In laser lighting, a major benefit over other lighting techniques is the possibility to achieve very high luminous exitance. Focusing the exciting laser to a very small spot size on the phosphor, however, does not necessarily provide a very small emitting area for the white light. In this study we investigate experimentally and numerically the relationship between the white light spot size and the incident blue laser spot size. We show that the specific phosphor material properties have significant impact on this relationship and on the achievable minimum spot size. This constitutes a limitation on the minimum spot size achievable in laser lighting and has important implications in applications.