What are the different types of exterior building signage

Signs can be found on buildings around the whole world. Signs act as visible indicators of where a business is located and what it is called. These two pieces of information can often tell people what the business does as well. 

Outdoor signs on buildings do not all look alike, however they do fall into to a few categories. Let’s explore what different types of building signage is popular at the moment. 

Panel Signs

Panel signs can be scaled to be large or small and have a little or a lot of information on. They are good as a simple ‘entrance’ sign on one pole, and equally suited to be a large, detailed map mounted on two or more poles. 

Panel signs are often made of aluminium. Aluminium is water resistant, scratch proof and easy to print on so it can be used for a variety of external signs. Because it is also lightweight this makes it a widespread option for exterior signage. 

Totem/Monolith/Monument Signs

Despite going by many names, this freestanding type of signage is extremely popular. You’ll see these towering structures advertising fast food restaurants from a distance. You may also walk past one at head height, illuminating the route to the next boutique shop in a London shopping district. 

The flexibility of monument signage goes beyond size. They can be completely customisable, have built-up lettering, be illuminated, and made of different materials. 

Tall monument signs also offer greater visibility from the street, making them an effective way for businesses to attract customers and increase brand recognition.

National Brownfield Institute
Glebe Farm School

Stand-off Lettering

Lettering and logos on the exterior walls of commercial buildings is popular because of the superior longevity. Often made of stainless steel, stand-off lettering is mounted to a wall with a gap behind it so it does not sit flush to the surface. As a material, stainless steel doesn’t rust or deteriorate. 

Signage designed in such a way can be eye-catching, especially if up-lit or down-lit by exterior lights. Similar to monument signs, stand-off lettering signage can be seen from a distance and increase awareness of a business’s presence. 

Fascia Signage

A sign that fits on the facade of a building is one of the most popular types of signage. What makes them different to stand-off lettering though? Fascia signs are usually not individual elements, attached to a wall separately like stand-off lettering. Instead, they are often one panel. Although a fascia sign will usually be quite flat, they can have 3D elements. They can also have lighting inside or outside. 

Fascia signage can be made of aluminium, aluminium composite (ACM), stainless steel, and even PVC. Often used as frontage for a business, fascia signs can also be installed high up to be seen from further away. 

Four of the most popular exterior signage types are:

  • Panels
  • Totem/Monolith/Monument
  • Stand-off Lettering
  • Fascia’s

These are all popular because they can be made from a wide range of durable materials and designed to suit almost any business needs and budget.

From freestanding panels to mounted fascia’s, these four popular types of external building signage can easily be customised to fit any commercial branding or messaging. xsign have decades of experience designing, manufacturing, and fitting external signage both large and small, so talk to our team today about your signage needs. 

National Brownfield Institute
UoB School of Engineering