Dull Markings
Over time, extreme weather conditions, road salt, and overall use dull or fade pavement markings, making it difficult for drivers to see the separations between parking spaces. Generally, you’ll need to update your parking lot striping if the visible lines have been reduced to 75% of their original appearance.
Faded Safety Markings
Arrows that indicate the correct direction of traffic, markings for fire lanes, and loading and unloading zones are essential features to maintain in your parking lot. If these areas experience heavy travel, they can fade in a similar fashion to the stripes for parking spaces. When this happens, it’s wise to handle all of the lot striping at one time, rather than updating some areas with fresh paint and leaving others faded.
Lack of Striping Maintenance
Most outdoor parking lots require striping maintenance every 18 to 24 months to retain crisp, clear lines. Extreme heat and cold, significant snow or ice, or frequent rain storms can cause lines to fade sooner, though. The amount of traffic in your lot can also impact how long your parking lot striping remains bright and clear.
ADA Compliance Standards
Does your parking lot comply with the current standards set forth in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)? If not, you risk angering potential disabled customers because they can’t find a parking space, and you’re also breaking the law.
At Lyons & Hohl Paving, we’re fully versed in the latest ADA standards and can help you determine if your lot is in compliance with standards that include:
Handicapped-Accessible Parking Spaces
Typical ADA requirements mandate at least one handicapped parking space for every 25 regular spaces. ADA parking spaces must be designated with blue and white pavement markings, as well as a metal sign to indicate the handicapped space.
Location of ADA-Compliant Spaces
Handicapped-accessible spaces must be provided for all accessible entrances at your facility. The spaces should be located along the shortest route to an available entrance, relative to other spaces in the same parking lot.
Hospital Outpatient Facilities
ADA standards require more ADA-compliant spaces at hospital outpatient facilities than standard facilities, with at least 10% of available spaces devoted to ADA-compliant spaces.
Of course, there are many more ADA standards than we could list here, but we’re always happy to answer any questions you have when you’re embarking on a parking lot redesign or re-striping project.
Designing Your Lot for Efficiency
Are traffic paths through your parking lot clear and easy to navigate? Are you utilizing all the available space in your lot? If not, there’s room for improvement.
At Lyons & Hohl we can help you make better use of available space to provide additional parking spaces. This encourages more customers to visit your business and makes your parking lot more cost-effective.
Your parking lot should also include visible pavement markings to indicate loading and unloading zones, pedestrian crosswalks, stop bars, or designated pick-up areas to provide visual cues that improve safety.
Clear directional arrows indicating the proper flow of traffic can also help visitors navigate your lot more easily, reducing accidents and encouraging them to return to your location in the future.
Ongoing Lot Maintenance
In addition to lot striping, it’s also important to keep up with other regular maintenance tasks for your parking lot.
Repair Small Cracks and Potholes
Small cracks and potholes form over time, making your parking lot unattractive and difficult to navigate. That’s why cracks and potholes should be repaired on a regular basis.
Invest in Sealcoating
Sealcoating the surface of your parking lot on a regular basis can extend the life of your asphalt parking lot and keep it looking new, longer.
Remove Trash and Debris
It’s extremely important to remove trash and debris that can not only damage the surface of your parking lot, but also make your facility unattractive to customers.
Maintain the Surrounding Landscape
Keep the grass cut during spring, summer, and fall. Be sure planting beds are properly maintained to reduce the spread of dirt or mulch to your parking area that can contribute to erosion and pavement cracks.
Finally, be careful when selecting trees that surround your parking lot. Some tree roots grow downward over time, while others grow outward, gradually pushing through your asphalt parking lot. Be sure to consult with an experienced arborist before you plant trees near your lot.
As you can see, there’s lots to keep track of when it comes to keeping your parking lot clean, attractive, and easy to navigate. The good news is, you don’t have to handle everything on your own.
At Lyons & Hohl, we specialize in paving, resurfacing, and lot striping for commercial parking lots throughout Lancaster, Reading, Downingtown, Coatesville, West Chester, and Chester County. We can help identify your parking lot issues and turn your parking lot into a business asset that welcomes customers and makes a great first impression. Just contact us for details!