I am doing a Garage Sale Series... this post is on signs. Signs are one the THE MOST IMPORTANT things for a successful garage sale.
If you want to read the rest of the Garage Sale series, the links will be at the bottom of this post.
Garage Sales can be such a blessing.. a lot of work, but a real blessing, whether you go to shop at the sales, or hold one of your own. Today, we are talking about having one of your own... and having signs that will draw customers to your sale. The signs are really important as they are the first thing people see about your sale, unless they saw it on Craigslist or other advertising, which we will talk about another time.
In the summer, you can see all kinds of Garage Sale signs... all shapes, sizes and colors. Some, like the one on the right, make use of other signs as a holder and tape something over the initial sign. It works... but such signs can be made more effective.
The sign on the left in the picture, is one you can buy... and it works also; however, this type of sign can be easily mistaken for a For Sale By Owner sign that is the same design... they can be hard to read until you get close enough to see... or until you can discern that there are only 2 words so it must be the garage sale sign. :)
What makes a good sign, anyway? I am sharing some things that I consider great for signs.
It is important to remember that people looking for garage sale signs will usually be driving... and may be in traffic, so they will need to see important information in your sign with only a glance. Also, they may need to change lanes to get to the side of the road needed to go to your sale. So, it is important that your sign be SEEN easily.
What needs to be seen? People need to be able to tell it is a Garage Sale... and not a house for sale... or a lost cat... or something else, so Garage Sale or Yard Sale, Sale, Rummage Sale, Tag Sale, or something needs to be prominent on the sign.
This garage sale sign is a good sign, but this picture shows how a good sign can be hard to see when driving. Is there an arrow on it? I can't tell from here. I assume from this sign that I should turn right on this road to go to the sale, but some people put a sign like this and have an arrow to turn LEFT. Not such a good idea... but if you do that, make the arrow BIG, so that people can see it.
Another sign... it has arrows and an address, the days and times open. A lot of good information and the sign is effective because the words, Garage Sale, are so big, but the rest is hard to see unless you slow way down. This can also possibly cause an accident.
This sign has big bold letters and a great arrow... this type of sign will bring in more traffic.
Placing the signs is important too.... they should be put at corners where many people will see them. They need to be put where the city says they have to be... like ours says they have to be 10' from the road. The city may have other restrictions, like how many signs or when they can be up, where, etc. It is good to check and follow the rules.
Other sign tips:
It you have more than one sign, try to make them look the same... or at least something that will tie them together.... like white with black lettering and a certain color streamer. If people are having to follow your signs to your house it will be easier if they see another one just like what they saw at first.
Taking your signs down at the end of the sale, is important... and even each day, is a good idea. Some cities won't allow them up overnight. Sometimes signs get stolen. We have had to make a lot of signs over the years... they wear out... or they get stolen and people just put their address over ours. This is why it helps to have an easy plan to make signs... they don't need to be fancy.
Use old political signs to make your own signs... take the sign off of the frame so it is opened up, then fold the front sides so they are inside and staple or tape. Now you have a white surface to paint on.... make your sign and easily push it into the ground.
Having your address on the sign is a good idea... but remember that the word, Sale, and the arrow are the most important. The address can be put inside of a big arrow, to save room.
Too much information can be distracting and be hard to read... if you have lots of baby stuff, and want to put that on the sign, that's great, but don't go into big detail... I have seen signs that say: Baby stuff, stroller, onesies, toys, rattles, diapers, johnny jump up, play mat, etc... all on one sign. It won't really help you to do that... that information is best put on your ad on Craigslist or in the paper.
Use bold colors. Writing GARAGE SALE in yellow might look nice, but it won't be very visible. If you want to use yellow, then outline it in black, but don't make the writing only yellow or light colors. Also, even if you use a large black marker, it will be hard to see unless you make the letters large and go over them a few times and widen them.
Using a variety of colors on the sign gets confusing. Choosing 1-4 colors is plenty. I have seen garage sale signs where GARAGE SALE was written large, but each letter was a different color. Just realize, that it will be hard to see and read what you have.
To decide if your sign can be effective, hold it up in the house and have someone far away... down the hall, maybe, see if it is very readable from there..... or try it in the backyard.
Having the time on the sign is a great help also, if you want to add that... keep it simple though, like 8-5 or something. Don't try to put Wed 8-5:30, Thurs 8-5, Fri... etc. Try to keep the times the same and reduce the amount of writing on the sign.
Have good contrast on your sign between the background of the sign and the letters. A light colored background, like white, with dark lettering works well. The reverse is good too. Using a brown cardboard box side can work, but since the background is in between, you will really need to have your letters bold so they can be seen.
The purpose of your sign is to draw attention, and customers, to your sale. Having good signs will really help. Taking the time to make, or buy, good signs and then taking care of those signs, can really help also, as they can last for years.
Thank you for visiting my blog today... I hope you have a great garage sale.
Garage Sale Series
Garage Sale Series-Selling Jewelry
Garage Sale Series-Price Tags
Garage Sale Series-Displays
Garage Sale Series-Signs
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