Your storefront is the first impression of your business. It’s a golden opportunity, provided you showcase the right message, with the right signage. Here are five things you need to know before buying a sign for your store.
1. Local regulations
First and foremost consider local zoning regulations, since you do not want your effort, research, and time to be wasted. Your signage must comply with the guidelines laid out by local authorities. The particulars you need to find out from the Zoning commission, regarding the kind of storefront signs permitted for use, are:
- Colors, font, and size
- Restrictions on content of the message
Check with your local Chamber of Commerce to find the local signage regulations or Google it with your area code.
2. Types of signs and costs
Once you know the signage regulations, it’s time to choose the type of sign appropriate for your store. Some of the popular styles of storefront signs are:
- Fabric sign – Fabric signs can be made colorful and unique, but they also require regular maintenance. These signs are considerably cheaper however; one might prefer heavy duty fade resistant fabric, which is somewhat expensive.
- Painted Plywood sign – This type is both creative and affordable, and the size, font, and paint you choose determine the final cost. Since they are not weatherproof, they might require regular replacement.
- Painted glass – It is a distinctive and attractive option and the store’s windows can be used as the canvas. However, the sun’s glare might reduce or cut off completely visibility of the sign, so consider carefully before choosing this option.
- Punched Metal signboard – It is both weather resistant and durable and by adding an artistic modern feel, it can be made creative.
- Awning signs – This type allows your business some exposure, and your customers some shade. Costs vary according to the size and fabric used for the awning and installations.
The installation costs vary according to the type of sign you choose, since installation consists of setting up a support system for the sign.
3. Where to buy storefront signs?
There are two options in terms of marketplaces where you can shop for storefront signs – local sign stores and the Internet. By choosing the local store you can interact with the experts directly, which is useful for crafting and design process.
On the other hand by choosing Internet printing services, your options become limited as they do not offer variety for printing materials. This service is ideal for when signs are required within a week, however, if it is your first time trying to utilize this service, you should not take the risk with Internet services. This is because you may order the wrong sign which will cost you money and time.
Talking to a human being has its advantages but if you already know what you want and you know it is within the local sign regulations then using the Internet is the smart route.
4. Branding and design considerations
It’s essential to think outside the box when brainstorming your signs design. Consider these critical factors when designing and branding your storefront sign:
- Visually pleasing – The sign must be easy to read, with vibrant colors and tones which match the surroundings and meet local regulations. If people need glasses like John Salley’s in Bad Boys to see your sign, then you have the wrong sign.
- Must match the brand – The sign should clearly declare what products or services you offer through your services.
- Easy to maintain – Numerous natural materials are unable to withstand natural forces for a long time, composite materials are a preferred choice.
5. Common mistakes to avoid
Most common mistakes one makes regarding storefront signs are:
- Budget – If you allocate a small budget, you might cross the budget, therefore keep a buffer in the budget, since it is not necessary that you spend the entire amount allocated.
- Professionals – Approach professionals to get a customized design for sign.
- Design – It must be kept simple (if people have to spend 20 minutes on Google trying to figure out what your sign means, that is not an impressive sign), and one must be flexible with their thoughts and ideas for the sign.
Utilize this advice now and accentuate your storefront with some smart signage, so that customers are wowed every time they walk or drive past your store.
I appreciate your tip to think outside the box to come up with a unique storefront sign design. Your sign will likely provide many of your customers with a first impression of your business. The better you can communicate your brand and values through your sign, the better off you’ll be keeping customers, I think.