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The 5 Commandments of Business Signage

In 2012, Fed-Ex conducted a study they called “Sign of the Times” and the results were mind-blowing. They found that almost 8 in 10 (76% to be exact) American consumers enter a store they have never visited before based on its signs, and nearly 7 in 10 (68%) have purchased a product or service because a sign caught their eye. YIKES! Finding the right business signage to adequately express your brand, company culture, and your product, while ensuring visibility, can be daunting. What we’ve done here is boiled everything down to four basic things you need to know to get started.

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(Classic Signs sign, Birdie's, Southern Pines, NC)

                                                                1. Location, Location, Location!

The location of your business should alwys dictate the location of your signs. This is perhaps the most important component in determining your signage needs. Here’s some important things to ponder:

How far away will the average Joe be from your building? 

How far away is your building from the main street? 

Will most passersby be on foot or driving, or both?  

If most will be driving by, what’s the posted speed limit on that street? 

How high will your sign be, and do you want it to be visible at night?                                      sandblasted wood grain effect hdu sign hawkins3 classic signs nc1280x1024

  (Classic Signs signage,, Hawkins & Hawkins, Southern Pines, NC)     

2. Your Needs

The first thing you need to do is sit down with a pencil and paper and write down what you want. Do you know what kind and how many signs you will need in relation to your building?  While you’re writing down what you want, here are some key things to keep in mind:

Do you need a building mounted sign to attract foot traffic? 

Do you need a ground mounted pole sign for road traffic? 

Will you need directional signs that will help your customers find the entrance, parking lot, and where to enter the building? 

Do you need channel letters for the side of your building for extra visibility? 

If you share a building with other businesses, will you need indoor signs as well? 


                                                                                 3.  Your Budget 

How much money you are willing to invest in your signage is perhaps one of the most crucial decisions you’ll ever make in terms of ROI.  Remember, your sign is not just there to provide information or give directions. A well-designed, properly installed sign will always be an endorsement to your legitimacy and professionalism. Expertly made signage is an initial investment that will be the most influential marketing tool of your business. Because it will be visible 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, it will be generating business when you don’t even realize it for years to come. Be clear on what your expectations are and what you want to achieve.   


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(Classic Signs sign- Dugan's Pub, Pinehurst, NC.)

4.  Your Purpose

What job does the sign have to do? Is it informational, instructional or directional? Is it advertising something, or is it a combination of several of these things? The answer to this will have a large bearing on the sign design.

After thinking about this and making notes, make sure to pass this information on to your sign professional. Some sign professionals often get so involved  with the design process, they forget the original job the sign needs to do.


                                                                   5.  Complying with Zoning Laws

Before you decide on your signage, you need to know what kind of zoning and permit requirements are set forth by your local government. Most cities and townships have specific laws when it comes to signage, so be sure not to skip this step. Next, you’ll need a sign permit. Acquiring a permit can be a little intimidating at first, but depending where you are, you can likely apply for one online. They typically cost anywhere from $50-$150. 

If you are renting or leasing your building, make sure you check with your landlord first to get their approval. To avoid any miscommunication on either side, it’s best to ask for their authorization in writing.

Classic Signs & Signblasters is a second-generation family business that’s served as a premier supplier of business and municipality signage for over 30 years.

Want to learn how we can convert your brand into a statement? We’re here to talk.

For a complete list of all things that might be of interest to you before buying business signage, click here.


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Some of what we create on a regular basis

Signs we manufacture are used for but limited to: Business signs, shops signs, restaurant signs, condominium Signs, subdivision signs, golf course signs, street signs, housings development signs, salon signs, beauty parlor signs, real estate signs, commercial signs, industrial signs, house signs, farm signs, beach house signs, resort signs, traffic signs, hotel & inn signs, pub signs, vehicle signs, interior & ada signs, boat signs, truck signs, office signs professional signs, trail signs wall sign, entrance signs, lobby signs, street name signs, outdoor signs, custom signs, mall signs, retail signs , marina signs, architectural signs.

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