Types of Signs

Have you thought about getting a new sign for your business but felt like you didn’t know the lingo of the sign world enough to even know what to ask for?  Well here is a breakdown of the most common types of signs to help you feel confident in determining what type of signage you’re looking for.

monument sign

Monument Signs – these are permanent signs that are not attached to a wall or building.  They have a base or support structure made from a permanent material such as concrete, wood, or brick.  They are often found at the entrance to a parking lot or building.

Pylon Signs – these are the big, tall signs that you see in front of shopping plazas or along the highway.  Often times they will have the names of all of the businesses in that shopping area. The difference between a pylon sign and a monument sign is height.  Typically, monument signs are no higher than about 5’ in order to be at eye height, while a pylon sign is much taller with the intention to be seen from the street.

Pole Signs – this refers to any sign mounted on a single pole. In most cases they are tall, much like the pylon signs, but advertise only a single business name.  They are permanent, self-supporting, and not attached to any building or wall.

wall sign

Wall Signs – this refers to the signs seen on a building which indicate the name of the business located within.  They are made up of individual letters that are mounted directly to the building.  Many include lighting either from behind, in front or within the letters.  These are permanent signs and one of the most commonly seen types of sign.

sidewalk sign

Sidewalk Signs – These are the signs you see sitting in front of a business as you walk through the front door.  Often they feature information that changes frequently such as upcoming events, daily specials, or current sales.  They generally have a frame and the ability to change out the sign quickly and easily.

window graphics

Window Graphics – these are the signs you see on windows as store front advertising.  They can be decals, stickers or clings depending on the type of adhesive used.  This type of sign is easy to change more frequently as well.

Blade Signs – these are the signs that project out from the side of a building.  They are mounted perpendicular to the building or wall and are most common in a more downtown setting where walking customers are trying to locate a specific business.

Infinity Signs NW can help you with any of these sign choices through a comprehensive offering of material types, professional designers, and qualified installers.

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Why Utilize A Professional Sign Designer?

Half-Dental

You probably pass hundreds of signs every day – on your way to work, the gym, the grocery store, to get the kids from school – they’re literally everywhere.  Have you given any thought to the science that goes into signs?  There’s actually a tremendous amount of research that’s been conducted on all of the factors that make up effective, and ineffective, signage.  The United States Sign Council (USSC) has conducted several studies and put together recommendations for creating the ideal sign.

It’s important to partner with a sign company that is going to do more than just take an order for a sign, make it, and install it.  The sign company you work with needs to be willing to take the time to really understand your business.  It’s critical for the sign designer to understand the message you’re trying to communicate as well as the audience you’ll be targeting.  Factors such as letter size, color, and font are only a few of the factors designers will consider.  The USSC has gone well beyond these and put out recommendations based on the speed vehicles will be traveling at, the complexity of the driving situation, the amount of viewer reaction time & distance, as well as the amount of “negative” (unused space) on the sign.  With all these items impacting the effectiveness of your signage, having someone help guide the decision can be critical for the best end results.

Let’s consider just two of the areas that a sign designer will review: size and color of letters.  The size of the letters you select for your sign will vary depending on how close the sign is to the road, is it for foot traffic vs highway traffic vs city traffic, and how much time is your viewing audience going to have to take in the information.  Take a look at this chart that the USSC uses to make recommendations for letter sizing.

 

Viewing Distance – Minimum Letter Height

100’ – 4” letters

250’ – 10” letters

360’ – 16” letters

500’ – 22” letters

750’ – 33” letters

1000’ – 43” letters

1320’ – 57” letters

 

To give you a point of reference 360’ is roughly a city block.  So if you want drivers to see your signage from a block away when they’re stopped at a red light, make your letters 16” high.  Another interesting fact about sizing, that the USSC found through their research, is that letter height should be increased by 15% if the sign will be all capital letters vs a combination of capital and lower case letters, which are easier to discern.

Now let’s move into color selection for your signage. The USSC found in their research that changing the letter color and background color makes a major impact on visibility.  They found that the combination of a green background color with yellow letters was visible from the furthest distance, while the combination of a black background color with white letters had the shortest visibility distance. In both cases these were for external signs only.  Other combinations such as white background with black letters or blue backgrounds with yellow letters fell in between.

With so many things to consider, and so much research having been done, it’s worth the investment to utilize the skills of a professional designer.  Infinity Signs NW has designers who will take the time to get to know your business and make recommendations for all areas of your signage.  We value your business and don’t want to see you waste large sums of money on signs that simply won’t provide any ROI.