Choosing the Right Material

When ordering an outdoor sign there are a variety of things to consider – color, size, material, lighting, and much more.  One of the most important decisions, and often the most confusing for those who are new to sign ordering, is which material to use.  Beyond choosing the correct material you’ll also need to be sure to order the correct thickness.  All of this can be tricky if you haven’t done it before.  Infinity Signs, NW has the answers you need.

For customers who are looking for heavy-duty construction site signs, such as a hazardous material sign, we would recommend using .125” thick aluminum.  In general aluminum is one of the most popular options for outdoor signage.  It’s lightweight, looks great for years to come, is affordable and is incredibly durable. For our real estate customers looking for small yard signs we would recommend a thinner .040” thick aluminum.  For something slightly more rigid .080” thick aluminum is also a good choice.  As an example this is the thickness of the stop sign at the end of your street.

Similar in appearance to the aluminum sign is a dibond material.  These signs are thicker than aluminum alone but have an aluminum surface, which means you keep the beautiful look but add dimension.  Dibond also increases the strength and durability of the sign, and is available in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes.  It’s priced comparably to aluminum but does even better in outdoor conditions.  Many commercial real estate companies will use dibond for their signage because of its balance between durability and portability.

Another popular choice is dura-wood.  For those who are looking for signage that has the classic look of wood but the durability of vinyl.  Dura-wood is ½” thick and can be custom cut into any size you need.  It’s one of the best options for those who are looking to make use of full-color graphics but want something that’s still easy to mount and can stand up to the outdoor elements.  Many customers prefer dura-wood because it can be printed as a double-sided sign.

Whether your business is real estate, construction, or something else entirely we recommend considering the use of one of these 3 materials.  There is so much you can do with each of them and our design team is here to help you create something that suits your business perfectly.  Give Infinity Signs, NW a call today.

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Outdoor Message Boards

Message boards

Many companies are looking to display information for those walking by in a format that allows for regular, easy updating.  Sidewalk signs are a great way to promote an upcoming sale or event, but they tend to hold a limited amount of information, and are not something that can be updated and reused.  Outdoor message boards are the perfect solution.  These boards are like having a physical Facebook page for your business front.  They create a space to post notices, share details about upcoming activities and events, display a new menu and generally post anything you want to let the public know about your business.

For many customers these boards function like an information center.  They use them not only to promote the business but also to post job postings, company announcements, and more detailed descriptions of the business.  Think of a spa that wants to post all of their available services – 5 different types of massages, various manicure and pedicure options, facials, etc.  Then they want to be able to describe each of those different massages in greater detail so that a customer can choose what fits them best and also to sell them on coming inside for a time of relaxation.  This is the perfect place for a message board.  For a lot of companies the message board provides similar information to that which is on their website.

These outdoor message boards are made from materials that can withstand the elements – rain, snow, and insects and continue to look great for years.  Most people select one that is made from high density polyethylene that will not rot or crack over time.  They come in a variety of styles and colors depending on the size you’re looking for, and how you want to access them.  Some can be free standing to allow for messages to be placed on both sides, while others attach to the building with single sided message access. Some have one or two hinged doors that open to insert information, while others are top loading.  The doors are made from shatter-resistant materials and are lockable to keep your information safe.

Message boards are an incredibly cost effective way to draw people to your storefront, entice them with thorough information, and get them to come inside to make a purchase.  They’re easy to install and available quickly.  Contact Infinity Signs, NW today to get one for your business before you miss all that summer foot traffic.

Effectiveness of Sign Spinners

Sign Spinners

Everyone has seen those people that stand on the street holding a sign and dancing like crazy, or spinning the sign around, or dressed like a gorilla.  Do these gimmicks actually work?  Recent studies have found that having a person standing with a sign actually does improve customer responsiveness.  In fact it found that the response rate when the sign was being held was more than 150% higher than when the sign was simply standing alone at the road.  The driver responsiveness increased another 15% if the person holding the sign was doing some type of action – dancing, spinning, etc.

The study looked at a variety of other variables as well.  As you might imagine there are many do’s and don’ts associated with getting the attention of the public when using a temporary sign.  Here are a few of the ones most important when designing your street sign:

Simplicity – the most important thing to remember is to keep your sign and your messaging simple and to the point.  Your sign needs to use as few words as possible to give drivers enough time to read and comprehend your message.  Avoid using graphics and designs as these can detract from your primary messaging and make it more difficult for drivers to read your sign.

