Retail Signs: Five Common Mistakes Made By Inexperienced Sign Writers

Retail signs need clear and concise communication to draw customers in and encourage sales.

It's critical to balance having the right message, directing people to the right areas of the shop and maintaining brand consistency.

PB Visual Communications have compiled a list of five of the most common mistakes designers make:

1. TOO MUCH INFORMATION or ‘clutter’ – Shoppers need to be able to digest a message within seconds so any signage must be clear and concise. Great retail signs will grab attention and encourage action immediately. That action might be to buy a product, move to an area in the shop or speak to a sales assistant. This can be achieved with simple, bold statements such as ‘50%off’, ‘Buy 1 get 2 free! or ‘Free Delivery’. Remember, grab attention and drive action.

2. USING OLD SIGNS – While recycling is an admirable goal, it doesn't matter if your customers appreciate your environmental efforts if they aren't being engaged to do business with you. Second-hand signs are tacky and ineffective, standing out for all the wrong reasons. If a sign is being used again, it means the same message is being used again. Customers want to see know about new deals, new promotions, better promotions and product improvements. Clean, crisp new retail signs encourage action!

3. OVER DESIGN – Retail is fast paced and most target markets are looking for impact not necessarily overwhelming creativity. The customers' attention to detail is limited in the first impact. This means you should get creative once you have the attention of the customer. Capture the sale before your competitor does!

4. CHOOSE THE RIGHT FONT – A common mistake that owner operators make is to jump on a computer and select a nice looking font with italic and serifs that looks great from 300mm away, but how will this look hanging from the ceiling in a busy ground floor department store? Small complicated characters are hard to read so use appropriate size letters and clear bold fonts.

5. LEAVING A NEGATIVE IMPRESSION – Symptoms of a poorly produced sign include: cheap paints and printing inks, dilapidated point of sale features, poor content, mis-spelling and blurred writing. These all add up to a negative experience for the customer. At best shoppers won't understand the intended message, but at worst they will also have reduced confidence in your brand.

PB Visual Communications can handle your signage requirements from concept to final installation, taking care of all aspects of the process.

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