Article Summary:Important things to consider prior to purchasing a banner stand to take to trade shows.
Finding the right banner stand to suit your needs can be a little tricky if you've never purchased one before. Knowing the types of banner stands out there is a good first step. The next step is asking the right questions. Here's a brief list of the most important things you should have answered before making your purchase:
Is printing included?
Better make sure; some vendors only offer the stand itself. Also, be certain to read and understand the artwork submission process and policies of the place you're buying it from. Important things to know are how and what to submit as artwork, and timelines on order fulfillment.
What type of material is it?
Here is the short list of common banner sign materials out there, with their pros and cons:
|usually a very good resolution, vivid color print (depending on vendor)||eventually shows its age by fading, curling|
|can be used outdoors||prone to scratches|
|not a very green choice|
|very lightweight||not the greatest resolution (though some vendors produce remarkable fabric prints)|
|excellent for outdoors||not a suitable material for all stands|
|the greener choice (many fabrics are recycled)|
|gorgeous resolution and color (depending on vendor)||sometimes shows its age by delaminating|
|often available in a glossy or matte finish||folding causes irreparable damage|
|can be cleaned (always refer to instructions first)|
Are the graphics replaceable?
Whether you plan on changing the graphics in the future, or just might need a replacement, it's important to know that you can get the graphic again without having to buy another stand, and for how much.
How long does it take?
Be sure to know how long it takes to print and ship, and to fully understand the timeline involved. Printing takes time, usually a week, and ship time depends on the state it's being shipped to. If you're in a rush don't hesitate to call the vendor as soon as possible. Even one day of delay can make a huge difference in shipping costs or rush printing fees.
What's the warranty?
The typical warranty out there is one year, and covers any manufacturer's defect on the hardware itself. The graphics themselves almost never have warranties.
One final piece of advice is to shop around until you're comfortable you've found a trustworthy vendor. Don't hesitate to grill vendors on the above points and more. If they're worth your business they'll have the right answers.
Datch Haven is the founder of Epic Displays, an online source for businesses seeking tradeshow displays and exhibits. Notwithstanding a lamentable habit of killing most houseplants Datch is an avid proponent of GREEN initiatives, within the trade show industry and beyond.