Dealership owners are often reluctant to spend money on signage. After all, you have a lot full of cars and it’s already visible to everyone passing by. What more could you need, right?
Well, it turns out that practically every business person could benefit from signage. Ultimately, your signs reflect your brand and attract potential customers to your lot or showroom. The most effective will boost sales and catapult your company to success, so they’re certainly worth the investment.
1. Cohesive Branding
First and foremost, consider your brand and how signs might help you better communicate it. The most effective signage will be cohesive or have a certain look that’s consistent both inside and outside your dealership. Perhaps they’ll all use the same combination of fonts or similar color schemes.
Marry your logo to your mission as a business and infuse it with a consistent human element or personality. Imagine your brand as a living, breathing person and make sure all of your messaging is consistent with their characteristics.
2. Persuasive Design
In retail stores, persuasive designs direct customer flow. Signs that announce new products, seasonal offers and limited-time deals entice buyers to go in a certain direction and make more impulse buys. Inside a dealership, this might include way-finding signs and ones that offer more product information about the cars on the showroom floor.
Using exterior signage with persuasive messages is a great way to draw potential customers into your dealership, too. However, you should make them a concise seven words or less in most cases. After all, people are usually on the move when viewing exterior signage, so you only have five to 10 seconds at best to make an impression. Make it count by being direct and including a call to action.
3. Attractive Color Scheme
It seems the marketing world takes some inspiration from the fashion industry when it comes to color. In most cases, neutral color schemes exude a more reserved or sophisticated feel while bright, bold shades and patterns scream for attention. Both can serve as effective color schemes for signage depending on your audience and brand.
Remember to choose colors that positively impact passerby’s subconscious. Most consumers make a decision to buy within the first 90 seconds of viewing an ad, and color almost instantly sets the tone. If you want them to associate your brand with bright, cheery vibes, choose a yellow hue over a calming blue — or use both to create high-contrast signage and demand attention.
4. Visibility and Lighting
Of course, you want people to actually notice whatever signs you put up. Placement is everything, especially outside where trees and buildings can block the view. Periodically visit each site to ensure signage is still visible as the surrounding landscape grows and changes.
You should also consider using floodlights to illuminate your signage. That way passersby can still view it, day or night. Flashing neon lights and signs that incorporate movement like feather flags can also effectively engage viewers and hold their gaze even longer than a stationary display.
5. Ideal Shape and Size
The shape and size of your signage will also determine how effective it is at your dealership. Typically, you want your sign to have a different shape than everything around it. That means if it’s outside amongst some shrubs, it should assume a non-biolithic outline that stands out against the curvaceous greenery.
Its text should be large enough to read from a distance, too, especially when using exterior signage. As a rule of thumb, your font should be one inch taller for every 10 feet of distance you put between it and potential customers.
Making the Best Impression
Put yourself in the audiences’ shoes. What might they think when they see your sign? Do they feel led to make a purchase or learn more about your business? Frequently assess your signage through the eyes of potential customers. Then, update the condition, look and placement of the sign so that it makes the best impression and is most effective.
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