Good signage tells clients and community not just that a business exists, but also that they offer a top-quality solution for customers’ needs. Naturally, signage is a worthwhile investment of money. However, business owners know the importance of controlling (or at least monitoring) the cost of doing business. Searching for deals can keep expenses low, and buying in bulk is one way to go. Naturally, if you’re a business currently on the lookout for signs, you may be wondering about wholesale channel letters.
The general idea of buying in bulk is to buy relatively more items, yet at a lower price per item. So, if we’re talking about channel letters (and we are), this could look like purchasing a larger number of letters. But when you do so, the amount you end up paying for each letter is lower than the amount you would have paid for each in a normal transaction.
Delight your wallet with wholesale channel letters
Your first stop when procuring wholesale channel letters can actually be pretty close to home. Buy them from a local sign manufacturer. Even if a local sign company doesn’t advertise that they sell channel letters in bulk, reach out to them.
Ask if they’re willing to offer any discounts if you purchase a large number of letters at once. If you’ve already been a source of repeat business, they could see this is a great deal for both of you.
The wholesale channel letters scenario
Imagine for a moment you’re the owner of a business. Exactly what kind of business doesn’t matter—so choose a company you’ve always dreamed of starting. Let’s say your area’s hit a bit of a slump so you’re brainstorming ways to lower your expenses and still get the attention of new clients (to drive up revenue).
You have several ideas. One of them is to create some new signage that can’t be missed. Still, you know signage costs can add up, so you head to your favorite sign specialist for a sit-down talk. Next, you ask about the possibility of buying channel letters in bulk and receiving a discount. You’ve given them a lot of business over the years, and in their eyes, you’re a valuable customer.
Unsurprisingly, they’re open to the idea. And they’re not just open, they’re actually delighted.
In fact, the owner you spoke to even begins talking about expanding the idea of offering wholesale discounts on channel letters. It could become a selling point in their relationship with new clients.
What to do with wholesale channel letters
Once you work out a star-studded deal with your local manufacturer, it’s time to get those channel letters working for you. Obviously, installing channel letters on a building is a very common use. And some take their place atop a pole, too.
But why only do what’s typical if you can put your letters to work in unique and creative ways. After all, if you bought wholesale channel letters, you have a bountiful supply of letters to work with.
Unique ways to use your wholesale channel letters
Now that you have an expansive supply of wholesale channel letters, you realize you have more leeway when using them. With the dollar sign on your side, it’s time to unleash your creative potential.
Fence it in
Let’s say you’re the owner of a restaurant on a downtown street, and you get a lot of foot traffic. You’re remodeling the area outside the restaurant, so you rope in channel letters as a cordon. The eatery already boasts a custom-built firepit in its popular outdoor eating area.
Since the spot is close to the road, you’re planning to add a metal fence. And channel letters of equal height will be the perfect creative addition to the restaurant’s perimeter. So, the company leaves a break in the fence where the metallic-face letters will stand. They’ll be illuminated at night, lending a striking appearance to the already popular spot.
Go for ground
Walls are a natural space for channel letters. But placing them on the ground could also add interest. A hotel’s design and decor team thinks they could be a showstopper on the ground outside the building. The hotel’s garden has a lot of unused patio space around its decorative foundation. Plus, the area has outdoor lighting so guests can enjoy evening strolls.
They’ll install backlit channel letters on the ground in front of the fountain. Not only will they be beautiful from the vantage point of people passing by, but they’ll also be striking from the balconies on any of the hotel’s 10 stories.
Glass for a backdrop
Plenty of channel letters take their place on the brick or cement of a building’s exterior. But not all buildings are made of those materials. A modern co-working space decides that channel letters are the perfect way to go for their all-glass exterior.
Freestanding (no backdrop at all)
In addition to having backdrops that vary, channel letters can also have no backdrop at all. And this could be a great way for your message to stand out (or rather stand up). Have a permanent awning or other roof structure on your building? Then maybe it’s time to make it landing pad for your company logo with channel letters.
Say something worth saying
Wholesale channel letters could be just the impetus you need to creatively reinvent your signage. And if you need more sign stimulus, take a look at The Importance Of Good Signage & The Psychology Behind How It Works. Or you can check out 6 Elements You Must Include On Your Sign | Tips On Layout & Design.
One of the vital uses of signs is to mark your business. You want to catch people’s eye, to stand out. And to draw them into your storefront or offices. LED channel letters can be a brilliant tool to make this happen. These signs are perfect signs for presenting your name to the world.
Read this article to find out more about channel letters and how you can customize them. We are going to look at different examples to get you inspired.
Why choose channel letters?
So what exactly are channel letters?
They are a type of building signs that you can use outdoors. People use them for all kinds of businesses, from restaurants to offices.
Manufacturers build them with metal sign backers and an acrylic sign face. They are three dimensional and are typically lit with LED bulbs.
The best part of these signs is that you can pretty much customize them as much as you want. You can decide on the color, shape, size font, and more for the letters.
Generally, companies design them to be front lit. This means that the illumination comes from the face of the sign and shines through the letters. But this isn’t your only option. You could also choose reverse channel letters or have them backlit.
All of these options will have different effects. But their main goal remains the same, to get you noticed.
Benefits of LED channel letters
In the past, sign companies might have used a variety of bulbs for their products like neon tubes. But now most of them primarily rely on LED lighting. This is what they usually use for channel letters too.
Here are the key advantages of choosing LED channel letters for your building signs:
- Impact: It’s all about making a statement. A well-designed channel letter will help get you noticed. But even more importantly it can make it more memorable as well.
- Visibility: Another crucial factor is that they can be far more visible than other signs. The lights mean that you can see it better even at night and from a distance.
- Energy efficiency: Do you want to go green? If being environmentally friendly is a primary concern for you, then LED’s are the way to go. They can use up to 75% less energy compared to other bulbs.
- Durability: Manufacturers typically use aluminum to make their channel letters. Thanks to this, they are pretty sturdy and can withstand a lot of punishment. This can save you from costly repairs.
- Longevity: Because they are durable, they can last a long time too. You probably won’t need to replace the bulbs as often. So they are quite cost-efficient. Besides this LED bulbs can last as long as ten years.
- Bright and bold: One thing that distinguishes these letters are how brilliant they are. They can produce quite the shine and can be very colorful too.
- Customization: Don’t forget the range of customization options that are open to you.
Guide to customizing LED channel letters
Customization is all about making the best out of the sign. You need to personalize it to fit your business’ unique needs. But also to suit your brand’s identity.
The core of this is to think carefully about the design of your signage. You could do this yourself. But the modern market is too competitive. Getting some help and input from an expert might be just what you need to give you that edge.
A pro tip is to ask your sign company whether they offer any creative services.
A few of the essential factors to consider in sign design are:
- Lighting effects
These are the main elements through which you can customize your channel letters. You can personalize each of these individual factors to create the perfect whole.
Now, let’s look at all of these principles in more detail with examples, of course.
1 – Shapely
First of all, we need to consider how you can use shapes in customizing your signage. Traditionally, channel letters were single separate letters that were put together to spell out the specific words that you want.
This is still an excellent choice for building signs and is undoubtedly the most common kind out there.
However, not everyone has the same requirements. For example, your business’ name could double up like your logo, so it needs to be shaped a certain way. And if you always use it that way it might not make sense to do it differently specifically for your name sign.
Luckily, modern technology gives you alternatives to the standard format.
Nowadays, your sign company should be able to help you with a lit sign capsule. They are basically oversized channel letters in custom shapes.
So when you hear channel letters, don’t think you are limited to typical letter shaped signs.
2 – Too big?
No matter what sign you want, you always need to consider the size carefully. Two key terms here are visibility and legibility.
First, you need to make sure that people will be able to see the sign. Secondly, they need to be able to read the words on the channel letters too.
You need to work out what the view distance for your sign is. In other words, from how far away should the audience be able to look at the sign.
Besides this, your specific size needs are probably going to depend on the space available to you and local regulations about signage.
For all these reasons, calculating the size is a crucial part of designing your own custom channel letters. You will have to give this information to the sign company that you’re planning to hire.
To do this correctly, figure out exactly how long you want each side of the sign to be.
Remember that when it comes to channel letters, you need to consider how thick the sign is going to be. Because they are three dimensional, you should keep in mind that people will be able to see parts of it from different directions.
This can also influence what effect you create with the lighting.
3 – Font
Another critical factor in customizing your own channel letter is to pick a font. Some companies will have lists of fonts that are available from which you choose. But it won’t always work this way.
In other cases, you will need to or want to use a unique font. Typography forms a core part of creating a brand’s visual identity.
Your business will probably already have a preferred font that you use in your brand. Or if you don’t, now might be the ideal time to decide on one.
If you do have a particular font, it’s a good idea to use it for your building signs, like channel letters. Consistent fonts will help your audience recognize your brand.
Overall, the font you choose needs to fit your business. It’s vital for creating the right feel and experience for your business. And it plays a role in attracting customers.
For example, you don’t necessarily want to choose a serious and professional looking font for a frozen yogurt store. Instead, you want a font that is fun and inviting or perhaps even playful. But a more professional and elegant font can be excellent for an attorney’s office.
Read this article for more information on choosing the right font for your business’ visual identity.
4 – Color me
Now let’s get more colorful. Like with any other type of sign, color is an essential element. It’s such a crucial part of our visual perceptions that you need to take it into account.
One reason why LED channel letters are so popular is the bright colors that you can select. Just take a look at the neon green in the example.
