In a matter of days, the US has adopted and become very familiar with a new word – social distancing. Anyone paying attention to the news, their neighbors, or strangers in their local grocery store, is aware of social distancing and what it means. Staying six feet away from other people is the most common of the social distancing measures. Maintaining distance, and “doing the five“, are vital practices for businesses who have kept their doors open to the public.
COVID-19 has created a new way of living, and it’s likely to be the new norm even after initial fears of coronavirus infection have faded. Residences and businesses have access to new signage designed to help reinforce social distancing, and control the spread of COVID-19. Whether you have a high-risk person in your household, or you are keeping your business afloat during the pandemic, you can find signs to remind others to keep a proper social distance.
Business Signs for Social Distancing
Most businesses, particularly small local businesses across the US, are doing everything they can to stay afloat and to follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Make sure you have signage in place that lets your customers know you are open for business, and that you are following CDC guidelines.
Keep your business running during quarantine and social distancing with:
Once the US is operating normally again, businesses and individuals will still be on high alert, and keenly aware of the danger of infectious disease. It is pertinent to adopt new procedures and ensure that your staff and customers follow them. Get the signs you need to let customers know you are practicing newly adopted rules and expectations in a post-COVID-19 world.
Also make sure your customers have easy access to the information they need about your business. Make sure your signage is current and that it reflects your latest hours, procedures, new delivery services and rules.
Every small business or restaurant should post updated signs for their:
Residential COVID-19 Safety Signs and Social Distancing Signs
Delivery of groceries, take-out, gifts and everyday essentials is a popular convenience that many people enjoy, and it continues to grow in popularity. Amazon’s two day delivery is the standard these days. Modern consumers have grown to expect quick, fast delivery to their front door. This likely will not change, but will become more common as people adapt to life after the coronavirus outbreak. Households with high risk family members can protect themselves from exposure to illnesses by posting signs such as:
“Someone in this House Has a Weakened Immune System”
Lighten the Mood with Decorative Signs for Home or Business
As post-pandemic messaging becomes standard, businesses and home owners will be placing these signs in plain sight. You can maintain your home or business aesthetic with required signage. Decorative signs include engraved wood, brass and plastic. You can even carve out a personal space at home with she shed and man cave signs. Create your own sign to include any message you want! Make it funny or inspirational.
Decorative signs are available for homes, businesses and cars.
Healthcare workers, the government, and everyday people are navigating unfamiliar territory. New York City residents who use public transportation daily, along with teachers, workers in elderly care facilities, childcare facilities and so many other professions and walks of life will undoubtedly take stronger measures against potential future outbreaks.
Everyone can do their part in flattening the curve, and preparing for the return to school, work, and everyday life. Remember to do the five!
What better time to update your business’s safety standards than the start of a new year?
2020 is here. When was the last time you audited your safety requirements? The importance of following OSHA regulations cannot be understated. So, as you move into the new year, ensure your workplace stays up-to-date on all safety standards.
To start, what is the number of people injured on the job?
Workplace Injury Statistics
As with most studies, the figures and statistics can vary.
Review your workplace. What can you update to improve safety within your organization?
A Year in Safety
The end of the year is a great time for you to reflect on your current safety standards.
What didn’t work?
Are there gaps in your training?
Have there been OSHA updates that affect your business?
How much did your company pay out for safety violations or worker’s compensation?
Are your signs faded or broken and need replacing?
Gather as much information as you can and update your safety regulations. Work with your administrative level employees as well as the rest of your work force. Audit your high traffic areas and work zones to ensure compliance with national safety standards. Ensure your workplace follows fire safety procedures. Replace safety signs that may be difficult to read.
Check Your Equipment
Ensure your equipment is functioning properly. Much like how a dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp one, if your equipment or tools aren’t cared for, the likelihood of injury increases.
Relating to training, make sure everyone who operates required machinery or other tools understands how to use them safely. This could mean additional digital courses or in-person sessions teaching proper handling, operating, cleaning, storing, and maintenance. Any employee who uses your equipment should also follow established guidelines on general inspection before and after use. Encourage them to report any irregularities such as exposed wires, cracks, unusual sparks, or other malfunctions.
Aside from daily use inspections, you may need to follow regulations requiring professional equipment inspections depending on your business. These inspections may occur trimonthly, semi-annually, annually, or at a different interval. Be sure you know when your equipment needs to be inspected.
It seems obvious, but be sure to repair or replace and equipment that needs it. Your workplace and employees will stay safer if you do.
Is Your Workplace Fire Safe?
‘To hope for the best and prepare for the worst, is a trite but a good maxim.’
Fires can break out almost anywhere. While there are prevention measures you can take to lessen the chances, your organization should establish procedures to prevent injury and death.
Inspect your fire extinguishers. You should check on them monthly and have a fire equipment professional inspect them annually. Again, the end or start of the year is a great time to have this done. Furthermore, ensure your sprinkler system functions. Your automatic fire dousing system needs to work to prevent, or at least, delay a fire from spreading. Test your alarms to make sure their tones are loud and clear. Functioning alarms may be your first warning of a starting fire.
