Anytime you’re making a purchase, it can be tempting to opt for the cheapest option available. After all, the cheapest option is the one that allows you to get what you’re after while keeping as much of your money as possible in your pocket.
At least, that’s how it might seem.
But when you’re buying an LED sign, things aren’t quite so simple. While it’s easy to opt for a cheap sign that might not cost you as much upfront, the consequences of going cheap may make you wish you invested a little more money upfront.
Let’s explore a few of the reasons why cheaper isn’t actually better when it comes to buying an LED sign.
Bad Design and Structural Integrity
LED signs are workhorses. They sit out front of a building and serve as a calling card for companies and organizations year-round, meaning that they’re exposed to the elements and have to take a battering during particularly rough weather conditions.
When an LED sign is cheaply made, one of the telltale signs is that it’s not designed intelligently. Its physical features aren’t as strong and structurally secure as its more expensive — but better made — counterparts.
On cheap LED signs, the cabinets containing the sign’s inner workings are often not structurally sound, which allows water and debris to seep in and cause leaking.
That’s a major problem since the cabinet contains the sign’s electrical infrastructure, which needs to be protected from water and other elements at all times.
Another problem with faulty cabinets is that the doors or latches won’t secure properly, making it all too easy for animals like birds or other critters to gain entry. Huddling inside a sign cabinet may keep the animal warm, but it puts your sign at significant risk of damage.
By contrast, the best made LED signs may cost a little more upfront, but because they’re sturdy and well made, they provide much better protection against animals and the elements, making them a much better and more cost-effective investment in the long run.
Another big problem with cheap signs is the software they come equipped with. Software is crucial for properly operating an LED sign. Without software that runs an LED sign smoothly and effectively, the sign can’t work at all.
Cheaply made signs present two problems when it comes to software. First, the software may be poorly coded.
Software is a crucial element of an LED sign and something that you’ll have to use throughout your sign’s lifespan, which means that ease of use is absolutely essential. If your sign’s software is confusing, complicated or difficult to figure out and use, it will create frequent headaches for you.
Another issue with bad software is potential language barriers. Many cheap signs are made overseas, and the included software is coded by people who are non-native English speakers. Depending on the extent of their English fluency, this could create big problems for you as you try to understand your sign’s software and execute certain functions.
Well made signs come up with modern software that’s designed with English-speaking users in mind, and provide an interface that’s easy to use and understand. This ensures that your sign will provide value, rather than headaches, and make it easy for you to get your message across.
Poor Customer Service
Another major issue with cheap, foreign-made signs is the poor customer service from the companies selling them.
When you buy a sign from half a world away, there are no guarantees that the sign is going to come with any real customer service. Or even that the people who sell you the sign will speak English well enough to understand your issue and help you encounter it.
Another issue is timing. If your customer service rep lives on another continent, their regular business hours could be drastically different than ours. That can make it all but impossible to get a customer service rep on the phone and speak to a real person at a convenient hour.
Buying a well-made sign from a local supplier eliminates all of these problems. For one thing, you’ll be able to deal with your supplier in person and feel confident that you’re buying a sign that won’t have a lot of issues and require a lot of maintenance.
But when something does come up, you’ll know exactly where, how and when to reach them. They’ll be able to help you troubleshoot your issue quickly, or come out and solve it in person.
Buying a Quality LED Sign Pays Off
As with making any major purchase, when it comes to buying an LED sign, the temptation to go cheap and buy something at the very bottom of the market is prevalent.
Unfortunately, so are the consequences. Just as buying a cheap used car requires much less upfront cash than buying a brand new one, in the long run the cost of gas mileage, maintenance and other issues mean that the new car is often the more sound investment.
LED signs are the same way. They’re big purchases that can last years and provide great value to your business or organization when properly maintained.
To learn more about why cheaper is not better when buying an LED sign, call New Style Signs at (905) 363-0101, or contact us here.