The Realtor’s Guide to Custom SignageJANUARY 9, 2020| SpeedPro
How people search and buy houses has evolved over the years. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), across all age groups, 44% of home buyers started their housing search online in 2019. Nearly all buyers (98%) said that they used the internet frequently as part of their home search.
While the house hunting and buying process might have gone digital, real estate is still very much a brick-and-mortar, in-person industry. For that reason, physical open house and for sale signs still play a big part in the search process. About 46% of buyers of all ages used yard signs to get information about a house at some point in their search.
Custom real estate signs can grab the attention of potential buyers who might be driving or walking by one of your properties. Learn more about the benefits of using custom business graphics and signs and how SpeedPro can help you connect with potential buyers or sellers.
When to Use Real Estate Signs
There are many times when using a real estate sign is the right choice:
- To advertise a new development: Let buyers see what the new development has to offer by setting up post and panel signs. The signs can include computer renderings of the new construction as well as floor plans and other details.
- To advertise an open house: Help people find their way to your next open house by setting a-frame signs on the corner of a block. You can also use a yard sign for advertising the open house at the property.
- To advertise a property for rent: A yard sign or colonial post can help get the word out about an available rental property. If you’re the rental agent for a multi-family building or apartment complex, banners or flags can be another way to advertise available apartments.
- To advertise a property for sale: A sign hanging in front of a property lets people know it’s on the market. A banner can announce the sale of a commercial building or complex.
- To generate leads: Signs should include the listing agent’s details so that potential buyers can reach out, even if they aren’t interested in a particular property.
Benefits of Using Custom Real Estate Signs
Although it might seem as if most real estate marketing takes place online these days, signs still play a significant role in attracting buyers to a property. NAR also reported that about 7% of buyers ended up purchasing a home, thanks to a sign they spotted. Along with helping get your property on a buyer’s radar, there are a few other benefits of using custom signs to promote your real estate listings.
- Signs get your contact information out there. A real estate sign should contain your name or the name of your company and contact information, such as an email address or phone number. When a sign has your direct contact information, it allows people who are interested in potentially buying or selling a property to reach you quickly. They won’t have to go online or have to dig through the details on a listing site to find out how to contact you.
- Signs help with word of mouth. In the U.S., about 50% of people say that word of mouth is their preferred source of information. When you put a sign up on a property, you can tap into the benefits of word of mouth. Neighbors who might not be interested in buying or selling might know people who are interested in a sale or purchase. Those neighbors can tell their friends and family about you and your sign, potentially getting you a few new clients.
- Signs are reusable. Although many marketing materials are single-use and are quickly tossed away, signs can have a long lifespan. As long as your business information and contact details remain the same, you can use your open house or available signs again and again.
- Signs are relatively inexpensive. One of the terrific things about real estate marketing is that it’s relatively affordable. Custom business graphics and signs are a good example, as they tend to be cost-effective and easy on the wallet. Since you can reuse the signs over and over, their cost-per-use also tends to be on the low side.
- Signs are easy to install. For that most part, it’s not difficult to install or hang up real estate signs. Often, you can put up the signage by pushing stakes or poles into the soil. You can hang other types of signs, such as banners, from the facade of a building.
- Signs give you lots of options. Although you might think of yard signs or colonial posts when you think of for sale signs, there are many other styles and types available. You can create a custom size and shape of sign to help it stand out from the rest or go with a classic style if that works better with your branding.
Are There Drawbacks to Using Custom Real Estate Signs?
While there aren’t necessarily drawbacks to using signs to advertise properties for sale, there are a few things to consider before you install a sign up on a seller’s property. If you’re selling a house, one thing to keep in mind is that some homeowner’s associations (HOAs) might have rules governing or restricting the use of real estate signs. Before you put up a for sale sign, double-check that the HOA will approve you doing so.
Another thing to consider is the seller’s thoughts and feelings about using a sign to advertise that the property is available. In the case of higher-end listings, a seller might be hesitant to put a sign on their property. They might want to keep the details of the sale discrete or limit who can know that they are trying to sell their home or prestige commercial property. With high-end properties, a sense of exclusivity is key to getting the best offer. If that’s the case, a seller might ask you not to use signs or other visible methods of advertising.
Finally, there’s the safety of the seller or property owner to consider when using real estate signs. If you use signs for advertising your listings, make sure you communicate with your sellers when buyers and other real estate agents will be viewing the property. Some people lack boundaries and might decide to approach a homeowner or tenants directly if they see a for sale sign on the property. Remind your residential clients not to let anyone in the house if they don’t have an agent or if the appointment wasn’t scheduled in advance.