Clearly mark fire exits with eye-catching signage. Set safe meeting places to account for everyone. Label fire extinguishers for everyone to see. Ensure your employees know where all of these things are with proper training. These are all things you can do to reduce damages and keep your work force safe.
Refresh First Aid Supplies & Equipment
Every business should keep first aid supplies on-hand. You should inspect your kits at least annually, so the end of the year is the perfect time.
Make sure your equipment is still viable and all the necessary equipment is present. Bandages, antiseptics, gauze, and other medical supplies needed to treat minor injuries should be clean and stored.
If you operate a warehouse, factory, or other workshop, inspect your eye wash stations. Are they functional? Do they need cleaning? Are they easy to find and marked with appropriate signage? These are all important in keeping your employees safe in treating exposure to dust, debris, and hazardous chemicals.
Update Your Safety Signage
Once you’ve reviewed the areas in your business that need updates, make sure your safety signs are updated. We’ll go into the importance of understanding signs below, but know that your signs need to be visible at all times.
Are your signs dull, worn, or broken? Many businesses are required to post specific signage signifying hazardous areas. Maintaining your signs and replacing old ones keeps everyone aware of possible dangers and the proper methods of preventing injuries. Understand all required signage your business needs to post, audit your current signs, and update or replace them as needed.
Once you’ve reviewed or made updates, ensure your work force follows any new regulations with proper training.
Most workplace injuries are preventable. It is common to hear professionals claim that 99% of accidents are preventable. Some say there are no such things as “accidents” at all.
Depending on your market, a hazard-free workplace may not be achievable. Construction sites, road repair services, factories, and other fields are inherently dangerous. But, you can decrease the likelihood of injuries with proper employee training.
Is your training comprehensive and easy to understand?
Your safety regulations may be in-depth and fool-proof but that means nothing if your employees don’t understand or are unaware of your established standards.
Has your work site experienced a recent, serious injury? Review your current training programs and identify areas in which your process can be improved.
The new year also gives you an opportunity to look back at 2019 and find any gaps in your training programs.
Would an online, in-person, or on-the-job element help? Ask your long-time employees and new hires what their concerns are. They may give you new insight into misunderstandings around your training courses. They’ll also appreciate having their voice heard by management.
The Cost of Poor Training
Training employees can seem like a major expense, but it shouldn’t be overlooked or ignored. The cost of not including proper training for your workers can far outweigh the downsides.
If you don’t train your employees, your business could suffer more than lost profit. OSHA’s penalties for violating workplace safety regulations can start at $13,260 per violation. Your company may also be liable for workers compensation, medical bills, and legal payments depending on the severity of the incident.
Ensure your company doesn’t spend more money than it has to, with comprehensive training for all employees. Your business will benefit from it while avoiding violation fines and other unnecessary expenses.
Part of your training should include a section or sections on what safety signs mean.
There are many pictogram hazard symbols. If your company handles hazardous materials, your employees need to know what each symbol means.
Posting these signs serves as a reminder for your employees to follow safety protocols. However, if your employees don’t know what these signs mean, then they won’t help in your safety efforts.
Additionally, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires certain signage to properly advertise hazardous elements in your business. When ordering or designing your signage, you must follow the OSHA signage design guidelines.
Ensure your training program covers what signs your company uses and their meanings. Again, your business may follow all the design requirements and regulations, but it means nothing if your work force doesn’t know what they mean.
This all leads to how improper training can cost your business more money.
CustomSigns.com is your one-stop-shop for compliant safety signage. We are your experts on the professional signs you need for your business.
The holidays are here which means many Americans are taking to the roads for home. If you’re one of the thousands of travelers this season, following posted signs and other traffic control devices will mean a safer trip for you and other drivers and pedestrians.
Understanding the importance of traffic signs and their meaning keeps everyone safe. The holiday season is a busy time of year for travelers, so follow the warnings posted along the roads of the United States for your safety and the well-being of others.
If you’re a new driver, make sure you understand these and other signs. Your safety and the safety of others depends on all of us knowing traffic laws and following posted traffic control devices.
We’re going to break down the basics of sign designs in color and shape. These give an easy way to identify upcoming road hazards or changing conditions. At the end of this article, we’ll show you some uncommon or confusing signs you may come across.
But, before that, let’s see the design concepts behind these signs.
As the title suggests, regulatory road signs regulate the flow of traffic. These signs direct motorists to specific actions such as yielding to other lanes or upcoming speed changes.
These types of signs are meant to be followed at all times. Some signs, as you’ll see later, are suggestions or call attention to attractions or rest areas. These are not considered regulatory signs. Whereas things like Yield Signs, Speed Limit Signs, or Construction Signs regulate and control the flow the traffic. So, these are regulatory signs.
With that in mind, you need to know what the colors of different signs mean.
