Garden Center Marketing Blog

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Cleaning Your Coroplast and Vinyl Signs

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: February 22, 2021

The best way to clean your coroplast and vinyl banners is to use a sponge and dishwashing soap like Dawn. Do not scrub to hard and definitely do NOT use a pressure washer. I learned that lesson the hard way; a pressure washer will definitely clean your sign as well as taking off all of the ink :(.

Plant Database Search Tips

Use the text search box to find the plant you're looking for

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: September 26, 2018

With a plant library of more than 18,400 plant records, using the text search box is the quickest way to find a specific variety. Watch a short video to learn a couple of quick tricks.

Don't let the sun ruin your sign's readability

Use vinyl with a blockout layer

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: August 13, 2018

If you plan to hang a vinyl banner where the sun will shine through it at some point during the day, be sure to use vinyl with a blockout layer. This will ensure that the light will not 'bleed through' your sign to make it difficult, or impossible to read.

Quick Tip: Installing 18"x36" Banners with Pole Sleeves

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: March 19, 2018

When it comes to installing vinyl banners, think boot camp hair cut: High and Tight!

Sign Tip: Make sure sign is easily read from a distance

You can't make it too easy to read!

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: March 13, 2018

In our 'Bigger is almost Always Better' blog on December 18th, we discussed the need to test font sizes to make sure the sign lettering is big enough to read. This blog expands on the tip of how to test font size BEFORE you pay for a sign.

Create a Signage Sales Funnel

Use various sign types and sizes to increase sales

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: March 5, 2018

Your Garden Center is competing with anyone or anything that takes your customers' time and/or money. If your customer runs out of time or money or worse yet, both, they will not be spending either with you. Good signage addresses the time constraint as shoppers can quickly find what they’re looking for, pay and get on with their day.

Use the 40/60 Rule to Have Signs that Rock!

Yes, math can be useful

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: January 20, 2018

If you are not careful, a sign can be transformed into an article very quickly as you keep thinking of things you want to tell your customer. The more you try to say, the less is heard.

Bigger Is Almost Always Better

Ensure text on your signs is big enough to be easily read

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: December 18, 2017

One of the biggest sign mistakes is using lettering that is far too small. There are three primary reasons people make this mistake.

Save space, time and money with 'Multiple Varieties' bench cards

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: December 14, 2017

There are times when you won't want or need a bench card for each and every variety. That's where the 'Multiple Variety' plant records come in handy.

Hundreds of new Syngenta varieties now available

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: December 11, 2017

Syngenta Flowers and are working together to make it even easier for garden centers to have customized bench cards, hang tags, pot labels and website pages with Syngenta varieties. 

Use Contrasting Colors to Draw Attention on Your Signs

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: December 2, 2017

It is quite common for people to be disappointed with the lack of “pop” on their actual signs versus what they approved on the monitor. Similar to font size, approving color choices based solely on what you see on a computer monitor can result in signs that are difficult to read.

Bilingual Bench Cards Now Available

English and French OR Spanish

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: September 18, 2017

All of the characteristic descriptions (Full Sun, Deer Resistant, Summer Bloomer, etc.)  have been translated to both French and Spanish. 

Good Signage is Not Optional

Simple ways to improve your signs and make shopping easier for customers.

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: August 15, 2017

Target does it. Home Depot does it. “It” is using signage effectively to help their customers quickly find the products they are looking for.

If successful retailers spend money on signage, it must make financial sense. With today’s printing costs and available technology, even small garden centers can implement a cost-effective signage program.

Annual UV Resistance Testing Underway

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: April 18, 2017

We test all of the products we sell to ensure they will perform well for you. We started UV Resistance Testing on March 24, 2017.

Photos: Don't be penny wise and pound foolish

Make sure you have the rights to EVERY image on your site

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: October 28, 2015

Grabbing an image from the Internet and putting it on your website is 'free' when you do it, but could end up costing you dearly in the long term. 

Create a Buzz! Pollinator Friendly Plants

Use 'Attracts Pollinators' signs to increase sales

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: May 5, 2015

To state the obvious, there has been a lot of news about the importance of pollinators. Take advantage of heightened consumer awareness with our new 'Attracts Pollinators' signs.

Group your pollinator attracting plants with these signs to make it easy for customers to find plants that address this need.

Got Metric?

Yep, we do now.

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: April 27, 2015

We have recently introduced the option for displaying metric units on bench cards, hang tags and pot labels.

Ink Saver Templates Now Available

Save up to 40% in ink coverage

Author: Kyle Barnhart   |  Published: April 20, 2015

Recently, customers began inquiring about which templates require the least amount of ink to print. While some templates used less ink than others, we could not confidently proclaim that one template over another was truly ink-friendly. That is, until now.

Don't Run the Risk of Lost Website Traffic: Chose Your Keywords Wisely

Author: Kyle Barnhart   |  Published: April 7, 2015

Your customers know who you are, they know your name and ideally have visited your website.  What you’re looking for is new customers, people or businesses, who don’t know you or have been to your website.  How do you attract their business if they don’t know you exist?  Keywords.  Being found on relevant keyword searches of potential customers is the end game. Ranking well in relevant, related keywords is how you attract new business on the web. There are two very important words in the previous statement: relevant and related. Let's go over each in a bit more detail.

Meta Tags: You're Not Using Them But You Should

Author: Kyle Barnhart   |  Published: March 25, 2015

Let's first talk about what Meta Tags are and what they are not.  Meta Tags are not the silver bullet to get you the to top of search results.  Filling out your Meta Data will not cause you to go from page 30 to page 1 for a keyword.  What Meta Tags will do, Meta Tags will help search engines display the content on your page in a legible format.  Let's take a look at where a search engine like Google uses meta tags.

Discover Who's Browsing Your Site by Mobile

Author: Kyle Barnhart   |  Published: March 20, 2015

Google Analytics is a powerful tool.  If you don’t have it installed on your website, I would strongly recommend you add it quickly.  Everyday that goes by is another day’s worth of data you're not compiling and another day of not knowing exactly what your website visitors are doing on your site.  

4 Reasons You Need a Mobile Website

Author: Kyle Barnhart   |  Published: March 10, 2015

Smartphones are everywhere.  Sometimes we love them and sometimes we don’t, but for now they’re here to stay and there are a few reasons you need to make sure your site is optimized to effectively capture this expanding audience. 

Add your own plants to your library faster!

Import your plants via an excel sheet to build your plant library quickly

Author: Kyle Barnhart   |  Published: February 26, 2015

One of the complaints we get from our customers is it can take a while to load plant data into their plant library. We are working hard to make this process as easy as possible for our customers as less time on the computer means more time in the garden center.

Lead the Way with Great Garden Center Signage

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: October 24, 2014

Nikki Weed wrote a great article on signage and her 'PIE" (Price, Information & Eye-Catching) theory. Nikki is a horticulturist and professional adventurer who uses her experiences and knowledge to manage a successful garden center in Greenville, S.C.

Portland's International Rose Test Garden

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: October 4, 2013

The International Rose Test Garden was one of 24 official testing sites for the internationally respected All-America Rose Selections (AARS). The All-American Rose Selections was a non-profit association of rose growers and introducers dedicated to the introduction and promotion of exceptional roses. I had the pleasure of visiting these gorgeous gardens on August 24th, 2013 and took over 1,000 photos to exand the breadth and quality of our rose database.

7 Tips To Create Compelling Signage For Your Retail Store

by Bob Phibbs

Author: Timothy Howard   |  Published: June 20, 2013

This is a great article with takeaways you can apply in your garden center. There are also a couple of great pictures near the end of the blog.