Signage: What Are the Different Types and How Should You Design Them?

In today’s hyper-competitive market, getting noticed is more than half the battle. While the digital realm is buzzing with advertisements, traditional outdoor signage still holds a potent charm. It serves as a silent salesperson, working around the clock to promote your brand. Designing these signs, however, requires a keen sense of aesthetics and purpose. Whether you are looking at monument signs or banners, the right design can make all the difference.

Use this guide to make your outdoor signage pop.

Monument Signs

These freestanding signs are often close to the ground and usually at the entrance of a property. Ensure they reflect the architecture or theme of the building they are in front of.

Design Tips

Incorporate materials that mirror your business premises, like brick, stone, or metal. Also, ensure the size is proportional to the surrounding landscape. This creates harmony and ensures the sign does not get lost amidst its surroundings.


Awnings serve a dual purpose in the business environment. Not only do they offer a protective shelter against the elements like sun and rain, enhancing the comfort of your customers, but they also double up as potent advertising tools. 

Design Tips

Opt for colors that contrast with your building’s exterior. If you have a dark-colored facade, a lighter awning with bold lettering can stand out. Also, ensure the text size is large enough to be readable from a distance but does not dominate the entire space.

Illuminated and Non-Illuminated Signs

These signs light up your business, quite literally. While illuminated signs are perfect for nighttime visibility, non-illuminated signs are ideal for businesses that operate during daylight hours.

Design Tips

For illuminated signs, LED lights offer better longevity and energy efficiency. Their brightness can be adjusted according to your needs. For non-illuminated signs, reflective materials can help catch ambient light, ensuring some degree of visibility during darker hours.

Window Graphics

Your store’s windows represent a golden opportunity for effective branding and advertising. Leveraging this space with vibrant and eye-catching graphics can not only convey important messages or promotions but also elevate the aesthetic appeal of your storefront. Strategically designed window graphics can attract more customers by making your business stand out in a crowded marketplace.

Design Tips

Use window graphics to highlight ongoing promotions or bestsellers. Opt for designs that allow patrons inside to see outside—completely opaque graphics can make interiors feel claustrophobic.

Yard Signs

Often associated with political campaigns, yard signs have a broader application and can be an excellent tool for businesses. These signs, when placed in strategic locations, can effectively spread the word about ongoing promotions, events, or the launch of a new product. Due to their portability and affordability, they serve as an impactful advertising method for both short-term events and long-term brand visibility.

Design Tips

Use bold, contrasting colors and keep the message concise. Since yard signs are typically viewed quickly by passing traffic, the design should be straightforward and instantly comprehensible.


A classic choice for many businesses, A-frames offer both portability and visibility. Perfectly designed for sidewalks, they attract the attention of passing pedestrians and potential customers. Plus, their convenient design allows for easy movement, making it simple to bring them indoors after business hours or during adverse weather conditions.

Design Tips

Use both sides of the A-frame for different messages or the same message for reinforced brand recall. Ensure the design is symmetrical and balanced, so the A-frame stands sturdily.

Do you think you know which sign you want for your business? Contact DSS, since we can help create and sign the perfect sign that will stand out to your customers.

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