If you use signs for advertising open houses, it’s a good idea to make sure that you or a member of your team is at the property during the open house. Keep an eye on anyone who drops in. It’s also a good idea to ask your residential clients to hide away any personal information or personal decorations before they show their homes to potential buyers or during open houses.
Types of Real Estate Signs
Real estate signs come in several forms. The type of signs that will work best for you depends on what you’re trying to sell or rent and how far along the development is. Some common examples of real estate signs include:
- Yard signs: Yard signs are typically made of durable, weather-resistant materials such as vinyl. Often, a yard sign is pushed into the soil in the yard in front of a property to attract the attention of pedestrians or drivers passing by. Yard signs usually have information about the real estate company selling the home printed on them. If there’s something unique or particularly appealing about a property, the sign might have a rider attached to it that highlights the unique feature. For example, a sign might point out that a property has as a pool, a garden or parking.
- Yard posts: A yard post is similar to a yard sign. The significant difference is the shape of the mounting hardware. A yard post will typically hang from an upside-down “L” shaped post, called a colonial post. Often, the signs attached to yard posts are larger and thicker than standard yard signs.
- A-frame signs: An a-frame sign is one of the most portable options for a real estate agent to use a-frame signs fold flat, then open up so that they can be set up on a variety of surfaces. A-frame signs are ideal to use to advertise an open house and to help people find their way to an open house from the end of the block.
- Post and panel signs: If you are trying to sell or rent a multi-family property, a commercial property or a property that is still under construction, you might use post and panel signs to do the job. Post and panel signs typically feature a large sign sandwiched between two posts. In some cases, a series of posts and panels can be used to create a square or triangular shape. Depending on the location of the post and panel sign, the panel itself might be printed on one or both sides.
- Banners: Banners can be a great way to let people know about an upcoming development at a property or to advertise condos for sale or apartments for rent. Vinyl banners are weather-resistant and have a long lifespan.
Real Estate Sign Best Practices
A real estate sign should be easy-to-read and give the reader all the information they need to reach out to you about a property or your services in general. When you’re designing signs to use, here are a few best practices to keep in mind:
- Use high-contrast colors. Some colors work better together than others. Black text on a white background is usually easier to read compared to red text on a white background. To make your message pop, choose text that contrasts with the background.
- Use logos to increase familiarity. If you work with a well-known real estate company or if your business is famous on its own, be sure to include your logo and other types of branding somewhere on the sign. Signs with familiar words, logos and fonts are easier for people to parse and understand. You only have a few seconds to get people’s attention and keep it. A little logo will go a long way.
- Use large print. While you want to fit everything on the sign, you don’t want the text to be so small that people have to strain their eyes to see it. Remember that most people will be looking at your signs while on the move. The bigger the letters, the more visible your message. One rule of thumb to follow is to have the height of the font be five times the X-width.
- Share the most relevant information. Making sure the sign’s text is big enough can mean leaving out some details. That’s fine, as a yard sign or post and panel sign doesn’t need to give a potential buyer all the details. Instead, share what’s most important, like your name and contact information, a special feature of the property and whether it’s for sale or lease.
How to Make Your for Sale and Open House Signs Stand Out
Along with following signage best practices, you can do a few things to make your custom graphics and signs stand out from the crowd.
- Choose a unique shape. Who says real estate signs need to be square? One way to make your signage stand out is to choose a contour cut or custom shape. Your signs can be a circle, a triangle or another geometric shape. If you specialize in homes with a particular aesthetic, choose a shape that complements that aesthetic to get your brand message on point.
- Light up your sign. Your sign might be easy to see when the sun’s out, but what happens after dark? One way to make sure your sign is visible at all hours of the day and night is to attach a light to it. Point the light so that it illuminates the most critical information. If you’re feeling extra technological, you can try using digital signage to promote your properties.
- Use technology. Since the information you can share on a sign is somewhat limited, you might want to embrace technology, both to get your message out there and to engage with anyone who sees your sign. If your sign is in an area with a lot of foot traffic, include a scannable QR code on it. When people scan the code with their smartphones, a video or photo tour of the property will open. You can also include a special phone number for people to call or text to get the “bio” of the property. When people call or text the number, you’ll get their information, meaning more leads for you.
Work With SpeedPro to Create Custom Real Estate Signs
Whether you want to create signs to advertise properties for sale, rent or soon-to-come, SpeedPro can help. Our experienced team members can work with you to produce real estate signs that follow design best practices and that stand out from the crowd. To learn more, find the SpeedPro studio nearest you today.