Road Sign Color Meanings
We previously touched on how businesses use color to influence customers, but color also plays an important part in road safety. Colors quickly and easily convey vague messages to road users. The symbols assign the specific meaning, but color is usually the first thing drivers notice. While the full intent of a sign may not be immediately known, seeing the color provides drivers with initial information.
Understanding the general idea of road sign colors keeps you alert and cognizant of potentially changing road conditions.
White road signs have a wide variety of uses as they are primarily regulatory signs. Speed limit, lane restriction, and weight limit signs are all examples of white road signs.
Red road signs are regulatory signs. They indicate prohibited actions or direct drivers towards certain actions such as stopping at an intersection or yielding to oncoming or highway traffic.
The best known type of red sign are Stop Signs. They’re bright, they’re noticeable, and they tell you what to do.
Yellow signs issue a warning to road users. These may be the most common and numerous type of road safety sign. Warning road signs have a variety of uses and generally inform drivers of changes and disruptions to the flow of traffic or terrain such as potential wildlife or merging lanes.
Green signs serve as guides. Guide signs tend to bear information such as street names, interstate on and off ramps, and distances to cities and towns.
Blue signs are not regulatory signs. However, they denote services for drivers such as gas stations, hospitals, and rest areas.
Since they aren’t regulatory, blue signs don’t control traffic in any way. They show you places to stop or other attractions, but you’re under no obligation to follow them.
Like blue signs, brown signs are not regulatory. They indicate guidance for road users towards recreational areas such as picnic areas, swimming locations, hiking trails, and many more.
Again, since brown signs aren’t regulatory, you don’t need to follow them.
These signs signify pedestrian crossing areas and school zones. It may be difficult to differentiate between this color and the yellow warning signs, and it is important to acknowledge the caution these signs offer for the safety of pedestrians and students.
Contrary to some beliefs, orange construction signs are not permanent. An orange sign means drivers need to know of temporary traffic control changes such as lanes closed for construction, slow traffic, and marking the beginning or end of road work zones.
Road Sign Shapes
The shape of a traffic sign works in tandem with its color in quickly imprinting and informing of a general warning or alert. Like color, since shape is an easy visual identifier, you can quickly interpret a traffic control sign’s general meaning by looking at its shape.
Diamond signs mean some form of warning. They’re typically used in conjunction with the color yellow to better alert drivers.
These signs indicate a school zone or crosswalk. Many of these signs use the fluorescent yellow/green color for consistency.
There are a couple meanings for triangle road signs.
Yield: Possibly the most common form of triangle sign, Yield signs alert drivers to slow down and yield to oncoming or ongoing traffic
No Passing Zone: These pennant-shaped signs inform drivers of a stretch of road where passing is not allowed and potentially hazardous such as around long turns or narrow lanes
Rectangular vertical and horizontal signs have a variety of uses, but there are some general meanings for each.
Vertical: Regulate driving behaviors such as indicating speed limits or informing of lane restrictions
Horizontal: Typically help in guiding drivers such as indicating a sharp turn, but horizontal signs have a variety of uses
Circle road signs inform drivers of an upcoming railroad crossing.
This may be the most easily recognizable. Octagon shaped signs are Stop signs.
Road Sign Symbols
While a sign’s color provides preliminary information, its symbol defines it. Many symbols and phrases adorn our streets, highways, and interstates, and understanding them ensures safe travels during the season. There are many different types of roads signs and they each carry their own meaning.
Most signs bear symbols in black or other contrasting color. This makes the sign easy to see and identify from further away. The typical colors for road sign symbols are white and black. They’re easy to see and contrast with most background colors.
Uncommon Sign Meanings
Knowing the colors and shapes of the variety of signs found along America’s highways and interstates allows you to quickly understand their general ideas. However, the symbols define the specific meanings.
As a reminder before your holiday travels, here are a few confusing or less-than-common signs to bear in mind:
This sign often gets confused with the similar Leaving Divider sign. The Divided Highway sign signifies an upcoming physical split in the road.
You should understand why this is important. If you don’t adhere to the warning of a Divided Highway sign, you could run into the median or off the road.
This sign alerts drivers that an upcoming ramp merges directly into the flow of traffic.
Staying aware of your place and the places of other drivers keeps everyone safe. You need to know that an on-ramp is coming up to keep an eye out for merging cars.
Contrasting with the Merging Traffic sign, an Added Lane sign informs drivers of a road or ramp adding another lane alongside and in the same direction as the current flow of traffic.
Similar to Merging Traffic signs, you need to know whether a ramp adds a new lane to the road or not. If it does, you’ll need to be aware of drivers staying in their lane. If not, you need to find a safe way to let other drivers into the flow of traffic.
Slippery When Wet
Relatively self-explanatory, a Slippery When Wet sign warns drivers to take caution of water on the road.
If you’re travelling through states or regions prone to snow for the holidays, you need to heed the warning this sign offers. Water always alters road conditions, but certain road types, such as bridges and overpasses, can become even more hazardous than standard asphalt.
Bridge Ices Before Road
Another example of weather warning, a Bridge Ices Before Road sign alerts motorists to watch for ice patches on the road.
