Outdoor signs are a key component to businesses that have walkway space outside of a store. In fact, they can increase both sales and profitability according to The New York State Small Business Development Center. Placing signage purposefully helps people notice your business and then draw them inside. These signs don’t have to be flashy to be a vital and strategic part of a marketing plan.
However, there are so many different aspects of designing and placing signs that need should be considered in order to be truly effective and profitable. There may be some regulations in some areas around business signage, or there may just be some common courtesy issues that dictate where you place these physical assets.
Don’t Be Pushy
Putting signs out on the sidewalk is one thing, but being obnoxious about it only irritates people. Be sure to check with your city on what their specific ordinance is and stay within the recommended limits. No matter what the regulations are, though, you should still use common sense. Signs that block the walk way, cover up a neighboring business, or just look like litter will irritate people.
Another way that space gets crowded is through the use of multiple signs. While more than one can be helpful, limit the number to two and only if you are going to place one on each side of the door. Otherwise, one sign is enough to get the job done.
Placing a sign for the best effect can be tricky. Whether it is a Grand Opening sign, a special of the day, or just a flag advertising a big sale, it needs to be in the right place at the right time to capture attention. Location is always an important thing to consider in business, even with business signage. Just as stated previously, A-frames and flags should not be too far out or else they will block traffic and even create a hazard. However, placing it too close to the building, or only having a sign flat against the wall, will prevent anyone from seeing it. The perfect place is somewhere in between these two options.
Signs are optimally placed close to the storefront so that people are drawn to the entrance. The text should be positioned at eye level so it is easy to read, and something that moves or has bright colors is also a great way to catch someone’s eye without a lot of noise or fanfare.
However, if your store is too close to the street or sidewalk or too far away, you may have to make some other modifications to your signage. Too close to the street and a sign that’s too low won’t be seen by vehicles, while if it’s too high, pedestrians won’t notice it. If the store is too far back from the street, small details won’t be apparent, and your message could be lost. You will need to think about all these factors when you place your sign.
Consider sight-lines. Pedestrians and drivers all have natural lines that their eyes will follow. This is the level that you are going to want to place your signs. Be sure to consider your audience too. If you are going to try and sell candy or toys to kids, you are going to want to place pictures aimed at them at their eye level rather than an adult’s, which would be over their head. If your storefront sign is too high for pedestrians to see, consider an a-frame sign on the sidewalk that meets their sight-line at a 90-degree angle.
Timing is Everything, Well Kind Of
Most industries have certain times of year when sales are better. For example, retailers sell more clothing when school is about to start and toy stores increase revenue during the Christmas season. There are also certain times that are better for moving inventory, like when items go out-of-season.
Another aspect of timing is knowing when to put a sign or flag out. If you are having a sale, a flag or sign can be very helpful, but if you always leave it out there, it loses importance. People will not be enticed into your store if they do not believe that anything special is happening.
Keeping It Simple
Placing a simple sign or two is a great strategy that doesn’t require a lot of money. There are many people who will gladly follow a sign into a store and many more who would never discover your location if the sign wasn’t in the most visible location. Remember to entice customers in by catching their attention without being overly intrusive. People don’t mind being advertised to as long as it is not excessive.