If you’re a small-business owner, or you’re thinking of starting one, never underestimate the power of good signage. Most consumers may only see your sign for a matter of seconds, but depending on what they see, you can either make or break a sale.
Signage is a simple marketing tool that you can utilize in order to grab the attention of new customers, as well as keeping your brand at the top of existing customers’ mind in order to get their continued business. In fact, 64% of all those small business owners surveyed believe impressive signage designs are key to making people notice a business.
So, how can you ensure your signs are appealing and effective? We have some important factors to consider, and tips to try, for designing marketing signs that work.
As we mentioned, you’ll want to make sure your signs stand out and can the grab attention of those walking or driving by. In the simplest of terms, that means big, bold colours and prints. If you’re using lettering, make sure they are large, clear, and legible. A good rule of thumb is to increase the height of each letter by one inch for every ten feet of a distance you want it to be read. So, for example, if you want your letter to be readable from 200 feet away, each letter should be 20 inches tall.
Do not use a hard-to-read font, like a squashed script, and make sure not to overload your sign with too many words. If your sign isn’t readable, it won’t be effective. If you have a logo, make sure it’s clear and consistent both inside and outside of your space.
For both design and text, make sure you’re choosing colours that stand out against their backdrop. Of course, there are obvious colours the eye recognizes and acknowledges instantaneously, like red and yellow, so you’ll certainly want to keep those in mind.
And no matter how much you might like Pantone’s colour of the year, you should avoid seasonal or trendy colours. By choosing such a shade, customers might subconsciously associate your business with a certain season, and you could lose out on valuable business.
Plus, you’d have to continuously change your colour scheme to keep up with the trends, and that inconsistency can be detrimental to your goal of welcoming repeat customers.
Contrast is especially important in establishing overall readability. So make sure you know what the background for your sign will look like, and whether you’ll have a border, so you know which colours will stand out best. You could even try neon, since it stands out bright against a variety of backgrounds.
We’ve talked a lot about the artistic qualities you’ll want to consider, but the message you put on the sign is just as, if not more important. Your sign serves as a first impression for your business, and you want to put your best foot forward. If this is, say a tented sign that sits outside your business, experts recommend choosing three main features or benefits of your business and advertise those. Make sure they aren’t obvious for your industry, you want these features to set your business apart from the pack. Plus, when you’re paying for the number of words you write, you don’t want to waste a letter.
Once you have your three benefits down, make sure to include a call to action, something that prompts whoever is viewing the sign to act. In this case, that action would be to come into your business and, ideally, make a purchase. Examples of a call to action include writing something like … “limited time introductory offer,” “try a taste,” or “find out how.”
So, you’ve picked what you want your sign to say, and you’ve chosen what font and colours you’ll use to write it, but now, you need to figure out where your sign will go! Location can be critical to getting eyes on your sign.
Will your design hang on your building facade? Or maybe on the front door of your business. You could also consider a yard sign or a wrap on a vehicle. You’ll need to determine whether your sign will be inside or outside, then also consider the height at which it will be placed.
Once you choose your locations, you can dictate your background, and ensure your colours will stand out as we discussed above.
There are also rules and regulations regarding where a sign can be located. Your municipality likely has code about the size and placement of your sign, so make sure to do your research.
If you take the time to do your homework and take care in crafting your design and message, your signage can be a pivotal tool in the success of your business. By utilizing signage inside and outside your business, you can build a recognizable brand that customers will remember.