Best of all, you don’t have to pick just one! You can practically make your channel letters a rainbow of color. Blue, purple, green, red, you name it.
The color in LED channel letters can come from several sources. First, companies can make the sign housing from colored plastics or other materials. Second, they can use all kinds of colored LED bulbs to light up your sign.
Yet again, if you have already figured out your brand’s visual identity, this should be reflected in the colors you choose. If your customers know that your primary colors are blue and white, stick with it.
A pro tip is to look at the surroundings and walls of your storefront and to choose a color that will stand out well against the background.
5 – Graphics
Yet again we come to the question of what more you can do with channel letters?
With innovations like lit sign cases, you can add graphics to your signage too. This can be an excellent way for you to add some color and life to your storefront. Carefully chosen and drawn graphics can contribute to attracting new customers.
And if you have a well-known logo, you could potentially add it onto your channel letters as well.
Although, you should remember that you don’t necessarily want to make the picture too elaborate and detailed. It can overwhelm your customers and at a certain point, make it more difficult to comprehend from a distance.
For the most part, simplicity is king.
6 – Lay of the land
This point is more relevant for business owners who have a lot to say with their channel letters. These are cases where you might have more than word in your name or even if you want to add a short slogan or abbreviation.
So, you have to figure out how to achieve this with little space and still make it look neat and professional.
You can solve this problem with some good layout design practices.
One of the most straightforward solutions is to stack the words in a hierarchy.
To do this, you need to figure out what your main heading and sub-heading are going to be. The title is the most important word or words and should be on top. It should also be larger than the sub-heading to distinguish it.
There are a few formulas like this you could follow, but this is a tried and tested pattern.
But in essence, it’s all about balance, striking that right mix between being making it uncomplicated and exciting.
7 – Light up the night
The thing that really makes channel letters stand out is the LED lighting. They will literally make your sign shine. You can’t go wrong with illumination if you want your sign to catch people’s eye and to be more visible even at night.
Generally, standard channel letters are front lit. Most of the times, they are an excellent option for you if you want the sign to be lit evenly throughout.
But this might not always be the look you are going for. As we’ve said, you can also choose backlighting where the sign is illuminated from behind. With this type of lighting, you can create a halo effect around the letters.
Many business owners love to use this to create the perfect atmosphere for their business. For example, it can work brilliantly for restaurants and bars.
Are you looking for something different? All you need to do is think out of the box. Take a look at the example above where red LED’s were placed channel letters without a front face to create an old school effect.
Be sure to ask your sign company about the different customization options that they offer for lighting effects.
8 – Mounting
Last but not least, we need to talk about mounting. This is another possibly crucial but easily overlooked part of customizing channel letters.
Your two primary options are direct mounting and raceway mounting. Which you choose will depend on building regulations, lighting effects, and the overall picture you want to paint.
Directly mounted letters are flush to the wall. All the wiring and fixtures need to be built into the surface of the building. With this, you can create a clean and neat look. However, local building regulations often prohibit this.
In raceway mounting, the manufacturers attach the letters to an aluminum box that houses all the wiring. This housing is then attached to the surface of the building. It is an excellent alternative if you want to create some depth with your sign.
On top of this, it’s the best option if you want to backlight. It is vital to helping you get that halo effect.
Customizing your LED channel letters is all about tailoring it to suit your business. You want it to match your style. But also draw in crowds.
Before making the final decisions about the right outdoor signage for your business, read our complete guide to building signs. It covers information about the dimensions, design, and installation of these products.
When it comes to signs, it can sometimes feel like people are speaking a foreign language. There are hundreds of terms that are specific to the design and manufacturing process of signage.
Because we know how confusing it can be, here is a range of some of the critical sign terminology. It will cover everything from the different elements of signs to a few key types of signage.
This is a sturdy and durable plastic that manufacturers use to make signs. This colored, clear, or frosted material is often called plexiglass. It is a fantastic alternative to glass because it is lightweight and shatter-resistant.
Aesthetics refers to perceptions of an object’s beauty and taste. Your signage needs to have some artistic appeal. Several elements play into this like the material, design, color, construction, the form of the sign. But the complete picture that these aspects create is critical.
This is another material that is commonly used to design signs. Sign makers use it because it is lightweight yet durable and resistant to corrosion and rust. Besides this, they can use it to manufacture the poles and frames for certain signs.
The next term applies to digital signs and advertisements. Aspect ratio is the width-to-height ratio or proportion of an image. For example, most high definition television screens have a proportion of 1.78:1.
These are signs which represent action or motion. Manufacturers usually create this depiction through changes in colors or light. The graphics and images are generally more central in these types of signage.
You will typically find these on storefronts. Manufacturers usually construct them from some type of heavy fabric which they drape over a metal frame. These project over the entrance or facade. You can print words or graphics on them, while also using it as a covering over your storefront.
A backlit sign is a sign which is lit from behind. Professionals usually do this by projecting light onto a surface behind the object. This creates a halo effect. You can choose between a variety of backlit signs like letters or awnings. They are best if you want to draw attention at night.
This product is a sign that is made of fabric and draped over a framework. Importantly, you can buy these in a variety of designs. Some of them are made to hang off buildings or structures, and others are freestanding.
You can use this phrase to talk about the physical edges of the sign. Or you can use it to describe the outline in the form of a line or band of color around the signs’ contents.
This one sounds pretty complicated. But don’t worry, it’s quite simple. CMYK is an abbreviation for cyan, magenta, yellow and black. It is one of the color profiles that are used by printers. You can use these shades to create a full spectrum of colors.
You can’t discuss sign terminology without discussing copy. The phrase is used to refer to all the words on a sign. This is the entire body of text from the business’ name to persuasive phrases.
An alternative for this term is corrugated plastic. It is a plastic which resembles cardboard. The benefits of this material are that it is inexpensive and light, but still sturdy. Sign makers generally use it to produce temporary signs like yard signs.
Cost per thousand
CPM is the cost necessary to bring a message to a thousand people. Marketers calculate this by dividing the money needed to produce one sign by the number of viewers who would see it. You can use this concept to help you find the most cost-effective signage solution for you.
The relative difference or variance in the hue, intensity, and saturation of different colors. Higher contrast signs are much easier to read than lower-contrast signs. Your audience will be better able to make out the individual elements.
Electronic message board
A board with LED lights that can be used to display computer-generated messages or graphics. Most of the times, you need to mount them on another sign like a monument sign.
Engraving is a technique which you can use to cut or curve a text or graphic onto a hard surface. Manufacturers can do this on a variety of materials like wood, plastic, or aluminum. You can use this to create a 3D effect on the sign.
The finish is the coating that sign makers can apply to a sign. Most of them are formulated to protect its surface. For example, there are finishes which you can choose for extra weather resistance. Others are purely aesthetic.
Font, or the typeface, is a set of letters, punctuation marks, and numbers which conform to specific design standards. For example, Gothic, Helvetica, and Times New Roman. The font can affect the sign’s visibility, readability, and aesthetics.
Many signage products need to be mounted on a pole or structure like a building. But others are freestanding. This means that the manufacturers designed and constructed them to stand on their own. For example, monument signs and A-frame sidewalk signs.
These are bulbs that are vacuum-sealed and contain a wire filament. When an electrical current passes through it, it lights up. They are often used in households but can also be used in signage.
Signage products are constructed for specific purposes to be used in particular places. Interior signs are made to be placed indoors. For example, menu boards, lobby signs, and wall wraps.
The letters stand for Joint Photographic Experts Group. This is quite the mouthful. To put it simply, it is one of the most common formats for colored digital images. To decrease the size of the file, a jpeg can be compressed. In the process, the image loses some of its sharpness.
The abbreviation refers to a light-emitting diode. It is basically a device which emits light when an electrical current is passed through it. They are extremely energy efficient. Experts can attach them to computer arrays to create changing video like displays. LED signs are perfect for getting attention and displaying information at night.
Overall, the legibility of a sign refers to how easy it is to read and to make out. You will find that this depends on several factors. The most crucial are the typeface, size, colors, contrast, spacing, and view distance.
In this case, the term is used to describe the various letters that are used in signage. You will generally use them to spell out your company’s name. There are many different types available like channel letters, dimensional letters, or backlight letters.
Logos are a name or symbol which represents a business, service, or product. It should be unique and visually distinctive. Your logo is vital to your branding. That is why you will probably want to incorporate it in some way on your sign.
The frontage is the facade of a building. It is the space which typically makes up the storefront of a business. Therefore, this is usually prime real estate for signage.
These are vinyl signs which are mounted on a magnetic back. They are usually flexible so that you can attach them to metal objects. That’s why they are often put on vehicles.
The phrase is critical in all kinds of artistic composition, including signage. It’s the unused space on the sign face. You should consider the empty parts of the design just as much as the spaces which are filled.
It is an inert gas which emits light when an electrical charge is passed through it. It has a distinctive orange glow.
These are the signs which use neon gas to light up. They are made of vacuum tubes that manufacturers can mold into an endless number of shapes of different sizes. You can use it to create letters, graphics, or frames. Its main benefit is that it often lasts longer than other options.
The optimal distance is the ideal distance from which a sign should be viewed. This is the best position from which to read and see its different elements. You should try to calculate this based on the distance where most of your audience will be. Besides this, you need to consider the viewing angle as well.
While some signs only need to be used indoors, others need to be used outside. Sign makers need to make them more weather resistant and durable. Examples of these are building signs, yard signs, and monument signs.
