Business signs are an important and cost-effective marketing tool. They not only publicize your business to the neighbourhood, but with traffic going by, they create awareness of your business to areas beyond your location. This is especially useful for a new business. An effective business sign can make the difference between a good launch of a start-up and an arduously slow one. An effective business sign is both informative and attention-grabbing. Keep to just the critical details, and make sure you design a sign that pops!
What Information to Include on Your Business Sign
Informational text should be kept to a minimum. Basically, it should just include the name of the company, what type of business it is and the best way of contacting it.
- The Name and the Nature of the Business. For instance, “Myrtle’s Corner” is not enough to let people know what kind of business it is. The addition of “Rare Gifts and Souvenirs” clarifies what potential customers can expect from this storefront.
- Memorable Website URL. When you create your domain name, come up with something humorous or a commonly used phrase that is easy to recall. In the case of our example, one option would be www.myrtlegifts.com
- Slogan/Call To Action. Include a short but snappy slogan that’s easy to recognize and remember. Or, you can make the slogan a call to action, such as “Come In to Find The Rare Gift You’ve Been Lookin For.”
If you don’t have a website, you can include your phone number and address, but passersby and motorists are not likely to remember these. Today, the majority of businesses are searched for by their URL. If you are opening a new business, you should definitely consider having a website and link the sign to the website.
It’s All in the Design
Colours and graphics are what catches the attention of passersby, and makes the sign stand out from all of the other signs in the location.
- Bold colours are attention-grabbing and visually appealing.
- Text and background colors should contrast, making the text easier to read and retain for passersby.
- Text font should fit with the nature of the business, but also have good readability, and be consistent across the sign. Keep in mind that a mix of upper and lowercase letters and simple font make the text easier to read.
- A unique and attractive graphic also makes your business sign more memorable. This can be your business logo, an interesting photograph, or a simple drawing, but it must always be something that’s both visually appealing, relatable to your business, and graspable at a glance.
Some Attention-Grabbing Tricks
Keep in mind that most business signs adhere to the standards discussed here. Well-proportioned and elegant signs can be the fitting representation of the business, and if that’s what you want, that’s great. But if you’re looking to make a splash with your new business sign, there are ways to make them more dramatic.
- Make the sign dimensions oversized.
- Create the sign in 3D.
- Choose colours that contrast starkly with the background.
- Make an error “accidently on purpose.” An error is always memorable, but it must be made in such a way as to say you’re complicit in making it. For instance, one of the letters in the text can be bigger or higher than the others, or something can be misspelled to create a humorous effect.
It’s best to think through and put down on paper what you want to communicate with your business sign, and then contact a professional printing shop. If you are just starting up, a consultation about your new business sign is especially critical. Most printing outlets have graphic artists on staff who will take your general ideas about your new business sign and make them a reality.