Whether you’ve just noticed that your building sign is getting older and outdated, or your business has moved locations and needs a completely new sign to proudly showcase your business name – you want to make sure that you choose the right signage company to tackle your job. Small business owners typically don’t have a lot of extra time on their hands to spend working with a vendor who isn’t responsive or doesn’t meet their specific needs the first time around. For this reason, it’s important to choose a reputable and capable sign company to tackle your signage project. Here are a few important points to consider when selecting a sign company to work with:

1.) Reputation

When you’re researching sign companies, be sure to take a look at their past work and the types of customers they work with. Are their customers similar to yours? Are they big names that you recognize?  The types and status of clients a company has worked with says a lot about the quality of work they do and their reputation overall. You might be able to find a gallery or similar section on a sign company’s website to see examples of their work. You should also be sure to check out platforms like Google, Nextdoor and Facebook for customer ratings and photos of past work.

2.) Customer Service

One of the first things you want to evaluate when working with a sign company, or any vendor for that matter, is their customer service. Do they respond to your original request in a timely manner? Is the staff friendly when you call to ask questions? Do they seem genuinely concerned with your wants and needs? While it can be somewhat difficult to truly gauge customer service before you actually become a customer, paying attention to these little nuances might give you a sense of what it would be like to be their customer. And again, taking the time to check out their reputation and what past clients have to say might help answer your questions about their level of service.

3.) Capabilities (Including Design Services) 

A one-stop sign company that has all the capabilities you are looking for eliminates the need to work with multiple contractors. Working with a single company speeds up the process for everyone. We suggest you do some online research to learn about a sign company’s capabilities and the breadth of their offerings. This can be as simple as looking at their previous work or giving them a call to talk about your project details. Some capabilities to consider include installation and removal of signs (height and weight limits), electrical work, digital printing, routing and painting and more. Asking specifically about graphic design services is a good idea as well. If you have a less than perfect logo or have been considering updating it, working with a sign company with an in-house graphic design artist can help simplify your process and cut down on the number of vendors you need to work with. If your logo is not the correct format or quality, they will often need to edit the file so that it can be used in the sign manufacturing process. This will produce a higher quality sign and you’ll end up with a professional-grade logo that can be repurposed for other marketing efforts. (Just be sure to ask that they will give you the final logo files.) At the end of the day, finding a one-stop sign company will save you time and money.

4.) Permit Process 

In the process of getting a new exterior sign for your small business, one of the very first things that needs to be addressed is the permitting process. Typically there are restrictions specific to each state and sometimes even local municipalities regarding sign size, lighting and message displays. Sign companies will usually not begin production or even design and proof work if the sign has not yet been approved by your local area. Acquiring a permit for your sign can be a confusing and sometimes tedious process – usually not a hassle that a business owner has time to deal with. When you’re exploring sign companies to work with, it’s a good idea to ask if they will handle the permit process for you. Given that they are the industry experts, they can more easily communicate directly with your town on the requirements and specifications of your sign. While you can expect a small fee for this service, most business owners find that it’s worth the investment to save them the headache.

5.) Multiple Quotes

This final tip is one of the most important, and often overlooked! You want to be sure to get at least a couple of quotes from quality companies for your sign job. Going to one company for a quote is a viable option once you’ve established a relationship with them and trust them to give you a fair price. When working with new companies, or if this is your first time having a sign made, you want to shop your idea around to find the best price and the best company to suit your needs. Not only will this potentially save you money, but you also get a glimpse into the customer service aspect of each company, giving you more information to make the right decision.

There is a lot to consider when choosing a sign company for your job. If you use these 5 tips to help you find the right sign company to work with, hopefully it’s the first and last time you need to do this work! Once you establish a relationship with a sign company you like, the process is much faster, easier and stress-free for future projects.

Art Parts Signs can help with all of your signage needs. Let our industry experts answer your questions and help guide you on your next signage project.

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