Naturally, the opposite of negative space is a positive space. These are all the areas of the sign that are filled with content, whether it is text or graphics. This will include the main focal point of the board.
Pixels per inch (PPI)
Yet another abbreviation for you to learn. Pixels per inch is a term used to describe the pixel density of the image. The higher the density, the greater the resolution a picture has. Because of this, the image will be sharper, and you will be less likely to see individual pixels.
Whenever you plan on hiring a sign-making company, you need to ask them exactly how the final product will look. To do this, they will probably show you a small digital representation of the design. This is called a proof.
The term describes graphics or lettering which is cut through the sign face and backing material, The manufacturers will then push it through and mount it on the inside of the sign face, so that extends out of it.
You can use this technique to create a 3D-effect. Many times, designers will put lights behind them to illuminate it from behind.
Real estate signs
Overall, this is one of the most popular signage products. They are often temporary and cheap and are coroplast or aluminum. Sign makers can construct them to be planted in the ground or fastened to poles or so on.
It’s great if you can create a sign that will catch your audience’s eye. But this isn’t enough. It needs to be memorable too. Recall can be defined as the ability of a viewer to remember the message even when they are not viewing it.
RGB is another popular color profile. But it is typically used only for digital graphics. In this case, the abbreviation refers to red, green, and blue. By combining these, you can also produce the full-color spectrum.
You always need to make sure that your signage is up to code. Part of these regulations covers the size of the board. To check this, you need to calculate its total sign area. The formula for this is “width x height”.
This is the area on which the copy and content will be printed. It is the front of the sign.
This describes the profile of the most desired consumers for a particular product or service. These are the people that you want to see your sign. It’s crucial that you define your target audience. To do this, you need to consider aspects like their age, gender, occupation, and location.
There are hundreds of factors which affect where you place a sign. One of these is the traffic count. The term is used to refer to the estimate of how many people will be able to see a sign in a given period.
You can use this term to describe the overall style of printed words. This is influenced by its font, size, color, spacing, and length. It’s all about making your copy legible as well as attractive.
SImilar to readability, this refers to the qualities that allow the audience to see the sign. You need to make sure that they can distinguish the individual elements and the whole from the background.
These are features on a sign that enables people to find their way to a specific location. You can convey the directions in the form of arrows and pointers or text. Wayfinding signs should be helpful and informational.
Power of knowledge
This covers the sign terminology you need to know for the design and production of your signs. Knowing these terms will help you communicate with designers and sign making companies to make sure you get the product your business needs.
Now it’s all about putting these terms into practice. To do this, you also need to know more about the different types of signs. It may also be useful to check out our guide on what to look for from a sign making company.
Nowadays, stores not only need to compete with other business in the local area. But they compete with online retailers too. That’s why it’s more critical than ever to look for ways to draw in crowds.
If you feel like you need to attract more customers to your shopping center you might want to take a look at your advertising. Whether you own a mall or a small retail park, signs can play a crucial role in this.
Today, we are going to look at how you can create the perfect shopping center sign to attract clients. To do this, we will first look at tips on design then at a few useful examples.
Purpose of the sign
Before anything else, you need to figure out what you want to achieve with the sign. Do you want to promote the center? Are you looking for a way to show your customers where to go?
There are several different uses that signage can serve at a shopping center. Here are the main ones:
- Name board: You need a sign to indicate the name of the shopping center. This will not only help guide people to the park but give you exposure to.
- Directions: You will need signage to give your potential customers direction. It can point out critical places like parking spots specific business and bathrooms.
- Safety: Another essential purpose is to use signs to warn people of potential hazards. Remember that this is important for legal protection and the insurance policies of your business as well.
- Information: Besides this, you will need to convey other relevant information to any customers. For example, which stores are at the center and so on.
- Promotional: One of the most critical uses of signs will be to advertise your retail park.
- Highlights: A rather unique use of signage in shopping centers is to point out its highlights. You can show off the most lucrative and exciting business in the park or landmarks and even art installations that might be of interest.
To make your shopping center successful, you will probably need to invest in a few of all of these types.
The first step to attracting new customers is always to be noticed. You need to catch their attention and get them interested.
One of the best ways to do this is by using signs, well-designed signs.
You need to design them to catch your audience’s attention. When it comes to advertisements and name boards, this aspect is particularly important.
So how do you achieve this?
- Go big or go home: This principle is pretty simple. You need to make signs large enough to be noticed. This doesn’t only mean the size of the sign. You shouldn’t make its contents so small that it isn’t legible to the audience.
- Color it in: Colors are an essential tool in advertising and design. Bright shades are highly visible, and you can certainly use them to grab potential customers attention. Besides this, the colors you use can make your signs more appealing and therefore more useful. If you want more information, check out which colors are the best at increasing sales.
- Light: Nothing catches the eye like a flash of light. Lights will clearly work best at night but can still increase visibility during the day. If you don’t want to actually install LEDs or other bulbs you can even create a fantastically shiny effect with reflective surfaces.
- Bold: All of these factors can be summed up in one word: bold. You want to make your sign as striking as possible while still being stylish and straightforward.
But making a great sign isn’t enough. You need to pay attention to where it will be put up to make sure it helps you achieve your goal.
The most significant factor when considering their placement is the purpose of the sign. It all depends on whether you want to reach customers who are outside or already inside the center.
For example, the purpose of name boards is to indicate the name and location of the retail park and specific stores in it. That is why they should be placed near the entrance of the center. You might also want to put some next to the roadway leading up to it. These are the places where the products will be the most effective at attracting customers.
On the other hand, advertisements can be put in a much more extensive range of spots. You can place a few of these signs right outside the center. But you can also place them throughout the local neighborhood.
However, this isn’t the only consideration. You need to be concerned with how visible the sign would be in its specific location. Ask yourself where most people will be able to see it, and you will get the most exposure.
No matter its purpose, you can use signs to help create your center’s atmosphere. In the case of name boards, they are the first thing that people see when they arrive at your location. First impressions are vital, so try to make yours count.
You might be surprised how much can be conveyed through simple letters and graphics on signs. They can be used to create emotional appeal, persuade people, and compel people to take action. Therefore, you can also use them to create the feel of your shopping center.
The right atmosphere can help to attract crowds to your business. Significantly, it can keep them coming back and help you to ensure their loyalty and future support.
Before you can move forward, you should decide what type of environment you want. Is it your goal to create a premium shopping experience? Do you want your customers to see it as a fun place to hang out?
Several elements on signage can contribute to these effects:
- Color: Bright and neon colors can help to create a casual yet upbeat and fun environment.
- Font: Different fonts have different effects on people. Script lettering will look elegant and formal. On the other hand, sans serif fonts can look neater and evoke ideas of modernity.
- Wording: Words are powerful. They can create strong emotions. We certainly have different connotations with different terms.
- Materials: The material that you use for the sign could also have an effect. Glass and metal often look quite premium.
Choosing the right product
A pivotal choice to make regarding your shopping center sign is which type of sign you are going to go with. There are hundreds of varieties available, but there are a few products which work particularly well at retail parks.
Ask yourself these questions to help you determine which is the ideal solution for your business:
- How much can you spend on signage?
- What do you want to achieve with this specific sign?
- Where will you put the sign?
- What size and shape do you want it to be?
- How long does it need to last?
Once you have answered these, you are ready to go talk to signage professionals. They will be able to take this information and suggest which of their products are right for you.
Now let’s look at some of the most common types of signs that can be used at shopping centers.
One potential shopping center sign is the billboard. Billboards are large advertising structures that are used outdoors. You will typically find them in high traffic areas, often literally speaking over and along highways. They are used to appeal to both pedestrians and people in cars.
In the case of shopping centers, you can use billboards in front of your location. But you can also use them to promote your shopping experience throughout the area. It can give you plenty of exposure. And be a great tool to draw in crowds.
Because of their size, billboards are brilliant at catching your audience’s eye. You shouldn’t have any problems with visibility if you get one of these.
They are made especially for the outdoors. That’s why manufacturers make them particularly durable. Most billboards are weather resistant and can even last a few years. However, they are quite expensive, and smaller businesses and retail parks may not be able to afford one.
Another excellent option is a monument sign. These are freestanding boards which usually stand on the ground.
Traditionally, manufacturers made the base of these signs from masonry. Nowadays, many are still made of masonries like stone or concrete. However, it’s not unusual to find some that only mimic these appearances and textures.
For monument signs, you can also choose a base which is solely metal or acrylic.
The sign that is attached to this base will display the graphics and wording that you want. It can be made with a variety of materials and in a variety of shapes, sizes, and designs.
You can use monument signs as name boards for your shopping center. For this purpose, you will want to place it at the entrance. If you need to, you can use it to point out directions as well.
Monument signs can help make your business look professional and well established.
Next, we are going to look at pylon signs. They work exceptionally well at shopping centers. Some manufacturers call them road signs, freestanding, or pole signs. But their basic structure and purpose will be more or less the same.
These are freestanding signs that tower above its surroundings. Because they are so tall, they are usually very visible.
You have a lot of customization options with these products. If you want to, you can design one with only one board. Alternatively, you can place several on the structure.
As a result, it can work well as a name board for the shopping center. And you can even list the names of the individual businesses and stores underneath that of the retail park.
If the stores in the center change often you can even choose one with slots into which you can slide new naming panels.
Illuminated box signs
All of the signs previously mentioned can be extremely effective during the day. However, they don’t always work as well in the dark. Not only can they be difficult to notice, but sometimes, they become entirely illegible.
