When someone walks past your retail store and catches a glimpse of its sign, what type of impression do you want them to receive? Many businesses design signage with prestige or style in mind, all the while forgetting the value of action.

The primary goal of any retail signage is to encourage customers and prospective customers to take action, whether doing so means entering your store to browse, immediately buy a new product or simply to remember your store for later.

While many businesses prioritize other goals in their sign design, designing your retail signage for action will produce a measurable, sustainable increase in sales, revenue and popularity for your business.

Designing signs for action is remarkably simple once you’re familiar with the few elements of design that inspire action. Read on to discover four design elements to use in your signage if instant action is your goal.

Effective use of color and contrast

Color has a huge effect on the way people perceive your business. Bright colors like red, yellow and orange can inspire people to feel alert and active, encouraging them to take immediate action.

Other colors can make people feel more secure and confident. Blue, for example, is a widely used color in bank and financial services advertising because it makes people feel more reliable, trustworthy and dependable.

Using the right colors in your marketing materials, as well as the right contrasting color combinations, is a great way to make your signage stand out, send a suitable message and inspire passersby to take action and enter your retail store.

Large, highly readable typefaces

The key to inspiring people to take action is having an effective message. If you don’t have a message that engages with people and encourages them to take action, you’ll struggle to encourage them to pay attention to your business.

In order to make sure your message reaches its target audience, use a large typeface that’s easy for people to read. Typefaces that are clean, well spaced and designed for readability from a distance are the most effective choices for retail signage.

It’s generally a good idea to avoid using typefaces that are overly charismatic. These typefaces might look visually interesting, but their design can make reading them an extremely difficult task for people that are just passing by your retail store.

An engaging, relevant call to action

Color and contrast catch people’s attention. A clear and highly readable typeface lets you communicate with them and broadcast your message. An engaging and relevant call to action lets you encourage people to take action after receiving your message.

A good call to action is the key to any form of effective advertising, from signage and in-store displays to direct mail. Write a fantastic marketing message without a good call to action and you’ll get people interested but ultimately lose them.

Your call to action should be simple, engaging and relevant. Think about your goal – from encouraging people to enter your store to getting them to interact with your sales team – and make sure your call to action is written to lead to this goal.

A clear explanation of your value

Rarely will people enter your store without understanding the value that you have to offer. This value can be concrete – a certain product at a certain price – or more abstract, such as a promise to improve someone’s quality of life.

Clearly communicating your product, service or store’s value to your target market is the key to effective marketing. Within five seconds of looking at your signage, the people you’re targeting should be able to clearly identify your store’s value.

The key to clearly communicating your store’s value is designing with value in mind, right from the beginning. Understand your value proposition before you design any of your signage and you’ll naturally make it a key aspect of your retail signs.