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Common Mistakes To Avoid When Designing Corporate Signage

By | Blog, News

Whether you own an independent clothes boutique, a quaint tea room or a large trade supplies store, making sure your shopfront attracts the right attention is essential to enticing customers and making a profit.

After all, your shop or office front is likely to be the first thing your customers see, and will help them form the first impression of your business. In fact, a great front display – including an engaging business sign – could be the deciding factor between customers stopping to pay attention or moving onto the next establishment.

With this in mind, it’s clear that brick and mortar shops, offices and other businesses need to invest in their front display, including well-designed signage that attracts customers and gives the establishment a sense of credibility. But, with so many different types of signage available and design factors to consider, where should you begin?

Here’s our guide on what not to do when designing corporate signage, with a list of common mistakes you’ll need to avoid if you want to be successful.

Not paying attention to brand guidelines

Whether you’re designing a brochure for your shop or a training document for your marketing company, adhering to your business’s brand guidelines and ensuring all documentation looks consistent is an important step towards creating brand loyalty and developing a credible company image. Of course, the same is true for corporate signage.

Failing to pay attention to your business guidelines could make your signage look sloppy and unprofessional, and isn’t likely to instill trust in your brand. For this reason, it’s important to make sure all corporate signage includes the same trading name, company logo, contact details, font and colour scheme.

You may not think something as seemingly small as font could make a difference, but if your shopfront and A-boards are both sporting different typography, your signage won’t look as professional as it should.

Having incorrect information on your business signs

When designing your business signage, undoubtedly one of the severest mistakes you can make is including incorrect information. An incorrect phone number or a mistyped website will not only look extremely unprofessional, but it will also prevent customers from being able to contact or find you.

It’s imperative that every piece of information you include on your business’s sign, whether an exhibition sign or fascia sign, is correct and up-to-date, so you’ll need to have a new sign designed every time you switch up logos or change your trading name.

Before you finalise your signage designs, you’ll need to check, double check and triple check all the information about to be printed. You don’t want to lose valuable custom over a missed digit in your contact number or something equally as simple to prevent.

Making spelling errors or grammatical mistakes

Another surefire way to leave your customers and clients less than impressed is to make spelling and grammatical mistakes on your business signage. After all, spending time making sure your spelling and grammar are top notch shows that you value your business and, most importantly, pay attention to detail.

However, don’t worry if spelling and grammar don’t happen to be your forte. You can always ask a friend to help you out, use an online spellchecker, or even hire a proofreader for advice. They’ll be able to point out any obvious errors and provide a second opinion on the copy you’ve written.

Forgetting about important functionality features

Of course, when designing a sign, there’s more to think about than aesthetics. You also need to make sure you think about the functionality of the sign, as failing to do so could limit its impact. For instance, if you want to continue promoting your business around the clock, you might consider investing in an illuminated sign.

Depending on your business requirements, the type of signs you need will vary. Always discuss your requirements with an established sign manufacturing company as they’ll be able to offer invaluable advice regarding the types of signs you need and any important functionality features to consider.

Overcrowding the sign with information

Signs have a clear purpose – to attract and inform your business’s target audience. Whether you’re designing direction signage to assist customers in finding their way around your premises, or internal signage to promote a particular sale or discount, you need to make sure your message is clear.

By overcrowding the sign with unnecessary information, you’ll make it difficult for your customers to find what they’re looking for. If they’re too difficult to understand, your customers may ignore them entirely.


When deciding what really needs to be on your sign, think about its function and the location of the sign itself. For instance, if you’re designing a shop front sign, you don’t need to put your address on there – this information is already clear to the customer.


Similarly, if you’re designing an A-board, do you really need to include your company’s contact information? Make sure you only include what’s really necessary to avoid a chaotic and cluttered design.

Not including enough information

On the other side of the coin is the mistake of not including enough information. As we mentioned previously, signs are designed to spread a message – if this isn’t clear, you’ll simply be wasting your money.

Although you don’t want to overcrowd your sign, you certainly want to put important information in front of your customers – and this is the perfect opportunity to do so.

While keeping it simple is often recommended, there are some pieces of information you definitely need to add. For instance, when designing a fascia sign, you should include your company name, logo, website and phone number. You may also add a short slogan to make it clear what services you offer, helping to bring new customers through the door.

Not paying attention to dimensions

For a truly professional-looking sign, you’ll need to make sure you don’t forget to pay attention to dimensions. This is a mistake that could ruin your entire sign; a stretched out logo or fuzzy text won’t make you look like an established company and could deter customers from trusting your services.

Attention to detail is key when designing signage so we always recommend hiring a reputable company to assist you. Hiring a professional business sign maker will ensure that all dimensions are taken into account and nothing appears disproportionately sized.

Opting for cheap signage that could be vulnerable to damage

Unfortunately, business premises do get damaged or vandalised from time to time. From graffiti to smashed windows, damage inflicted upon properties can be expensive, time-consuming and stressful to deal with. This is especially true for your signage, as certain signs may have to be replaced entirely depending on the extent of the damage.

For this reason, it’s important to invest in signage that can stand the test of time. When choosing what material you’d like your signage to be produced in, discuss your options with your chosen sign company. They’ll be able to advise on which type of material is best suited to your requirements, depending on the type of sign in question and its location.

