Signs grab attention. They are information-light and impact-rich to promote, engage, inform, and sell. According to the Sign Research Foundation, 60% of businesses that added or upgraded their signage enjoyed a 10% increase in sales!
Getting the best results, however, requires a knowledgeable salesperson that can help you navigate the many choices in signage types, material choices, design options, and format sizes. Signs viewed indoors from a few feet away require different choices than outdoor signage viewed by drivers from hundreds of feet away.
Poor choices in any category will result in a sign that does not function as intended or fit in the intended space. And it may not unlock those additional sales.
Indoor and Outdoor Signage
Approach choosing the best sign for the job using our decision tree. The first decision point is location — will the sign be used indoors or outdoors? Indoor signage is often used for a shorter period and does not need to be as durable as those used outdoors. Signs placed outdoors must withstand the local weather, including sun exposure, varying temperatures, precipitation, and wind.
Make the Best Design Choices
Where the sign will be located, or its placement, is another closely related design choice. Placement will dictate the type of lighting that will influence how the color is perceived, the viewing distance, and the context of the surrounding environment. An adhesive window graphic installed on the glass of a city bus stop is quite different from a window graphic placed inside the window of a restaurant. The bus stop sign will require more durable materials and likely need a design that can be understood at a greater distance.
The physical space and the viewing distance for the sign will influence the finished size and mounting options. State-of-the-art, large format printing equipment allows Up All Night Ink to print sizes measured in inches to feet in width and length. To help choose the best size, we help provide design specs, templates, and guidelines that work best for each type of sign, or let us design it for you! Remember to consider the constraints of the target location, including wall and ceiling heights, floor space for sign stands, and how close people will pass by the signs.
The same is true for material choices. Let's take Banners as an example. Those used for advertising at ball fields, can be printed on scrim vinyl or mesh. The difference is that scrim vinyl is a solid, reinforced material. Mesh banners inherently allow wind to flow through its mesh material.
How the sign will be attached, affixed, mounted, or otherwise installed requires careful consideration. The environment will impact the placement and the best method for installation.
Design for Effectiveness
The final design considerations relate to the artwork and color choices. These are important decisions because the research tells us that small unclear signs do not help a business. The Sign Research Foundation says that 61% of US consumers missed a business location because a needed sign was unclear or too small.
Bold colors and simplified designs usually work best for most signage because the message needs to capture the viewer’s attention within seconds. Photographs, graphics, and fonts must be sized appropriately.
We have all seen signs where the font is too small to read from the highway, street, or sidewalk as we pass by. Do not make those mistakes!
Place with Deliberation
Signs allow smaller companies to compete for attention, even in mall and shopping center locations. A well-placed sign hanging at eye level or on a sidewalk sign by the store entrance gets people to stop and take notice. And once you get them in the store, don’t forget more signs to guide customers to the specials.
For non-retail customers, like event organizers, sports teams, and schools, the same rules apply. Keep the sign designs sharp, vibrant, and easy to find. Ask about feather flags, retractable banners, and other types of portable signage that can be stored between events.
Work through this set of design considerations to avoid most mistakes before placing an order. Reach out to us to answer any more nuanced or specific questions related to your signage requirements!
Wishing you all the prosperity in the world,
A pair of individuals who like helping businesses succeed and make a great first impression.