Awnings are basically a small roof that sits over a door or window made with a lightweight and rigid frame, often from aluminum. The cover is frequently made from canvas, although it can also be made from vinyl (which allows more light to come through). The frame is then attached to, and supported by, the building.
An awning can also cover a patio, walkway, or even a deck, which means we often see awnings on homes, as a protection from the sun, although home awnings typically don’t have awning graphics on them. But they can make great signs for businesses able to install them on their building.
1. They can provide shade in the summer and shelter from the rain.
Depending on which way your business faces, you can help reduce your utility bill as you reduce the amount of incoming radiant heat. West- and south-facing buildings can especially cook buildings in July and August. Awnings provides additional shade to reduce glare and incoming sunlight, without blocking the view the way curtains and blinds do.
2. They add some character and class to a building front.
Awnings can provide a vintage look or one of stability and prestige, especially with rich colors that complement or match the company’s corporate colors or building facade. If your business is trying to convey a certain image, awnings can do the trick.
3. They can double as a business sign.
While the awning itself has an architectural function, you can still put it to work for you by putting your awning graphics on canvas or vinyl. This shows people where you are, promotes your business from a distance, and is one more business sign you can add to your arsenal.
4. But they don’t always count as business signage.
Some municipalities have business signage regulations that count the square footage your signs take up. In those cases, only the awning graphics themselves count toward that sign allotment — the awning as a whole does not. So you can have a large awning providing shade and shelter, but if you only have a 4 square foot graphic on the awning, then you only count the 4 feet.
Keep in mind that your awnings may require local permits, as well as permission from the building’s owner, before they’re placed. Signarama can help you with local permits, since we frequently work with local businesses and municipalities to ensure all signs comply with local ordinances.