How to Choose Outdoor Business Signs in Ottawa, ON for Your Brick and Mortar Store

Things can get exciting when you’re about to open up your first location-based business. But where are you going to display your business signage? Can you put signs anywhere? Let’s start by looking at how to choose outdoor business signs in Ottawa, ON for your brick and mortar business.

Find out zoning codes and regulations

Even though you may own the business building, it’s likely your county, city or town has zoning laws in place. What this means is that your local government has made rules geared toward business buildings such as, in your case, specific zoning restrictions for signage display. Depending on things like your store’s location and type of business, there may be limitations on sign size, or certain types of signs could be prohibited altogether. Your city may also have a cap set on how much and what types of information about your business can be printed on outdoor signs.

Often times, a city may publish information online related to the types of allowed signage. Check your city’s website for photo samples of appropriate signage, but to be sure, it’s best to receive verbal and written confirmation. Steer clear of potential city fines, wasted effort and poorly invested sign money by setting aside a day to go into your local city planner’s office to get important information.

Know how to make signs work for your location

Before you invest time and money into creating business signage, you need to do a little investigating. Take a walk around the neighborhood or commercial district in which your business storefront is located and note what types of sign materials are being used, how signs are designed (colors, styles, fonts) and where signs have been placed on other businesses. And while you don’t have to conform 100 percent to surrounding businesses, it might be a good idea to follow a similar pattern.

Another thing to consider is your building’s design, so you are not installing a sign where it cannot be seen from all angles, like high enough to be visible to cars and low for pedestrians, or signs that are too big and block out your windows. If zoning laws allow them, can your business benefit from light-up signs? Even if you are not open in the evening, lighting offers a good source of nighttime advertising.

Simple, easy-to-read signs are best

For efficient, standout signage that passersby and customers will remember, hang signs that are clean and simple in design and have an easy-to-read font. Don’t cram a bunch of information onto your signs—this not only turns people away, but it also doesn’t give them much reason to come into your shop for more information or to browse merchandise. Stay away from huge signs that block your entrance or windows, especially if you have inventory displayed. Moreover, it’s suggested you simply stick with your business name and a mention of offered services or products for signage.

At Plastics and Signs of Ottawa, we are here to help you with custom signage and designs for indoor and outdoor use. Give us a call today and let us know what you are looking for in your business signs in Ottawa, ON.

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