Things to Consider When Designing a Signage

A sign board is a display of name / logo of the business placed on top of a store, it helps existing customers in locating a store. 

For new shoppers, looking to buy products that you deal in, the sign board can act as an invitation. How strong the pull of the invitation is, depends on the quality and attractiveness of the signage when compared to competitors around you. We have created this comprehensive signage design guide to help you through all the steps till you get the best possible signage for your business.

Why you should invest in a good signboard?

Survey data - impact of a signage
  1. A good sign board gives the store a unique identity and helps in building a brand image for a business.
  2. Several surveys show that a signage is very impacting in influencing a customer’s buying decisions, a signage can act as a deciding factor for customers on deciding to enter the store or not.
  3. A company’s signage helps customer recognize the brand, just as labels on a grocery store shelf make a product instantly recognizable. Make sure the name of your business, logo, company colors, catch phrase, etc., are consistent everywhere they’re used; on your sign, letterhead, business cards and print ads etc. This builds recognition and helps brand your business firmly in the mind of the consumer.
  4. Today’s consumers have higher disposable income, hence impulse buying has increased manifold in the past few years. To exploit this instinct of the customers, and increase sales subsequently – you need to adopt an holistic approach in branding of store and the retail arrangement.

Things to consider during the design process:

Choice of distance and letter height:

  • The sign board needs to have high contrast, be easy to read, visible from long distances and catch peoples’ attention in a few seconds.
  • Make sure the information is clearly visible to all. The customers should be able to easily read the signboard even from a distance. Choose a light background color and a dark text color for clear visibility.
  • For calculating best possible visibility, in terms of positioning, the following analysis needs to be done. 

  • The following formula can be used to find the minimum size (height) of the lowercase letters that can be used which is visible to the viewer from a set distance.

Here, R – reading distance (in meters) and X – height of lower case letters.

  • Consider the following:

  • In the below image, for a given store, if the width of the street is 5 meters, then, for every element of the signage to be visible through the width of the street. Using the above given formula, the minimum height of lowercase letter should be:

    X = 5/200 = 2.5 cm

Choice of color and its impact on illumination and visibility:

  • The colors used for sign letters, objects, and background greatly impact the sign’s visibility. In a study, the following color combinations were ranked from most to least readable. Also when going for a lighted signage, the impact of the color on lighting also needs to be considered. Different colors behave differently to illumination. When you have planned to go ahead with an in-lit signage, then you should be aware of the behavior of the color of sheet being used to the lighting. More illumination typically leads to more visibility

Percentage of light reflected by various colors:

  • In case a store is located in a market setting with a lot of stores, then in order to maintain the visibility, you should choose a light color for the signage. But, in case of no or very low competition around, even a dark color signage can work while keeping a premium and commanding presence.

Types of Lighting and its utility:

  • If you have decided on going ahead with a letter signage with inbuilt lighting, then there are two ways to do the same. One is to embed the light in the whole box-backdrop and the other is to embed the light only within letters (as illustrated in the below given images).

box signage
Box Lighting Signage
Lit Letters Sigange
  • In the first case (Box Lighting) the options of lighting are – panel lights and module lights. Panel lights are bigger in size and hence need a bigger space to accommodate and illuminate, while module lights are smaller and require smaller spaces to accommodate and illuminate.

    The brands typically supplying these light options are ONIX and Samsung with cost varying from INR 25/pc to INR 50/pc for module lights depending on warranty ranging from 1year to 5years. In case of In-lit letters the minimum depth of letters required is 2.5 inches and minimum width required is 1 inch.

Points to consider before installation:

  1. The signage should never block the entrance of the store. 
  2. It should not hide the interiors of the store.
  3. Install the signage at a place which can be easily viewed by all; even from a distance.
  4. Don’t put too much information on the signboard. Let the customers walk into the store and find out on their own what the store is offering.
  5. The signboard should not mislead or confuse the customers.

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