Article Summary:Trade show banner stands come in four main types: retractable, adjustable, tension, and motorized.
When you're preparing to go to a trade show, one item you would be strongly encouraged to have is a good quality banner stand. A banner stand is used for displaying a simple message; typically a brand reinforcement or specific announcement.
There are four main types of banner stands available, which differ in function as follows:
Motorized Trade Show Banners
A moving display always catches the eye over a static one. However, motorized banners are not very common for several reasons. They require careful artwork design to effectively communicate a message, need a power source, and take relatively longer to set up than other banner stands. Motorized stands are available in single or double sided designs.
- movement is eye-catching
- power consumption makes it not a very green choice
Typical Cost Range: $400 - $800
Typical Set Up Time: 5 - 10 minutes
Retractable Banner Stands
Retractable banner stands are popular for their easy portability and use. The graphics are attached to a rolling mechanism within the base and retract when not in use - which protects the graphics during freight and storage. Some higher end models feature an adjustable height (width is never adjustable), and changeable graphic cartridges. They are available as single or double sided.
- Very easy set up
- Simple to transport
- Graphics are hard to change unless you get one with a changeable cartridge feature
Typical Cost Range: $230 - $1200
Typical Set Up Time: under a minute
Adjustable (Rigid Pole) Banner Stands
These stands are commonly used at retail locations and other commercial venues. They often have a solid, weighted base - which makes them ideal for semi-permanent use but can be a drawback for easy portability. Many rigid pole stands can accommodate varying banner sign sizes with a certain range, and feature an adjustable height. They are available as single or double sided.
- Relatively inexpensive
- Easily changed/replaced graphics
- Can be a bit heavy (10 - 15lbs)
Typical Cost Range: $60 - $300
Typical Set Up Time: 1 - 3 minutes
Tension Pole Banner Stands
These stands use tension poles, which bend like a fishing pole, to hold the banner display taut. They weigh practically nothing, and break down into a minimal size to carry. Many designs necessitate four grommet holes to be punched into the sign material itself in order to attach the banner to the pole. Most models are made to accommodate just one particular graphic size. Tension poles are available in single or double sided designs.
- very lightweight, easy to carry
- easily changed/replaced graphics
- not recommended for outdoor use
Typical Cost Range: $120 - $350
Typical Set Up Time: 1 - 2 minutes
There a few other categories of banner displays such us Tabletop and Outdoor, which are typically different versions of the above. See also: What to Look For in a Banner Stand
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.