Color – selecting a color contrast for your sign will make a big difference in its effectiveness.  A bright color for the background or text contrasted with white or black works extremely well.  If you don’t want to use color at all a simple white background with black text was almost as effective in getting driver response during the study.

Text – it’s critical that you select a font that’s easy-to-read, bold, and sized appropriately.  You certainly can’t have someone holding a sign that’s ridiculously big so you’ll need to make sure that the number of words you print will fit in a standard size sign while maintaining a large font.  It’s far better for drivers to read 5 words and understand them than to see 20 words but be unable to read them all. The study found that short messages were over 90% more effective than longer ones.

The most important thing for business owners to take note of is that signs work!  People definitely notice signs when driving.  Their response to your sign is heavily dependent on its design and messaging, but they’ll definitely notice it.  In addition, it’s worth the cost to have an employee standing outside holding your sign.  If you can increase driver interest by 150% that will pay for your employee cost in a hurry.  Get your sign designed and printed today from Infinity Signs, NW.

The Power of a Refresh

Sign refresh

I recently walked through an airport that I’ve walked through hundreds of times.  You know how it goes when you take the same route over and over.  You stop really seeing anything, it’s all just a blur of vaguely familiar images.  Interestingly this time I actually noticed the signs for the bathrooms, dog walking area, baggage claim and others.  I realized that the reason these signs were suddenly grabbing my attention was that they were all new signs.  While of course the information they provided was the same as it’s probably been for 50 years, for the first time they actually stuck out to me.  What if the same thing could happen for your business?  What if those customers that drive by day after day, but never really see anything, suddenly noticed you?  A new sign could make that happen!

A new sign doesn’t have to be a dramatic change from the old one, sometimes simply a facelift will get the job done.  The airport signs for example went from being black signs with white lettering to being metallic signs with colored light illuminating the letter cut-outs.  They were subtle, but different.  Just enough to grab my attention.  If you’re happy with your color scheme, there’s no reason to completely revamp it.  Instead look for new ways to present the same colors, graphics or logos.  Maybe this is changing the material type for your sign or using the same font and material but adding lighting to create a halo sign.  Creating a new look doesn’t have to be dramatic or expensive.  There are a variety of simple ways to create something that will grab people’s attention.

Another option is changing the location of your sign.  I noticed that at the baggage claim area they had relocated the signs from hanging centered over the luggage conveyors, to being located on cement poles at the end of each conveyor.  Again the information was the same but because it was not in the place it’s always been in, it stuck out in a whole new way.  You could also consider changing the size of your sign.  Make it slightly bigger or smaller than before and it will register in your customer’s mind that something is different, which will cause them to give it a second look.

These simple changes- size, material type, lighting, color, or location can yield big sales results.  They can be effective on exterior signage, directional signs, and interior informational signs depending on your goal.  If you need to get people to a new area of your store or business try new signs inside, if your goal is to bring in new customers altogether than let’s upgrade the outside.  Whether you need 1 new sign or a 100, interior or exterior, a big revamp or something subtle, the team at Infinity Signs NW can get the job done.  Give us a call today to get your business to stand out again.

How often Should You Replace or Redesign Your Sign?

old signs

For a lot of business owners, outdoor signage is a big priority when they first open, or when they relocate to a new facility, but then it gets put on the backburner indefinitely.  You may think that it’s a one and done situation, but it’s not quite that simple.  While your signage will certainly last you for many years, there will come a point when the constant exposure to the elements, the development of other businesses around you, or changes in the city requirements will make a new sign important.  Your sign is the first and last impression customers will have of you, and it’s well known that a new sign promotes business growth.

We would recommend that every few years you take a hard look at your sign.  Does the location still make sense?  Does the wording still accurately describe your business?  Is the lighting appropriate and effective?  Are the materials of the sign in good repair? If the answer to any of these questions is “no” than it’s time to reach out to Infinity Signs NW for a new sign.  If the location or materials are the problem than more than likely a replacement of your existing sign, or possibly just a repair, will get the job done.  On the other hand if the wording or lighting aren’t working out, than a complete redesign and replacement may be in order.

For many customers the cost of the new sign is off set by the increase in sales that results from improved visibility, better messaging, lower maintenance costs, reduced electrical expense through the use of LED lighting and more.  So while that initial cost may feel overwhelming, the payoff can be substantial.  When selecting your next sign consider the material you select in terms of longevity.  An aluminum or aluminum composite sign has a life expectancy of 7-10 years, while plastics are only 5-7 years.  A vinyl banner may last 2-3 years depending on wind and weather impact.  A cedar wood sign will give you 8-10 good years and a high density urethane option can last 10 years or more.  Keep in mind that the lifespan of each of these materials is dependent upon regular maintenance along the way.

