How to make the best use of pavement signs
If you own a retail shop or restaurant, you already know that it is important to leverage every opportunity for marketing and advertisement. From word of mouth to social media, newspaper adverts to sponsoring events – every little bit can help.
With that said, it is amazing how many businesses neglect the one major resource that is literally right in front of their face: their storefront, and the real estate they could occupy on the pavement outside.
Placing a well-designed pavement sign outside your shop is an affordable, easy and effective way to get the attention of passers by. A pavement sign is also a brilliant solution for shops and restaurants that are just slightly off the beaten track. If your business is tucked out of sight or located around a corner from a high street, a pavement sign can catch the attention of locals and point them in your direction.
What is a pavement sign?
Pavement signs are double-sided signs designed to be placed outside of a business in order to attract passers by. You can find signs of this style all over the world, and they can really boost the visibility of a shop or restaurant. Ideally, someone walking or driving past will see the sign, and then they’ll look up at the shop in order to decide if this is an establishment they would like to visit. Sometimes this works instantly, and other times a potential customer will come back later.
Pavement signs come in many designs, shapes and sizes. They are often an A board style, but more modern designs include forecourt signs with a heavy base. They can be custom printed, or finished with chalkboard paint for regularly changing messages.
Why are pavement signs so effective?
Simply put, pavement signs are effective because they increase your visibility. Everything about your storefront helps a potential customer build a first impression about your business. Your signage, font, colour scheme and décor all play a part in helping get bodies through the door – so too does an open vs. closed door!
When someone is walking down a high street, they are often engrossed in their own thoughts – or their phone screen! Anything that can help lift their gaze and encourage them to look up and into your shop’s windows is an important tool that you need to harness. That is where pavement signs come in.
You can decorate your shop windows in a riot of colour. You can invest in the most exquisite branding and design campaigns. You can splash out on eye-catching posters and banners advertising your sales. But if no one looks up to see them, you’re still back at square one.
A well-placed pavement sign does the trick. By printing effective and alluring information (more on that later) on your sign (or signs), you pique their interest. They look up, they see your shop, and they come inside. Don’t fret if people initially seem to keep walking past without noticing your business. A pavement sign can take a few days or weeks to pay off, as someone might make a mental note of your shop and come back later.
A pavement sign should appeal to your customer base
Now that you have decided to invest in a pavement signs, you need to know what to print on them in order to increase footfall and sales. Remember, you are trying to entice people, and so a small amount of marketing juju should be applied!
Think about your target demographic. Are they rather conservative and no-nonsense? Are they urban professionals who are always in a rush? Are they fun-loving and looking for a pun to post on social media? Consider all of these factors, and start to build an idea of your typical customer – and what would grab their attention.
Depending on your target demographic, these could include:
- A simple logo and description of your offering
- A pun or joke that you change on a regular basis
- An advert for a sale, with bold language about mark downs or a % off
- An arrow pointing to your location
- Quotes from reviews (online sources or legacy media)
- Photos of your goods or menu items
Remember, your pavement signage should continue your overall branding out onto the street. You don’t want a zany or funny sign for a notary, or a stoic advert for a cocktail bar! If you are confused about what strategy will work best, we have you covered. The team here at Red17 knows how to ask the right questions so that we determine the best strategy for your pavement signs.
How pavement signs can catch the attention of potential customers
Your pavement signs are an important part of your overall marketing strategy. Think of them as a tool in your arsenal that you can utilise to increase footfall and boost your revenue.
Here are just a few ways that you pavement signs can help to increase footfall:
- They can provide directions
As mentioned above, if your business does not open up right onto the high street, you might have a harder time attracting interest from pedestrians. Your quaint location tucked down a lane might be ideal for Instagram, but your clients have to find your first. A pavement sign can literally point customers in your direction and encourage them to walk a few steps out of their way to come and visit you.
- They can alert customers about your sales and offers
Your regular clientele can also be hooked by a pavement sign. As they walk past on their daily business, if they see a sign advertising a new sale, discount or even new stock items, this can be the encouragement they need to pop in to have a look around. Some printed pavement signs have a blank space that can be changed with markers or chalk so that you can keep your clients up to date at a moment’s notice.
- They can be printed with messages (and get shared on social media)
You might not want to spend valuable pavement space on a ‘jokey message,’ but they can actually be a very good use of your real estate. Check these ones out, for instance – the businesses featured are now gaining valuable social media traction. Customers, tourists, passers by and locals might stop to photograph your signage and post it on social media. That means that your logo and branding also gets some free advertisement. Just never forget to include your logo on every sign that you put outside!
- They are a powerful reminder of your business
This is really the number one goal of any sign. Your pavement sign should always attract attention, paint a clear picture of your business, and encourage someone to step inside and have a look around. If your sign doesn’t make someone interested in what you have to offer, it is time to rethink your entire strategy.
Should you have more than one pavement sign?
Alright, you’ve made the decision to invest in a pavement sign, and maybe you have even decided what you want printed on each side. Now – should you get another? Or maybe even a few?
Studies have shown that the same images and signs lose their effectiveness over time. After all, the foot traffic walking past your business is likely to be the comprised of the same individuals again and again, and they will eventually start to ‘tune your signage out.’ Your carefully crafted signs will start to blend in with the background, thus defeating their purpose. By changing things up on a regular basis, your branding won’t become stale and will continue to attract attention.
If you have chosen a chalkboard design, then you can change your pavement sign as often as you wish with just a few swipes of a brush and a piece of chalk. But if you have gone for a printed sign, you might want to consider purchasing more than one. Now, this doesn’t mean that you have to invest in an entirely new sign each time you want to shake things up! Many A board designs come with changeable inserts that allow for new signage to be slipped into place whenever the urge strikes.
Buying pavement signs for your business
As you can see, pavement signs are a smart – and affordable – investment. Get in touch with us and we can start working on pavement signs that will boost your footfall – and boost your sales.