Thursday, 26 March 2015

Rules for Retail Signage

In any retail establishment, the signs are the salespeople that are on the job from the moment the doors open till they close. Signs never take a break, never get tired and irritable and never give out conflicting information. If you own or manage a store, your focus is on getting customers to come in, telling them what is available, where the items can be found, alerting them to bargains and informing them about new products. This is what signs do, 24/7. By keeping a few simple guidelines in mind, you can use signs to increase sales and provide customers with an improved shopping experience.

Entrance Signs

A clean and well maintained sign at the entrance creates a positive impression in the mind of the customer. More than just telling him or her who or what you are, it should create anticipation about what is available inside. A positive slogan or catch phrase will arouse curiosity and expectations. And an interchangeable element that allows you to inform them about special offers or discounts will increase their expectations of having a positive shopping experience.

Floor / Department Signs

Large signs that indicate what is available where will make it easy for people to find what they are looking for. Everyone is in a rush these days and enabling people to get directly to where they want to go improves their shopping experience and their impression of being in an efficient establishment. Adding a little about what is available in each department without cluttering it up improves the sign’s effect. For example, if the store sells both home improvement and gardening supplies, adding a few products under each sign will save people time. If they know that hoses are in the gardening department, they will not have to waste time going to the home improvement section.

Directional Signs

Finding the products they want is the main part of offering your customer a good shopping experience, but not all of it. They need to know where to find the restrooms, the cash registers, where free samples are on offer, where they can go for help and so on. This is where directional signs are important. A simple arrow, with a few descriptive words, hung high enough to be seen from anywhere in the store, will serve this purpose. If need be, this can be supplemented by a few extra words such as “Refunds – At the Rear to the Left.”

Special Services

Customers need to know about any specials services you offer. For example, if you sell bulky products they cannot take home in their cars, and offer a delivery service, signs near these products that say “Delivery Service Available” tell people about the extra benefits of buying from you.

Size is Important

Signs should be large enough for a customer to read without a problem, but not so large that they overshadow the products on sale. A thumb rule is that the lettering is 1 inch high for every 10 feet of distance from which it should be readable. In other words, if a sign has 3 inch high letters, it will be readable from 30 feet away.

Warning and Negative Signs

Warnings about shoplifting, penalties, surveillance etc. are essential and in some cases mandatory. However, their use should be controlled so that customers in the store, who are not going to cause problems, are not put off into thinking that they are automatically suspects.

Designing and creating effective signs is both a science and an art. Certain types of signs are most effective in certain locations and for specific applications. The look of the sign is critical to the way it attracts customers to what is waiting for them. A professional signage company will be able to work with you to design and create the signs that will add to the appeal of your store and the products on offer.