The reason bridges ice over faster than roads is due to their construction. Roads built on the ground take longer to change in temperature because only one side is exposed to the air while bridges cool faster because of the colder air both above and below the structure.
This sign means that the road itself narrows up ahead. Understanding this warning is important as a tighter lane space means less room for you and other drivers.
A narrowing road could mean dangerous conditions such as soft dirt to either side, a water feature such as a river, or tight and close rocky walls. Whatever the reason, you need to follow a Road Narrows sign to avoid a collision or falling off the motorway.
Two Way Traffic
These signs demonstrate a change from one way or split roads into a two-way highway or interstate.
If you’ve been traveling on a single-lane road, these signs alert you to on-coming traffic. This is important so you understand where the new bounds of your lane are.
There are many kinds of crossing signs and they vary from region to region. Many signs indicate wildlife crossing areas for animals such as bears, deer, or cattle. Additionally, there are signs warning of farm equipment or recreational vehicle crossing.
Regardless of the source, you must stay aware of animal and equipment crossing signs for your safety and other bystanders.
These signs warn of potential hazards. As a driver, you should already be aware of your surroundings. But, Animal or Equipment Crossing signs reinforce that behavior. An animal could dart out in front of your vehicle, but you might be able to avoid a collision if you stay vigilant in these sections of road.
Some stretches of road indicate a suggested speed. Such markers may be found along exit ramps or lanes, upcoming turns, or other potentially hazardous sections of road.
These signs are not regulatory speed limit signs. However, they indicate and suggest the maximum safest speed given usual road conditions. While these signs aren’t absolute, it is best to heed them.
This type of warning sign alerts drivers of an upcoming section of road that contains more frequent turns and curves. Advisory Speed signs may accompany these markers for added safety.
A multitude of signs line America’s highways and interstates. Understanding their meaning and heeding them ensures you, your family, and other drivers will arrive safely.
CustomSigns.com is your one-stop-shop for professional-grade signs. From safety signs to office signs to ADA compliant signs, we are the best online source for all of your signage needs.
Many new businesses use car magnets because these ads:
Create top of the funnel brand awareness
Generate 30,000+ daily impressions
Cost significantly less than the $1,500-$4,000 monthly cost of many billboard signs
Have a memory recall rate of 97%
Help meet the budgetary needs of new businesses trying to spend less than 7-7% of gross revenue on marketing
Reinforce recognition of brand logos and colors
Are easy to design with contact info and discounts
Car Ads Function as Brand Touch Points
Car advertisements create brand awareness that can be further reinforced with future customer touch points, such as visiting your store, seeing your website online or other types of advertising. A beautifully designed sign allows you to introduce your small business to the local market, get exposure for a new logo and share up-to-date contact information with potential customers.
Did you know that individual vehicle advertising generates around 30,000 to 70,000 daily impressions? ARD Ventures, a venture capital firm dedicated to market research, completed an outdoor marketing trends study in 2003. The study notes how advertising influences drivers who are searching for a service as well as those who may be searching for a service in the future.
Making your logo, services and business name recognizable builds trust with customers by making them familiar with your company. A car magnet sign that clearly shows what type of product or service you sell both informs potential shoppers of your existence and gives a way for them to contact you. When you then use a similar design on your building, it creates a consistent and professional brand impression.
Comparing Magnetic Signs and Billboards
The average cost for a monthly billboard rental in a small to midsize city can range from $1,500 to $4,000, according to FitSmallBusiness.com. That doesn’t include the cost of designing and purchasing the billboard sign itself. For a new business still struggling to get the capital for operating costs, adding a monthly fee for a billboard often isn’t a feasible option.
Billboards not only cost more than car magnets, but are also stagnate, reaching the same set of commuters day after day. A mobile sign can have a greater reach, especially for business owners that spend a large amount of time on the road. Outdoor Advertising Magazine TACA’s market research suggests that mobile advertising has a recall rate of 97%.
For business owners with long commutes in heavily trafficked locations, each moment on the road can be put to use by displaying a magnetic sign.
Cost Effective Marketing Using Car Magnets
For new small businesses with less than $5 million a year in sales, a recommended budget for marketing and advertising should be around 7 to 8 percent of gross revenue, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. More competitive businesses may want to spend as much as 20 percent to get established. Oftentimes, most of this budget will be put into creating a website and starting digital campaigns. However, businesses can stretch their reach even more by utilizing magnetic car signs.
A car sign is a low-cost investment that does not require signing up for a subscription, committing to a long-term contract, or hiring a full-time marketing professional to join your staff. Signs also provide longer exposure than online advertising that can be deleted or scrolled past in a moment. With so much noise online, it’s easy for one advertisement to get lost in the noise. With a magnetic sign there is no need to open an email or click on a link. Instead, the information is clearly displayed without disrupting your shoppers’ day.
Magnetic Car Sign Perks
Custom Signs makes easy to design car signs that come in a variety of sizes to help meet the budgetary needs of new business. With do it yourself signs, you can make an eye-catching design in the size and style of your choice.
