Should a ‘Sale’ Sign always be red?

We’re fast approaching the busiest shopping season of the year, and with all the competition out there, your shop or business needs to be as eye-catching as possible. The high street will soon be full of the big red ‘Sale!’ signs that we all know and recognise. But is it worth trying to stand out from the crowd, or should you always jump on the bandwagon?

Why Are Sale Signs Red?

As we discussed in a previous blog about colour psychology, red signs attract us into shops for a reason. Research has shown that being exposed to red makes us more impulsive and less likely to think things through analytically. A big, red sign that is designed to tell us to step inside and browse the sale items is likely to work on our brains on a basic level. We will respond to it quickly, going from shop window to till without thinking too deeply about the state of our finances or whether we really want to buy anything from the shop! The same colour combination is used on ‘stop’ signs. We see the instruction and follow it by impulse, without stopping to think why.

Old Habits Die Hard

Another reason that red sale signs work is because we all know what they mean. ‘Sale signs are red’ is just a fact that anyone who has been to a high street or market just knows and accepts. A red background with white writing that isn’t a ‘sale’ or ‘stop’ sign would probably look very strange to us!

Is It Worth Going Against The Norm?

If done correctly and carefully, you could use an unusual colour to try and stand out from the crowd. The problem with going against the norm is that red is already the ideal colour for encouraging impulse buys in a sale, so choosing a colour to compete with the other businesses around you is difficult.

Consumers sometimes now associate a red sale sign as signifying cheap or substandard merchandise, which could work to your advantage if you decide to try a different route. Use an attractive colour that fits it with the branding of your business to make a sale sign that showcases the quality of your product. Don’t be discreet, however – you need clear signage such as A-boards on the pavement or a large pvc banner outside of your shop that can compete with the sea of red signs out there. You should also be clear about your offers to make your sale seem as attractive as the others – are you offering 50% off? Then you should put that in the text!

If you’ve decided to go against the status quo when it comes to sale signs and banners, then you need custom banners that can trump all those recognisable, yet unoriginal, red signs your competitors are using. Big Value Banners can help – call us on 01939 260 377 or contact us online for more information.

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