Bad times mean really bad times for the restaurant industry–a fickle business in a good economy. I worked in restaurants during college and after–I loved being able to take off and travel and not be bound by a boring 9-5 gig. But I just watched another little restaurant in my neighborhood fail and I was not surprised. They violated the most basic of rules–signage. Really, folks, this is just so obvious.
For the longest time, they had a very small, discreet orange sign out front with lettering in small greenish letters that you couldn’t read. How would you ever agree to meet someone there if you couldn’t figure out what the name was? They finally did get a bigger sign and an awning, but I suspect that by then it was too late.
I see a lot of this. Another good example is the name of a store in script that you can’t read. Or foreign names that you can’t pronounce without sounding like a bungler. There is this trend these days towards small, discreet signage–these little signs well may chic, but they don’t do a damn thing towards making your presence known. People put their lives on the line to start a new business and need to be doing everything they possibly can to attract customers. This is not the time for discreet. Making sure people can find you is business 101.