Wayfinding is particularly important in complex built environments such as healthcare, schools, train and bus stations, shops, offices etc. As architectural places become more complicated people need more visual cues such as maps and directions and symbols to help guide them to their destinations.
Wayfinding signage is a type of sign that gives someone a direction of where to go without having to ask someone for help. They should be able to guide the customer along the way easily and they should be able to reach the destination with ease.
Healthcare present a unique set of navigational challenges. This makes navigation among the buildings complex. In addition, the patients and families that visit healthcare are often under stress. Wayfinding systems can help reduce their stress by providing easy to follow signage and legible directions to their destinations, such as colour coding walkways.
Warning & HSE Signs
Warning signs are not only used to make customers aware of hazards in the area, but it is also required by law so make sure that this type of sign is visible.
According to Jamie from Leeds based Dock Street Signs “Signage needs to be readable in different lighting conditions and also in different weathers (if the signage is being used outdoors.) Back-lighting on signage is important in these areas.”
Catering To All Visitors
Wayfinding signage needs to be able to be created and helped for every possible user type which sometimes isn’t easy. This can make it both complex and challenging. Imagine, for example, if you create wayfinding signage that provides visual guidance for people.
Using braille at the entrance of a location can be helpful. Secondly, is to ensure that signage is large enough in terms of lettering to be visible from different distances an such that the letters are readable by those with poor eye-sight.
Directional & Confirmation Signage
There are different forms of wayfinding signage such as directional signage that tells you which way to go that points an arrow. Confirmation that confirms you are on the right path or have arrived somewhere. It will let you know that you are on the right path and let you know that you are heading in the right way too.
Wayfinding signage can be sued to direct human traffic but there are many workings that go into that. You can use symbols, arrows, words or a mix of all three of them. You will have to make sure that your signage is consistent and clear though otherwise you will confuse people.
In summary when considering wayfinding signage, you will want to create a safe customer friendly space around your building. Wayfinding signage is also there to keep your customers happy and relaxed while walking about your business. Always make sure you have your signage that will help your customer navigate the area in and around your businessand keep the signage as visual as possible minimal and easy to understand with as little confusion regardless of age or ability.
If your customer gets confused and has to ask you for help take note of why that might have happened and consider your options for better signage.