When designing a new development or property, there are plenty of aspects that need to be considered, even more so if you want to construct a place that stands out from the competition and draws in your target audience.
Using wayfinding signage is one of the main ways you can deviate from the pack and create something unique and forward-thinking. If this sounds like what your next project needs, read on to discover four important things about wayfinding signage.
1. Wayfinding is about helping people find their way.
First and foremost, nobody likes to feel lost, and the last thing you want to do is have visitors to your development or property feel irritated because they have spent too much time trying to find where they need to go. You want to make it as easy as possible for guests to find their way each time they arrive.
You do this by creating a thorough method of information that escorts guests through an environment and confirms a feeling of place for them. The best wayfinding signage will inform people about where they are and will aid them in arriving at their destination, without them even regarding what is happening.
If you don’t have a wayfinding strategy in place, you are quickly going to be met with dissatisfied patrons, criticisms, and decreased or lost business. In other words, you need to spend time devising a blueprint for fostering a harmonious visit experience.
2. However, it is also about more than just signs.
One of the biggest misconceptions regarding wayfinding — or good wayfinding — is that it is merely a tool to help people navigate themselves from point A to point B. In reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth, as wayfinding is more than just that. It is also an opportunity to generate fantastic place-based experiences.
Obviously, you want your signage to be easy to read with legible fonts and large enough lettering. Moreover, you want to include only the necessary information concisely. In fact, in all aspects of wayfinding, you want to be applying a less-is-more plan of attack.
When plotting out where your signage will be located, contemplate the course that you want your visitors to take and then actualize the signs along that specific route.
3. Wayfaring signage should be used to showcase brand identity.
The best wayfinding signage helps you to quickly communicate your brand identity as soon as someone enters your property. Whatever form of signage you choose to use (for example, color-coded, minimal, gamified, or themed), you must ensure that the signs are advertising your brand clearly.
Each element of your property must come together to symbolize a cohesive narrative that will entice your coveted audience.
4. Materials are crucial when it comes to your wayfinding strategy.
The worst thing you can do is dedicate a tiny budget to your wayfinding strategy. To provide the best experience possible, and to have your signage last a long time, you are going to want to invest in high-quality signage and posts.
Additionally, you must be prepared to maintain and repair your signage when necessary. After all, the more visitors you have (which you want), the more chances there are for your signage to run into trouble. Whether it is cars knocking the posts or the sun bleaching the signs, there are plenty of opportunities for your signs to endure a little bit of degradation.
However, by investing in quality materials and a well-thought-out system, you can reduce your chances of experiencing a major disaster when it comes to your signage.
If your business is looking to create the best experience possible for visitors, opt to work with signage and wayfinding consultants in Dubai to ensure that you get the job done right. After all, you only have one chance to make a lasting first impression.
Does your property or development use wayfinding signage? If so, what have you learned from the process? What would you tell someone who is new to the concept? If you don’t utilize this system, what is stopping you? Let us know your thoughts regarding this topic in the comments below!
Zak Zakaria is a Waymaker at dezigntechnic in Dubai who also previously worked as the company’s Graphic Designer and Art Director. Zak is a creative with work experience in multiple multinational agencies such as JWT and Saatchi & Saatchi. Signage design is a family business, making Zak’s personal experience with signage his longest professional commitment.