Shop window signs – facts and figures that you shouldn’t ignore
The high street has always been competitive, but with the rise of the internet and e-commerce, it’s more important than ever to have a shopfront that draws attention, piques interest and stands out from the crowd. Your shopfront embodies your business and is the first physical thing that potential customers interact with. It’s therefore important for numerous reasons that any shopfront and window signs communicate precisely the image that your business seeks to project. In this post, we try to answer any questions you might have around shop window signage.
What are signs for?
It might sound like a silly question, but the answer goes deeper than you might think. At face value, the purpose of signage is to communicate to the public that your business exists. The type, form and appearance of the sign, if done properly and with consideration, might inform the consumer about the nature of the business.
Another way in which to understand the importance of a sign is consider it as a silent salesperson, “selling” your business to potential customers by drawing attention to it and helping to differentiate it from the blur of other shops on the high street. If successful, therefore, shop window signs can be an effective and easy way to increase foot traffic, giving a purpose to signage beyond simply marking your existence. Indeed, signage serves as the initial link between your business and its customers (to be).
Viewed from yet another slightly different angle, signage could be seen as the real-world equivalent of web design. Businesses routinely splash out thousands on web design, but physical signage is often treated only as an afterthought. Both are as important as each other, however, and the amount of attention, time and capital you decide to allocate to each one should depend upon the primary market focus of your business.
Why are signs so significant to a business?
Any business that fails to make window signage a central component of its overall marketing strategy can only put itself at a disadvantage. Depending on the location, your signage could be visible to hundreds or thousands of people every day, delivering the same coverage as a billboard at a fraction of the price. And unlike other means of advertising, such as television or radio, window signs are visible 24/7.
The importance of brand recognition
Signs can contain your business’ logo, helping to build brand recognition and familiarity. This is important, with research suggesting that 85 per cent of the customers of a small, independent shop live or work within 3 miles of it, on average. There’s also evidence to suggest that consumers are risk-averse, preferring to buy from companies they’ve already heard of, so striking window signage can help sow seeds that may bloom into sales further down the line.
This makes sense – once customers know where and what your business is, thanks to your shop window signs, it will be at the front of their mind when they think of where they could go to acquire what it is that your business provides. And this is key – this familiarity, in time, develops into a sense of ‘local community’. Aided by involvement in local affairs, such as sponsoring a local sports team, your business will come to be seen as a truly community entity, which, given the current movement to support local business, helps to give you the edge over corporate and chain competitors. And all of this starts with a recognisable sign!What other benefits do shop window signs have to offer?
High quality signs can give the impression of professionalism, working on the idea that if the signage is of superior quality, then the products or services provided by the business will be too. First impressions are particularly important – they’re formed in an instant, and second chances are hard to come by!
Another benefit derived from high visibility window signs is that they ensure you’ll be found. Many customers, especially younger ones, may initially find your shop online by searching for the service or product that you provide. Others may be travelling from other areas, or trying to find your shop having been advised by friends. Market research has shown that between 20 to 45 per cent of purchases are made on impulse, so window signs encouraging this sort of shopping (think ‘sale’) may be particularly successful.
Some statistics also suggest that up to 15 per cent of the population relocate every year, and although their destinations are highly location-dependent, this is likely to mean a steady flow of potential customers to be attracted by your signs. Naturally, you’ll want to make it as easy as possible for all of these prospective customers to find you, and window signs help you to very effectively achieve this.
The economic question
As with any investment, business owners will want to ensure that they will receive a good return on their outlay. The installation of shop window signs has been shown to directly increase sales – so too has simply changing the sign, suggesting that it’s a good idea to freshen up your frontage every now and then. Signage is generally a very cost-effective option for advertising and promotion. Measured by cost-per-thousand-impressions, signage is far cheaper than radio, television or newspapers.
It goes without saying that to unleash the full effect, your shop window signage should be just one part of a larger sign-based marketing campaign. There are many other types of signs which could deliver a plethora of benefits to your business. Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we have the expertise and experience to help you find the most appropriate signage solution to achieve your desired strategic goals.
For help or more information please call us on 01273 417057 or email us here.