As the saying goes, you never get a second chance to make a first impression. So, make sure the first impression your customers get when they walk through your doors is a great one! The environment you create at that initial introduction to your office space speaks volumes about the pride you take in your brand, your dedication to creating an inviting atmosphere, your level of professionalism, and your company personality. Walking into a dimly lit, cluttered, or chilly reception area creates a vastly different atmosphere compared to stepping into a reception area featuring thoughtful lighting, distinctive brand communication, efficient arrangement, and cozy furnishings. 

Every welcome area should be exactly that – welcoming and hospitable. And when it comes to the ideal reception area, pay attention to the senses.  


Does your reception area design flow well, meaning can people walk through it without any sort of furniture, wall, or other fixture blocking their way? You’d be surprised at how important the floorplan of your reception area affects that first impression. Ensure that however you choose to design and set up your reception area space, you do so with the consideration of foot traffic in mind. As the saying goes, the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Keep that in mind when you choose your layout.


Walking into a dismal reception area is, well, dismal and depressing. It’s amazing how much of a difference good lighting can have on a person’s overall experience. Natural light is always ideal because it puts less stress on the eyes. If you can take advantage of it, arrange your reception space in ways to do so. If you can’t, no worries. Choosing softer light bulbs can help mimic a more natural feel and provide a welcoming atmosphere.

At Benjamin, we carry a wide range of floor and desk lamps that can help improve the lighting of your reception area.


Color has a much greater impact on a person’s mood and experience than we often credit it for. If you really want to tap into someone’s subconscious and plant a positive seed, pay attention to your color choices. Some colors, such as red and black, can give off a hostile, angry vibe if used in large quantities. Colors such as blue, green, and beige are often considered more calming.

Want to incorporate your branding color scheme into your decor? Try to coordinate your color scheme to your brand while also being cognizant of how those colors affect the space and the people in it. Knowing which colors to use in which capacity and in which quantity can be the difference from a positive and a negative reaction to your reception area.

Color can also show up in the form of wall art, plants, and carpeting. Carpet can kill two birds with one stone – it can add color to your reception space while also softening the flow of sound. And sound is the next aspect to consider when creating an inviting reception area.


We often forget how much sound affects our moods and comfort levels. Loud noises are jarring and uncomfortable, while muted noises tend to be more soothing and comforting. Your furniture selection plays a crucial role in how sound moves within your reception area. For example, the harder the surface, the more intensely sounds reverberate and the louder they are.

If you want to create a soothing or more welcoming ambiance, keeping noise (both indoor and outdoor) to a minimum should be a serious consideration in your design and decor. To that end, upholstered furnishings such as cozy sofas and cushioned chairs are more effective sound absorbers than their wooden or plastic counterparts due to the tendency of hard and flat materials to reflect sound waves.

Along those lines, flooring is also a consideration when it comes to how sound travels. If you want to dampen the sound, consider investing in carpeting or rugs. If you prefer to let sound carry, concrete or hardwood floors will do the trick.

Since the reception area is a high traffic area, it’s wise to invest in durable and sustainable flooring to avoid excessive wear and tear. To handle heavy foot traffic, low pile carpets made of wool or nylon are recommended, while laminates or vinyl surfacing are great options for easy spill clean-up. Remember, a clean reception area is crucial in leaving a lasting impression on visitors, so regardless of the material, it should be kept immaculate.

If you invest in smooth-surface flooring like wood or laminate, consider investing in high-quality floor matting at your entrance. Not only does this help minimize safety dangers such as trips and falls, but it also limits the amount of dust, dirt, and pathogens that enter the building.

Seating and Furniture

The reception area’s warmth and welcoming ambiance are significantly influenced by the seating. It is not just about the fabric and patterns and types of furniture; the amount of seating available and its strategic placement within the space also matters.

When choosing furniture, choose pieces that accentuate your brand’s character and the overall atmosphere of your environment while also prioritizing comfort. Soft sofas and cushioned chairs, especially those upholstered in more velvety fabrics, never fail to evoke warmth.

Also consider the size of your space and how it is utilized. Is your reception area one where people often sit and wait, or is it one people typically just pass through to get to an office somewhere else in the building? The more your reception space is used for sitting and waiting, the more seating you should have available, and vice versa. And no question, all that seating should be comfortable.

Incorporating corner tables (especially those equipped with power/USB modules) is another way to enhance the visitor’s experience. These tables can also serve as computer tables and power ports, enabling guests to use their laptops and charge their phones while waiting.

Another item of furniture often overlooked is the reception desk itself. It plays a pivotal role in the overall reception setup, and choosing the right desk is crucial as it can make or break the ambiance. Not only does it serve as a statement piece for the room, it also serves as the hub for numerous crucial tasks, such as phone calls, correspondence, organizing meetings, greeting people, and managing employee requests. Any reception desk you choose should have ample space for the receptionist to carry out their work easily and fluidly.

Regardless of your modern decor, brand aesthetics, or space layout, incorporating a few timeless design elements that appeal to the senses and convey your brand’s essence is crucial without overcrowding the available floor space.


What’s more of a turn-off than walking into a room that smells like yesterday’s trash? Our sense of smell is a powerful influence on our overall mood and attitude towards something or someone. We have an actual visceral reaction to smells, bad and good. The power of scent can NOT be overlooked. Good smells make us happier and more receptive. Bad smells disgust us, making us more unhappy and less receptive.

Given this connection between smell and overall mood, it’s not hard to see why people entering your building who encounter a less than pleasant odor are likely to be less inclined to want to work with you. In fact, encountering a bad smell when you walk into a building makes a person more likely to simply turn around, leave, and never come back.

Keep your spaces smelling fresh with our odor-eliminating products.

Keep It Clean

Remember – your reception area is your first touch point with a visitor or client. Be diligent about cleaning and always keeping your reception area spotless. Flooring and carpets can be some of the worst offenders when it comes to the cleanliness of your reception area. Be sure to clean carpets regularly and have those hardwood floors gleaming.

Also, over the last few years, people have become more cognizant of the importance of clean hands. A simple gesture such as having hand sanitizer available at the front desk for people signing in shows you’ve considered their needs and want to keep your space as healthy as possible.


Lastly, no reception area is complete without the people staffing it. All the fancy decor in the world will not make up for a rude receptionist or an empty desk. The reception area sets the tone for the company culture while also telling clients that they care about them. A warm welcome and an informative staff that listens goes a long way in making a memorable impression and should never be overlooked.

Your reception area is an extension of your brand and company culture, setting the tone for a person’s experience with your company. It would be a mistake to overlook it. Benjamin Office Supply has everything you need to design and furnish the kind of reception area that makes a great impression on everyone who walks through your doors.

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