Set of 2 Custom Car Magnetic Signs
6″ x 12″
12″ x 18″
12″ x 24″
18″ x 24″
Using our easy design wizard, you can make a unique magnet that will fit your car and company brand. Each magnetic sign is sold in a set of 2. You will choose the background colors, text, fonts and lettering sizes. You can also upload your logo, a photo or other type of graphic image.
We also have preset templates, where all you need to do is choose the text. For all of our car signs, there is no minimum so you can choose as one set of signs or more.
Designing Your Car Magnet
As you decide what to include on your sign, here are some marketing tips to make sure you get the most from your magnet:
Plan where you will be adding your sign to your vehicle and measure to fit
Include contact details such as an address, phone number or email
Clarify what type of business you are
Use your logo and brand colors
Focus on a top product or service
Use quality images
Advertise a sale, discount code or competitive price
Magnetic car signs provide an affordable way to target local shoppers and create top of the funnel brand awareness. Without paying monthly fees or investing in the cost of developing and filming a TV commercial or web advertisement, businesses can get their name and contact information out there.
The holiday rush is coming. People across the country will be shopping for the best deals on the perfect gifts for their loved ones. Your business needs to stand out to catch the eye of every potential customer, but how effective is your sale signage?
A bright, flashy sign may seem like a great idea, but what effect will it have? We addressed how to use psychology for your sale signage in a previous post, and we wanted to expand on the effect of the techniques addressed.
Signs Improve Sales
The purpose of your Black Friday sales is to move product, right? Proper labeling, even for items with unchanged prices, may improve your business’s numbers. Luckily, savvy marketers and researchers have already studied ways to capture sales.
Business Insider references an unpublished MIT study that separated products into three groups. The first was the control; unlabeled at regular price. The second group had their prices reduced by 12% without signage. And, the final group kept the normal price but marked with sale stickers.
The second group had an approximate increase of 17% in sales. But, the third labeled, unchanged-price group sold over 3% more compared to the control. This study’s conclusion demonstrates that sales improve by posting sale signs.¹
The end goal of your signage should be to influence a customer into committing to a sale.
Attracting new customers should be an integral part of your Black Friday sales. Studies show that appealing signage is great at bringing in new business and securing sales.
According to a FedEx survey, 68% of people make a purchase because a sign grabbed their attention. Additionally, 76% of Americans visit a new store based on their signage.²
Color and your product’s appearance also plays a major role in securing sales.
Results of Implementing Colors
Reading how colors influence customers is a great first step towards improving your store’s signage. But, how effective is it? In a previous post, we addressed how color influences people.
To recap; people associate emotions and reactions depending on which colors they see. Reds invoke a faster heartrate, blues elicit a sense of trustworthiness, greens indicate health or prosperity, etc.
What does this mean for your sale signage? Well, as mentioned previously, a large majority of consumers make purchases because a sign caught their eye. Additionally, roughly 93% of people claim that the visual appearance of a product is the main reason for their purchase.³ Furthermore, a study from the SCMS Journal of Indian Management estimates that a customer’s willingness to read and selling potentialincreases by 80% when color is present.4
Prepare for Black Friday
To give your business the best chance at taking advantage of the busiest shopping day of the year, we’ve aggregated some Black Friday statistics and frequently asked questions. Understanding key aspects of Black Friday shoppers and numbers helps in your preparations.
When is Black Friday?
Black Friday is November 29, 2019
How Much Does the Average Person Spend on Black Friday?
Finder estimates that the average person will spend between roughly $252 and $626 depending on their age5
How Many People Shopped on Black Friday?
Over 34 million people shopped in stores in 20186
How Much Did People Spend on Black Friday 2018?
Over $717 billion total between in-store and online7
While there seems to be a downward trend for in-store shopping, ignoring the millions of brick-and-mortar shoppers is ill-advised. Your sale signage can play a major role in ensuring a successful Black Friday and holiday season.
With so many people shopping, both online and in-store, you need to prepare the best deals and signage to stay competitive and catch the eyes of any and all potential customers.
CustomSigns.com is the best online store for ordering high-quality, eye-catching sale signs and business banners. Customization is always free and most orders ship next business day. Attract new customers for Black Friday and special holiday sales with CustomSigns.com.
With winter fast approaching and your holiday sales starting soon, if they haven’t already, you may want to consider some of the psychology behind successful signage. How does color affect customers? What do numbers mean to consumers? These are questions to bear in mind when designing signage for your sales.
How Colors Affect Customers
Since signs are a visual form of advertising, colors play an integral role in the success of your sales. According to The Ultralinx, over 84% of people say that color is the main reason they buy something.¹ With this in mind, the color of your sale signage influences your customers decisions.
The Color Red
Generally, sale and clearance signs are in red, but why? A 2011 study found that grip strength and the velocity of the force increases when a person sees the color red.² The study concludes that red encourages a fast, physical reaction from individuals. Additionally, red conjures up feelings of urgency and can lead to an increased heart rate. With all these factors combined, red is the perfect color to entice shoppers into taking advantage of sales.
