The 6 Most Popular Types of Illuminated Signs

You’re searching for the perfect sign for your business. But where do you start?

With so many signage options, lighting features, and sizes on the market, it can feel overwhelming.

Electrical or illuminated signs also have styles of their own. These signs consist of lit lettering with custom shapes and programmable lighting.

We want to make it easy for you to decide which type of sign is best for your business.

So let’s look at the six most popular types of illuminated signs and the key points you need to know about each.

1. Lightbox or Illuminated Cabinet Signs

The most common type of illuminated sign is the lightbox or cabinet sign. These signs consist of an aluminum, four-sided box, with either one or two sign faces. They can be used on a building face or as a monument sign. The faces are made with translucent acrylic or polycarbonate. Polycarbonate, often referenced by the brand name Lexan, is more expensive, but preferred for signs, because it is high impact and crack resistant. We can direct print or lay printed translucent vinyl on the face to create any sign design. One of our specialties is our two-layer process that ensures accurate vibrant color at night to match the daytime look of the sign. You won’t get a faded-out look here!

2. Front-Lit Letters

Mural inside of UNC Wilmington's Admissions Office hallway

Front-lit letters draw attention during the night or day.

They’re the most common type of letter, and they work by using lights to illuminate the face of the letters via a translucent acrylic face (that shines from within the letter itself). We produce our letters with LED (light-emitting diode) lighting. LEDs are more energy efficient, require less maintenance and have lower voltages than the traditional fluorescent or neon applications.

We also are able to create signs that light up in a custom color at night that is different from the daytime color. An example is the Cambridge Fitness letter sign that looks black in the daytime, but lights up in a custom blue at night.

3. Reverse-Lit Letters

Vinyl artwork on the elevator doors at Cape Fear Community College

Reverse letters are often called “halo” or “backlit” letters. We are able to provide customer colors for the halo lighting. This UNCW halo lit sign was customized to match their very own Seahawk Teal.

These signs deliver an impactful and classy look because they are mounted away from the wall.

This small distance causes the light to form a halo effect behind the sign.

4. Front and Back-Lit Letters

Front and back-lit letters create a more dramatic illumination than their counterparts.

This is because both sides of these signs have light (rather than just being lit from the front or back).

5. Illuminated Logo Boxes

Van wrap for Red Door Homes

An illuminated logo box is the ideal way to incorporate your business’s logo into your signage. A letter logo box is produced in the same way as a rectangular lightbox cabinet, but has a custom shape to match your logo shape. Logo boxes can be front lit, backlit (halo) or both. These signs can increase your brand awareness and communicate what your product is in a much more dynamic way.

6. Indoor Display Signs

Emerge Ortho Mural in Front Office

Whether you need an indoor sign for a showroom, office, or exhibit, a custom illuminated display sign can draw attention to your indoor space.

We produce a variety of types of indoor illuminated signs from indoor letters to illuminated acrylic 3D and flat signs. You can customize your sign’s design elements, including the fonts, colors, sizing, and branding.

We can match existing art in order to keep signs looking fresh and your business looking consistent, just like we did here with this exterior sign.

Port City Signs has recently moved to a new location! 

We now have over five times the space, which means we’re able to fulfill all of your signage needs. 

Plus! We now offer all six electrical and illuminated sign options listed above.

If you’re ready to start creating the perfect electrical sign for your business— contact our team of sign experts today for a FREE estimate.