Small Business Sign Survey Reveals Generational Differences

Small Business Sign Survey Reveals Generational Differences

FedEx Office Examines Signage Trends within the Small Business Community

DALLAS, May 7, 2014 — More than half of small business owners find in-store signs and graphics effective in attracting customers to their business, according to a nationwide survey commissioned by FedEx Office. The survey explored trends in signage across generations, revealing differences in design and marketing materials and the importance of tailoring signage to effectively promote a small business.

The survey showed 64 percent of Millennial small business owners (age 18-34) place significant value on creativity in graphics and signage, a contrast to their Baby Boomer counterparts (age 55 and over), who place higher emphasis on simplistic designs. In fact, they are more likely to use signs (45 percent) than more traditional marketing elements like direct mail (34%) or brochures (39%). Millennials are more likely to believe contemporary, modern designs drive customers to their business (47 percent), compared to 29 percent of Gen X (age 35-54) and 17 percent of Baby Boomer small business owners.

The survey indicated the younger, Millennial small business owner is more likely to choose a banner, window cling or poster and use color with thoughtful and intelligent humor to engage customers.

Regardless of age, 91 percent of small business owners agreed that readable graphics are important, and 37 percent favored bright and colorful graphics to drive customers to their business. The survey found 46 percent of Millennials turn to signage experts for guidance for signage creation.

“We understand how important it is to address the array of design and signage needs among small business owners of any generation and are constantly seeking solutions to help them succeed,” said Randy Scarborough, vice president of retail marketing for FedEx. “Whether you are an experienced business owner or just starting out, FedEx Office offers design and print experts to help create large-format posters and banners that emphasize a business’s personality.”

Recognizing the ever-changing needs of small business owners, FedEx Office is employing a new fleet of Canon imagePROGRAF 12-color printers across the majority of its stores. These printers offer customers large format printing solutions designed for exceptional speed, flexibility and photographic color quality. These printers are ideal for FedEx Office customers who demand intricate details and an exceptional color.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with FedEx Office to provide our latest technology to small business customers,” said Junichi Yoshitake, senior vice president and general manager, Business Imaging Solutions Group, Canon USA. “These new printers provide FedEx Office customers consistent color and added tools to meet their business needs.”

With more than 1800 digitally-connected locations in the United States and Canada, FedEx Office is a one-stop-shop for large-format printing from indoor/outdoor banners to posters to corrugated/PVC plastic and metal signs. FedEx Office team members are experts and can work with small business owners to determine the best signage solution for their business.

In support of National Small Business Week, FedEx Office and small business expert Anita Campbell (@smallbiztrends) are hosting a tweet chat on Tuesday, May 13 at 8 p.m. ET. The chat will cover how to get the most out of signage, as well as provide marketing tips and advice for the small business community. To participate, simply follow @FedExOffice and use the hashtag #SMBSignage.

Survey Methodology

This report presents the findings of a telephone survey conducted among a sample of 503 small business owners who employ 5 to 100 employees, generate over $100,000 in annual revenue, and are living in the United States. Interviewing for this survey was completed between April 4th – 10th, 2014. The margin of error for this study is +/-4.4% at the 95% confidence level.

About FedEx Office

FedEx Office, an operating company of FedEx Corp., has more than 1,800 stores and locations primarily in the U.S. and Canada, providing convenient access to printing and shipping expertise with reliable service. The company’s network features retail stores, centralized production centers, corporate on-site print centers, and on-site business centers at hotels, convention centers and universities. Services include copying and digital printing, professional finishing, document creation, direct mail, signs and graphics, computer rental, free Wi-Fi and corporate print solutions. In addition, the company offers FedEx Express and FedEx Ground shipping, Hold at FedEx Location, and packing services backed by the FedEx® Packing Pledge. InformationWeek 500 recognized FedEx Office® Print Online and FedEx Office® Print & Go solutions with the 2011 Most Innovative Products award. Products, services and hours vary by location. For more information, please visit

About FedEx

FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenues of $45 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world’s most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 300,000 team members to remain “absolutely, positively” focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. For more information, visit

About Canon U.S.A., Inc.

Canon U.S.A., Inc., is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business, and industrial digital imaging solutions. With approximately $36 billion in global revenue, its parent company, Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), ranks third overall in U.S. patents registered in 2013† and is one of Fortune Magazine’s World’s Most Admired Companies in 2014. Canon U.S.A. is committed to the highest level of customer satisfaction and loyalty, providing 100 percent U.S.-based consumer service and support for all of the products it distributes. To keep apprised of the latest news from Canon U.S.A., visit and follow us on Twitter @CanonUSA.

# # #


Heather Alexander

FedEx Office Media Relations

(214) 550-7533