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The street survivors: To let and For sale boards

Despite a poor press and enemies within many council, For Sale and To Let boards still take a huge slice of the property marketing cake, says Lawrence Higgins.

Property Drum


It is estimated that 95 per cent of property hunting is done online. If this is the case why bother with a For Sale boards? Well, because sometimes the old ways are the best, “Nothing can replace a well made estate agency board – it represents your company’s image,” says Gary Gosney at Kremer Signs.

Boards have not been superseded by technology, they have been enhanced. Naomi Wood, Agency Express, says, “The estate agency board still remains the cheapest and most effective form of marketing. Whilst most buyers will search for a house online, having well-placed boards will direct viewers to the right property.”

There has been much movement in the market for this static product, so we have spoken to some of the key operators about the latest innovations and how you can get the most from your boards.

how has the relevance of boards changed?

012-for-sale-boards-trees“Although many more initial contacts for agents are web based, 95 per cent of agents still believe that they are an essential part of their marketing strategy. They are also one of the cheapest sales tools available,” says Andy March, at Signboard.

The board is one of the most vital advertising means for any agent, not only for that particular property, but also for their agency itself, “With QR codes potential clients can instantly access property details whilst also seeing the agent’s other properties”, says Elaine Hill at Site Signs.

95% of estate agents still believe that boards are an essential part of their marketing strategy. Andy March Signboard

The relevance of an estate agency board is now more important than ever; it is a 24-hour, local advert for the business.

“Even internet estate agents rely heavily on a traditional for sale or to let sign as a basic tool to increase brand awareness and drive web traffic,” says Gary Gosney at Kremer Signs.

 What are the key cost and management issues?

Naomi Wood at Agency Express says that the cost of servicing and maintaining boards is dependent on the type of service required, “We offer packages from fully inclusive, where all movements and costs are included in one set fee; a movement service, with a charge per property visit and a rental service providing a complete solution to board provision and management.”

The price from one agent’s board to another can vary hugely based on the size, number of colours, shape, etc. The biggest factor that affects the price is the quantity ordered, says Elaine Hill, “The more we can produce at one time has the biggest impact on costs due to the cost of setting the printing machines up.”

Depending on the colours, size, shape, quantities you will achieve a different price, on average, a complete board will vary from £12-15 with more expensive boards costing upwards of £35.00, and the longterm cost is also determined on how well the boards are manufactured, how well they are stored and how many will be used. Gary Gosney says that a typical board erection charge is around £4.00.

Design and operational trends

The ‘T’ board still remains an industry wide favourite. They are among the easiest to erect and the most efficient to produce, but there are trends, the American style gallows boards are, says Naomi, becoming more popular but they cannot be used in certain situations, such as small terraces.

There is also a growing use of the “mini-vie” (“cottage board”), where a property is pavement fronted, for example, “This still gives the agent the opportunity to advertise safely and economically,” says Andy March.

April 10, 2013

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