Opting for expensive signage in areas where the risk of damage is high

For some signs, producing them in cheaper materials is likely to be a sensible idea – especially if they’re in a location where they may be prone to vandalism or are just a temporary addition. For instance, when designing direction signage for a festival, you may opt for cardboard due to the likelihood of it becoming vandalised.

Again, it’s recommended that you discuss your requirements with your chosen signage company, as they’ll be able to offer you industry-specific advice regarding materials and much more.

Ainsley Signs Manchester: High-quality corporate signage, including office signage, exhibition signage, direction signage and more

If you’re looking for professionally-designed signage for your business, look no further than Ainsley Signs Manchester. We produce a vast range of indoor and outdoor signs for business, including illuminated signs, fascia signs, direction signage and much more, to allow companies in Manchester and beyond to give their customers the best possible service.

We also offer a range of other printing services, such as t-shirt printing, roll-up banners, vehicle graphics, vinyl lettering, window graphics and much more. With over 50 years of experience in our field, we’re proud to have developed a reputation for excellence throughout Manchester and further. We specialise in designing, manufacturing and installing each product, ensuring a seamless service from start to finish.

For more information about our range of services, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Ainsley Signs Manchester today.

Four Visual Merchandising Tips To Make Your Shop Windows Stand Out in Manchester

By | Blog

Making your business stand out to others is no easy feat, especially as the streets of Manchester are dominated with shops and businesses of every type and description. One of the best ways to increase footfall in your business is to design an intriguing and compelling window display.

Stunning window displays have become a cornerstone of legendary luxury department stores like Harrods, Selfridges and Harvey Nichols, generating crowds of people to flock to their stores to take pictures all year round. This is largely down to the artistic and flamboyant nature of these displays.

Although this scale may not be able to be achieved on a small brand budget – it shows just how vital a good window display is for promoting brand awareness and increasing customers. With this in mind, we have put together four visual merchandising tips to make your shop windows stand out amongst the bustling streets of Manchester.

Plan Ahead

One of the most important tips in designing the perfect window display is actually planning ahead. A well thought out window display will certainly make potential customer’s heads turn in the street, and a messy display could do the same but for the wrong reasons. Think about your window displays months in advance and change them every new season (a minimum four times a year). This is because passersby may become blind to a shop window that they have seen many times before – therefore a fresh and new window display is more likely to capture their attention.

Create a Theme

Creating a narrative or theme with your window display is a great way to not only catch the eye of persons in the street, but also, it can coincide with the theme of your products. For example, if you are a start-up fashion label and your collection is whimsical and feminine, display motifs that associate with this like butterflies, flowers and pastel tones.

Have Multiple Layers of Height

The last thing you want when you have planned out a window display is for it to seem dull and flat. This is why you need to make the display dynamic. One of the ways to do this is by creating multiple layers of height, having your products hung, shown, stood or sat on different podiums that are ranging from eye level upwards will make your window display feel unique, and if they like the products on show – then they will certainly step inside to find them.

Consider Window Graphics

Window graphics are a great way to have your business standing out amongst the others on the street. Whether you are wanting to display exciting new stock, or you have a sale on – window graphics are a great option to increase footfall into your business. Make sure that your window graphics align with your businesses branding – whether that in a certain font or colourway – to keep consistency throughout.

Here at Ainsley Signs, we pride ourselves on producing eye-catching and bold window graphics for a range of businesses around Manchester and beyond. To find out more about us, simply contact us today.

A Brief History of Typography

By | Blog

Writing is a fundamental form of human communication. In fact, written communication is wholly unique to the human race and is what distinguishes us from all other living things. Typography is essentially how written communication looks aesthetically; often confused with font, which indicates a set of letters designed in a specific typeface, created by a typographer. Read More

Why Traditional Shop Signs Are Still Important

By | Blog

In today’s ever-changing, digital consumer environment, where UK-based shoppers make on average 87% of all purchases online, it may seem as if there’s no space left for brick and mortar establishments offering the traditional shopping experience. After all, with so many products and services available for purchase with just the click of a button, many people are convinced that brick and mortar shops are heading towards their demise.
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Groundbreaking Advertising Campaigns

By | Blog

Advertising is all around us, from giant billboards by the roadside, to print adverts in magazines, television commercials and pop-up adverts on our phones and devices. We’re so used to being bombarded with different types of advert that it takes something special to make an impact, but there have been many groundbreaking advertising campaigns over the years that have stood out as something truly special. If you want to know more, see our list below of some of the most groundbreaking advertising campaigns of the last century.
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Funniest Signs from Around the Internet

By | Blog

Here we have a fun blog post that we have created which features some of the most hilarious signs that we have found around the internet. We hope that these pics brighten up your day and feel free to share it on social media and let everyone know which picture you like best. Read More

Signage and Your Business Identity

By | Blog, Infographics

Here is an excellent signage infographic from the website called Vinyline Graphics that takes a look at how quality signage can help grow your business. The piece includes signage facts as well as information about the importance of signage for a business, why signage is cost effective, how signage can drive traffic and how signage can boost your sales. Read More

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