Business Signs | Legibility is Critical to Sign Effectiveness


There is an old saying that goes “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”  Well there is a saying in the sign business that goes something like this “If a sign is not legible, is it really a sign?”  The sign below is a perfect example of this.  I dare you to tell me what this sign says. 

There are a couple of issues with this sign.  First the ratio between the depth of the letter and the height is off.  Channel letters need at least 3” for the internal illumination.  Due to the depth the letter height needs to be proportional or the lettering will turn out blocky.  Nature is another reason this sign does not work.  Due to the direct sunlight the shadows cast by the letters do not allow the letters to have outlines.  Essentially the shadows are acting like camouflage, successful signs have to be legible. 

There are a few ways to avoid something like this happening to your sign.  The sign above would be visible if the store went with flush mounted lettering.  With the awning below the lettering could be illuminated with up-lighting.  The building’s façade does not help the sign either.  While there is good contrast, the rough surface can be distracting.  If the lettering were mounted to a white backer panel the letters would have the necessary outlines to be visible. 

While this was not the intention of the sign maker to make an illegible sign, it does happen.

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