{% set baseFontFamily = "Open Sans" %} /* Add the font family you wish to use. You may need to import it above. */

{% set headerFontFamily = "Open Sans" %} /* This affects only headers on the site. Add the font family you wish to use. You may need to import it above. */

{% set textColor = "#565656" %} /* This sets the universal color of dark text on the site */

{% set pageCenter = "1100px" %} /* This sets the width of the website */

{% set headerType = "fixed" %} /* To make this a fixed header, change the value to "fixed" - otherwise, set it to "static" */

{% set lightGreyColor = "#f7f7f7" %} /* This affects all grey background sections */

{% set baseFontWeight = "normal" %} /* More than likely, you will use one of these values (higher = bolder): 300, 400, 700, 900 */

{% set headerFontWeight = "normal" %} /* For Headers; More than likely, you will use one of these values (higher = bolder): 300, 400, 700, 900 */

{% set buttonRadius = '40px' %} /* "0" for square edges, "10px" for rounded edges, "40px" for pill shape; This will change all buttons */

After you have updated your stylesheet, make sure you turn this module off

How to Get a Building Sign for Your New Business in 7 Easy Steps

by Deborah Scott on April 7, 2015
RainMaker-Signs-Illuminated-Building-Sign-Alderwood-Mall-Lynnwood-WAIf you've never purchased a custom building sign before or it is an infrequent purchase, the following 7 steps should serve as a useful guide through the process.  For many franchisees or new business owners, this may be a one time purchase, so seek out a sign company with friendly, helpful and responsive service who will work with you throughout the process from beginning to end.  Below are the 7 easy steps you should following to get your new sign up before your doors open.

Step 1:  Understand Your Local Sign Codes and Lease Agreement

Review your local sign code to make sure the signs you want will be in compliance with local regulations.  Local regulations will often have restrictions on the size of signs based a percentage of the linear feet of the building front, or facade.  There may also be restrictions on illumination. and in some cases even color.  The vast majority of municipal sign codes can be found online.  Your sign company will verify your findings.  Be aware that codes can also very by neighborhoods or zones within a city.  Your local sign company will be familiar with your local code and can help decipher the code for you. 
Your lease agreement and/or property manager will also provide essential guidance on the type and size of sign you are allowed to install.  It is essential that you include your property manager often and early in your process.  By not including them in your process, you risk investing in a sign for your business that you are not allowed to install on your building.  They are one of your partners in this process since both you and your property manager have a vested interest in ensuring the property looks good and that your business thrives.

Step 2:  Identify the Best Size and Type of Sign

Based on your findings in Step 1, the size and type of sign may already be determined for you.  In some cases, you may still have lots of options.  If you have options, the best size and type of sign for your business will be one that:
a) Complies with city and property requirements
b) Is large enough to work to effectively support your business 
c) Works within your budget 
(see our upcoming post of types of building signs or visit our site page)

Step 3:  Request a Quote from your Sign Company

Now that you have more specific information about the sign you are looking for, you will be able to get a quote for your new sign.  Your sign company may schedule a site survey and request additional information about power source locations for illuminated signs.  Their quote should address sign type, size, installation and equipment requirements, access and permitting fees. Be sure your quote also includes an image of your building with a box or logo that displays the relative size your sign will be in proportion to the building face.  If any of these items are missing from your quote, ask your sign company for clarification.  

Step 4:  Review and Approve Design Proofs

Once the quote is approved your sign company will officially open your project and prepare detailed designs/drawings.  The design will be provided to you in the form of an electronic proof for your approval and the technical drawing will be provided as part of your permit application.  Note that the application should not be submitted to the city until you have approved the sign size, type and design.

Step 5:  Apply for your Sign Permit

A sign permit is ultimately the responsibility of the business owner.  This gives you a choice.  You can either prepare and submit your sign permit application yourself or have your sign company manage the permitting process for you.  Each city has a their own fee schedule that varies by type of sign.  You can easily search online to find the sign permit fee schedule for your city.  If your sign company is handling the permitting process, they will charge you a fee for preparing the technical drawing and managing the application process.   
Note that production of the sign typically does not begin until after the permit has been approved.  This protects you from spending unnecessary resources if the city does not approve your application.

Step 6:  Begin Sign Fabrication Once the Permit is Approved

The time required to fabricate a new sign varies by type of sign.  At the quote stage your sign company should provide you with an estimate of how long it will take to fabricate and install the sign once the permit is approved.  

Step 7:  Schedule Installation

As your sign production nears completion your sign company will contact you to schedule the installation of your new sign.  If there has been any change in access or new  or removed obstructions to the sign site, notify your sign company as soon as possible so they can schedule and manage the right equipment to access the sign installation site.  You should plan to be on site to provide access if necessary, and sign off on completed installation.  

Congratulations You're in Business!  

It's a proud moment for any business owner when you hang up your new "shingle"!  You work hard to build a meaningful business and brand and it's exciting when it is on display for all the world to see.  
It is often the case that the sign permitting process does not align as perfectly as you would like with your grand opening plans.  If you are not able to have your sign installed by your opening date, be sure to plan for temporary signage to let prospective customers and clients know about your new business.  See examples of temporary signage that companies have used while permanent signs are approved and installed here.

RainMaker Signs specializes in building signs for franchises, branches and affiliates of national retailers.  You've got an opportunity and we've got the expertise to help you maximize your advertising and visual communications.  Together we can create powerful visual impressions to grow your business.  Let us be part of your brand execution team.

Looking for a way to grab prospective customers' attention with retail store signs?  Give us a call at 855-806-SIGN (7446) or 425-861-7446 or email us at answers@rainmakersigns.com.  The RainMaker Sign Team is always happy to help you out.  Click below to request a quote.


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Topics: Outdoor Signs

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