One solution to this problem is to install illuminated box signs. Manufacturers typically make these products with some kind of plastic and install a light inside.
Illuminated box signs usually aren’t freestanding. So you will need to mount it on some kind of structure. You can even attach it to monument signs or pylon signs.
Many business owners use them alongside traditional unlit products. That way they can capitalize on them throughout the day and night.
Sometimes bringing the human element into your signs can make a world of difference. It can help get your signage noticed and can help people to make a connection with your business. That’s why sign twirlers can be so useful.
If you are trying to promote your shopping center, you may want to hire people to stand in the surrounding areas. They will be more effective if you place them right on the sidewalk of the road that leads up to the park.
Other signs for a shopping center
The products we have looked at so far work well as the primary ones for shopping centers. But you will also have smaller signs that are spread throughout the location, like ones used by individual stores.
The following is a list of other signage options that you can use in retail parks:
- A-frame sidewalk signs
- Channel or dimensional letters
- Building signs
- Window graphics
- LED message centers
- Floor graphics
Each of these can serve specific purposes on the grounds or buildings of your retail park.
Create an experience
One thing to remember is that customers aren’t only looking just for a place to buy. Instead, they are looking for a whole shopping experience. So it is essential that you use your shopping center sign to help you create the right atmosphere.
To do this, you might have to use a variety of different products.
If you have more questions about signage, read our article on do sign twirlers really increase sales? And also check out what to look for from a sign making company + questions to ask.
You can use signs for such a wide array of purposes from advertising to conveying safety information. However, no matter how you use these products, certain features are almost universal among all the types.
These are the crucial aspects that signage needs to make it a success. You can arrange these in a variety of ways to suit your sign’s specific purpose.
Let’s look at six elements that you need to include on your signs. Together with this, we will cover a few more bonus tips for designing effective signage.
The primary purpose of any sign is to communicate information to its audience. This is what makes it such a powerful tool in the hands of any business owner.
But how do you get this message across?
Yes, images can convey certain messages. But oftentimes, not as clearly as you can with words. It is up to a certain amount of interpretation. Therefore, the meaning an image conveys can be pretty ambiguous.
This is where using text comes in. Here are several reasons why words can be the ideal solution:
First, writing can help you to achieve the goal of the specific sign. What do you want to accomplish? Do you want to sell a particular product? Are you promoting a charity or cause? Use words when advertising something or describing something.
Second, you can use words to share crucial information about your business, like its name.
Third, you will often have to use text to communicate some terms and conditions or disclaimers.
The following are principles which you need to consider when it comes to text:
- Font: You need to choose the font carefully. Don’t choose one that is ornamental nor one that is too thin.
- Size: The text should be large enough that people will be able to read it from the relative distance.
- Amount: Keep it short and sweet. People are much more likely to read and remember a sign with fewer words.
- Complexity: Keep it simple. Go for clarity above anything else. Don’t use too many long and complicated words.
- Readability: All of these aspects boil down to how legible the words will be. There is no point to putting text on your size if people won’t be able to read it for any one of these reasons.
Even though, the script is the key to conveying specific information clearly and unambiguously don’t discount images. Big or small, graphics are still an essential element of signs. It’s no wonder that most signs, whatever their goal, feature graphics of some kind or other.
Images are clearly the main alternative to communicating a message without any words. They are often the element that takes up the most space of any feature on the sign.
One critical use of images in advertising is to create an emotional appeal. This is key if you are trying to persuade an audience to take a particular action. Photographs often work best in this regard.
Graphics not only make a sign more interesting to look at but can also make it more memorable. All of this can help you to achieve your specific goals.
Obviously, some signs are limited in what they can include on them like our channel letters. But for graphics specific promo merchandise, you can get creative.
Another way in which graphics are used on signs is through symbols. Symbols are a mark or character used as a conventional representation of an object, function, or process. So these are images whose meaning will be recognized by most people.
Therefore, they are most often used on safety and warning signs like exclamation marks and also on directional signs like with arrows.
Whatever image you go with, try to make it as impactful as possible. You probably only have one chance to catch a person’s attention.
A third critical element on most types of signs is some form of branding.
But what exactly are we talking about here?
Branding is a practice through which a business creates a design, symbol or name that is easily identifiable as theirs. This is essential to help the audience recognize the company or other venture to which it is relevant.
People usually won’t have time to read your entire sign. So it’s better to play smart and make sure that the significant parts, like who your company is, are noticeable.
Here are ways you can incorporate branding on a sign:
- Logo: If your company has a well-established logo this should feature somewhere on your signage.
- Name: Otherwise, you could print your venture’s name somewhere on it. It should be legible. You don’t have to use both if one would be enough to tell people whose sign it is.
- Colors: Does your brand have a specific color palette? If so, it can be a good idea to incorporate this on the sign.
- Motto: A tagline can make your business much more memorable as long as it is catchy. If it fits the purpose of the sign, you could incorporate it too.
The board doesn’t have to be covered with features of your brand, but it should be noticeable.
Remember that your brand identity will be more effective if it is consistent. For this reason, you should keep it recognizable across all your platforms.
However, this aspect isn’t necessary for all signage. For example, there is typically no reason for a safety sign to show off a brand. As a matter of fact, many informational and directional signs won’t need to be branded.
Few things in the world can have such a powerful effect on our minds as color can. It can be challenging to imagine signs without it. Even if you make your signage black and white, it is still an important feature to consider.
Color is a brilliant way to catch people’s attention. Bright and bold shades can help you make sure your sign stands out from its environment.
Additionally, you can use color to make small parts of the sign more visible. It can literally be the best highlighting tool. You can emphasize the most essential elements of the product by printing it in a different color or one that contrasts with its background.
Most of this boils down to creating the right aesthetic for your sign. You want to use the palette to your advantage to make it as appealing and impactful as possible.
Besides all of this, one of the most impactful uses of color is how you can employ it to affect your audience’s mood. You want to pick a palette that will evoke the right emotion and associations in people.
For instance, if you are making a sign to advertise a beach resort, you don’t want to coat it in red. Instead, use blue which can have a calming effect.
To use this effectively, you should learn as much as you can about the psychology of color.
5- Call to action
What is the point of designing and printing a sign if it doesn’t create the desired effect?
All types of signs are made to lead its audience to one action or another. Designers create advertisements to persuade people to buy a product or service from your company. These type of persuasive signs are probably the most flashy and exciting of all the signage products.
Not so differently, safety and warning signs are there to stop people from doing something that can harm them or others. And so forth.
No matter the sign, this is where the call to action comes in. This is any device which is used to prompt a response in the audience.
Nowadays, you will usually hear the term used to talk about digital sales and marketing. However, it is just as crucial in printed media.
A call to action should clearly tell the audience what you want them to do. It can be just a few words or a few sentences, but it should contain a verb of some kind. Words that you can use are:
These can work on both digital and printed signs.
Here are easy techniques you can use to make it more impactful:
- Create a sense of urgency. People are more likely to act if they feel they only have a short time to do so. That’s why limited offers and sales are so popular.
- Tell them what they will gain by taking action. Happiness? Excitement? Knowledge?
- You can make your call to action much more successful by using emotional appeal to persuade your audience.
For some inspiration, take a look at these brilliant examples of digital CTA’s. See for yourself just how effective they can be.
6- Interactive elements
Nowadays, another fantastic feature that you can include on your signage is interactive elements. These are devices that allow your audience to interact with the product physically. This adds a whole new level of depth to the experience.
Today, interactive features are one of the hottest tools in the industry. And for a good reason.
Research has shown that using them can lead to significant results. For example, the duration which a video holds your attention is increased by a whopping 47% when you add interactive elements.
What else do they bring to the table?
- They’re great at grabbing people’s attention. Besides this, it keeps your audience interested for longer.
- You don’t get much more memorable than interactive ads. The more time people spend with a sign, the more likely they are to recall it and your business later on.
- If you use them right, interactive elements can make your signage fabulously fun and exciting. Overall, this means that people are more likely to build positive associations with your brand.
- In digital products, you can use interactive features like a call to action. This can significantly boost responses to your ads.
Once again, this device can work wonders in both digital and printed signage.
You can make digital products interactive by adding links through buttons to creating virtual signs like banners. But this is only one potential application among many. The sky’s the limit to what you can do.
You also have more than one option when it comes to printed media. For example, an easy way you can implement this is to make signs that encourage people to take photos with it – like large frames. Another is to print QR codes on your sign that people can scan in order to find a link to your app.
Other tips to designing signs and their layout
But it’s not enough to simply throw all these elements together. Here are some pro tips on the design and layout of both your digital and physical signs:
- Save space: Don’t overwhelm your audience with new input. You really don’t have to fill every inch of your sign. Instead, stick to the essentials. Focus on making the critical message come across.
- Top to bottom and left to right: This is how we read, so it makes sense that the layout of your sign should match this style. Our eyes are trained to move this way. Therefore, you need to keep this in mind when planning the flow of the sign.
- Focal point: Successful signs usually have one primary central point. This can help you to grab people’s attention. Experts use lines to lead your eye to this center. On top of this, they use contrasting colors to highlight the point.
Intelligent design is becoming increasingly important in the modern world. The more saturated our environment’s become, the harder it can be to create a sign that will catch people’s eye. It’s all about putting the elements together to form a complete picture.
For more information read our article on the importance of good signage and the psychology behind how it works. And if you are having trouble choosing the right products perhaps take a look at the comprehensive guide to the different types of signs and their uses.
