Signage plays a part at every event you will ever attend in your life – from directional signage to guide you around the event, to exhibition signage and even exit signs.

It may seem a very basic tool but if done wrong, the entire attendee experience is at risk. These signs that help your audience find exactly what they are looking for, can cause disruption to the entire affair.

Signs are a visual communication tool and do not usually need to be pointed out. They can provide audiences with safety instructions or even make them aware of certain brands.

» Event Signage: Why is it needed?

Why is signage important at events? Well, try and picture an event you have been to and see if you can remember it not having a single sign; it just would not happen. After all, some signs can be that subtle

 – you would not even think twice, like a toilet sign for example (Fig 1.),

Toilet Signage - Airport
Fig 1. Airport Toilet Signage

 – or they can be extremely hard to miss like wayfinding signage because you need it to find your way around the event (Fig 2.)

Event Signage - Wayfinding Signage
Fig 2. Wayfinding Signage

For health and safety reasons every event must have their fire exits clearly signposted. The same applies to entrances and directions. Especially if there is a one-way system in place and you must follow the directions to enter and exit the premises.

Signage helps you to communicate and convey information to staff and visitors. At events, signage is usually branded or sponsored and will be used not only as helpful guides but also to raise awareness for brands attending.

» How Do They Work?

Signage and visual communications both work in similar ways – they need to stand out to the human eye. Using the right colours and graphics can help with this.

For example,

by using the red colour, you associate it with danger or a warning 

No Entry Sign
Fig 3. No Entry Signage

by using the green colour, you associate with ‘go’ or safety.

Fire Exit Signage
Fig 4. Fire Exit Signage

Therefore, you may want to have green fire exits and red no-entry signs.

Typically, you will require signage in certain areas at events/exhibitions such as entrances, stands, stages, smoking areas, registration areas, information points, food and drink stands, entrances and exits (both regular and emergency) and queues.

10 Best Solutions For You:

1. Floor Graphics:

Self-adhesive vinyl floor graphics have a non-slip grain-textured finish in compliance with UK safety regulations. They can come in all shapes, sizes or colours – you name it. Floor graphics can be used to create brand awareness or directional signage.

A good example of being used in this way is at the furniture retail giants ‘IKEA’, they use floor graphics to direct customers around the store, so you do not get lost.

Ikea - Wayfinding Signage - Floor Graphics
Fig 4. IKEA Floor Graphics

During the Covid-19 pandemic, floor graphics were used, successfully, to ensure staff and visitor safety when businesses re-opened their doors.

2. Digital Screens:

We always integrate free-standing touch and non-touch screens, and kiosks at exhibitions we attend; from exhibitions to charity fundraisers.

Digital signage can be used as an effective advertising and promotional tool as it has been proven to increase the average purchase amount by 29.5% according to ScreenCloud.

These technologies can be used to inform, educate, entertain, and communicate and with it being so diverse, it is one of our most popular signage solutions.

URBAN CHEF: Digital screens were used as menu boards. They are eye-catching, easy to update and has proven to increase interactivity and generate higher Return-On-Investment.

SME LIVE EXPO: Our digital screens were used throughout the venue to inform attendees about the different seminars and speakers.

STOKE-ON-TRENT REPERTORY THEATRE: Several indoor and outdoor free-standing non-touch dual-screens were used to advertise the shows playing in the theatre. The outdoor digital signage enabled the theatre to increase its visibility as well as create a unique look in comparison to other theatres.

3. Banners & Roller Banners:

Are the most cost-effective signs at any event. Audiences tend to read the information on them. They often decide whether they will have a conversation with you, based on the information that they read on your banners.

If you design and look after them carefully, you could potentially use them for a longer time.

Roller banners are one of the most popular and effective communication tools available. They are retractable, compact, and very easy to use. You can simply pull the banner out of the base unit to reveal your custom-printed graphics.

Due to the high number of companies using roller banners, standing out at an event can be difficult.

A creative design with bold colours will help you attract more people. Integration of a digital screen in a stand with roller banners has proven to generate higher interest, too.

You must remember that if your design includes many words, your chances of attracting ‘cold leads’ at expos will decrease.

Directional and wayfinding signage are two very similar things but are used in different settings.

4. Directional Signage:

Directional signage is usually used externally, for example, in the car park

NHS South Staffs - Car Parking Signs  Hardy Signs
Fig 5. – NHS Car Parking Signage

This is an important solution that helps attendees find their way around or inform about designated parking areas.

5. Wayfinding Signage:

This is used internally to direct people to the designated areas and sometimes (depending on how many are in attendance) to get them to follow a one-way system. Clear design helps visitors find their way around and avoids confusion.

6. Flags:

Flags can be used both indoor and outdoor and are an eye-catching solution that enables you to display messages or raise brand awareness.

Motion attracts attention. According to The Dynapac Rotating Co.  ‘’ movement in a person’s peripheral vision can trigger a shift in visual attention. How fast that attention shifts toward a moving object depends on how animated the viewer perceives the object to be.”

7. Backwalls:

Backwalls provide a simple way to create stunning backdrops, exhibition stands and displays. These are often a flat structure that covers the back of a stand – leaving three sides open to the public.

At the exhibitions that we attend, we use illuminated backwalls to increase the visibility of our stand and draw more visitors. They make your stand feel and look bigger.

8. Literature Holders:

Displaying your brochures encourages your visitor to stop by, view and take them away. Placing them at the edge of your stand will capture a potential customers eye as they walk past. Literature holders are a re-usable option and give visitors easy access to brands’ brochure. They can also be a more permanent option in offices, reception areas and public buildings to display different pamphlets and other useful information.

9. Health & Safety:

This signage is mandatory at any event to ensure that everyone is safe. Event organisers usually inform the attendees about the health and safety regulations at the beginning or before the day of the event. This just makes everybody aware and so they know what to look for if something does happen.

First aid, fire exits, emergency arrangements and site hazards must all be signposted. This would ensure that staff and attendees are all aware of potential dangers if anything is to go wrong.

10. Hand Sanitiser Stations:

These solutions are perfect for any event. They can be both automatic and manual stations and can hold both gel and liquid.

Hardy Signs Hand Sanitiser
Fig 6. – Hand Sanitiser


They ensure your visitors and colleagues health and safety. You could place several manuals and automatic stations across the exhibition floor, to maintain cleanliness.

For example, the entrance where you sign in is the perfect place and keeps viruses and bacteria from spreading if and when visitors, attendees or staff walk around, shake hands or exchange business cards.

A sign can be placed over the hand sanitising station or be mounted on a wall to increase visibility.

» Case Studies:

» Conclusion:

Signage for events is important in every aspect. From the health and safety implications discussed above to the overall experience and event journey. Signage significantly helps to attract audiences in all areas of a given event.

Exhibitors and organisers often invest heavily in their events and they are integral in their marketing strategy. Return on investment and the success of an event is, of course, crucial.

Without signage, be it essential or cosmetic, events would not run as smoothly as they might.

With more than 25 years’ experience in designing, manufacturing and installing a complete range of signage, Hardy Signs has established itself as a market leader and preferred supplier for all kinds of events and for a wide range of customers across the UK.

Take a look at our Display Solutions brochure – in the footer of the website – to find out more!


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