Are you having trouble deciding between outdoor vs. indoor signs? Not sure which types of signs you should get for your business? While they are both essential for a strong marketing strategy, these two types of signs have unique functions, design options, and communication styles.
Outdoor vs. Indoor Signs: 5 Differences That Will Help You Choose the Right Signs
Outdoor and Indoor Business Signs Target Very Different Audiences
Indoor and outdoor business signage targets people at different points in the customer journey. Signs installed outdoors serve to:
- Introduce people to your business
- Make your business familiar and trustworthy
- Generate excitement with product or service promotions
Signs installed indoors, however, are designed for people who have already taken the first step of visiting your establishment. Therefore, they serve to:
- Create memorable experiences
- Influence purchase decisions
- Guide the customer experience
Indoor and Outdoor Signs Have Different Marketing Goals
Signage installed outdoors casts a wide marketing net. The purpose is to help you build brand recognition and top-of-mind awareness with potential customers. Signs are also used for general advertising, such as highlighting new product or service launches and ongoing sales promotions.
Signage installed indoors, on the other hand, seeks to bolster the promises of outdoor signs. They build on brand awareness by cohesively decorating the space with brand elements. The signs are also used to showcase promotions that will appeal to customers. An example of this is checkout signs, which encourage impulse buys.
Outdoor and Indoor Business Signs Are Designed Differently
Outdoor business signage is designed to be visible to people from near and far. This is why signs are large, use easily read-fonts, and may include vibrant lighting. Each of these elements is meant to capture the attention of passersby.
Signs installed indoors are more subtly designed. The materials and finishes are such that they are appealing even when viewed up close. Similarly, the intensity of the lighting is reduced to prevent a jarring experience for visitors.
Take Note of the Materials Used for outdoor and Indoor Signs
Signs installed outdoors must be able to withstand harsh weather conditions and prolonged exposure to sunlight. This means signs should be made from durable materials, such as acrylic, stone, aluminum, and vinyl.
Signs indoors do not have to withstand weather, but they must still be fit for the daily wear and tear of a commercial space. This means resisting staining from cleaning products and discolouring under artificial lighting. Common materials for indoor use are wood, metal, acrylic, vinyl, and fabric.
They Have Different Accessibility Roles
While both indoor and outdoor signs play a role in the accessibility of your business, the guidelines for these signs are distinctly different.
Signs outside are often used to begin the customer experience on the right foot, such as displaying accessible parking spaces or wheelchair-accessible entrances and paths. However, these signs are not mandatory for businesses to display.
On the other hand, indoor signage is required by law and must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines. This ensures your business is a safe and comfortable environment for everyone, regardless of ability.
Outdoor vs. Indoor Signs? You Need Both
An effective signage and marketing strategy is not complete without both indoor and outdoor signs. As they both serve very different purposes, they help your business maximize sales opportunities and improve customer experiences in a multitude of ways.
If you’re not sure which ones you need, we’re here to help. Book a free consultation and start preparing a custom sign package with a signage expert.