Illuminated vs. Non-Illuminated Storefront Signs

Illuminated vs Non-Illuminated Storefront Signs

Your storefront sign is one of your business’s most important assets and can play a significant role in your company’s ability to attract potential customers. Signs come in all different shapes, sizes, and colors. A good storefront sign should represent your brand and make your business stand out. But to illuminate or not to illuminate? That is the question.

Additionally, the impact of typography in storefront signs cannot be overstated, as it greatly influences how effectively your message is communicated and perceived by passersby, further enhancing your sign’s ability to catch the eye and convey your brand’s essence.

Both illuminated and non-illuminated signs come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages, and you’ll want to choose the right type to suit your business. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each:

Illuminated Signs

Illuminated storefront signs incorporate some form of built-in lighting, often lit by LEDs, fluorescent lights, or neon.

Pros of Illuminated Signs

  • Enhanced Visibility: The biggest advantage of illuminated storefront signs is their enhanced visibility. These signs can be seen in the evening, at night, on a cloudy day, and from a distance. Illuminated signs grab your attention and are easier to read. This is especially important if your business is open after daylight hours. Exploring different types of storefront signs, including illuminated options, can significantly impact how your business is perceived and how effectively it attracts customers, making them essential for businesses that operate during evening hours.
  • Brand Exposure: If your storefront signage is visible 24/7, naturally, it will reach more consumers. Illuminated signs can be seen outside your business’s operating hours for constant advertising.
  • Attractive Custom Design: Illuminated signs look good, no doubt about it. There are countless unique designs to choose from to suit your business’s aesthetic. A creative, attractive storefront sign will leave a lasting first impression on consumers.
  • Longevity: With proper maintenance, some LEDs have been proven to last up to 100,000 hours, giving your sign a long lifespan. This means if you have your sign lit 24/7, it could last up to 11 years!

Cons of Illuminated Signs

  • Higher Upfront Cost: The initial cost for an illuminated sign will be higher than its non-illuminated counterpart. You may need to consider your budget and evaluate the benefit of the upfront cost over time.
  • Require Maintenance: Illuminated storefront signs do require some maintenance. Weather-related wear and tear, burnt-out bulbs, and electrical issues can all occur. A poorly maintained sign can deter customers from your business, so taking care of any upkeep is important to maintain the lasting impression of storefront signs. Regular maintenance not only ensures that your sign functions properly but also maximizes the impact of storefront signs, keeping them vibrant and effective in attracting and retaining customer attention.
  • Requires Electricity: Illuminated signs require electricity. Constantly running lights can add to your energy consumption and lead to higher energy expenses. However, LED lights are incredibly energy-efficient and are a great sustainable option. Utilizing digital LED signs can significantly reduce your energy costs while maintaining bright and effective signage. This makes LED technology a smart choice for businesses looking to optimize their visibility and impact with minimal environmental footprint.

Non-Illuminated Signs

Non-illuminated storefront signs are signs that have no internal light source.

Pros of Non-Illuminated Signs

  • Affordability: Non-illuminated signs are generally more cost-effective. They are cheaper initially, require less maintenance, and require no energy usage. Understanding the psychology of storefront sign colors can greatly enhance the effectiveness of these non-illuminated signs, even without the aid of lighting. Choosing the right colors can influence customer perception and behavior, making even non-illuminated signs impactful. This understanding, combined with strategic design, maximizes the impact of typography in storefront signs, ensuring they effectively communicate your brand’s message and attract the right audience, despite the lack of illumination.
    Flexibility: Non-illuminated signs don’t need to be placed next to a power source or require wiring. They are easy to install and can be moved around. Without the constraints of interior lighting, it’s easy to customize your sign with an array of colours, fonts, shapes, and sizes.
    Simple: Simple doesn’t have to mean boring! Non-illuminated signs can effectively convey their message with a sleek, professional-looking design. Sometimes, less is more.

Cons of Non-Illuminated Signs

  • Less Visible: The absence of lighting can make non-illuminated signs more difficult to see, especially in dim lighting or at night time. This is especially true if your business isn’t in a prime location since non-illuminated signs are harder to see from a distance. If a customer doesn’t see or notice your sign, you might miss out on business opportunities. There are steps you can take with traditional signage to make your storefront more visible. Try lighting your sign with an external light, such as a spotlight, using bold, contrasting colors to draw attention, or using reflective material to enhance visibility. Additionally, incorporating digital Canada’s signage can provide vibrant, illuminated options that catch the eye even from afar. Applying vinyl lettering can also improve readability and aesthetic appeal, ensuring your message stands out effectively.
  • Weather Dependent: Non-illuminated signs are harder to see in poor weather, such as overcast, rain, or fog. These signs rely on natural lighting conditions to be visible. Living in a region with inclement weather or short daylight hours could affect your sign’s potential to attract customers effectively.

Both illuminated and non-illuminated storefront signs come with pros and cons; the right choice will depend on the specific needs of your business. Consider factors like your operating hours, budget, location, and your brand’s goals. Whichever type of sign you choose, choosing a reputable sign company in Calgary that can make your vision a reality is important. Contact us today at National Neon Signs!

About the Author

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Noah is the sales manager of National Neon Signs and is commited to supplying the best storefront and commercial signage to businesses across Canada as possible.

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