6 Keys To Developing A Successful Trade Show Display

trade show display

More than any other element you prepare to attend a trade show, the display will make or break you. Attendees will decide with a quick glance at your trade show display whether they want to visit your booth or not. So, the design and wording the board displays directly affects whether anyone will hear your message.

Create an Eye Catching Trade Show Display: Reel Them In

1. Show and Tell Them Who You Are in a Single Glance

trade show display

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Displays can answer a question or pose one, but in order to attract attention you must give them some idea of what they stand to gain from visiting your booth.

Develop a clear, concise theme and allow this message to dictate the rest of the design.

2. Keep it Simple

trade show display

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It’s tempting to want to give everyone your entire message on the display. But people milling about a crowded room with lots to see and do won’t take much time to read.

Instead, give them one or two key points that quickly and easily introduces your product, service, etc.

3. Boil Down Your Message to a Single Catch Phrase

trade show display

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Most new products and services are quite complex. It’s hard to easily define a complicated concept, mobile app, product or software package in a single sentence. Instead, create a message that gives the viewer one good reason to give you a minute of their time.

Make it catchy. You want your phrase to be something easy to recognize or recall later when they’re ready to make a purchase.

4. Don’t Get Too Technical

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Even if you’re attending a tech trade show, never assume the people attending are interested or knowledgeable about highly technical things. Many companies send a manager or non-tech representative to attend these shows.

Craft your message so a layperson can understand and don’t build a display that intimidates non-techies.

5. Use Color and Images Wisely

trade show display

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You want color and images to attract, not to distract. Use no more than two or three contrasting colors to create an eye-catching scheme that isn’t too busy or dizzying. Any images you use must be clear and vivid.

It pays to have displays professionally printed, because you don’t want to look homemade in the midst of your savvy competitors.

6. Use Quality Materials and Construction

trade show display

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The worst thing that could happen during your trade show is for your well-designed trade show display to topple or crumple. Don’t use cheap materials to build the display. Select high quality, durable materials and make sure the display is assembled properly at the start of the show. Check the integrity of the display regularly.

The right trade show display means you’re catching attention from across the room. A display that colorfully highlights the key point of your message lets attendees know it’s worth their time to mosey over –  meaning you get what you paid for to attend the show.

Send your best people to work the booth. You don’t want to spend all that time crafting the right trade show display just to have the speaker turn people away.


Timothy Carter Industry veteran Timothy Carter is the Chief Revenue Officer for SEO.co. Tim leads all revenue for the company and oversees all customer-facing teams including sales, marketing & customer success.

22 Reactions
  1. Trade shows are great ways to build your brand while having a good time. Thinking about how to make it a successful event is very important. Thanks for this!

  2. Having something useful/interesting to give away is a great complement too.

  3. Oooh I miss attending trade shows. The designs are simply amazing. You can see what every brand has to offer and everyone is busy. These are some really nice ideas with some really nice samples. If I may add, you can also host some type of contest to draw the crowd to your booth more.

  4. Great post Timothy. Exhibitions stands on first impression tell any type of audience/attendees what they are about. Working around the house designs of your exhibition stand is vital, especially for those attendees who know who you already are. But the design of the stand should also be well thought out for any new lead acquisitions. Simplicity and creativity can go much further!

  5. I would add one more item here: prepare your booth so that visitors can easily flow through it. Also, prepare a small space for your staff to easily record visitors’ information. It is indeed the most essential part of a trade show – recording data for future follow-up. Preparing your booth to ease this aspect is essential. Last but not least, make sure you have (good quality) WiFi on your stall: you will need it to record leads digitally. myfairtool offers a free solution to record leads but it still requires a good connection.
    Good luck with your next event and great business to you!

  6. I love the advice about boiling your message down to a single catchphrase. I had no idea that by doing this and keeping things simple that you are more likely to attract people. I’ll have to keep this in mind and hopefully, find someone to help me in case I need to set up a trade show booth.

  7. Make your trade show booth stand out from those of your competitors. Custom displays for trade shows use a contemporary style. They portray a blend of the features, feel and look. will make your business stand out of from the rest.

  8. I really like your tip to create an eye catching display that can pull your potential customers in. I would add that you need to be sure to have engaging content that you can share with them that will keep them there. It’s important that your potential customers have a enjoyable, unique experience at your booth that will leave a good first impression with them.

  9. “Use Color and Images Wisely” – Great tip. Having a trade show booth design that aligns with your brand makes a big difference in your prospect’s mind. If your logo and website are red and yellow, make sure your booth design is red and yellow not blue and pink.

  10. The company I work for is planning on going to a trade show soon, so they are wondering what kind of display they should do for their booth. So I appreciate you letting us know that we should only use 2 or 3 contrasting colors so that we don’t distract people. I’ll be sure to tell my boss that our booth display should only have about 2 or 3 contrasting colors.

  11. Thanks for this advice for having a good trade show display. I’m glad that you mentioned you should try to keep a display simple and try to find a way to easily introduce your service. This seems helpful especially since you technically have a few seconds to make an impression.

  12. Trade show is a medium to make your brand visible to the visitors. Thanks for sharing important tips to good trade show display.

  13. You make an excellent point about ensuring that trade show displays should not be too technical and it is best to ensure it is people-friendly. I like that you advised us to craft our messages in a way that a layperson can understand as most of the time, people attend trade shows are not interested in highly technical things. I will keep this tip in mind if I ever plan on organizing a trade show.