If you’re looking to get a sign that lasts, at an affordable price, contact Infinity Signs NW today.  Our design team will make sure the look and feel of your sign fits your business and our manufacturing group will ensure a quality product.

Signage: It Can Make or Break Your New Business

exterior-signage

As a business owner you have a million decisions to make, especially when opening a new location or getting a first time business off the ground.  As you wade through government red tape for permits and legal protections, contractor decisions for the set-up of your facility, and marketing choices to best get the word out, you may not be giving your sign a whole lot of thought….but you really should.  Undervaluing the power of the first impression that your sign will make could be catastrophic to your business.

While traveling recently, we came across a great example of the damage that can be done by not using good signage.  A new business had just moved in to the area and set-up a fantastic facility for kids to jump on trampolines and run through ninja courses.  They did everything right with the facility.  The inside was clean, had bright colors, was well laid out, and had many friendly employees ready to engage kids in an afternoon of fun.  They did everything right with the marketing.  They hit social media hard, promoted on local radio stations, and offered deals to get people in to check it out.  It looked like this company was set-up for success with parents throughout the area talking about taking their kids there.  Unfortunately things went downhill when parents pulled in to the parking lot.

As many of these types of places are, this one was located in a large warehouse style building at the end of a strip mall.  This means an enormous surface area on the front of the building in which to put a sign.  This business chose however to print out a small banner to hang over the door.  It wasn’t properly secured and was thus flapping in the breeze, making it difficult to even read what it said.  Sadly many people pulled into the parking lot and either couldn’t find the place, or saw the sad little banner and decided to move on.  The impression it gave to parents was that this place was a fly-by-night company which did not instill the confidence parents want before taking their children inside.  These potential customers never had the chance to see the amazing facility inside or the eager-to-please staff members.

To avoid shooting your new business in the foot before you even get it off the ground, make sure your signage sends the appropriate message to your new customers.  They’ve got to feel comfortable that your business is legitimate.  If you do an amazing job inside, but your customers never walk through the front door, you’ve lost before you’ve even started.  Infinity Signs NW can make sure you don’t end up in this situation.  Our design team will help you come up with just the right signage to market your business to the community, our manufacturing team will create something beautiful, and our installers will make sure the work is properly completed. So before your big launch contact Infinity Signs NW and make sure you hit the ground running.

Interior Signs: Acrylic vs Photopolymer

acrylic-signs

The majority of interior signage is made from either acrylic or photopolymer, and while sign makers will certainly know the difference, the average consumer may not.  When your business is looking to create new interior, ADA compliant, directional signage you’ll want to consider the pros and cons of both options.  Either material can be used to create signs that are informative, and meet all government requirements for ADA compliance, but there are definitely differences between the two.

Acrylic – in many facilities acrylic is the material of choice simply because it’s generally the most economical option.  When using acrylic a raised text is applied to the face of the sign and a raster fit method of braille insertion is used to create a compliant, affordable, and visually appealing final product.  On acrylic material it’s no problem to add graphics through digital printing or applying vinyl.  These signs can also have 1/32” thick plastic text bonded to them in order to meet ADA requirements.  All of this can be done at the appropriate surface gloss level to avoid too much glare.

Photopolymer – this is the material of choice for buildings that need signs with a higher degree of durability.  These signs are virtually indestructible and vandalism proof.  In places that are often unprotected, or out of view of the general public, such as educational facilities or other public buildings, using photopolymer makes the most sense.  With photopolymer signs the raised text and braille are actually printed as part of the sign itself, rather than bonded on after the fact.  This makes it impossible for them to be defaced or removed. These signs can also have graphics added to them through digital printing or vinyl application.  In order to achieve this higher level of durability the signs are made from a slightly more expensive material than the acrylic, this can be compensated for by reducing the frequency of replacement in certain environments. Photopolymer will still meet the requirements for raised lettering heights, surface gloss and non-glare in order to stay ADA compliant.

If you’re not sure which option makes the most sense for your business, get a quote on both from Infinity Signs NW and talk with your sign designer for additional suggestions.  In either situation the look of bright new signs throughout your building can send a message to visitors that your company is headed in a fresh, new direction.