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Choosing the right screen for your digital out of home advertising is a bit like finding the right performance tire for your car: lots of options, they all look alike, and it can be overwhelming to decide which specifications you need.

A smart LED screen allows you to run advertisements, special offers, and share information visually throughout your storefront. Smart TVs are connected to your store’s internet connection and typically use Wi-Fi to receive their content. Depending on your business needs, you may choose to have one or many screens located throughout your space.

When choosing the right screen for your business, consider the following:

Size

Turns out size does matter, at least when it comes to your advertising screen. But, is bigger always better? Not necessarily. Digital signs have the greatest impact when they add to the overall customer experience and fit the environment well.

Choosing a smart LED screen in proper size for the space, advertisement, and your campaign goals is as important as selecting your messaging. When purchasing a smart LED screen for in-store use, consider where within your retail space you intend to place your screens. Large, clutter-free walls will do well with a single large screen or many smaller screens, while busier areas are best suited to medium to small sized screens.

Remember: the larger the screen, the further away your audience needs to be to properly see your ad. Aim for a screen size that is easily and clearly visible at both close and great distances for the strongest impact.

Resolution

You want your advertisement to look its absolute best at any angle and any distance, which simply can’t happen with a low-res screen – but you also don’t want to go high for no reason. Consider this: you won’t really notice the difference between 720p and 1080p on a smaller screen at a distance, but a larger screen? You’ll need to go to at-least 1080p if not 4K.

You can steer away from the 8K TVs – the human eye can only perceive so much detail, and the difference between 4K and 8K will be almost negligible compared to the difference between 1080p and 4K.

Still not sure? Remember: HD and Ultra HD screens offer the most vibrancy and clear picture, which makes your advertisement stand out even more.

Refresh Rate

Refresh, what? Refresh rate happens to be one of the more confusing aspects of television technology and manufacturers often don’t do much to explain it. Refresh rate is listed as a number, and that number indicates how many times per second the image on your screen changes. This is especially important if your ads have motion.

Most 4K televisions have a native refresh rate of 120HZ, though the rate listed can be as high as 540HZ based on manufacturer features designed to reduce issues like motion blur and create the perception of better refresh rates. These features include black frame insertion (BFI) and a feature known as motion interpolation (ME/MC), often called the “soap opera effect”.

Connectivity Capabilities

Smart LED screens can connect to the same broadband router and Ethernet or Wi-Fi network used to connect your computer to the internet. While Ethernet provides the most stable connection, Wi-Fi capability is by far the most convenient option.

Depending on your needs, you may prefer a screen with built-in streaming platforms as an all-encompassing replacement for built-in tuners and antenna/cable connections. Some smart screens provide even more capabilities, like Miracast and Screen Sharing, to allow you to send content to your screens through a compatible smart phone or tablet – and some can do the reverse, allowing you to send content from the TV to a compatible smartphone.

Energy Efficiency

No one wants to spend unnecessarily when it comes to energy (and energy bills!), and your digital signage is no different.

Energy efficient screens – particularly those marked with the ENERGY-STAR® label, which is a great indication the model includes energy efficient features – will help you save money. On average, ENERGY-STAR®-certified screens use 27 per cent less energy than other models.

Even without the certification, you can look for options that help enhance the television display while still using less energy. These include:

  • Automatic Brightness Control (ABC) which adjusts the brightness of the screen to complement the space. Not only does this help improve the viewing experience, it uses less energy by adjusting its brightness throughout the day.
  • LED-backlit screens use LED lighting to backlight the picture display, making them more efficient than older LCD models. These screens also include local dimming features which dim or tun off parts of the backlight, deepening the on-screen blacks to add depth to the picture and reducing the energy used.
  • Organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) are the latest in tv screen lighting technology, allowing for thinner and brighter displays while using less energy than LED screens as they don’t need backlight to function.

Cost

Don’t let a big price tag fool you into thinking that particular screen is better than the others. Always make sure that the screen you buy is worth the ticket by ensuring the features that matter most to you and your business are represented in the product. And don’t forget to do your research: sometimes inflated promises of higher refresh rates can, in turn, inflate the cost.

Also, be sure to check with your corporate credit card company to see if warranty is offered on your smart LED screen purchase. If so, you can skip the extended warranty offered at stores or by manufacturers to help you further reduce the up-front cost of your DOOH.