One of the most valuable tips when designing promotions for shops is to ask the right questions. Something that can be overlooked is consideration for what sits around, or in front of, your graphics. What will, or could, obstruct them? Are they static or constantly changing? Does the area that they are placed in physically move? You always need to know and understand the environment you are designing for.
The last thing you want is a window frame to block a few letters on your poster revealing an offensive word (we’ve all seen examples of this online!). The more you know about all of the elements that make up the display, the better equipped you are to create a great space.
Following the point above, along with the obstacles that different locations and VM elements bring, you also need to take into account what display fittings will be used. Not everything you design will be sitting on its own.
A simple example of this is when you are designing an A4 poster that will be displayed in a frame. In order for your design to work, you instantly need to consider the width of the frame. You don’t want it to obscure or overpower the content.
When you’re working with large graphics, make sure that you print them out to size (where possible) and stick them to a wall. It’s good to see how they will actually look and check that everything you are communicating is legible at the correct scale. You can do this in-house, or get sample prints from the printer.
It’s also really helpful to see your graphics in a 3D model. It’s much easier to visualise how people will approach and interact with your displays and the impact that they will need to have at different distances.
Keeping in mind that this will change depending on your target audience (five-year olds tend to be a little shorter than the average adult!), but remember to design for eye level. If your target audience has to strain to see something, it’ll quickly lose its desired effect. There are tools available online to help you organise your content to follow natural eye movement patterns and achieve your desired visual hierarchy.
Excellent design for printed point of sale doesn’t just consider the content on the paper and the other items or products that sit around it, it also takes into account all of the space in between. Too many messages or visual aspects in close quarters can quickly become confusing.
Another top tip would be to view the empty space as equally important as the space that is filled. There is a real art to viewing a number of shop floors or fronts, in varying sizes, and planning how the same concept can be reworked and applied effectively and consistently across each of them.
A last tip is to always double or triple check your work for any mistakes. And never make assumptions. You need to be certain that all of your measurements, and any information you have about the different display environments, is 100% accurate before you sign off the final designs.
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