7 Common Mistakes Retailers Make with Their Digital Signage

Digital signs can be absolutely revolutionary when it comes to engaging customers, building brand awareness, and moving shoppers along the customer journey towards conversion.

Yet, in order to reap the myriad benefits of this technology, it’s vital that retailers follow best practices with regard to both their content and the hardware itself. Despite this, plenty of retailers make significant, easy-to-avoid mistakes with their digital signage.

To help you get the best out of your digital signs, here are seven of the most common mistakes to avoid.

1. Treating digital signage like a stationary billboard

When digital signage is considered to be a direct replacement for a stationary billboard or poster, it’s easy to see why so many retailers get their content wrong. Digital signage is not a direct replacement for traditional signs; it offers so many more opportunities. With the right approach, digital signage could even be revolutionary for your business.

Considering how to digitise stationary content is the wrong approach to digital signage. Instead, retailers should take the opportunity to create content campaigns that fully leverage the dynamic capabilities of digital screens, using video, animation, rich images, and – where possible – interactivity.

2. Focusing on the screen rather than the content

Retailers who invest in digital signage to replace their stationary signs and billboards have a tendency to become so focused on simply having the technology that they fail to make the most of the opportunities in front of them.

Remember, the point of investing in screens is to showcase engaging, attention-grabbing content that boosts the business’s bottom line. Simply having the screens isn’t enough to achieve these results.

3. Failing to customise and personalise content

One of the biggest benefits of digital screens is that they allow businesses to customise and personalise their content based on everything from the time of day and the climate, to the retailer’s audience and location.

Why does this matter? In the modern era of digital marketing and streaming services, consumers expect tailored content experiences that use personalisation to build trust and smooth the user journey. While the individualised level of personalisation available online may not be possible on digital signage, you can still use digital screens and digital content campaigns to get much closer than in the past.

4. Not having a cohesive content strategy

Retailers often make the mistake of not incorporating the content for their digital screens into their overall content strategy. In order to build consumer trust, brands must deliver seamless messaging – both online and off – with digital screen content complementing online and offline marketing campaigns.

Further, retailers should avoid thinking of each digital screen content asset as a one-off piece. Instead, they must consider their goal for the content, ensuring that each piece of content works with the others to facilitate progress towards that goal. Cohesive branding – such as using the same brand colours and tone of voice throughout – is instrumental as well in making the strategy a success.

5. Making the content too busy

With every brand fiercely competing for consumer attention, shopping can sometimes feel like sensory overload. Yet the human brain can only process so much at once. Making your digital screens too busy will only add to this feeling of stress and cause shoppers to look away.

Instead, focus on creating simple visual content, and avoid using too much text, high contrasts, or flashing images. Once that’s achieved, half the battle for consumer attention is won – your next job is to ensure shoppers internalise the messaging on the screen.

6. Placing the signs out of eyeline

This may sound obvious, but it is astounding how many retailers do not consider the importance of making their digital signage as easy for shoppers to see as possible. It’s important to think about the offline user journey, as well as the digital one.

Consider the average height of your shopper, and perform walkthroughs of your retail spaces. Where should the screens be placed so they’re as easy to see as possible? Where will shoppers stand for the longest in the store? If the screens are interactive, what height should they be at to make them easy to touch? After all, if shoppers have to crouch or crane their neck to see the content, they’ll more than likely decide it’s not worth the discomfort.

7. Constantly looping the same video

The human attention span is famously fickle, and due to on-demand culture, it’s only getting shorter. Indeed, in 2000, Microsoft conducted a study that found the average attention span was 12 seconds. Yet by 2015, this had plummeted to just eight seconds.

As a result, retailers face the challenge not just of capturing attention, but of retaining that attention as well. Content clip length is one area to consider. Most brands create 15-30 second clips for display on these screens, yet most window displays receive just 1-2 seconds of attention. Shorter clips ensure more of your message is received.

Keep your messaging variable as well. Simply looping the same video or displaying the same static image isn’t likely to hold consumer attention long enough for them to buy into your messaging.

However, by creating a number of different – yet cohesive – pieces of content, retailers can keep the display fresh and increase engagement.

For more tips on getting the most out of your digital content campaigns, reach out to the team at Engagis. We’re standing by to help you experience the full benefits of digital signage at your retail store.