What About Other Colors?
Other colors evoke intrinsic reactions as well. Shades of blue instill a sense of trustworthiness and dependability, green hues show health and wealth, and yellows elicit positivity.³ Depending on your business, you may want to play with colors that are in-line with your brand and what you want to convey to your customers. While colors are the first thing consumers notice, what your signage says should further entice a sale.
The Numbers Matter
If you’re planning on adjusting prices for your holiday sales, you may want to consider the specific numbers used. Numbers play an important part in any marketing or advertising campaign, and your signage should reflect that value. Prices ending in 7, 8, or 99 indicate value according Mark Ellwood, who wrote “Bargain Fever: How to Shop in a Discounted World.” Items priced with “.99” generally advertise special savings while “7” or “8” are usually used for clearance items.4 The psychology behind “.99” comes from the idea that consumers tend to round down these numbers. For example, an item priced at $4.99 is perceived as $4 rather than $5. This plays into how your customers perceive the sales you launch during the holidays. Are your sales meant to convey value or that you are attempting to clear out your stock?
Dollars Signs Are Discouraged
In addition to how your sale prices end, you may want to reconsider including the dollar sign on your signage. Cornell University researchers conducted an experiment with customers of St. Andrew’s Cafe. They made three menus to test which one led to increased sales. One menu listed items with the dollar sign ($), one with the word “dollar” spelled out, and one with nothing next to the prices.
The study found that customers spent more money when they ordered from menus without the “$” or word “dollar.”5 The researchers concluded that the symbol or word solidified the idea that customers would be spending money whereas leaving them out meant the numbers were less concrete in the minds of the consumers.
Suggest Bulk Offers
Offering bulk discounts or sales touting savings for purchasing multiples of the same product is a tried-and-true marketing tactic. Buy one, get one has been around for decades, but advertising bigger can entice consumers to buy even more. John Gourville of Harvard Business School states “many people buy the amount, or buy in increments….”6Consumers perceive an inherent value when a greater number of goods is suggested for the same proportionate deal. Including this method on your holiday signage can help increase sales and move more merchandise.
Home fires are an unpredictable tragedy that can be difficult to recover from. While people are capable of finding their way to safety, pets follow their instincts, which means there is more risk in protecting them during emergencies. There are special considerations you should take to give your pets the best chance of survival in the case of a fire.
As humans, we understand that we need to escape a burning building. However, our pets often revert to their instincts during stressful situations. Many animals will go into familiar hiding places thinking they are safe. They may become agitated or aggressive, making it more difficult to remove them from a fire. Understanding your pet’s behaviors will give you a better chance of saving them during an emergency.
Pet Alert Stickers
Stickers or signs that alert to the presence of animals in your home may help keep them safe. Pet alert stickers are placed on windows or doors to alert firefighters and rescue workers that your household has animals inside.
Do They Work?
There is some question as to whether pet alert stickers and signs actually help keep our animals safe. The question “How do firefighters feel about those ‘Please save our pet(s)’ stickers” on Quora.¹ Most of the responses indicate that firefighters generally ignore these signs. According to the answers, there is no way of knowing if the pet, or pets, are still alive, if the animals are even present, or if the stickers were put in place by a previous occupant. Structural damage caused by a fire makes prolonged searching dangerous, so firefighters don’t seem to put special consideration into pet alert stickers.
However, firefighters generally conduct searches during a fire, if the circumstances allow. Additionally, there are a few responses on Quora from some firefighters stating they appreciate knowing that pets may be present. Ensure that your stickers are updated to reflect the current occupants.
Pet Safety Tips
What can be done to keep our pets safe during a fire? There are a number of precautions you can do in order to prepare for the worst.
1. Note Hiding Places
If your pets hide during thunderstorms or when fireworks are set off near your home, you should take note of their preferred spaces. Animals may tuck themselves under beds, under tables, in closets, or other confined spaces in order to feel safe. During a fire, your pets may hide themselves in one of their favorite spots in an attempt to escape the danger. Knowing where your pets could be can help you and rescue workers retrieve them in time.
2. Keep Kennels Close to Entrances
Many people keep their pets in kennels or crates during the day for various reasons. The locations of where these are kept vary according to house or apartment layout. However, if possible, place kennels, crates, and other animal carriers near entrances or exits while you’re away from home. This makes finding your pets much easier for firefighters and first responders.
3. Post Pet Alert Stickers
While pet alerts may or may not be heeded depending on the level of danger, it is still important to alert firefighters to the presence of your animals. An updated sticker detailing the number of animals in your household can help rescue workers in their search.
4. Train When Possible
It is also easier for first responders to locate your pets if you train them to respond to particular commands. You or emergency personnel, if given the command word or phrase, will then be able to call your pets during the search or out of the burning building.
What are vanity plates? How about custom car tags? Is there a difference between them? You may have seen these terms tossed around while registering or renewing your vehicle’s license plates. The answers to these questions are somewhat nebulous and there isn’t a black-and-white difference between them.