Children’s birthday parties are all fun and games. Or are they?
For the parents, who have to organize everything, the experience can be quite different. Instead, it can be nerve-wracking and tense. You just want the best for your kid but how can you manage this?
If you’re on the party planning train, take a look at our step-to-step guide on how to plan a fantastic children’s birthday party. It will also cover a few bonus decorating ideas.
Step 1: Calculate a budget
First things first, you have to get money matters out of the way. We all want the best for our children. But practically there are limits to what we can spend on their birthday parties.
Luckily, you don’t necessarily have to spend big to create a fantastic day. There are plenty of small things that you can save money on. For example, try baking the cake yourself.
To calculate the budget, you should consider what you want to spend, how much the different aspects will cost, and how much you can afford. Or else you can start off with how much you want to spend and plan everything around this.
If you consider this well, you can make the whole process go much more smoothly.
Step 2: Involve your child
It can be easy to get carried away with your vision and plan. But remember to involve your child from the start. Many kids love nothing more than to help come up with ideas for their own party.
This will help you make sure that they love the day from the beginning to the end. Here are some key aspects that you should ask them about:
- Which activities do they enjoy?
- How many friends would they like to invite?
- Who do they want to come?
- What is their favorite movie or book?
- Is there a specific place they would like to go?
- What are their favorite colors?
- Which foods do they enjoy?
Unfortunately, children’s expectations could often get out of hand. So you have to temper them to prevent them being disappointed later on. A great way to do this is through compromise. Real unicorns might be off the cards, but a pony ride might be brilliant too.
If you want it to be a surprise party, you can keep everything a secret. However, consider their personality, likes, and dislikes the whole time.
Step 3: Choose a theme
One of the critical things you can decide on with your child is the theme of the party. Of course, this will depend on the age of your child. If they are still too young, you can decide on one of the things that they like.
There are often trendy themes which all the kids want. Like the Frozen craze a few years back. But there are endless options that you could go with.
If you are having trouble deciding on one here are a few ideas that are always popular:
- Superheroes: All the kids can dress as their favorite hero.
- Movies night: You can set up a screen and let them watch some movies while eating popcorn and so on.
- Tea party: Need I say more, teacups and cupcakes are perfect for many young romantics.
- Dumbo: Dumbo is one of the biggest animated films of 2019. It’s no surprise that many kids would love a party with this adorable elephant as the focus.
- The Secret Life of Pets: This is another movie about adorable animals that your kid might fall in love with.
- Pirates: Pirate themed parties are a timeless favorite. Everyone can dress up, and you can arrange games like a treasure hunt.
- Activity focused: You can plan a party that is based on a specific event like horse riding or ice skating.
You can use these ideas to tie the whole day together from food to costumes to decor.
Step 4: Location
Now that you have a better idea about what type of party you are planning, you can begin looking for a venue.
Here are the essential aspects to keep in mind:
- How many people will it accommodate?
- Activities at the location
- Distance from your home or neighborhood
- Does it fit the theme?
If you want to, there are businesses which specialize in hosting children’s birthday parties. For example, some tea gardens and restaurants.
Don’t worry. You don’t have to rent out a fancy venue. Many kids love nothing more than a party at their home. One benefit of this is that you have more time to set up and prepare and you can keep everything on hand. Another is that there might be fewer safety concerns.
But a possible downside is that cleaning up afterward would be entirely your responsibility.
One more budget-friendly location is your local park. This gives you a lot of space to work with and your kids’ plenty of space to play in. Many parks also have jungle gyms, and so on that, they can enjoy.
Step 5: Send out invitations
Next, it is time to send out invites to all the friends that your child wants to come. Do this early so that everyone can put the date aside. Distribute them at least two weeks beforehand.
You can have a lot of fun with the design for the invites. They can match the theme of the day in creative ways. For example, if you are hosting a movie night party, print out invitations which resemble cinema tickets.
Nowadays, you could choose digital invites instead of printed ones. Rather than handing them out at school you can email it or send it as a message to the parents.
The invite should contain the following details:
- The date
- If they need to bring anything like towels and sunscreen
- Dress code (if there is one)
- Whether or not parents should accompany their children.
- How and when they should RSVP
Step 6: Decor
Once this has been finalized, you can go on to planning and sourcing the decor for the party.
Some locations will need far less to jazz it up while in others it will be entirely up to you to paint the scene.
But no matter the place, the decor should fit the theme of the day whether that be pirates or safari. This will help you to get everyone into the right mood and make the day more memorable.
You’ll be able to buy many of the items you need like printed napkins. Other things you could rent, like tablecloths and costumes.
Overall, getting everything together can take time. Therefore, you should start planning and gathering the items early on.
Step 7: Games
No children’s party is complete with activities of some kind. Surely, it’s a crucial part of helping all the kids have fun.
Moreover, you will need something to keep all the children busy for several hours on end. And we all know how easily they could get bored. Therefore, you should choose a variety of activities,
Plan three or four short games that are spread out throughout the day. For example, a sack race, tag, and pin the tail on the donkey.
Finally, it can work well to select different types of activities. You can choose one which involves lots of running and one which is less active like coloring.
Step 8: Organize the food
Eventually, you will need to give some attention to the refreshments that you are going to serve. This includes both food and drink. You will need to consider how many children and adults are going to attend
Preferably, you should arrange this at least a week before. If possible, wait to finalize the amounts until you’ve received the RSVPs.
You can make everything yourself, or you could hire a caterer to make a few platters. A good rule of thumb is to have enough food for a portion for each guest and some extra. Hence, no one will go home hungry.
To be safe, ask the parents on the RSVP if their children have any allergies or dietary requirements that you need to be aware of.
Most important, don’t forget the cake! Some would say you can’t have a party at all without a cake.
Step 9: Favors
Another aspect to consider is party favors. These are small gifts that you can give to each guest. You don’t necessarily have to get something too elaborate or expensive. Instead, you can just buy a treat to thank them for coming.
If you enjoy getting creative, you can make these yourself. And you can even write out a little thank you note to go with it.
Goodie bags are always a crowd favorite.
Take a look at these list of options of items that you can combine into a bag or give on its own:
- Assortment of sweets
- Candy skewers
- Pencils or crayons and a coloring book
- Water gun or bubble gun
- Homemade cupcakes or cookies
- Materials for painting
- Plush toys
- DIY slime
- Masks or costume pieces and props
- Lego pieces
Overall, try to have it suit the activity or theme of the party.
Since parents also come to younger children’s parties, consider getting some treats for them too.
Step 10: Set up
Finally, you need to get everything in place for the party. If you are hosting it at your home, you can start the day before. But if it is at a venue, you will probably only be allowed to start the morning of.
You can put up any decor items beforehand. However, it will be better to only serve food, drinks, and other perishables during the party.
An expert tip is put up signs to point the direction to the party. This can be extremely helpful whether you host it at home or somewhere else.
The best signs for these will probably be ones made from coroplast like yard signs. They are cheap and quick to make. And any professional signage company will be able to print them for you.
In addition, they should be able to make them in a variety of shapes and sizes.
While setting up, you can put signs in your yard to indicate that this is the location for the party. You can also tie some to poles in the street leading up to your house. Of course, they work even better if the party is in a large location like a park or a zoo.
Here are some additional ideas for decor to get you inspired:
- Bright and colorful: Children are drawn to bright colors. Use these throughout your party decor. This will help you to make the day much more festive.
- DIY: A smart way you can save some money is by making some items yourself. For example, make your own paper flowers. This can be a great way to get your kids involved.
- Mason jar magic: Take old glass containers and paint them. You can even stick on some decorations like glitter and use them as vases for flowers, candles or to place candy in.
- Reuse: Besides this, you can get creative with items you already own. Like using any old basket to pack a picnic in.
- Balloons: Nothing says party like balloons. So don’t forget to get some. You can make a balloon wall or even double them up as a party game like balloon darts.
- Food as decor: Food shouldn’t just taste good, it should look good too. So get creative with snacks, like chocolate pots which resemble real flower pots.
- Costumes as decor: The clothes that the kids wear can form an essential part of the aesthetic. So if everyone dresses up, you are one step closer to creating your vision.
- Go green: If you want to teach your children about protecting the environment, this is an excellent opportunity. Wherever you can, use eco-friendly decor like paper straws.
- Use banners: Signs aren’t only useful before the party but during it too. One fantastic product is banners. You can design personalized banners which wish your child a happy birthday or something similar. You can hang them up in several places at the party. The same company that manufactures the coroplast signs for you can also print these for you.
An important thing to remember when planning any party, especially a children’s birthday party is to have fun. Don’t take things too seriously and don’t sweat the small stuff. The more relaxed you are, the more everyone will enjoy the day. You want you and your child to look back on it as a happy and stress-free day.
One thing that can help you to achieve this is by asking for help. Don’t be afraid to let someone else handle some of the details. Consider hiring a professional company, like Signarama to design and print all the signs that you could possibly need for the day.
Learning from others who have done well promoting their business can be instructive. But, on the flip side, you can also learn from marketing ploys that just don’t cut it. One is a case of imitating what someone else has done right. And the other is a case of steering clearing of what others have done wrong. Save yourself time, money, and sanity by learning from the mistakes of others.
Today we offer some potential don’ts when creating promotional materials—things you may want to avoid as you promote your business. However, don’t forget that, to some degree, these judgments are relative. What may flop for one company, could be successfully carried out by another in some cases.
