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Five kinds of businesses that need custom signs and how to make signs that stand out

Five kinds of businesses that need custom signs and how to make signs that stand out
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Written by editor

Signs are items that help pass important information to people. We have them everywhere. In fact, in most offices, we have several signs that tell people where to go and what they can do in certain rooms.

From an office tag to the toilet doors to even identifying parking space, signs have always been part of our office culture.

Signs can also be part of your marketing drive. They can be used to let people know where your company is and what it does. They can be used to nudge people towards making a purchase too.

At the heart of it, signs are all about communication. A good way to know whether you need a sign within a business is to ask yourself, “Is there some piece of information we require everyone coming in here to know?” If the answer to that is yes, then a sign is often necessary as one of your communication tools.

From the answer to that question, it’s probably already clear that most businesses will need signs at some point.

Since businesses naturally need signs, it makes sense to go one step further to get custom signs. With a custom sign, you can imprint your brand identity on whatever information you want to pass, regardless of the subject matter.

Research has shown that almost 90% of the information processed by people is obtained visually.  The research also showed that people remember 80% of what they see compared to 10% of what they hear.

Branding is all about getting people to remember you. If you are passing information in and around your business premises, then you need branded signs that cue your brand’s identity. When you create custom signs for your brand, you’re effectively killing two birds with one stone – ensuring you pass the needed information and maintaining brand mindshare.

Since we’ve established that all businesses should create custom signs to maximize the attention of their customers, let us turn our attention to the businesses that need custom signs the most.

Banks

Most banks receive a significant amount of foot traffic every day. Whether it’s customers looking to make complaints or those who haven’t given up on withdrawing cash over the counter, you’re bound to always have people in banks.

Having custom signs in banks helps you to take advantage of the foot traffic to keep people abreast of all the information they need. Simple tips like fraud prevention and accessing new opportunities can easily be communicated using signs within the premises.

These in-bank signs help reduce the work responsibilities of the staff who would otherwise have been required to remind every visiting customer about these tips. It also maximizes the waiting time for people by ensuring they can engage themselves with

Banks signs can be placed near ATM kiosks, behind the tellers, on the walls, between drive-through lines, and anywhere else you think people are going to be looking.

Restaurants

Restaurants also receive a tremendous amount of foot traffic daily. However, those numbers can also be further increased by using custom signs.

When you start a restaurant, the first thing you want is for people to know you’re there. In fact, restaurants use some of the boldest, attention-grabbing outside signs for marketing. Bright, outdoor signs are an industry-wide norm for restaurants. They help them grab the attention of potential customers, increase visibility, and ultimately promote their brands.

Whether it is a food truck or a 5-star restaurant, having beautiful custom outdoor signs is a necessity.

However, physical restaurants can also take advantage of signs to help pass crucial information to their customers. When eating, people tend to wander with their eyes. Use that time to educate them on some of the things they should know about your business.

Your custom sign doesn’t only have to be marketing or sale-sy material like a discount. Sometimes sharing a bit of your restaurant’s history can be helpful too. Such information can give customers a feeling of familiarity with your brand, thereby increasing their loyalty.

Retail Stores

Imagine a retail store without signs. It would be almost impossible to find anything in there. Heck, it’s still difficult to find stuff at a retail store with signs.

Raise your hand if you’ve had to ask for help from an attendant at a retail store with signs. Yes, that’s right, we’ve all had to.

Retail stores make a case for custom signs. They’re often so big that finding the item you’re looking for on the first visit is typically a chore – and that’s even with the signs.

One of the reasons people find it difficult to locate items in a retails store is because the signs are usually generic text signs. Generic text signs would not be problematic if businesses didn’t have differing definitions of what falls under what classification.

Some stores may prefer to keep dishwasher liquid in the soap/detergent section than to keep it in with kitchen utensils.

Creating custom signs can help you avoid confusion like the above with customers. With your brand-designed sign, you can include contextual information that helps customers identify items faster.

Aside from helping people make faster decisions within your facility, you can also use custom signs to reinforce your brand identity in your customer’s minds. If you have upcoming promos or cashback programs people can take advantage of, signs are also a good way to remind them.

Gas stations

Gas stations are typically one bad decision away from being a fire hazard due to the nature of the substance they sell. Because of that, it is imperative for gas stations to offer safety advice to all visiting customers continually.

Depending on where your gas station is located, you might be in competition with several other gas stations for car traffic. In such a case, the gas station will likely need a huge sign that attracts drivers. The sign can also contain extra information, including the gas price and other services offered at the gas station.

Most gas stations also double as convenience stores. The convenience stores help these stations maximize the spending of the customer. As such, it is important for gas stations to make use of signs that inform their visitors of the possible benefits of shopping with them.

Vehicle maintenance shops

Like gas stations, maintenance shops are typically road-side ventures. In most cases, it is so because of positioning. Maintenance shops are positioned to provide easy access to car owners who need repairs.

However, it is also important to let people know where you are and what you do. Most maintenance shops come with tall, big billboards that clearly pass the message of what they do.

If you run a maintenance shop, you can take it one step further by adding the names and logos of the brands you work on. Generally speaking, people are usually more comfortable with working with specialists who have experience with the brands they drive.

How to make custom signs that stand out

Making brilliant signs is as much a science as it is an art. While you should aim to make beautiful, heartwarming designs, there are simple principles to keep in mind that will help you stand out among the competition:

  • Always use bright colors: bright colors typically grab people’s attention, and that’s what you want to do with your signs. You want people to notice them and read them. Colors like red, yellow, green, and blue are usually great picks for design background.
  • Use universal symbols: Even though you want to customize your signs, it is important that the symbols in them retain the universal standards.

    For instance, if you are trying to indicate danger, it makes no sense to create a new symbol for it as people are less likely to understand it at first grasp as opposed to when you use the traditional skull sign.

    However, even despite using universal signs, you can put a little spin on the signs to indicate your brand’s ingenuity.
  • Use simple fonts: The only thing to concern one’s self with when choosing the font of a custom sign is whether it is readable or not. Regardless of how beautiful a font is, if it’s not legible, it will negate its purpose on the sign.

    Even if the font is legible to you, you have to factor in people with reading disabilities who may not be able to easily tell characters from a distance.
  • Less is more: When designing slides, you need to keep the information short and straight to the point. Most people who encounter your sign may not be able to spend several minutes reading a lengthy message. Optimize your message for easy understanding.
  • Make it big: The bigger your sign, the easier it is for people to read it from a long distance. Bigger signs usually guarantee more foot traffic and, by extension, more customers. Always make sure that the information on your signs is big and legible enough to be read from a distance.