How do you prepare artwork for a billboard

How To Design A Billboard

How To Design A Billboard

It can look like a complex task, especially if it’s the first time that you’ll be doing it, so we will show you how to design a billboard that will increase the probability of your campaign being a success.

To help you, we’re going to take you through some important tips to ensure that you can achieve a high quality design that captures the attention of your target audience effectively.

Short And Simple Messaging

Consumers will only have around 5 to 10 seconds to view your message and absorb it. So one of the most important elements when you design a billboard is it should be simple and straight to the point.

Resist the urge to cram vast amounts of text and information into your billboard when designing it.  If you keep your message simple, you’ll get a much better response from your campaign.

In most cases, a billboard is used to signpost the consumer to get somewhere or suggest what to do. It is a must that you use no more than 10 words within your advert.

Use Readable Fonts

When you design a billboard, you must select fonts that are legible from both long and short  distances. Don not consider fonts with thin strokes or ornate scripts as these will be extremely difficult to read.

Use large, legible typefaces with adequate spacing between letters. This will enhance its readability. Finally, Avoid using all uppercase characters, when words are used with both upper and lower case characters they are much easier to read.

Sans Serif fonts like Arial, Calibri, Verdana, Tahoma and Helvetica are perfect for billboards. Simple, modern and easily intelligible, they are the perfect typography choice for an effective billboard design.

How To Design A Billboard


Use Bright Colours And Contrast With Your Billboard Design

A key tip when you design a billboard is to avoid using subtle colours  as they just won’t work. Research has proven that the best colours for billboards are vivid or bold. This will make sure that your outdoor advertising message stands out against nature and its surroundings.

Colour contrast is also very important when you need your message to stand out. You will need to avoid colours that have similar frequency to each other. It makes it illegible to motorists as they pass by at speed.

Below is a guide on how to design a billboard with the best colour combinations.

Best colours for outdoor advertising



The most memorable billboard campaigns have used high quality imagery to tell their story. Whether you’re using traditional or digital billboards, it’s really important that the images or photos that you are using shows clearly what you’re promoting. A great way to achieve this is to use large images of smaller objects that are high in resolution. This will ensure that they are sharp and bright even at longer distances. Furthermore,  Stay away from complex images that will cause clutter within you design as this will detract attention from your main message.

How To Design A Billboard With A Call To Action Included

Another important element of your design is incorporating a call to action.  Too many businesses and brands ignore this. It actually makes consumers perform a profitable action towards their business.

The effectiveness of the advertising creative is actually tested when you ask the consumer to call, buy, visit you on social media, visit your office or store. As a result, The stronger your advert, the more effective your call-for-action would be.

Some examples of effective call to actions:-

Asking people to call your telephone number.

Direct consumers to a website.

Signposting them to your place of business.

Direct people to your social media channels.

Use of twitter hashtags.

Dedicated discount codes.

QR (Quick response) codes.

A time sensitive sale with an “Offer ends” date.

These are just a few examples that have been proven to be successful within billboard advertising messages.

Use A Memorable Slogan

A memorable slogan should be short, punchy which uses an economy of words. Incorporating a billboard slogan within your design is an essential component to the success of your overall campaign.

It’s worth putting doing some research, study popular slogans and find out what makes them tick.

slogans in billboard advertisements

Billboard Design Ideas

The influence of quality designed billboard adverts are growing among consumers. It is one of the most prominent ways to build your brand within you local area.

However, only some designs manage to become a success in the long run. The most memorable billboard creatives rise from creativity and innovative tactics.

Please feel free to get inspiration from some of these great billboard design ideas.

Digital Billboard Design Tips

Although very similar, there are variances in designing for digital billboards as opposed to traditional sites.  With this in mind, here are a few tips for designing a digital billboard.

Creating an effective digital billboard design is mainly about making it easy to read.  Even the best design is worthless if it is not readable from long distance. Designs should be simple and clear.

A big digital billboard design tip is to add a thin dark stroke around the text to separate it from the background.

Use only RGB colour files for digital billboards.
  Design as you would for a website or TV.

These days, people are inundated with adverts as they go about their everyday life. The best way to engage with the consumer is through relevant, timely messages. Change your digital billboard design to throughout the day to reflect current affairs.

Make sure that you know the size of the digital billboard that you have booked. Although all digital 48 sheet billboards look the same size, they will have a different display pixel pitch.

digital billboard design tips


How Much Does It Cost To Design A Billboard Advert?

Advertising costs for a billboard will vary based on several factors. These include location, size, printing, design of the advert and length of time.

Here, we’ll take a look at the cost to design a billboard advert. Professional advertising agencies would range between £60 – £200 per hour. Whilst smaller agencies would charge a one off design fee between £50 – £100 with the ability to make several amendments to the advert.

However, at Amplify, depending on the length of campaign that you book with us, the cost would be included at no extra charge through our billboard design maker.

The design of the billboard is one of the most important parts of the campaign, so make sure that you do not cut corners.


Would you like to know more about how to design a billboard and planning an outdoor advertising campaign?. Please get in touch – / 01202 670687


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