As demand for digital signage grows exponentially, its usage in a wide array of vertical markets is becoming more prevalent.
In fact, global use of digital signage displays is expected to grow 7% to 8% between 2015 and 2016.
Much of the demand is being driven by entry-level, small-business owners looking for a boost in sales and to pump up brand awareness.
As customers allocate more of their operating budgets to digital signage marketing, value-added resellers (VARs) undoubtedly will field more questions about how to install and operate effective signage solutions.
VARs should expect to field the gamut of potential questions from novices and experienced end users alike.
Here's a look at some of the frequently asked questions that VARs will likely field:
What equipment will I need to set up an interactive digital display?
Equipment will vary depending on end user specifications and what you expect to accomplish using a digital signage solution. Essentially, one or more digital displays are needed along with some source of content such as a media player or computer. You will also need an assortment of video and audio cabling and possibly one or more video distribution devices to begin with.
Can I use more than one source for content delivery?
Yes, multiple players can be used to deliver unique content to different locations where digital signage has been installed. For example, in a retail setting, one digital display may offer advertising content about perfume, whereas in the men's department, an interactive display may allow users to virtually "try on” clothing before making a decision to buy.
Can content be delivered over IP, and what are the benefits?
Digital Signage over IP uses a network of computers and/or servers to distribute content, often over vastly spread-apart locations. The benefit of this type of arrangement is that network administrators have remote access to content players and can order content based on customer specifications. Administrators can also access content players for maintenance and link media players for ease of use.
Can a live cable or satellite TV broadcast be delivered via my digital signage solution?
Yes, you can use a TV tuner or other cable-supplied digital tuner to display satellite and cable television broadcasts. Depending on whether or not you are running content supplied by an IP network, you may be able to stream live video and audio as well.
Can I set up one large image using multiple digital displays?
Yes, you can set up a video wall, which will be comprised of two or more displays. Most commonly, video walls are made up of four or more display units. You will need to use computer software to direct a single image or any other combination to your displays depending on the end purpose of your content.
What verticals does digital signage work best with?
Interactive digital signage is so versatile that effective delivery of messages or information is only limited by budget, imagination, and current available technology. In fact, digital signage is being used in a wide range of applications, including airports, hospitals, restaurants, retail stores, and hotels, just to name a few.
Are there factors limiting where I can set up a digital signage solution?
Yes, but most limiting factors involve knowing ambient environmental conditions where the displays will be located.
For example, digital displays used in extreme cold or hot environments should be specified for outdoor use when budgeting for a particular project.
The displays must also be resistant to humidity, which is a big electronics killer.
If the goal of a digital signage setup is to encourage interactive participation, it must be installed in a location that not only gets the right amount of foot traffic, but does not hinder use because of too much foot traffic.