Many small businesses feel that a good trade show booth is beyond their budget, but nothing could be further from the truth! Some do too little, and limit their company’s presence to homemade printouts arrayed on a cloth-covered table. Others go overboard and spend countless thousands on a booth that attendees ignore.

With planning and creativity it is possible to arrive at a solution for a great exhibit display–one that attracts new customers while still staying within budget.

1. Develop a Battle Plan

Planning a display booth months in advance is a critical step that too many businesses ignore. When employees are busy fitting travel arrangements into their normal workday, it is easy to forget about the importance of the display.

But by planning in advance, the process can be a team building exercise that flows over the course of several months. Are your employees disenchanted with trade shows? Then get them involved in the design process. They will be able to share insight on the successes and failures of previous shows.

Questions to consider during this phase: What part of my company and mission will this exhibit represent? Do I want to sell something at the show or do I want to collect leads?

2. Be Proactive

To keep the design consistent, be careful not to develop too many working teams. It is also important to hire an exhibit solution provider early in the process. Although some of these providers cater to mega corporations, the better ones will be able to work with you regardless of your budget.

When developing display booth graphics, don’t be afraid to communicate with the designer. Don’t wait until the designer creates something you dislike. Be involved in the process and bring in photographs, clippings, even sketches of designs you think would work for your exhibit booth graphics and design.

3. Think Smaller

Two mistakes that many small companies make is to believe that bigger is better and that going smaller means stealing poster board from a middle school science project. However, popups and tabletop exhibits are portable and excellent ways to make a professional statement without going over budget.

Banners and signage supported by banner stands can add the illusion of a more robust trade show booth displays. This has an added benefit because banners are easy to store and banner stands are an affordable rental option.

To further maximize space, businesses should consider purchasing or renting brochure stands. Not only will this keep your literature organized, it will keep your table free for giveaways and customers who want to fill out information cards.

Regardless of what you decide to do, make sure your booth has enough room for your presenters and visitors.

4. Think About a Trade Show Booth Rental

Renting an exhibit display may be the ideal solution. Some exhibit design companies have the ability to provide turnkey solutions that will save time and stress.

The best of these companies will give you options to customize the exhibit, so you will still have the opportunity to develop a general look and theme for the trade show.