Environmental graphic design embraces a variety of design types. Many industries play a role in environmental graphic design, including the graphic design industry, the architectural industry, the interior design industry, and sometimes even landscaping and industrial design. Environmental graphics can be used to assist in wayfinding, communicating identity, communicating information, and shaping the visual aesthetic of a business.
In our line of work, environmental graphic design means we are not just creating and sending signs that may or may not match the tone and design of your business. With strong environmental design components, you can embrace any size or shape of the sign, while staying true to the overall design theme of your business.
Because this type of design has more to do with branding a space itself, it can translate to functionality in any market, including creating serene healthcare spaces, clear and concise educational experiences, commercial spaces that desire to stay on brand and are eye-catching, or even residential clients who want to create a timeless aesthetic in their home or neighborhood.
What is environmental design primarily used for?
Although environmental design has a wide range of purposes and benefits, the most common place you will see environmental designs being used is within wayfinding and placemaking, or the tools that help clients get from one point to another without experiencing stress.
Strategizing for the experience a first-time client will have in your space is critical to converting prospects into leads, and in fact, ensuring a positive experience for all visitors. With this in mind, an important place to start involves wayfinding signs, and there are four main categories:
This category has to do with where the client is currently. You cannot expect someone to take the literal first step if they do not know where they are! Making a client feel secure in knowing their location can contribute to their overall comfort level, and subsequently, their willingness to do business.
Directional signs are a type of placemaking sign that unfold throughout the user’s experience. These allow the user to know exactly the path they need to take in order to get to where they want to be. Have you ever walked through a hospital, following the little arrows on the floor? These are a convenience to ensure that you do not have to stop and ask for directions during an otherwise stressful time.
Informational signs answer many specific questions, such as: How much does this item or service cost? What is the WIFI network information for your business? What hours can I do business with you? Ensuring that clients have a quick and simple way to get their questions answered can make a tremendous difference in how they feel when it comes time to do business.
The final category of wayfinding is for regulatory signs. Essentially, these signs are to teach your client the rules for doing business with you. Perhaps you have a shared parking lot and need to indicate where clients may park without being ticketed. Perhaps you need to indicate the speed limit within your parking lot or mark your fire exit, in case of an emergency. All of these signs instill confidence in the user, which heightens their mood and their eagerness to work with you.
What is the importance of environmental design?
The Gensler Research Institute recently reported on the impact of design on experience. They found that “the design of physical spaces proves to have a significant, quantifiable impact on the quality of people’s experience.” Throughout the course of the study, the Gensler Research Institute surveyed more than four thousand people and learned many interesting things!
The first thing the Gensler Research Institute learned was that people who said that the spaces they visited were incredibly well designed rated their experience twice as high as they rated their experience in a lesser designed environment. Additionally, businesses that came across as modern reported users to have a great experience nearly four times more than their less-modern-looking counterparts. Finally, and perhaps the most relevant to those looking to increase their brand visibility, this study indicated that clients are ten times more likely to shout out their experience on social media if the business had a unique, memorable design than if it did not.
How can Starfish Signs help?
Starfish Signs wants your business to be the one getting ten times the social media mentions that your competitors are getting. We are in the business of giving you every edge we can through clear, beautifully designed signs. Please reach out and allow our expert designers to assist you in having your needs met today!