Trade Show Displays on a Budget

Categories: Trade Show Displays on a Budget, Trade Show Tips

One of the key components to keep in mind when devising your strategy towards a successful trade show is how to maximize your marketing budget in the most efficient way possible. With trade show displays being a large aspect of that budget, is can seem like a large task when it comes to ordering different kinds of signage for your booth, especially when you start adding everything today. But at the end of the day, augmenting your show to be the best it can be is crucial. Your goal is to drive in patrons and garner the attention your company or brand deserves, and nothing does that better at a crowded trade show than large, eye-catching signage. However, balancing that need to be noticed among the crowd with your limited budget is vital so as to not overspend. Below, we go through some advice to keep your budget from going in the red while keeping your booth looking sharp.

Work with what you got

When analyzing your budget and allocating funds for trade show signage, take stock of what you already have purchased. If you have been attending shows for years, there is a large chance that you have already purchased numerous displays, and therefore have a massive inventory to work with. While these displays might be older and a little worn out from wear and tear with being brought to exhibition after exhibition, there is still a chance they can be used yet again for your next trade show. If the information that is currently on the older display is out of date, you may just need to reprint the signage itself rather than order a whole new display package. It is only when the displays are literally falling apart and can not accomplish their sole function that you know it is time to put those displays out to pasture. Some exhibitors have a very limited budget as well as a monumental “do it yourself” attitude towards signage, and by listing your older displays on websites such as Ebay or Lucky Exhibits, you might be able to squeeze out a bit more money out of those displays instead of discarding them completely.

Consider Price-vs-Value

When planning out and ultimately maximizing your marketing budget, there are a couple different tactics and facets to consider in your decision making. Do you need a quick fix for your next show, or do you have the monetary means to invest in your signage and displays longer term? The old adage “you get what you pay for” definitely rings true in this regard. Spending more on one show can lead to savings in the future, since you will have higher quality signage to call into action come exhibition-time, which will effectively increase your medium as well as long term budgets.

If, after you assess your budget and determine your needs, you realize you fall into the category that is described above, the question then becomes “what displays would be best to invest in?” Seeking out displays that can have their graphics reprinted as well as reattached can save you in overall costs, since you would not be purchasing new displays or brand new hardware every single time the print itself needs to be updated with current information. Both TRIGA displays as well as SEG frames accomplish this goal, while also having replacement parts ready for your hardware, should you need to commit to some fixes down the road. While these displays can be a little pricier than others, keep in mind that this is an investment, and can ultimately save you money on future shows as well as stress and effort.

Start your Display Search Early

When it comes to saving money on displays, the last thing you want to do is to pay extra fees and surcharges to get the displays you desire to you via expedited shipping. Sinking budgetary funds into shipping direct to show can have this effect as well. If you do realize that ordering new displays, signage, or prints is a necessity for your next show, make sure you have more than enough time from ordering the aforementioned products to the show itself. Creating checklists and budgeting your time efficiently can be the action that saves your budget as well.


Regardless of how large your booth may be or your preferences at trade shows, there are always steps you can take to save a couple dollars here and there to stretch that marketing budget just a bit more. Budgeting your money efficiently as well as your time in ordering newer products kicks off the process, while determining your short, medium, and long term goals round off the attack plan.

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