How to make the most of your signage – Infographic

September 21, 2016

Don’t you love funny signs? When a business shows their sense of humor by putting up a funny sign, it always makes me think, “I like these folks already.” I’m drawn to their cleverness and in some sense, fearlessness, when it comes to signage. Your store’s signs tell more about you than just your name. They convey your overall image (brand). Make sure your signs convey the message you want them to.

Infographic on signage statistics

How important is it?

Before we go much further, let’s take a look at what the sign industry has to say about the importance of your signage. Statistics clearly show your signage is as important as your location, merchandising and marketing. The number that amazes me is “76% of shoppers entered a store for the first time based simply on the store’s sign.” Imagine, over 3/4 of first-time shoppers walked in strictly because they noticed your sign! Once inside, 67% indicated they purchased a product because a sign “caught their eye.” Conversely, 60% of shoppers said the absence of a sign deters them from even entering a store.

Your 24-hour salesperson

Your day has a start time and an end time, but your outdoor signage sells for you 24/7.  It serves as the main connection between you and your customers. If you have an existing shop, the issue of your sign has already been decided. New shop owners will have a lot of questions regarding zoning restrictions in your area. Can it be placed above your building? Is it only displayed over your shop’s door? Can it be lit? What about in front of my shop? Read Increase store traffic with these holiday ideas to find out how you can use a sandwich board sign to draw shoppers in. If you are renting your location, read your lease agreement carefully about restrictions and discuss your options with your landlord.

Another 24/7 sign is a car wrap. A car wrap covers your entire car with a custom design. It’s a mobile billboard. You can have the entire car wrapped or just a small portion. The price is determined by the type of wrap, the size of the car and how much you want covered by your design.

Why you should never, ever use handwritten signs

Always keep your customers and the type of store you own in mind when considering your in-store signage. Never, ever put up a handwritten sign. A handwritten sign immediately conveys there was a problem somewhere and now you’re trying to fix it with a band aid.  Fix the problem so you won’t need a sign explaining why the problem exists. Always consider your message from your customers point of view. If a sign written by an employee appears at the register and says, “We no longer accept checks” it clearly conveys the shop had a problem with bounced checks or high fees. To the shopper, it says you are unwilling to deal with the problem to make purchases easier for them.

Build your brand with signage

As a part of your overall visual communication, the signs in front and inside your store should reinforce your shop’s branding. You want the look and feel of your signage to match that of your shop. Color is extremely important in defining your brand. Studies have shown the majority of brand recognition comes from the color of the logo. Think Coke red or McDonald’s yellow arches. Do you have a high end furniture or clothing shop? Then, make sure the color and design of your signage conveys a feeling of elegance. Burgundy red, deep purple and black are colors associated with sophistication. If the brand or mood you want to convey is youthful, your signs should be colorful, bright and definitely fun. Use the same typeface (font) you use in your logo or use your logo itself.

signage can be very importantSigns should be visual cues to shoppers

There should never be a time when a customer is wandering aimlessly. Your signs should tell them exactly what they’re seeing and what’s to come down the aisles. Draw attention with your signs to special promotions, events and sales. Make sure they give clear instructions for the location of restrooms, dressing rooms and checkout. Something as simple as changing your in-store signage can give a fresh, new feel to your shop and build curiosity in customers. Try creating a special holiday promotion and change your in-store signage to tie in with the theme.

However you choose to do it, building your brand with your signage reinforces what consumers expect from you. Don’t think it doesn’t matter.

Deb McGonagle

I have been a writer for various forms of marketing for over 40 years. I've written my share of radio and TV scripts, magazine and newspaper ads as well as direct mail brochures and newsletters. Currently, as the Marketing Director for Traxia, home of SimpleConsign software, I've moved into blog posts, eBooks and website text. It's been an ever changing and ever challenging journey but I've loved it all along the way.