According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, commercial signs are essential for two reasons:
- They help customers locate your business in real life
- They get prospective customers to notice you
The next time you drive down the main drag in your city, observe the wide variety of signs lining the street. While they differ in size, color, material, features and location, one factor is consistent. Each business sign is unique, and the more eye catching, the more memorable.
Whether you’re developing signage for a new business or updating a current sign, here are five things to keep in mind to design the most effective commercial sign.
1. What’s Your Sign Made Of?
From granite and marble to metal and wood, commercial signs come in many sizes and materials, each with pros and cons. Before zeroing in on a particular idea, consider how it can be designed on different materials.
Wood and metal signs are generally less expensive and are a good option for brands with smaller budgets. Wood signs convey an old-fashioned or vintage look, while metal signs are more sleek and modern.
If you’re looking for something more high-end or durable, signs made from granite, stone and marble are a great option. These materials last longer and are more weather-resistant.
2. What’s On Your Sign?
Your sign is a 24/7 branding tool for your business. Be sure that all necessary information is included on the sign, but not too much that it overwhelms potential customers. Every sign is different, but important information may include:
- Company name
- Phone number
It is also important to make sure your sign reflects the image that’s been established for your brand. Your sign should include your logo, and fonts and colors that are synonymous with your brand. This will ensure that customers associate the sign with your business and not one of your competitors.
Lastly, make sure your sign is legible. Fancy, cursive lettering is pretty. But can people driving past at 45 mph read it? Pay attention to colors, contrast and fonts (size and style) when designing your business’ sign.
3. Where Is Your Sign?
The location of your sign can have a big impact on your business, as well. Does the evening sun cast a glare for some drivers? Does a neighboring business’ sign block yours? How does it look in different seasons of the year? Are you located in a commercial plaza with other businesses?
Consider where your customers are coming from (which streets, parking lots, etc.) and pick a location that suits as many viewers as possible. If you want to be certain of the location before installing a permanent sign, we recommend experimenting beforehand. Hang a banner that imitates your sign in several different places and at differing heights and take note of all obstructions and issues.
4. Is Your Sign Practical?
Another aspect to keep in mind when designing a commercial sign is the practicality of it. Are there zoning regulations in the area? Will the sign cost you money beyond creation and installation? How will your sign hold up in your region’s weather?
Asking these questions in the early stages of designing a sign for your business will save you time and money down the line.
5. Is Your Sign Being Maintained?
Once you’ve designed the perfect sign for your business, make it last for years to come by spending the time and money to keep it looking new. Regular sign cleaning and maintenance go a long way in preserving your investment. A partially burned-out or damaged sign sends the signal to your customers that you don’t care, which can turn them away from doing business with you.
Check with the company creating your sign to see if they offer cleaning services (or discounts for being a repeat customer). Otherwise, a quick Google search for sign-cleaning companies near you should give you options to choose from.
Time to Get Started
In the market for a new or updated commercial sign? Or restoration? Schedule an appointment to meet with the Milano Monuments team and design the new business sign of your dreams.