Custom Business Signage

Custom A Frame Sidewalk Signs that Stand Out

Custom A Frame Sidewalk Signs that Stand Out


Shop owner setting out a black metal sidewalk sign

One of our biggest wins comes when our clients’ outdoor sidewalk signs stop foot traffic. Before starting our custom sign business online, we ran retail shops on Main Street in our hometown. So, we know firsthand how many details have to come together to create the brand you want your customers to experience. Here are a few tips for designing custom a frame sidewalk signs that look completely bespoke for your brand.

Choose the right materials for your sidewalk signage

In the same way that you communicate your brand values through colors and fonts, you can use physical materials in your space to entice customers to step inside your shop.  Instead of adding to the row of scuffed up plastic signs on the street, consider choosing a wooden or metal a frame sidewalk sign. By choosing an aesthetically pleasing and sustainable material, you’re using your custom a frame sidewalk signs to show customers that you’re intentional with your business choices.

Wooden signs are a great option for locations without much precipitation, and for shops that can easily bring their sidewalk sign inside if the weather turns bad. While most wooden sidewalk signs are finished with an exterior grade material, they will still expand and contract as the temperature and humidity fluctuates. Ideally, wooden sidewalk signs are used for indoor walkways.

Metal can be a beautiful and durable material for outdoor sidewalk signs. Make sure your sign is made using exterior-grade materials, such as acrylic (recycled options are out there!) and vinyl. 

The material you choose should be both practical for your location and visually appealing to your brand. A good sign company will consider both of these when talking through customizing a sidewalk sign for your business.

Stick to your brand identity on sidewalk business signs

You’ve probably invested deeply into a brand identity – whether you built it yourself or hired a designer. All business owners know the power of their brand’s style when it comes to marketing. A lot of the time, your business’ sidewalk sign is a customer’s first impression of your brand – it should showcase the fonts, colors, and graphics that you’ve invested in!

Make sure to send your brand’s style guide, or at least some jotted notes about the style, for your sign designer to reference. (There are tons of free style sheets available out there if you need one – Canva has an entire. gallery, and Pitch has a template with a handy walk through.)

Keep in mind that you’re bringing these design choices into three dimensions – so some lines may be too thin to cut out or fonts may be too elaborate for quick readability. Be open to adapting your style for the practical needs of the sign, but don’t abandon your brand either.

Remember: Outdoor sidewalk signs aren’t the place to say everything about your business

You’ve heard the saying “If everything’s bold, then nothing is bold.” Same goes for information on your sign – if everything about your business is highlighted, then nothing is highlighted. One of the most common mistakes we see is business owners trying to put too much information on their custom a frame sign.

When you’re deciding what your sign should say, keep in mind who’ll be seeing it and what you want their next action to be. Sometimes, your clients need to know that a businesses located upstairs. Other times, you’re trying to intrigue foot traffic in what your business is selling. Think in terms of categories, brand personality, and directions when you’re writing out your sign.

Don’t be afraid to be yourself! Sometimes, playing it safe is disappointing. For a cheeky women’s clothing brand, a sign that says “Get in here, hottie” might draw in more traffic – and say more about your brand – than “We are Open” would.

Use mockup tools to make sure your custom sign design stands out

No need to design in a vacuum. Look around at your neighbor’s signs, and think about how you want to fit in or stand out compared to them. Snap a photo of your storefront, and use an online design tool like Canva to place your sign design on the image – you’ll get a better feel for how the colors, materials, and message on your sidewalk sign will look in real life. 

Not sure about mocking it up yourself? Send us your image and sign information, and our in-house designers will get a mockup sent back your way within one business day – for free.

Reading next

How to import our design template to Canva