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Stay Ahead of the Curve: Discover the Latest Digital Signage Trends

Tue Aug 8 | Posted by  Daniel Hooper

Amid the ever-changing landscape of recent years, there has been one constant: the resolute march of the digital revolution. As a society, we have embraced the opportunity to transform analog systems into their digital counterparts wherever possible, and this trend extends even to signage.

Over the past few years, digital signage has exploded.  As the year goes on, we predict that we will continue to improve current technologies, and businesses will continue to find innovative uses for digital signage.  Here are some of the latest trends in digital signage we’ve noticed so far

Touch-Screen Self-Service Kiosks 

The pandemic may have forced us to adopt solutions minimizing face-to-face interactions, but many people have discovered they prefer it that way. 

Some find it faster and more efficient, while other people might just be glad that they don’t have to make small talk with the cashier.  At the grocery store, it gives customers the freedom to bag their purchases the way they like them.

At a fast food restaurant, they minimize the risk that the person taking your order will mishear you and serve you the wrong food. 

Most touch-screen kiosks don’t take up very much space, so businesses can install five or six kiosks where they previously only had two cash registers.  Kiosks allow you to serve more customers simultaneously without the cost you would pay to expand your counter and hire more staff each shift. 

Digital touch screens are the most user-friendly way for customers to serve themselves.  They can scroll through your entire menu, view high-resolution pictures of the food products, and modify their order.  This technology is also great anywhere customers might need to check themselves in, such as an airport, a doctor’s office, or a hotel. 

Engaging, Interactive Advertisements 

Advertisements are everywhere—on our roads, malls, televisions, phones, and more.  Consumers have become so desensitized that they have learned to tune advertisements out. 

The challenge for advertisers is to find more innovative and engaging ways to advertise that stand out from the crowd and grab consumers’ attention.  One way to do this is to replace traditional static image ads, like billboards with dynamic digital signs

The human eye is naturally attracted to movement.  It’s easy for consumers to gloss over still images.  However, digital signage can change colors, scroll different text across the screen, and feature animations or videos.  Motion sensors, cameras, and touch screens allow your customers to interact directly with digital ads. 

For example, you can create an ad for a mobile game or movie that allows users to play a short demo of the game.  You can also let users see themselves in a vacation destination or virtually try on your products. 

You can also update your ads with the latest information or respond to the environment.  The ad can display a live countdown if you’re counting down to an event.  You can also highlight different products or features based on the time of year, day of the week, time of day, and more.  If you’re a coffee shop, you might program the sign to promote your espresso beverage at 6 a.m. and a chamomile tea at 6 p.m.

Formetco Digital produces signs for both indoor and outdoor use, giving you greater flexibility to create exciting, interactive ads in any location.  

QR Codes

QR codes are series of pixels arranged in a square-shaped grid.  Like barcodes, they store information for easy retrieval.  However, traditional barcodes usually require special equipment to access the information stored in an internal system.

Anyone with a smartphone camera can scan a QR code and get directed to a website or app.  Digital ads let you easily embed QR codes into all your advertisements and even allow you to adjust which QR code you choose to display.   

With online advertisements, consumers can click on the ad and go directly to your site to make a purchase.  This is one of the drawbacks of physical signage: consumers have to remember the name of your company or website to look it up later.

By embedding a QR code into your digital signage, you give customers a way to go directly from looking at your ad to shopping on your site.  You can also use QR codes on menus to let customers access nutrition information quickly and easily. 

Up-to-the-Minute Data Broadcasts 

We’ve talked about the many ways you can use digital signage for external communications, but they also have several useful applications as internal communications tools.

If you work in manufacturing, you can use digital signage to display daily production goals and the team’s progress toward that goal.  This is an excellent way to keep your employees focused and increase productivity. 

You can also use digital signage to post important safety reminders, share announcements, shout out employees on birthdays and anniversaries, or send out alerts.  In an emergency where you may need to evacuate the facility, digital signage can show team members in different parts of the building the closest and safest evacuation route from their current location.  You can also notify employees about severe weather, early closures, and more. 

Cloud-Based Content Management 

Right now, most digital signage technologies still rely on hardware solutions.  However, cloud-based software, especially for content management systems, is on the rise. 

Cloud-based solutions offer several advantages over hardware.  First, they tend to be more user-friendly and customizable.  This means that you can teach any member of your team to manage the content displayed on your digital signs effectively.

Because you can access the cloud from anywhere, you can update content across multiple signs from one central hub instead of traveling to each location individually.  Cloud-based software also has better capabilities for building interactive content. 

Virtual and Augmented Reality

When it comes to engaging and interactive content that improves customer experiences, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are leading the game. 

Augmented reality is a little bit simpler to implement.  With AR, you create digital environments that users can overlay onto the real world and interact with digital versions of your product.

Virtual product demonstrations are one of the biggest ways businesses use AR to market their products, such as furniture or paint companies that allow customers to envision how their new décor will look in their space.  With digital signage, you can create virtual “mirrors” that allow your customers to try on clothes without visiting a changing room. 

Virtual reality may be a little more difficult for most companies to implement now, as it requires special headsets. However, it presents an interesting opportunity for businesses to bring digital signage into virtual environments like the metaverse. 

Screens are the access point to virtual reality.  Soon, customers may be able to enter the metaverse in many different places thanks to digital signage. 

Going Green with Screens

With the acceleration of climate change, businesses and consumers are placing more emphasis on sustainability than ever before.  Digital signs provide a greener alternative to analog solutions.  For example, restaurant self-serve kiosks are far more sustainable than paper menus.

With traditional billboards, whenever a company wanted to change the advertisement, they would have to remove the vinyl covering and replace it with a new one.This used an incredible amount of resources. 

However, for digital signage, once a sign or billboard is installed, there are no more wasted materials.  Companies can upload new ads with zero waste.  This also creates much faster turnaround times for replacing content. 

Through the present and beyond, we expect to see improvements to digital signage that make advertising even more environmentally sustainable, including automated shut-down times, lower energy consumption, and more environment-friendly materials.  Many of these green features can also help companies save costs

Read Sustainability Efforts in Digital Billboard Manufacturing

Join the Latest Trend with Formetco Digital 

At Formetco, we offer a wide range of digital screens to help you deliver personalized content that resonates with your customers.  Contact us today to learn more and receive a quote!

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