There aren’t always hard-fast rules. Be sure to deploy your own common sense and be forward-thinking. Keep in mind both your own thorough understanding of what you do as a company and of what your customers expect from you. That said, let’s dive into some scenarios you may want to steer clear of:
1 – To proofread or not to proofread—it’s not even a question
Enter a marketing firm that wants desperately to reach more clients in their local business district. They’ve set aside money in their advertising budget to rent a billboard to bring their message to nearby companies. The slogan?
Were reinventing businesses all over the city.
The problem? Well, if you were looking for a marketing company to help you reinvent your business, you would want it to help create top-tier marketing material, right? And top-quality marketing material shouldn’t have glaring spelling or grammatical errors. Thus, omitting the apostrophe in their first word doesn’t exactly paint a promising picture of the quality of their services.
The bottom line: Don’t forget to check (and maybe double check) your promotional materials.
2 – Not vetting for appropriateness
If you thought that think before you speak was advice that only children have to heed, you were wrong. The idea applies to marketers, too.
Imagine you’re the head of marketing at a medium-sized company in the foodservice industry. As such, you’re one busy manager and you don’t have time to tackle everything yourself. So you delegate promotional material creation to a star new hire who you recruited from halfway across the country. This talented individual comes up with what they think is a perfect slogan for a new product launch.
Turns out, coming from hundreds of miles away is a bit of a liability in this case. Their slogan contains language that has a very different meaning where you live from its meaning in your employee’s home state. At the end of the day, you never noticed it, but the community sure did.
The whole thing blows up and the company trends on social media—but not for a good reason. Innocent mistake? Yes. Innocuous outcome? Not so much.
3 – Cracking bad jokes
A popular hotel needs a billboard along a nearby highway. When he’s not at his hotel day job, the in-house “graphic designer” happens to be a savvy political strategist. He knows a lot about what’s going on in city politics. He designs a billboard that incorporates a joke about a recently contested city statute. It’s funny, and he and a co-worker laugh uproariously at the creation.
Two days later, it appears on three billboards. Some viewers don’t find it funny. Incidentally, neither do the designer’s managers who now have to deal with the community fallout. One way to try to prevent this kind of situation is to vet all promotional materials before they go out. In fact, the company could decide to mandate that multiple members of the company have an opportunity to weigh in before promotional materials are disseminated.
4 – Being vague on important details
Let’s say a local gift shop just came up with a snappy ad that simultaneously promotes their weekend craft festival and their shop as a whole. It’s already making viewers chuckle and smile. And people are definitely interested in checking the place out.
However, there’s one slight problem. The ad doesn’t mention when the fair is, where it is, or even how to get in touch with the company. While interested participants can do some legwork of their own to find out more, the company may have just shot itself in the foot. What if some potential participants decide that looking up more info is just too much work?
5 – Stabbing blindly at promotion
A manufacturing company has a “meeting of the minds” for upper management. They decide that the company needs to do more to market itself. So they choose to put more effort and money into promotion.
They elect to use a targeted mailing, a billboard, and a series of in-person visits to potential clients to try to market the company. Six months later, they discuss whether the work has had a positive impact. The chairman asks if they met their goals for the promotional campaign. The room is silent until someone is brave enough to ask “What were our goals?” Uh-oh.
If you don’t know what you’re aiming for, how will you know when and whether you reach it? Undirected promotion might seem great in the heat of enthusiasm, but what you really want is promotion that’s actually effective. And how will you know if it’s effective until you determine what effect you actually want to achieve?
Now that we’ve run through some scenarios you should try not to repeat, don’t forget that there is a flip side to this coin. Thus, take some time to learn about what you should and could do. If signs are in your promotional pipeline, check out our Tips And Tricks To Creating The Most Effective Signs For Marketing. Then, head over to 3 Of The Most Creative Signs & Banners In And Around Detroit.
Farmers markets have grown tremendously over the last decade. These shopping experiences have begun to pop up in neighborhoods all around the country.
They are clearly popular and for a good reason. People love their friendly, down-to-earth atmosphere and the variety of unique items and fresh produce on offer.
But they are fantastic for vendors too. Research has shown that they can yield substantial profits for farmers and other sellers.
If you are a vendor, it is essential that you find out what will make you stand out among all the other vendors and markets. In this article, we are going to cover farmers market ideas to sell more produce and handmade goods.
1- Giveaways & free samples
One of the things that people love about farmers markets are the free samples that they might find there. These give you the chance to try out any products before making a purchase.
Giveaways often attract people to approach your stall in the first place. Display them right in front of your table or goods. Pick a selection of some of your most popular products and any new items.
If you are selling handmade goods that they can’t use there like soap, it can work well to provide a small test item that they can take home to try.
A sample can really help customers who are on the fence to make a decision. So don’t miss the chance to entice buyers.
2- Pile it high
A pro tip for increasing your sales is to be generous with the number of products you display. Don’t skimp, but instead put out a bunch for each item.
Create the impression of abundance. This will appeal to many potential customers. It can look as if you have a much wider variety of products available and are likely to have something that will satisfy them.
You can really get creative with this. Stack the goods, lay them out, hang them, or put them in baskets. Whatever suits your specific products and stall.
3- Connect with customers
With the rise of departments stores, we have lost much of the personal touches that characterized older forms of shopping. People miss knowing their local bakers, farmers or fishmonger.
These markets give you and your customers the opportunity to form a more personal connection.
Make sure that you and any of your staff are friendly. Greet customers as they arrive at your stall and take the time to talk with them. If necessary provide some training for your team.
Creating this connection with customers can help to build trust. People want to know where their products and come from. They want it to be safe and high-quality. It could also increase the chances of them returning to your stall in the future.
4- Fresh products
For many people, farmers markets epitomize freshness. It is all about farm to table produce. Or directly from crafter to customer. People often come here because they believe any goods will be much newer than what they will find in a department store.
As you can imagine, it is essential then that you focus on keeping your products looking new. It’s vital whether you are selling produce, animal products, other foodstuffs or handmade goods.
In terms of fruits and vegetables, you want them to look crisp and fresh. For other items, the packaging should be new and undamaged.
When it comes to your products, think of the best ways to store them to keep them in good shape. One solution is to put any foodstuffs in cold storage and bring them out as products on the table are sold. This counts for crafted goods that can get damaged by the sun or heat as well.
5- Your best foot forward
You have to be strategic about setting up your display. As the owner, you might feel that all your products are equally great. But this isn’t necessarily how your customers will see it.
Therefore, one strategy you can use is to place your best or most appealing items at the forefront. You can literally put it in a more visible position than your other goods.
Additionally, you can make these items the focus of your marketing and signage.
6- Under wraps
No matter where or what you are trying to sell, packaging is always crucial. It is often a customer’s first look at your goods. This means that you need to pay attention to the design and materials.
Because customers who come to markets are interested in consciencious living, it can be an excellent idea to use these principles in your packaging.
Try to make it as eco-friendly as possible. Use recyclable material or reusable containers. Otherwise, don’t use any at all. Going “naked” with products is currently one of the most significant trends. You can offer customers the chance to bring their own containers for the goods.
How do you advertise your farmers market stall?
Many vendors might believe that marketing is all up to the organizers. But this isn’t always enough. You can really boost your sales by taking some of the promotion into your own hands.
Take any chance to advertise the market and your stall on different communication platforms for your business. For example, in newsletters or on your website.
Another option is to put up signs in your business or around it. This way, anybody who visits your farm or primary location will see it.
Be creative about the different methods and platforms you can use.
8- Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter
A vital part of your advertising should be to use social media. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are all fantastic resources for this.
These sites give you the opportunity to tell people about your business. One of its best features is that you can share photos and updates about your goods. Pictures are an ideal way to attract potential customers. It can really make your stall memorable.
Besides this, people will have the chance to ask you any questions that they have.
9- Eye-catching signage
Signage is a key part of any market stall and its marketing. But remember that just putting up a sign isn’t enough. Promotional materials need to be carefully designed. You want them to catch potential customer’s attention.
Here are some basic principles to keep in mind:
- Keep the sign simple
- Don’t use too many words
- Make it easy to read
- Use appealing graphics
If they are attractive, they will add to the aesthetic of your entire stall.
10- Label prices
People don’t want to spend excessive time searching for the prices of specific items. And they don’t want to be forced to ask you what every single thing costs.
One trick is to make prices as visible as possible. You can put individual labels on items. Another option is to write the costs out on sign boards. This will add to the aesthetics as well.
Some vendors find it easier to keep prices the same across categories – like choosing one price for all jams.
You can also make it easier by selling goods in bundles.
11- Decorate your table
Set up is on thing that makes farmers markets unique. Instead of having traditional storefronts, you work from a stall or table.
This display should be a crucial part of your strategy. Choose every single aspect carefully. Your display needs to be stunning. It needs to stand out from the crowd.
Your goods form a core part of the appearance. This is vital to the market aesthetic. However, you should also use other decor pieces too. Table cloths, baskets, and other features can increase your display’s appeal.
12- Be prepared
An essential strategy for any trader is to always be prepared. You want to be ready for everything the day can bring.
First of all, if you are new to farmers markets, you want to check up on any rules or policies that might be in place. Make sure you comply with them.
Second, ensure that you bring enough goods along. There is nothing worse than unnecessarily running out of products within the first hour. It can take time and a bit of trial and error to estimate how much you can sell at a time.
In addition to this, be ready for any questions that clients might have. People love asking you questions about the origins of your goods and so on.