What is a Vanity Plate?
There isn’t a clear-cut way to define vanity plates. Cyber Drive Illinois is one of the few places that provides a definition and contrasts vanity plates with other personalized license plates:¹
“Vanity plates contain up to 3 numbers or 1 to 7 letters only”
“Personalized plates contain both letters and numbers”
Outside of this specific differentiation, the terms personalized license plates, custom car tags, and vanity plates are mostly interchangeable. Vanity plates may apply to purely decorative license plates more frequently, but the term still applies to official tags.
Typically, these terms refer to personalizing required license plates to read specific phrases or names. An important distinction comes into play when considering which states require front license plates.
What States Require Front License Plates?
While many motorists seem to want novelty or unofficial front license plates, there are only a handful of states that allow them. 19 states require the rear license plate only. This means the other 31 states require both front and back license plates. See the following list for which states do not require front license plates:²
The above list of states allow custom front license plates that aren’t required to follow established design guidelines or include assigned identifying alphanumeric character combinations. This gives motorists a wide degree of freedom to personalize their vehicles according to their personality and style. Looking for front license plate ideas is a fun way to find inspiration if you live in one of these states.
Advertising with a custom car tag is an easy way to get your company’s name in front of potential customers or clients. Some organizations utilize business license plates as an additional means of marketing their products or services.
However, this does not mean that drivers within these 19 states have complete freedom. There may be restrictions on what phrases or designs are allowed. For example, plates that could be mistaken as official tags for police or government officials. Designs of this nature could potentially pose public security and safety risks.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) began requiring chemical manufacturers to label dangerous materials with warning pictograms in June of 2015. The standard helps decrease the risk of injuries, illnesses and accidents caused by exposure to certain chemicals.
OSHA’s standard follows guidelines set by the United Nations. The United Nations established the international system of pictograms to identify chemical hazards, known as the “Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals” (GHS) standards. This system includes distinct visual symbols assigned to each type of risk.
Upholding GHS Standards
Chemical manufacturers are required to make sure any container holding these substances is properly labeled. They must also prepare safety data sheets and provide training. By using the GHS standards, employers and workers can see and understand the same set of hazard labels in different businesses and industries.
According to OSHA, requiring this standard should help “prevent over 500 workplaces injuries and illnesses and 43 fatalities annually.” With a white background, red border and chemical hazard classification, the labels are easy to recognize. Now workers employed at chemical manufacturing companies and employers utilizing certain chemicals can quickly identify risks associated with specific substances.
9 Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) Pictograms
Health Hazard – The health hazard pictogram features a silhouette of a person with respiratory obstructions. It is used for chemicals that can cause cancer, genetic defects, respiratory irritation, reproductive toxicity, organ toxicity and aspiration toxicity. While some hazards relate more to the environment, this pictogram relates to danger to human health. For example, people working in metal production and metal fabrication industries often deal with toxic materials that must include this label.
Flame Sign – The flame sign features a silhouette of a fire flame. It is used to label chemicals that are flammable, self-heating, self-reacting, pyrophoric, contain organic peroxides and emit flammable gas. Work environments ranging from power plants to pharmaceutical companies may house chemical products with this label.
Exclamation Mark – This warning symbol is a simple exclamation mark. It is used for skin and eye irritants, narcotic effects, respiratory tract irritation and acute toxicity. Items with this label require proper storage and handling processes. Workers in electronics, engineering, and construction industries are often at risk for occupational skin diseases from materials with this label.
Corrosion – The corrosion symbol shows chemical vials pouring substances on metal and a hand. The corrosion pictogram distinguishes substances that make cause eye damage and burns. It is also used for substances that destroy metals. People may encounter corrosive substances in oil and gas refineries.
Exploding Bomb – This label features a fragmented circle representing a bomb explosion. It can be used on solids and liquids which are capable of causing damage to the surroundings. These explosive materials may be self-reactive (causing fires without reacting to air), organic peroxides (reacting to heat). Jobs in mining, quarrying, demolition, construction and firefighting may expose workers to these hazards.
Gas Cylinder – This symbol looks like a sideways bottle. It is used for substances that are compressed, liquefied or dissolved gas under pressure. The hazard pressure is set as 29 pounds per square inch or more. Cylinders can become uncontrolled rockets and may contain reactive substances. These types of chemicals are often found in the oil, marine and space industries.
Flame Over Circle – This symbol features an “O”, which stands for “oxygen” with a flame above it. It is used to label oxidizers, which can cause fires by increasing the concentration of oxygen in the air. Workers in the automotive industry and textile plants may encounter these types of substances. Proper storage and handling helps reduce this risk.
Environmental Hazard – The environmental hazard pictogram shows a tree next to a dead fish. It designates aquatic toxicity, which is passed through exposure to water. It can refer to harmful chemicals that may damage human health as well as fish, invertebrates and plants. These risks may be seen in places such as the wastewater management industry and disposal of farming and agriculture chemicals, among other places.
