There are over one million brick-and-mortar stores in the U.S., which shows that competition is rife.

Choosing the right store signage is key to standing out and drawing customers in. But, if you don’t understand the basics, you may miss out on sales and lose your brand identity. Maybe that concern brought you here; you want to harness the power of retail signs and need a nudge in the right direction.

Sounds like you? Luckily, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s our complete guide to store signage.

Benefits of Store Signage

Before brainstorming ideas for business signs, it’s important to consider the benefits, especially if you’re on the fence. Even the most basic store signage can unlock these perks. 

Attracts New Customers

A major benefit of storefront signage is it attracts new customers. Signs set the first impression, so make sure it’s clear from a distance and has a distinct color. This includes everything from your store’s name to the window display.

Helps In-Store Customers

Businesses should use store signs to guide customers throughout the space. Otherwise known as “retail wayfinding”, this is where you use visual graphics and tactile surfaces to show customers what they need. For instance, use signs to divide your store by merchandise or even brands.


Store signage is renowned for being cost-effective. You needn’t worry about paying a monthly fee for advertising as there’s a single upfront cost. But make sure that it’s eye-level so it’s more effective.

Raises Brand Awareness

A major advantage of business signage is that it boosts brand awareness. When you take the time to design an eye-catching sign, you’ll instantly become more recognizable to customers. As a result, you’ll stay in your target audience’s mind, which increases the chances of landing a sale. 

Tips for Store Signage

You understand the perks, but you likely know little about sign design. Ideally, learn the basics; otherwise, your hard work will go to waste. Here are our top tips.

Consider the Different Types of Store Signage

Before harnessing the power of signs, familiarize yourself with the different varieties.

Business owners often prefer digital signs to advertise their stores. These feature video or multimedia content that captures the passersby’s eye. A major bonus is that the company can control the display within a cloud, so you can easily update it.

Or you can use traditional outdoor signage to entice customers to your store while making a great first impression.

Many businesses also use persuasive signage to influence consumer behavior. This could be to advertise a particular product or a promotion. Make sure that the design aligns with your brand and features bold colors like red or yellow for urgency.

Also, a surprising option is mats. If you don’t want to overwhelm customers with hanging signs, feature arrows on the floor to guide clients. An added bonus is that they keep stores clean during wet or snowy weather. 

Be Specific

You’ll notice that effective signs are specific. Remember, you have several seconds to capture the prospects’ attention to be mindful of the copy. For instance, add relevant product information or if there’s a sale.

Pay Attention to Your Typography

Don’t underestimate the value of how typography can impact your business.

Your font choice will make your brand recognizable and give it an identity. But factor in your target audience when comparing options. For instance, if you run a luxury store, choose a serif as it exudes luxury and looks classic.

However, you shouldn’t rely solely on text. We all know how powerful images can be, so switch it up by adding an illustration. This simple trick is crucial if you’re in a cosmopolitan or tourist area, because visual signage overcomes every language barrier.

Keep It Simple

Don’t fall into the trap of overcrowding your retail sign. Instead, keep it simple with a bold typeface and a maximum of three colors. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, hire a reputable graphic designer to guide you through the process.

Add a Call-to-Action

Unless it’s your main storefront sign, always add a call to action. Remember, this is an ad for your business, so ask the customers to do something. Otherwise, passersby will dismiss it and potentially ignore your store.

Feature ADA Signage

Businesses want to welcome all customers and you can show this via a sign. Using ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliant signage will make the shopper’s experience more comfortable and they’ll feel included.

A good rule of thumb is to offer accessible parking, entrances/exits, and restrooms.

Test and Maintain Your Signage

Like with every area of your business, you should constantly be testing. You likely won’t see your desired results instantly, so be open to new ideas. For example, signage on your window display may look great from the sidewalk, but it could be in the blind spot of anyone driving by.

Retailers with multiple stores can easily conduct A/B testing by placing the same signs in a similar location. Then, you’ll see whether you’re attracting your target audience and if it sets a great first impression.

Our Guide to Store Signage

Hopefully, you’re now set on store signage for your business.

There are many great tips to try out, such as keeping the design simple and being specific to attract attention. Business owners should also include a call to action and constantly test their signage to get their desired results. Good luck with your venture!

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