FedEx survey points to power of signage for small business

By David Ward, San Diego, Thursday 17 May 2012

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Following a recent large investment in large-format equipment, FedEx Office has commissioned and released a new survey finding the true power of signage in driving small business.

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The "What’s Your Sign" survey, done for FedEx by Ketchum Global Research & Analytics and  ORC International, found more than 75% of Americans have visited a store for the first time based solely on its signage and that nearly 70% have made purchases solely because a sign caught their eye.

The survey also found that 68% of US consumers believe a store’s signage is reflective of the quality of its products or services, and that more than half are less willing to enter a store with misspelled or poorly-made signs. On average, the survey of 1,000 Americans, also found that a small business should have two or three signs around its storefront.

In a PrintWeek interview, FedEx Office Marketing VP Randy Scarborough suggested the survey results, though interesting weren’t necessarily surprising to the company, adding: "We’ve been in the sign and banner and graphic business for some time. What’s new is the significant investment we’ve made in our infrastructure to serve small business customers."

FedEx Office recently installed large-format and grand-format printing equipment, including Agfa Graphics' Jeti 3020 Titan inkjet printers and Zund G3 M-2500 digital table cutters.

"We do strategically place this new equipment through our network and we also have a series of post-production centers," Scarborough said.

"Most of the new large format equipment is in the post-production centers. But because we leverage the network, a job request for a sign could be submitted in one city and the need for the sign is actually across the country."

There is some indication that US small businesses are boosting their marketing spends, including signage, Scarborough said, adding: "We are very optimistic about the small business segment and overall we are seeing business continuing to be strong just as the commitment we make to small business owners continues to be strong."

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