13- Cashless payments
To help increase your sales, provide more than one payment option for your customers. Some markets might have policies about this. But the choice is usually up to you.
Only taking cash can look like a trouble-free solution at first. However, it can be bad for business in the long run. Nowadays, fewer and fewer people carry around paper money. Besides this, people often run out of cash on market day.
More options translates to more potential sales and possiby even larger sales.
Two alternatives are card payments and mobile payments.
14- Tell a story
Another one of our brilliant farmers market ideas to sell more is to tell a story with your stall.
When customers hear your personal narrative, they are more likely to build a connection with your business. It will keep them coming back and build loyalty and trust in your products.
The story you can tell is that of your products and business. Show them where it all started and what it is all about.
You can portray this through photos of your business. It can work well to write a bit about your business on pamphlets, signs and so forth. You and your staff should be ready to tell this to your clients.
Remember that this is all about creating a complete experience. You are giving customers an alternative to the impersonal and generic nature of other stores.
15- Local flair
Farmers markets typically form a large part of the movement to go local. It’s the ideal place to find produce and goods from your area.
Customers want to reduce their negative impact on the world. Some also want their money to stay part of the local economy and to support their community.
This is also what you want to emphasize in your stall. Clients should be able to see at a glance that your products are locally sourced.
The following are some ideas on accomplishing this:
- Feature goods that are specific to your area such as a regional cheese.
- Include the name of the area in your business name or in your product names.
- Display photos of the farm or place where the goods were crafted.
- Use local jargon in your marketing and signage.
16- Be unique
Especially at a market with plenty of fresh produce, you probably won’t be the only vendor to sell one type of item. There will likely be more than one person with handmade goods too, like jams and loaves of bread.
Next time you are there, take a walk around the market and look at other people’s stall. This can give you an idea of what makes your goods different. Use what you find to your advantage.
Highlight your uniqueness on your signs and packaging. It can really make the difference between customers choosing your stall and not others.
On the other hand, if you are selling a truly unusual item, you should make sure that you let people know. An excellent way to showcase it is to give people information on how to use it. If you don’t have anything like this, try to source an exceptional product.
Top farmers market ideas to sell your wares
Try out these farmers market ideas to sell to see if they help you to boost your profits. They all involve playing to the strengths of this type of shopping experience.
Farmers markets are all about making more conscientious decisions about our shopping and consumption. If you want to stay in the spirit of being more sustainable, check out FiberMate™ recyclable rigid print media for creating your stall signage.
And before you try to design your sign, don’t miss our tips on creating the most effective signs for marketing.
Small businesses are the epitome of a local and personal shopping experience. They are the lifeblood of many towns across the country. The U.S. Small Business Administration states that there are more than 27 millionsmall businesses in the United States.
One challenge that owners of these businesses face is how to compete with trans-national corporations. In the end, the solution boils down to attracting more customers to your store.
The 29th of March is National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day! So in honor of all the “mom and pop” store owners out there, we’ve created this guide on how to increase walk-ins to your small business storefront in Michigan.
1- Inviting storefront
The first step to drawing more customers to your store is to build an attractive storefront. Take a good look at the exterior of your business. Is it inviting? Does it look like a place that your target customers would like to visit?
This is key to attracting new customers as well as keeping established customers coming back.
You want to make them feel excited about coming into your business.
The following are some strategies that you can try for your window display:
- Keep it neat and uncluttered.
- Put your products on display. Choose some of your best and most popular products to show off.
- Don’t overcrowd the window.
- Design your storefront to suit your brand and style. Customers like stores that are unique and have personality.
- Don’t be afraid to make changes. If something doesn’t work, try something else. Keeping it new can also help keep customers interested.
- Use light cleverly. You want your store to appear well lit to passersby.
If you feel a bit lost, it can be a great idea to ask for some expert advice. A stylist or interior designer can be able to give you some tailor-made help.
Here are more ideas on how to create a welcoming storefront.
2- Curb design
Designing a storefront is not only about the window display. Another essential feature is to use curbside or A-frame sidewalk signs.
These traditional adverts can still be a fantastic way to increase walk-ins. It can help to catch the eye of passersby. Especially people who don’t know about your business.
Choose a beautiful sign that will add to the aesthetic appeal of your store. You want it to reflect the general theme.
One important use of these signboards is in advertising your promotions. This is a fantastic method for communicating deals and sales to existing customers and potential new ones. They will know about any specials before even stepping foot in the store. It can really help draw people in.
We have all seen those really witty curb signs. These are the ones that stick in your memory. So try to make it funny. Put some personality into it.
3- Essential signs
You aren’t only limited to curb signage. There is a huge variety of promotional materials for you to choose from.
Here are just a few options for a small business:
You don’t necessarily have to choose just one. Some variety can be useful to mix it up.
Put up these signs in your area to let people know about your store. Learn more on your target audience and try to figure out where they are more likely to see these signs. This can play a part in choosing locations for the ads.
But just having signs aren’t necessarily enough. You need to think carefully about their design and look. Keep them simple. Choose your words carefully. And make them pleasing to the eye.
It can also be a great idea to update the signs on your building. If your signage is old and outdated, new signs can really increase walk-ins to your storefront. Remember that first impressions matter.
4- Online presence
So far we have covered a lot of the physical aspects of encouraging walk-ins. But nowadays this isn’t necessarily enough. It is not only about the physical storefront. You need to have an online presence as well. You need to show some tech savvy.
People are increasingly relying on the internet for information. This is where people turn to find out about products, services, and businesses. Because of this, chances are higher that people will visit a store they found online first.
If you have been avoiding digital so far, you might want to jump on the bus.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to create an online store to reap some of the benefits of digital. You can build your own website, join online listings or create social media pages for your business.
Here is some of the crucial information that you should put out there:
- Share the physical location of your store. Make sure that is has been pinned on Google maps to make it available at the touch of a button.
- Tell people about the products and services that you offer.
- Notify people about your promotions.
- Let customers know when you have new things on offer.
- Upload photos and videos that show off your storefront.
5- Social media marketing
Say what you want about them, but social media sites can be a fantastic tool in any businesses toolbox. If you manage them carefully, it can be a great way to increase traffic to your storefront.
You can also use it to help build your reputation. Sites like Facebook have a review feature where customers can rate their experiences. They can also post photos of their experiences with your business.
A key to social media marketing is to use it to keep people up to date on your storefront. Tell them about any news or changes to your store. Do you have new products? Have you renovated your space?
This can build up some hype and get people to talk about the company.
One tip is to use social media in your physical store. Work out a hashtag and use it in your store and your marketing materials. A prevalent trend is to create a selfie wall where people can take pictures and post them online.
You can create an entire strategy purely for your social media campaign.
6- Support other local businesses
Mom and Pop stores function best in a well-connected community. You can contribute to building this community by making connections with other local business.
With some teamwork, you can help make each other’s businesses’ grow.
The first step is getting to know other small business owners. Go visit their storefronts and tell them about your own. Try to build a positive and mutually supportive relationship.
If there isn’t one yet, you can also start a formal local business community. This can involve setting up a listing or directory. Or even hosting annual meetings. A meet and greet can be a great way to get this ball rolling.
This community can set the stage for collaboration. You can offer to put some ads or business cards in your store and ask them to do the same.
Another idea is to host events together. Work together to set up a market or something similar where you can showcase your products and services.
7- Smart promotions
A tried and tested method for attracting more customers to your storefront is to use specials and sales. But because promotions have become more common, be sure you use them strategically.
You could, for instance, work out event-related promotions like a sale for a National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day.
It is vital that you try to share any information about specials as widely as possible.
Once you have your social media pages set up, this is the ideal platform to tell people about any specials. These sites give you more exposure and a better chance to catch customers’ attention.
A great idea is to use promotions to encourage your audience to use your social media. For example, offer them a chance to win a hamper if they share an image of some of your products. Make this even more effective by asking them to share your hashtag.
8- Keep them coming
Although it is essential to connect to new potential customers, it is still crucial to keep your existing customers. They are the people that keep your business running. On top of this, they can help you to bring more traffic by spreading news of your store.
That is why you should prioritize trying to keep people coming back.
By offering consistent and high-quality services and products, you can make sure existing customers want to return. At the same time, you need to grow with the times and keep up with clients’ changing needs.
Also, ask yourself how you can reward customers for shopping at your store.
Nowadays, most box stores have a loyalty program. You can have one too. It doesn’t have to be complicated. You can work out a simple system. For example, give customers a free product for “x” amount of purchases.
9- Prioritize customer service
One of the fastest ways for a small business to flounder is if they have lousy customer service. News spreads fasts, and it doesn’t take much for your reputation to suffer. Therefore, it’s essential for any company to be customer focused.
As a matter of fact, because of the more personal nature of Mom and Pop business, your customer service can be even better than that of larger enterprises. This is what draws a lot of people to smaller stores.
They enjoy being greeted by the owner. Or by staff who they eventually get to know.
You and your staff need to be appropriately trained to provide the best customer service possible. Courtesy is key. They need to know how to greet and address customers. Your personnel also need to know how to handle possibly tense situations with unhappy clients.
Above all else, you need to show customers that you care about them and their experience.
Are you looking for more ways to create a buzz around your business?
Well, one of the most effective methods is to host some in-store events. This is a surefire way of getting people to notice your store and to start talking about it. It can help to put your storefront on the map.
