Signage conventions may be studied under the two broad headings of Pictograms and Sign Shape, each of which has been discussed in details in the following paragraphs.


Pictograms refer to the use of particular iconic images or symbolic pictures in signs in order to communicate specific messages to the target groups. Every country possesses certain statutory or legal conditions by which the use of pictograms is regulated or controlled. Each pictogram, therefore, has to abide by certain laws concerning the use of color, shapes or sizes. Instances of such conventions include the ADA Accessibility Guidelines of the United States whereby rules are established and regularized as to the use and deployment of pictograms.

When no texts are included into the body of the Superior Signs Services, one must ensure the use of such pictograms as may be interpreted and understood by members belonging to all cultures or language communities. The use of standardized color codes or shapes may ensure that the pictograms are successfully understood by all. In other words, in order to be informative and comprehensible, pictograms must always try to have an universal appeal.

Sign Shape

Though the shape of sign boards are hardly paid much attention to, they serve to communicate several messages in themselves. With their regular use over a long period of time, certain signs have been conventionally associated with certain specific messages. For instance-

a. Rectangles:

Rectangular sign boards are usually used to provide general information to the public.

b. Circles

Circular signs are used for providing instructions to the public, be it mandatory or optional

c. Triangles

Triangles are conventionally used to convey warnings or alert the public against a potential threat.

The use of these shapes, may however, very from culture to culture.

Commercial signs are evidently one of the most efficient ways of marketing products and promoting them. It is through a well designed, elaborately worked out sign that men of commerce may hope to have upon their potential customers any desired effect. In this context, the choice of available material becomes a matter of concern. Professionals can choose from amongst a variety of options available to them in order to find the perfect material used for their signs. It would be appropriate at this juncture to have an overview as to the options available to businessmen with regard to the materials used for signage which may be studied under the sub heading of Sign Technology.