Table of Contents
For those who are creative, maybe you’re looking for a new medium or adventure. Have you ever thought of owning your own sign business? It may seem a bit out-of-the-box, but plenty of entrepreneurs start right in their homes. Let’s discuss some of the benefits of owning a sign shop and what you’ll need to begin.
If you’re looking to start a new business and happen to have access to the funding, you may be bouncing between ideas. With a little bit of drive and creativity, owning a sign business isn’t as difficult as it may seem. You see signs everywhere you go. They are on buildings, marking streets, and helping regular folks navigate through almost every aspect of life.
Many industries look to sign businesses to help them with their branding. It can be difficult to stand out when some markets are saturated. What can you offer your local businesses to help them grow? Helping your community grow is only beneficial to your business as well. These are all excellent reasons for wanting to start your own business.
But why signs? Well, it can be reasonably easy to accomplish if you find yourself successful. There are a few things you will want to start with, so let’s go over that first. You’ll need to organize your goals for your business. Figure out how much you will need for your startup costs, who your audience and target market are, and how and how much you’ll be able to charge your customers.
Materials are Your First Expense
First, you should decide on how you are going to create your designs. You’ll need access to a computer that can run software specifically for design. If you are looking into using something such as InDesign, Illustrator, or independent sign software. There are numerous programs designed specifically for making signs, but they can be costly. If you have the budget to do it, it’s worth the price!
Next, you will need to look into machinery and equipment to create your final products. Some of the creations you will do may be small. This would include interior signage for bathrooms, directional signs, or glass decals. However, customers may come to you with a request for a sign on their building, and you’ll want to be prepared for that.
Some basic substrates to start with for your sign shop are vinyl, acrylic, aluminum, coroplast, and MDO wood. They all have individual benefits and suffice to cater to the customer’s needs. You’ll need to have some vinyl cutters, laser printers, wide format printers, 3D printers, and heat presses. Depending on any other specialty work you’d like to offer, you may have other equipment such as a lathe, router saws, or a CNC machine.
There are some things you will have to spend money on simply to just operate your own business. If you are creating something like this with machines and intricate software, you need to have insurance. You’ll also need to calculate your rental and utility costs. Running these sign-making machines requires power. You’ll have to consider any monthly maintenance to your facility or maintaining equipment and software as well.
Finally, there are only a few additional items you will need that you may not have to concern yourself with right away. However, once your business is open and operating, you’ll want to analyze marketing tactics to help you grow your customer foundation. Once you have a smooth procedure, think of taking on more employees or offering additional services. Customers would be delighted to learn you can install their signs on top of creating them.
Even if sign-making doesn’t sound like something you would enjoy, it may surprise you. If you are creative in any way, you should at least try it out. You never know if you find yourself creating vector images for the rest of your days and enjoying it.