Skull and Crossbones – This symbol, commonly associated with poisonous substances, is used to designate substances with the potential for acute toxicity. With these chemicals, even exposure to a single dose can be toxic or fatal. Exposure can occur through inhalation, swallowing or skin contact. Manufacturers of chemicals and pharmaceuticals, as well as farming industries, may be in places where this label would be placed on substances.
Workers should always check labels which will alert them of specific risks. If less hazardous materials are available, those should be used first. Storage, safe handling, contamination prevention, and external conditions can be major factors in preventing chemical reactions and physical exposure.
Understanding the health hazards, special instructions and emergency procedures can help prevent severe injuries and illnesses, and fatal accidents. Workplace safety signs also include helpful information such as a Signal Word, Substance Name, Hazard Statement and Precautionary Statement. GHS chemical signs can include multiple pictograms, depending on the substance hazards.
The right to vote is an integral element to the United States electoral system. With the 2020 Presidential election rapidly approaching, it is imperative to follow along if you plan on participating. Throughout the next year, there will be many important dates and events to remember in order for you to exercise your right to vote. Passionate support for a candidate is well and good, but making an informed decision on who you vote for is important on guiding the direction of your town, county, state, and country.
We have aggregated major 2020 campaign dates to ensure that you to stay updated during the election season.
While the elections aren’t until November 2020, the campaign trail starts in 2019. The Democratic Party held six debates over the course of 2019. They have planned for four more for the first part of 2020.
At the time of writing this post, the Republican Party has not scheduled any debates.
2019 Democratic Debate Schedule
Candidates addressed a variety of topics and their involvement from Medicare for All, environmental dangers, and geopolitical issues. NBC hosted the debates on their networks.¹
Watch the full debates on NBC’s YouTube channel here and here.
Candidates addressed healthcare and immigration primarily. CNN hosted the debates.²
Full transcripts of the debates can be found on NBC’s site here and here.
Candidates primarily debated over healthcare. However, they also touched on foreign relations and pulling forces out of Afghanistan. ABC and Univision aired the most recent Democratic debate.4
The fifth 2019 Democratic Debate was held on November 20th and hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post.6 Candidates addressed racial inequality, Medicare, and housing.
You can watch the debate on MSNBC or read the transcript on NBC News.
The sixth 2019 Democratic Debate was held December 19th. PBS NewsHour and Politico hosted the event.7 Candidates addressed the on-going impeachment process, changes in trade, healthcare, and foreign policy.
Most of the election cycle will take place over the course of 2020. From February until November, candidates will campaign across the country in bids to gain traction over their opponents.
2020 Democratic Debate Schedule
The seventh Democratic candidate debate was hosted by CNN and The Des Moines Register. Participants discussed foreign trade and relations as well as healthcare, prescription drug prices, impeachment, and climate change.8
Watch the full debate on CNN or read the transcript on Rev.com.
Healthcare was a major topic for the candidates. But, they also addressed their electability and foreign and domestic policies.
As with most of the previous debates, the discussed topics varied. But, common topics included climate change, electability, and domestic policy. This was the first debate Michael Bloomberg participated in.
Once the Democratics decides who will represent the party, most of the 2020 race will consist of the states holding primaries or caucuses.
Primary or Caucus?
What is the difference between primaries and caucuses? The difference between the two can be confusing as they accomplish the same goal; they determine which candidates will run for the presidency.
Caucuses are localized meetings where registered voters gather to elect delegates who will attend conventions to elect political candidates. Typically, attendees may only attend caucuses that are held by their registered party.
Primaries are statewide voting processes that allow voters to directly choose their preferred candidate. Registered voters submit secret ballots for their chosen candidate which are then tallied. There are two types of primary; Open Primaries and Closed Primaries. In an open primary, an individual may cast a vote for any valid candidate no matter their registered party, and in a closed primary, votes may only be submitted for candidates within an individual’s party.³
Primary & Caucus Dates
The primaries and caucuses held across the country are scheduled ahead of time for voters to prepare and educate themselves on the potential candidates.
Some states pushed their primary dates back due to public health concerns.
Click here for a full list of primary and caucus dates by state and territory.
Once the primaries and caucuses have ended, the Democratic and Republican parties will hold conventions. These conventions are held to announce the official presidential candidates from each party. The nominations will be announced here and the last few months of campaigning will begin.
Democratic National Convention: July 13-16, 2020
Republican National Convention: August 24-27, 2020
Election day is November 3rd, 2020. In order for you to exercise your right to vote, you will need to register. Each state has its own laws concerning registration deadlines, so be sure you check to see if you are registered or how to register with a site like Vote.org.
Also check to see if your state has early voting procedures or vote by mail options. Military service members and spouses have the option to participate in absentee voting if they are stationed away from their residence.
Find out where your closest polling station is and make sure it is within your precinct, and help others find your station with directional yard signs. You will be assigned a polling station based on your address, so you will need to go there in order to cast your ballot. If you go to a different station, you will not be listed and not allowed to vote.
Inauguration day for the 2020 elections is January 20, 2021. This will mark the start of the new or continued administration based on the results from the election.