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How Much do Commercial Security Cameras Typically Cost?

Savvy business owners today are leveraging the incredible advancements in video surveillance technology to better secure their buildings and their assets, as well as provide business intelligence and operational efficiencies that just weren’t possible even 10 years ago.

As today’s IP cameras get smarter with more capabilities, such as better image quality and zooming functions, for example, the cost is also coming down, making it possible for a business owners to pair up their security and video surveillance system to maximum potential.

ROI Dial Illustration

Do Commercial Security Cameras Provide a Return on Investment?

In addition to improvements in camera quality with relation to cost, today’s IP cameras can be networked, allowing business owners to take advantage of savings in storage options, and leverage video analytics, which provides even more ROI.

Speaking of ROI, let’s take a look at some of the initial costs associated with adding commercial security cameras, including a look at the many variables involved when deciding on the right cameras, and how many you need, for your business.


When it comes to deciding on which cameras are right for your business, cost is obviously a key factor and will influence the overall cost of installation (more on this later), as well as warranty, maintenance and management costs.

For example, a good mix of fixed cameras, which are generally the cheapest and most popular cameras to use in the commercial environment, provide an economical option that will keep your installation costs down.

Here’s a breakdown of the most popular security cameras for businesses and their prices:

1. Fixed bullet, dome and box style cameras

These security cameras run between $100-$500 each based on the type, quality and features, are considered all-purpose in nature. Fixed bullet cameras are not only easy to install but also provide high-resolution images that can meet most of your surveillance needs, both indoors and out. If you are looking for a more discreet camera that has some added protection within the dome casing, fixeddome cameras are very popular, and can be used in any environment. Probably the most well known camera in a business and retail environment, fixed box cameras are great for providing that visible deterrent in any environment.

2. PTZ Cameras

The security cameras, which got their name because they can “pan, tilt and zoom,” are more expensive than fixed cameras, and can run anywhere from $500 to several thousand dollars, based on brand and quality. While these cameras cost more money, they are ideal for a business owner looking to get coverage of a large area with one camera. Similar to a panoramic camera, which you may be familiar with, this versatile camera allows you to do a lot with a single camera. In addition to being very durable and able to stand up to harsh conditions, the cameras have some intelligent features, including moving to preset positions, and zooming in on areas when a sensor has been triggered.

3. Panoramic Cameras

Panoramic security camera, which can provide coverage for a wide area—up to 360 degrees—are similar in price to PTZ cameras. They are also similar in the way in which they provide multiple functions and multiple sensors with one camera. Based on your store and set-up, a panoramic camera can do the job of several cameras, though, saving you on overall installation and system costs, especially when paired up with a robust video management software, or VMS, system (more on this later). The cameras also have multidirectional capability, which allows you to focus each sensor/lens on a particular area, essentially creating multiple cameras in one camera. So in addition to monitoring activity and detecting incidents, you can track the flow of people and better manage larger areas.

4. Thermal Cameras

These specialty security cameras, which can range from $500 and up for the mini versions, are ideal for areas like boatyards or parking lots, for example, or other areas where darkness or variations and fluctuations in lighting are a factor. These cameras are great for areas where you need 24/7 surveillance in all conditions, as you don’t have to worry about darkness, shadows, inclement weather, etc., interfering with you capturing footage.

5. Explosion Proof Cameras

These extra sturdy security cameras, which can be costly—from several thousand dollars on up—are designed to withstand explosions, and are ideal for hazardous areas where these types of cameras are mandated or required, for example. They also provide excellent video surveillance 24/7 in any dangerous setting.

How Many Security Cameras Does My Business Need?

How Many Security Cameras for Your Business? Man Monitoring Displays

Before you can figure out how many cameras are needed, it is important to figure out what you need the cameras for, which can vary from location to location both inside and outside your establishment. So for areas where you are trying to provide deterrence in addition to surveillance, such as near important inventory, products or vehicles/boats, for example, you want to have cameras prominently displayed.

Also, depending on the type of camera deployed will also determine how many you need to cover a certain area, indoors or out. Working with a security company that has experience in video surveillance installation is vitally important, as today’s system’s are highly scalable and customizable, allowing you to mix and match the cameras and systems you need to meet your needs.

Total Cost of Commercial Security Cameras

Security camera in retail store

Some other factors that need to be considered in the overall cost of cameras and installation include storage and video management software, or VMS, which allows you to achieve greater business intelligence, do faster and more efficient investigations or audits, as well as find operational efficiencies and create business continuity. With today’s IP and wireless cameras, there are several options for storage, from storage built into the cameras to your standard on premises NVR to using storage in the cloud. Each of these options has their own advantages and costs associated with them. For example, an NVR is a larger initial expense than cloud storage, which involves a monthly storage fee. But, the cloud allows you to only pay for the storage you need.

In addition to some built-in analytics available within the cameras, VMS allows you to easily add on some more advanced rules and search functions, which translates to greater ROI. In addition to analytics, being able to manage your video easily, all in one place with one software program, allows you to get a better handle on shrink, as well as employee theft, for example, which is something every business has to deal with.

Price of a Commercial Security Camera System

All told, total cost of a video surveillance system with installation will vary based on the many factors above, but in terms of cost ranges, a business owner can expect to pay the following:

  • 15 camera setup (indoor/outdoor): $10,000-$15,000
  • 25 camera setup (indoor/outdoor): $20,000-$25,000
  • 40 camera setup (indoor/outdoor): $35,000-$40,000

Learn More About Commercial Security Cameras

We have locations throughout Virginia that install, service, and monitor commercial security cameras for a wide array of businesses, schools, government facilities, and more. Click here to learn more about Commercial Security Cameras.

Security cameras for Businesses