The benefit of holding an event in-store is that it gives you the chance to bring customers to your physical location. Now that they know where it is, they’ll be able to visit more easily in the future.
Don’t worry, the event doesn’t need to be huge. The point is to create exposure for your brand. You want your customers to enjoy the experience and to build positive associations with the business.
If you feel a bit lost on what event to hold, here are a few types to consider:
- Opening: If you are just opening, or if your business is relatively new, this can be a creative way to kick it off. Hold some kind of event to celebrate the opening like a cocktail party or competition.
- Launch: Consider holding an event for new products or services especially if they have been much anticipated.
- Host a class: An excellent way to draw regular traffic is to host repeat classes that are relevant to your business.
- Holidays: You can also organize events to correspond with specific holidays.
Research what types of events are popular with your target audience. Find out what kinds of activities are typically held in your area. Look to see if there is a gap you can fill by holding the first event of its kind in the area.
Use this opportunity to showcase what makes your business unique and promote your products or services.
Small changes, big results
These steps can all help increas walk-ins to your small business storefront in Michigan. As you can see, not all of them require tons of effort. But this doesn’t mean they can’t be effective.
One critical strategy is undoubtedly to focus on advertisements. Take a look at Signarama’s selection of indoor and outdoor signs to promote your store. While you are at it, read up on the sign policies and ordinances in Detroit.
Business owners often make the mistake that any sign is better than no sign. But in today’s world advertisements are everywhere. It is easy for ads to get lost in the clutter.
Never fear! Experience has shown advertisers what can make your advertisement a hit or a miss.
If you apply these principles by carefully and plan out your signs, you are one step closer to success.
Designing the right graphics can be tricky. That is why we are giving you a breakdown of tips and tricks to creating effective signs for marketing.
#1 Keep it simple
The old cliche is still true that less is usually more. Simplicity is at the heart of designing successful and effective advertisements.
Well designed minimalist signs are often better at
- Grabbing attention
- Keeping attention
- Making an impact
- Being memorable
Often, attempts to make adverts exciting results in making them overly complicated. You don’t want people to be distracted by unnecessary details. Otherwise, they could miss the point of the sign.
Instead, you want your audience to be able to notice what the ad is about immediately.
The following are steps you can take to make your sign simple:
1- Bare necessities: Ask yourself if each element is absolutely necessary? Can your sign work without it? Throughout the conception and design, you should analyze whether each part is essential to the ad. This should be a continuous process to weed out any unnecessary clutter.
2- Quality over quantity: Instead of spending time on hundreds of elements, focus on a few and do them well. A few brilliant features will have much more impact than a mishmash of poorly defined ones. Try to make every small detail the best that it can be.
3- Be clever: Simple ads often stand out because they are smart. The designers find a way to do as much as possible with as little as possible. This is the time to get creative.
Keeping it simple can be a challenge. But it can have massive payoffs.
Unfortunately, businesses are often skeptical of whether a minimalist approach to advertising can work. If you still need to be convinced, take a look at these examples of super yet straightforward signs. They are striking and impactful.
#2 Color coding
Never underestimate the importance of color when you are designing an advert. Research has shown that this can have a significant impact on our moods and our responses to advertisements. As a matter of fact, entire theories have been designed for using color in advertising.
This is why you should select a color palette that matches the message of the sign. For example, green is associated with health and nature. So this is often a go-to color for healthy foods or products.
Don’t make the mistake of using colors that are too similar. Writing can quickly become lost against the background of the ad. So you need to use color carefully to create a contrast.
If your branding uses specific colors, you should try to focus on them. Or at least include them somewhere on the sign where they will be visible.
Very legible combinations are black on white, white on blue and black on yellow.
#3 Easy to read
We have all seen those signs which are virtually impossible to read. No matter how hard you try, you just can’t make out the words. This isn’t only frustrating to the audience. It can turn into a marketing disaster.
If the audience can’t read, they don’t know what the ad is about. Therefore, the sign failed in its purpose.
Illegibility is one mistake that you really want to avoid. If people need to strain to read it, they are probably going to skip it. Their eyes will instead wander to something else.
Luckily, it isn’t too tricky to get right.
Different factors influence whether you can read a sign or not. The following are the primary ones:
- Font: It’s essential to use a well thought out professional font on your sign. You don’t want to use one with too much ornamentation. The focus should be on finding a font that is simple and legible.
- Size: The typeface needs to be large enough to read. You shouldn’t need to squint. The words might look great up close but be impossible to make out once it is up.
- Spacing: You should pay attention to spacing. The closer letters are too each other, the harder they are to read.
- Amount of words: It is not only about the font and size but also about the number of words. Ads are much more difficult to read if there are too many words. People don’t want to spend too much time reading. So try to keep it as concise as possible.
- Words: You want a wide variety of people to be able to skim your sign. It works best to keep the words short and uncomplicated.
- Contrast: The color of the writing should stand out against its background.
#4 Think big
Another vital feature of creating an effective sign is to look at its size. You need to consider its dimensions carefully.
People often forget that the sign needs to be visible from a distance. Details of advertisements often get lost if you see them from far away.
To find the appropriate size for your sign, you need to have an idea of where you want to place it. Yes, you can just scale up dimensions for different spots. But this won’t necessarily always work. It usually works best to tailor-make the ad.
Imagine a sign on a building. It has to be seen from the ground, from the building across the road and sometimes from even farther away. The dimensions of these boards are usually set out to serve this particular purpose.
As we’ve said, choosing a font size is a crucial aspect of design. But this isn’t the only factor to look at. Any graphics or images also need to be visible.
Remember that size is even more critical in locations where the audience doesn’t have much time to look. For example, signs on the highway should be much, and the audience needs to understand its message much quicker.
The general rule of thumb is that the bigger it is, the higher the chance is that it will be noticed.
#5 Brand it
Consistency is crucial throughout a business, but especially when it comes to marketing. That doesn’t mean it needs to be boring. However, customers need to be able to recognize that the advert is yours.
This is where branding comes in. Effective signs, like other forms of advertising, are an extension of your brand. Therefore, it needs to reflect this in some way.
The key is that the audience should be able to recognize your brand immediately. Promotions often only hold people’s attention for a little while. So you want them to grasp what business the sign is about. This will also help to draw the attention of people who are familiar with your company.
Secondly, If they can recognize the brand people are more likely to act on the sign. Whether it is promoting a product, service, or event.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to include every aspect of your brand. The following are examples of features that you can use from your brand:
- Color palette
- The font you use.
- If your logo is well known, you can include it. But otherwise, it might take up too much space.
- Your motto or tagline
- Photos of your product or service
Branding is a central part of your business identity. It is essential that you create a coherent brand that portrays your message. Here is more information on the basics of branding your business.
#6 Sending a message
One trick to designing excellent signs is to formulate a clear message. This is basically the goal of the advertisement.
Do you want to create exposure for your brand? Is the aim to create awareness about a specific issue? Or do you want to sell a product?
It is easy to include too much information on the sign. But this can work to your detriment. You don’t want to confuse your target audience and leave people unsure about what the ad is actually promoting. That is why you want to keep the message concise and specific.
You shouldn’t try to include everything on one board. Instead, pick one specific product or service to advertise. Choose one that will be striking – like something new, something that is unique to your company, or one of your most popular items.
The sign isn’t there to give customers all the information about your business or product. Its goal is to attract their attention and to spark interest.
All of the design features should be focused on conveying the message. Everything from the color, to the font, are part of highlighting its purpose.
#7 Light it up
To light, or not to light?
The answer to this question depends on your specific advertisement and its location. It won’t work everywhere and can be a bit expensive. But if you use it well, it can make a huge difference.
Lighting can help to catch people’s attention. It is particularly useful if you want people to see the sign in the dark or even be able to read it at night. Billboards next to highways are usually lit up for his purpose.
Experts know how to use lights to highlight specific features on board. You don’t necessarily have to light up the whole thing but can shine it on particular parts.
Another option is to use lightboxes or LED signs. With these, the whole sign will be made from light. This usually works best to indicate a place.
In general, lighted signs are only used outdoors or in windows.
#8 Location, location, location
You need to remember that design isn’t the only part of making your signs effective. Advertisers need to carefully consider where the final product is going to be displayed.
You might not know the precise spot beforehand. But you should try to get a general idea. Experts know that the location is going to impact how a sign should be designed. Making sure that it is going to be suitable is vital.
If it’s placed in an unsuitable location, the success of the sign diminishes. And in the worst case scenario, you might be restricted from putting up the sign at all.
Many areas have local rules about what signs are allowed and what not. This can involve the size, shape, and content.
Besides these regulations, you want to make sure that the advert is going to stand out. Try to design it to look unique in its location.
You might not be able to place one sign in a variety of places. Designing several versions of the same ad can be helpful. They can resemble each other but can be customized to suit different locations.
Ask yourself who should see the sign? In what area is your target audience? Where will you get the most exposure? Will it stand out in the environment? Is it going to clash with its surroundings?
Here is a list of possible locations for a sign:
- Next to roads or highways
- Over or above roadways and highways
- In a yard
- On vehicles
- Bus stops
- Train stations
- Business windows
- On a building
In the end, you should try to choose a place with excellent visibility that gets a lot of traffic.
Close the deal with effective signs
Signs are an important puzzle piece in any marketing campaign. These tips and tricks lay out fundamental principles in the advertising industry. They can help you to design effective signs that will put your product in the spotlight.
Once you have chosen your design, you should hire a company to help you print them. Take a look at the types of signs that we offer at Signarama.