10 Tips for Designing a Yard Sign

10 Tips For Designing Yard Signs

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Looking to create a yard sign for your business but are stuck on how to make it the best possible? Below we've outlined a handful, 10 exactly, of ideas to keep in mind when designing your yard sign. While creating the best yard sign is critical to any successful yard sign marketing campaign, there are plenty of other thoughts that you should consider, but don't fear - we have you covered! Give our other blog post, Yard Signs Can Work For You, a read!

1. Single Sided = Double the Results

Yard signs, especially smaller ones, can very rarely be placed in a way that both sides are facing targeted traffic. If you are targeting an intersection with a 12" x 18" sign, only the traffic in the lane you are next to will be able to see your 4" lettering (4" lettering is only readable from 40' or less). Generally, you can save about 25% by using a single sided sign. This means that for every 10 double sided signs you buy, you can buy 12-14 single sided signs.


2. Prominent Colors

You would think this is a no brainer, but I can’t tell you how many times I have seen black and blue or orange and yellow signs along the side of the road. "What was the message?" I have no idea. Use one very dark color and one very light color. Use black, red, blue or brown on a white background. Use yellow on a black background. Use white on a blue, green or red background. Remember - CONTRAST YOUR COLORS.

Also, keep in mind that many people are color blind. Avoid similar colors like blue and green or yellow and green.


3. Simple, Simple, Simple

The most effective signs have one, maybe two, lines of messaging and a CTA (Call To Action), such as a phone number or an arrow. Don’t say too much, the traffic will not read more than two lines of text. If you absolutely cannot say what you do in five words or less, do something else.

If you need to put an address on your yard sign, it is only effective if you can put a major intersection, like Corner of West & Main, or Go North on Center.

Include the area code in your phone number only if your city has more than one area code. Look at your final design a handful of times and continuously ask yourself if there are ways to make the message even simpler.


4. Use Arrows

If you are advertising a location, i.e. a garage sale, open house, store closing sale use arrows NOT THE ADDRESS. People don’t want to think about how to get there. Get a simple sign and use arrows. You’re safe with arrows as long as both arrows point towards the same edge of the sign. This will allow you to choose the direction of your arrow when you are placing your signs by just flipping it around.



5. Refrain From Using Your Logo

Do not use yard signs for a NEW branding campaign. Yard signs are for someone who is not brand loyal (yet). Tell them what you do and how to get a hold of you, that’s all you need!

It’s not that your logo is a bad thing to add to marketing materials; it’s just that with a yard sign, your real estate on the face is very limited. A logo that does not help the message is a waste of time.


6. Use One Color As Two

If you have a black and white sign, make the message black, and the phone number white against a black block. This is still one color, but reads like two and helps your number break away.

7. Stick To Simple, Specific Messages

If you have a full-service auto body shop, it’s probably best if you advertise a specific service on your sign. For example, if you want to push your tune up and regular maintenance business, you could say FAST OIL CHANGE – $19.99 and promote the other services when they get in the shop or even promote them on different signs.


8. Use Open Fonts

Fonts like Arial, Verdana and Sans Serif are good fonts to use because they are easily read and distinguished.


9. White Space Means Legibility

You should maintain at least 30-40% white space on your signs. The more white space, without wasting space, the better. Without a decent amount of white space, your sign will become very difficult to read, especially at high speeds.


10. The Bigger The Better

Larger letters mean visibility from a greater distance. Use this chart as a rule of thumb. As you can see, a yard sign is not a practical way to target traffic moving much faster than 30 miles per hour.

Speed Of TrafficRecommended Letter Height (in inches)
55 mph (90 kph)16.5
50 mph (88 kph)15
45 mph (72 kph)13.5
40 mph (64 kph)12
35 mph (56 kph)10.5
30 mph (48 kph)9
25 mph (40 kph)7



Now that you've learned how to create an eye-catching yard sign, you'll need to understand how

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