We’ve all been lost before. Whether you’re trying to find an event venue, shop, business establishment, gate for your connecting flight, or new friend’s home, making a wrong turn or driving past can be a frustrating experience. Wayfinding signage can solve most of these problems. The Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD) defines wayfinding as information systems that guide people through a physical environment in a way that enhances their understanding and experience of the space. The more complex your space, the more need for wayfinding to get people from here to there in the least complicated way possible. Directional signage is the primary tool for wayfinding solutions. It let’s people know where they are and from there how to get where they’re going.
Directional signage has the power to move people from stranger to promoter. Here’s how:
Signage moves people from stranger to visitor.
To get customers, people need to know you exist. A FedEx study called, “What’s Your Sign” reported that 76% of American consumers enter a store they never visited before based on its signs. 65% have purchased a product or service because a sign caught their eye. And 3 out of 4 consumers reported that they have told someone about a store based simply on its signage. Another study by the University of Cincinnati surveyed business across the country and found that 60% of businesses reported a 10% increase in sales when they changed or improved the visibility of their signage.
A simple change to the placement, readability, size, or visibility of your exterior signage can have a significant impact of the number of people who come through your doors. Your signs can help you convert strangers to visitors.
Signage moves people from visitor to customer.
Once visitors are through your doors, directional signage gives them a quick lay of the land. Well-marked areas empower them to move about your space confidently at the speed they choose. In today’s marketplace, this “customer independence” is highly valued and translates to a pleasant experience. It many ways, this self-serve experience mimics the online shopping experience where customers only have to interact with the product in which they’re interested. Customers enjoy this much more than the old-school method of engaging with a salesperson the moment they walk through the door.
Direction signage can lift a burden from your staff. Directional signage allows people to move confidently through the space toward the exact area they need. This is so much better for everyone — they don’t have to interrupt someone to ask where to find something. Customers know where to find the restrooms, various departments, exits, and services. This ease of navigation provides less stress for the customer, improves staff productivity. It also gets customers, clients, or patients through the sales or service process more efficiently. Which means more profit!
Directional signage moves people from customer to promoter.
People return to pleasant experiences. PDX is a great airport for many reasons, but one of those is ease of navigation to its many amenities — and the world talks about it. When people enjoy something, they tell others all about it. (And when they don’t, they share that, too.) If you make the customer experience both to your store and in your store one to rave about by making it easy to find things and enjoy all you offer, you’ll grow your customer base exponentially as word of mouth grows.
If you’re looking to grow your profit margin, take a moment to put yourself in a stranger’s shoes:
- Do they know your business exists?
- Can they find your business easily?
- Do they know where to park?
- Do they know where to enter?
- Can they find what they need once they’re inside?
- Is it easy to checkout and exit the building?
Most likely, you can improve at least one of these areas. Make your directional signage more visible, and you’ll most likely see an increase in customer satisfaction.