Digital marketing gets all the focus in the modern age, but for stores with a physical presence, storefront signs are still incredibly important. The signs that you use provide your customers with their first impression of your store and help to drive foot traffic. Poor signage, on the other hand, can even work against you, driving away potential customers before they even have a chance to enter your store. Selecting the right signs isn't always an easy task, but this guide will help to get you pointed in the right direction.
Determine Placement First
Where you intend to place your sign will dictate to some degree the materials and types of signs available to you. Common placement locations include awnings, hanging or attached signs installed parallel to your storefront's wall, façade lettering, and even simple banners. Your placement should be determined by the purpose of the sign as well as the length of time that you intend to keep it up. Permanent signs that will be a part of your business' long-term identity are commonly installed on the façade itself, while temporary signs (such as sales announcements) are usually simple vinyl or fabric designs that can be easily placed on windows or doors.
Consider Aesthetic Cohesion
Are you purchasing multiple signs at once or does your business already have one or more signs in place? Having a number of wildly varying designs can create a cluttered, unprofessional look. Depending on the image that your storefront is intended to evoke, this can push away customers that are looking for a more sophisticated shopping experience. Luckily, it's not difficult to avoid this situation even if you aren't working with a professional designer. Maintaining consistent color schemes and using at most two font styles can help to give you storefront a cohesive look, even if more than one sign is present at once.
Select Materials Based on Budget and Needs
Many business owners start by deciding on a material, but this should generally be a step that's only taken near the end of the process. In some cases, the material may limit the colors that are available for use or the types of printing that are available. In other cases, you may the options that you want, but a particular material choice will help your design to really stand out. The most common types of materials used for commercial signs are vinyl, fabric, wood, and metal. Unusual materials such as stone are also available, although less common.
While vinyl and fabric are typically used for shorter-lived signs, they can also be made into more permanent fixtures if they are installed in frames or other supports. Although this increases their cost, it can help to make the final product appear more professional. Wood and metal are more expensive, but can also be more versatile. Lettering installed on façades is usually constructed from durable and attractive metal, for example.
Don't Be Afraid to Ask for Advice
Once you have a rough idea of your sign's placement, style, and material, it's always a good idea to make one final consultation with professionals. Most sign shops are staffed by experts who can offer advice and suggestions. Since you will already have a solid idea of what you are looking for, they can help to guide you in the right direction so that you end up with the perfect signs for your business needs. Contact a commercial sign shop near you to learn more.