The Anatomy of an Impactful Business Sign

“Signage is the silent salesperson.” Unknown

Marketers tell us that your business name is the most essential aspect of your brand identity. For the past 76 years, AA Sign & Awning has been fabricating and installing well-designed signs that, when combined with an effective business name, not only reflect your brand identity but also have the power to attract new customers and increase overall revenue.

Creating an effective sign for your business is a crucial aspect of your marketing strategy. It’s often the first thing people notice when visiting or passing by your establishment. Here are detailed tips to help you design a sign that stands out in a crowd and draws customers into your business

Key Elements of Impactful Signage



Your sign’s visibility is paramount. It should be easily distinguishable from its surroundings and not blend in with other signs or buildings. Utilize a background color that pops against the environment and ensures the text is readable from a distance. Bright colors with a black background or a white background with dark text can be effective.


A great sign design is often simple, prioritizing readability and delivering vital information quickly. Overcomplicated designs can be hard to read, especially for passersby. Keep the message clear, concise, to the point, and easily understood.

Font Size

Choose fonts that are easy to read and large enough to be seen from a distance. Ten-inch-high letters are recommended for every hundred feet of visibility. Avoid fonts that are cursive or novelty styles. Don’t use all caps or mix fonts on one sign. Remember, your sign needs to be legible to someone in motion, like a driver or a pedestrian. Sans serif is the most legible font even while driving or walking.

Consistency with brand identity

Your sign should be an extension of your brand’s visual identity. Ensure that it reflects your brand’s colors, fonts, and overall aesthetic. This consistency helps in building brand recognition and trust. Tailor your sign to reflect the personality and values of your brand. Choose colors that align with your brand’s identity and the emotions you want to evoke in your target audience.

Unique Selling Proposition 

What makes your business different? Highlight that difference in your sign design. Whether it’s a catchy slogan, a distinctive logo, or an unusual shape, find a way to differentiate your sign from the competition.

Design Principles for Effective Signage

Pictures and Graphics 

Use images and graphics that are relevant to your business and resonate with your target audience. A well-chosen image can convey your message more effectively than text alone. However, make sure your images are not overpowering or cluttering the sign.

White Space 

Don’t underestimate the power of white space. It helps to make the content on your sign more digestible and less cluttered. Leave 30-40% of your signage with “white space” for good readability. 


How well your sign is lit can make a significant difference at night or during poor weather conditions.

Size and Scale 

The size of your sign should be appropriate for its location. A sign that’s too small won’t be noticed, while one that’s too large may be overwhelming. Make sure the size of your sign conforms to the local zoning laws.

Color Contrast 

Use contrasting colors to make your sign’s content stand out. High contrast between the background and text or graphics makes it easier to read and more noticeable.

Simplicity and clarity 

Make sure that every element of your sign is clear, concise, and understandable. This includes the fonts and images.  Choose a font that is easy to read and make sure your most important message is most prominent.  

Location is Important 

Place your sign where it can be seen clearly from multiple angles and distances. Avoid any obstructions that might block it from view.

Eye-Catching Shape 

Consider non-traditional shapes for your sign. Unique shapes can catch the eye and make your sign more memorable.

Embrace Technology 

Incorporate innovative technology into your sign design. Digital displays, projections, or even interactive elements can make your sign more engaging and memorable.


Outdoor vs. Indoor Signage: Differences in design approach

Outdoor and indoor signage have unique considerations and design approaches tailored to their specific settings. Let’s delve into the key factors to keep in mind for both.

Considerations for Outdoor Signs


Outdoor signs face harsh weather conditions like rain, wind, and sunlight. Therefore, durability is paramount. Choose materials like aluminum, acrylic, or PVC that can withstand outdoor elements without fading or warping.

Weather Resistance

Beyond durability, outdoor signs should also be weather-resistant. This means they should be waterproof, UV-resistant, and able to withstand temperature fluctuations without compromising their integrity.

Considerations for Indoor Signs


Clear, concise messaging and intuitive design elements such as arrows or icons can help visitors navigate through complex environments with ease.

Material Selection

Consider options like wood, glass, or fabric that can add texture and visual interest to indoor spaces without the need for weatherproofing.

Information Hierarchy

Indoor signage often conveys more detailed information than outdoor signs. Use a clear hierarchy of text and graphics to prioritize essential information while maintaining readability and visual appeal.

Final thoughts

A well-designed business sign is a silent salesperson for your brand. It works continuously to attract attention, increase foot traffic, engage potential customers, and convey your message. By following these tips, you can create a sign that not only captures attention but also encapsulates the essence of your business, encouraging new customers to step in and explore what you have to offer.

Remember, your sign is often the first impression customers will have of your business, so make it count…call AA Sign & Awning to help guide you through the process.

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