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Effective Signs 101

Signs are the most cost-effective way of advertising. Whether it is a business, a retail outlet or any other dealing that is looking to increase its patronage, signage is a very effective way of doing so. However, signs are not just placards on sticks stuck in the ground that say, “Buy this” or “Contact Us”. For signs to really work and be effective there are some basic signage principles that need to be followed:


Less Is More: A sign is glanced at for just a second or two. Long messages are seldom read, neither do they make the required impression on people. No matter how big the sign, the content in it should be short and to the point.

Avoid Clutter: People who are professionals at making signs were aware of the need to avoid clutter long before Marie Kondo and her books on tidying up. The usage of more words, colors, patterns and graphics on a sign will result in the message losing its focus. Just because a signboard is large it does not mean that every inch of its area needs to be filled up –blank spaces can often add emphasis to the matter around them.

Fonts: The fonts used in the sign should be crisp, clean and easy to read. Artistic and fancy fonts may look nice, but they take longer to focus on and absorb. Remember, the viewer has only a second to internalize what your sign has to say. Another factor to keep in mind is that having the entire sign in bold does not add emphasis. All that it does is give the reader an impression that he is being yelled at. Choose the fonts and sizes carefully.

Colors: The colors used in a sign should not clash, neither should they be so bright that they take the focus away from the message the sign conveys. The background and foreground (text) colors should be such that the contrast makes reading the message easy.

Use Borders: Including a border around the edges of a sign may appear to be a waste of space, but studies show that borders increase the focus on the material within them and enhance reading speed.

Location: Location is critical to a sign’s effectiveness. A sign must be tailored to the people who will see it. A roadside sign must be so easy to read that a driver whose main attention is on traffic is still able to read it and absorb its content. A sign on a sidewalk is read at a more leisurely pace, but it should be relevant to the surroundings – the reader may walk to the business the sign promotes, but he will not go through the trouble of going home, getting his car and driving there.

Professionally Created Signs Are the Best

Knowing what should be done is one thing, implementing these concepts to create effective signs is another.For a sign to create a positive impact in the viewer's mind and to motivate him to find out more, experience, skill, artistic ability and detailed knowledge of the various types of signs are required. It is also necessary to know which sign is best suited for a specific purpose. This means that the best signs, those that bring in the most footfalls, can only be made by a professional sign making company.If your signs are made by a company like this, which has a reputation of delivering what the clients want and need to produce results, they can have a massive positive impact on your business.