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How to choose your letter height

Signs are used to connect with and attract new clients and customers. Whenever designing your window sign, banner, or car sign you always want to make sure your target market can read what you want to tell them. The size of your letters and logos, and the colors you choose are crucial in creating a visible and easy to read sign.

The Letter Visibility Chart shows the maximum reading distance for maximum impact, and the overall readable distance. A good rule of thumb is every 1 inch of letter height equals 10 feet of readability with maximum impact. For example, 3in. tall letters have their best impact within 30 ft.; however, it can still be seen and read at up to 100 ft.

When designing your sign, consider what you will be using it for, and how far away are the readers you are wanting to impact. For example, if you are placing a sales ad inside of your retail store, your text only needs to be visible to the people in the store, so 1-2” or less would work just fine. However, if you are hanging a banner and want drivers on a nearby highway to be able to see it, you would design your letters at 3” or much larger.

Another important factor is to use contrasting colors when designing your sign. Text color with a contrasting background can increase the impact and visibility of your sign by making your text stand out more. On the other hand, using a background color that is similar to your text color can make your text almost impossible to see at any distance. Some of the most visible text colors include black, red, and white, each most visible with a contrasting background color. Readable distance can vary 10% depending on various color combinations.

The font type that you choose can also impact the visibility of your text. Very thin fonts and script fonts can potentially decrease visibility. When choosing fonts, you want a bold style font that is easy to read with sufficient spacing between letters. You can test this by typing in a few words in a computer program at different font styles, colors, and sizes, and printing them out and posting them on a wall. Stand back and view them at different distances to see how all these aspects come into play in choosing the proper lettering for your sign.

When choosing a sign, there is a lot to consider. You want the best impact on those you are trying reach. The size, colors, and styles you choose should all depend on what you want as your end result. Always consider how your sign will be viewed and who you are trying to reach. Trying to save a few dollars by purchasing smaller letters is not a wise decision; you may be wasting all your expense and efforts when the sign cannot be read by the customers you are trying to attract.

sign visibility chart

Sign Letter Visibility Chart.

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