Colourful display screens

6 easy ways to help you get the most out of your retail LED screens

Over the past few years, LED digital signage has been adopted with particular enthusiasm in the retail sector, where they’ve been instrumental in boosting more footfall and sales for countless businesses. That makes them an instantly worthwhile investment – and like any business investment, you’ll want to know that you’re getting the most out of them. While we’ve recently published a post detailing the general ways they can be used to increase business for almost any industry, there’s a certain art to using them to maximise sales in a retail environment – helping you to stand out from your competitors in a busy market (both in the economical and literal sense). So with that in mind, here are our six top tips on using LED digital displays to get more customers through your door.

Focus on visual designs

It might sound like an obvious thing to say, but then again, LED digital signage is still a relatively new technology in the advertising landscape, and it can be easy to get carried away with all the possibilities it offers. One particularly common pitfall for businesses is to end up overstuffing their visual adverts with too much copy, which can make it difficult for customers to properly absorb the message – especially if it’s part of a rapid-fire series of advertisements.

As we noted in our recent post focusing on how LED signage can increase business, our brains process visual information much faster than text, and retain it for longer. That means the most effective adverts are design-led first and foremost, so it’s best to start by whittling down your copy to just the bare essentials, and focus the rest of your energy on creating graphics which will communicate that information in a striking, visually arresting way. Too much text, and your viewer will likely just give up and turn away.

Time your content to target key demographics

If you want to achieve maximum engagement for your content, you’ll need to think about when, where and how your target markets will be shopping. Different types of consumers will be active at different times of day, so tailor your content accordingly. For example, students and professionals will be going to work around 9am, and returning between 5pm and 7pm, whereas parents will be picking up their children around 3pm. Young people will be more likely to go out on weekends, and families will typically be doing their shopping on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. So narrow down your target markets early on, and time your content to ensure that it reaches the maximum number of your consumers.

Different products and services will be best-served by being broadcast at different times of day in real-time, too. Breakfast deals should be displayed in the morning for example, and Happy Hour drinks in the early to late evening.

Beyond just the day-to-day basis, you’ll also want to think about more long-term strategies as well. Warm coats and Christmas promotions will work best in the darker seasons, whereas the summer months will obviously be the best time to promote swimsuits and holiday flights.

retail display
Use dynamic displays wherever possible

One of the best things about digital signage in the UK is that not only are the screens effective in themselves, but they open up a whole new world of high-tech possibilities for engaging your audience. If you’ve got the budget, dynamic and interactive displays are brilliant at getting a buzz going for your business.

Just take a look at the campaign launched by British Airways and the Olgivy 12th Floor advertising agency, which was so impressive that people are still talking about it almost a decade later. The campaign involved LED digital displays which could detect when an aircraft was flying overhead, and every time one did, they would display an image of a child pointing in wonder. It was a beautifully creative example of what this technology could achieve, so it’s probably no surprise that the campaign was a runaway success.

Another of the more sophisticated (but effective) ideas involve pairing your LED digital signage with high-tech cameras which can read human facial expressions, and play responding content accordingly. We’ll leave that to you to decide if it’s in your budget, but if you’ve got the capital, it’s well worth the investment!

Provide useful information (even if it’s not related to your brand)

This is a slightly more subtle way of engaging with your customers, but again one which has proven to bring results, time and time again. If you’re able, it’s worth thinking about using your LED digital displays to communicate useful information like the time, date, weather forecasts or temperature. That can attract glances from passers-by, who are then more likely to engage with the advertisements alongside it. This technique especially effective for shoppers who routinely pass by your premises, as they can get into the habit of looking towards your displays for this information, increasing their chances of engagement with your brand. It’s a good reason why so many businesses and marketers choose these sorts of displays for city centres and other busy urban hubs.

Synergise your LED digitals displays with your sales strategies and social media

While it’s true that LED advertising displays are highly effective on their own, they work best when they’re deployed as part of a wider strategy that incorporates a range of other marketing channels, all working in harmony to communicate the same message. So if you’re promoting a new product launch on your social media, make sure to highlight it on your LED signage, too. If you’ve got a new upcoming event that you want people to know about, don’t just mention it in passing to your customers in-store – make sure that your LED signage tells them about it before they even step foot in your shop. The same goes for any competitions, or limited-time promotions – especially since LED digital displays can be fantastic for emphasising a sense of urgency. The list goes on! When you take the time to ensure that all of your channels are supporting each other with the same message, that’s when they’ll enjoy the greatest success.

Stay on top of current events

This is a point that’s probably most relevant to larger businesses and corporations, but it’s worth occasionally bearing in mind for SMEs as well! Most campaigns are planned out months in advance, so when you’re at the planning stage, it’s a good idea to try and think about the potential for them to be affected by changes in the political or cultural landscape. The sudden impact of the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic is one obvious and dramatic example. Another is the worldwide Black Lives Matter marches in 2020, which caused countless companies to review their marketing in light of the delicate political situation (no doubt nervously remembering the infamous Kendall Jenner Pepsi ad from a few years before).

Now, the Pepsi ad was a particularly notorious clanger, amplified as it was by a large-scale rollout courtesy of one of the world’s biggest corporations. It’s not likely to be a mistake your company makes, but it does underscore the importance of staying abreast of current events and trying to anticipate how they might affect your marketing – especially if you’re planning on displaying in large cities with especially diverse populations, which can often be more sensitive to changes in the political climate.

Those are just a few of our ideas – you might well be working on some of your own! Whatever the case, if you’ve got any further questions or need any additional details on anything, our experts here at Scanlite are here to help, with an extensive range of digital signage solutions. We know this technology inside out, and exactly how it can be used to achieve your goals as a business. To find out how we can help you, feel free to give us a call today on 01253 302723, or email us on

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