Interior Signage Tips
Effective Retail Signage Should Convey Your Brand’s Voice and Insights
Your store, your world.
In-store signage is your opportunity to create an immersive customer experience that transforms your retail store from a mere point of sale to an experience center.
Whether your brand’s voice and style guide is friendly, cheeky, sassy, or fun, your signs should express that voice, and should remind people why shopping with you is different than shopping with your competitors.
Some tips for making your branded signs pop even more:
- Use the exact same Pantone colors you use in your brand’s marketing and sales materials to ensure consistency.
- Align the sign with your strategic goals. Draw attention to promotional products or upselling opportunities.
- Sell a lifestyle. Your brand should stand for something your customers want to be a part of. Connect with that with persuasive language and colors.
- Think outside the boxy sign. Different shapes, materials, and designs draw your customers’ attention.
Choosing the Best Indoor Retail Signage Materials
It’s important to choose the right manufacturing materials to use when creating your indoor retail signs.
Each material has advantages and disadvantages based on factors like weight, reflectivity, durability, and cost. Which is why choosing the right material is so important.
When it comes to indoor retail signage, here are the three most popular material choices:
- Gator Board. Rigid and lightweight, gator board comes in a dense foam core with a wood-fiber veneer exterior. The effect is a water, scratch, and dent-resistant sign with high-gloss, vivid colors and a great deal of structural integrity.
- Foam Core. This inexpensive and extremely lightweight signage is perfect for temporary indoor uses. Its matte paper exterior is low-glare and is perfect for use in aisle signage and non-contact applications.
- Ultra Board. This is the sturdiest and most durable of the indoor signage materials. Thanks to its exterior layer of polystyrene plastic, it is extremely scratch and warping resistant and is a favorite for high-use applications like celebrity cutouts, or any signs that need to be free-standing or support their own weight.
Don’t Forget to Look Down: More Types of Signage
In the branding arms race to capitalize on every square inch of space in retail stores, too many brands are forgetting an entire quarter of their floorspace: the actual floors!
Branded floor mats are an excellent way to perform two vital marketing functions.
They are just as effective as traditional signage in sharing your message with customers and pointing out promotional or upsell opportunities.
They can be used as clever wayfinding devices as well, serving a practical purpose that will surprise and delight shoppers, and improve their recall and perception of your brand.
From “Bathroom, This Way!” to “You Look Great In That!” floor mats are a clever and often overlooked way to make your marketing stand out.
Large, Bold Fonts Make Department Store Signage Easier to Read
When it comes to the font you use for your in-store signage, studies show that serif fonts – those with little “feet” and “heads” attached to them, like Times New Roman – are easier to read at a distance than sans-serif fonts. Stick to serif fonts to convey information to your customers quickly.
Effective retail signage also means considering font colors along with the other creative elements on the sign. Make sure there is enough contrast to avoid decreasing the legibility of the sign. Black-on-white, for example, is always better than pink-on-red.
Yes, even for Valentine’s Day promotions.
Include Calls to Action in Your Retail Signage
Create a connection between your signs and conversion goals with calls to action (CTAs).
Whether your brand’s specific strategic goal is to boost loyalty program sign-ups, increase sales of a high-volume product, or gain more subscribers to your newsletter, creating retail store signage specifically aimed at these CTAs is extremely effective.
Forget creating CTAs for your signs; create signs for your CTAs.
Effective Directional Signage Guides the Way
When it comes to retail store signage, not every sign needs to be a comedian.
Sometimes, the best signs simply get the job done.
Informational signage, also known as wayfinding or directional signage, helps your customers find things and get to where they need to go faster.
The real value it adds to your brand, though, is improving the customer experience.
Clean, clear directional signage – with bold, serif fonts and high-visibility colors – creates a positive association with your brand, and helps provide the customer a positive shopping experience.
Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Signage, For Everyone
We’ve talked a lot about the visual nature of signs, but there’s a whole class of signs that are crucial to your customers’ experience that have nothing to do with sight.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant signage, like those with braille indicating restrooms and those that indicate the location of wheelchair ramps and elevators, make sure that every customer feels welcomed by your brand, not just some.
Strict rules govern the production and manufacture of ADA-compliant signs, including:
- Font must be uppercase and sans serif (serif fonts may be easier to read, but they are not standardized, which the ADA requires)
- Signs must be displayed 48-60 inches above the ground
- Signs must feature both tactile and visual lettering
- Lettering on signs must feature set raised and spaced distances
Be sure to partner with an expert in ADA-compliant signage, and ensure your brand continues to speak to all shoppers.