Do you have an exhibition coming up soon and would like to know how much your exhibition stand would cost? This question has no definite answer as different people have varying needs and preferences.

But there are techniques you can always rely on to work out the cost of your exhibition design. In this article, we give tips to help you prepare estimates for your exhibition stand in readiness for your next trade show.

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Estimating the cost of an exhibition stand

Guide on Estimating the Cost of an Exhibition Stand

Think of exhibition expenses as investments rather than costs. But investing immense sums of money in stands that do not yield good returns isn't worthwhile.

Even the smallest exhibition stands that have taken careful planning reap more than large stands that lack proper planning.

Many exhibitors are often prone to making bad budgeting decisions when estimating the cost of an exhibition stand because they fail to plot out all variables in an exhibition.

Before setting a budget for your exhibition stand, here are some facts you might like to consider. First, an exhibition stand could cost around £50 to £50,000 or more.

Second, It is always essential to strike a balance between your returns on investment, budget and getting recognition on the trade show floor. Last, your exhibition stand budget could be around 50% of your total exhibiting budget and double your floor space.

Factors affecting your Budget list

If you wish to get the best return on investment for your exhibition stand, it is important that you understand the factors that could affect your budgeting list.

For instance, how many trade shows would you be showcasing? What is the size of your stand space? It might also be important to consider the number of open walls that your space has and the aims and objectives of your exhibit.

There is a difference between the amount you can acquire a stand for and the amount you are willing to spend.

For as low as £50, you can acquire a pull-up banner. But, because these banners barely attract sizeable crowds, you might be unlikely to get the attention you may need at the trade show.

This is especially true when the neighbouring stands are custom-built. On busy trade show floors, it is every exhibitor’s dream to grab people's attention.

For this reason, it is important that your stand be eye-catching. The cheap market options aren't usually the best choice. While more costly, custom-built or custom modular exhibition stands may attract more crowds.

Trade show budget breakdown

To help you prepare for your upcoming exhibition, you can create a list of all the costs to cater for to give you an idea of your budget allocation. These costs include furniture, electricity, staffing, exhibition stand, floor space, and promotion.

Floor Space (25%)

The two items that make up a larger percentage of your exhibition budget are your stand and stand space. Usually, exhibition venues may charge stand space per square meter, but this can vary for different shows.

Averagely, you may spend around £300 per square meter. As you formulate your plan, consider making floor space your first consideration. But, ensure this isn’t your highest expense.

Spending a quarter of your total budget on this item would be wise.

Exhibition stand (50%)

Your stand makes up a considerable portion of your exhibition budget. Experts recommend allocating 50% of your budget to an eye-catching exhibit. With the remaining 25% of your budget, you can cater for the following costs:

Electric Installations (2%)

Your stand may require electricity to power your audiovisual and lighting features. Typically, a 5 x 3m floor space may require only three electric sockets.

You might be charged around £115 for these by the venue. Additionally, you might have to incur a £15 testing fee. It is important to remember that you might need lesser or more sockets depending on the number of your lighting and audiovisual features.

Your exhibition stand design might also be a determinant of the number of sockets you may require.

Furniture rental (2%)

Having some furniture on your exhibition stand is always a welcome idea. Have some space where people can interact and chat with your team.

This presents the perfect opportunity to grow your networks, give product demonstrations and seal deals. Renting a table and three stools might cost you £250 on average.

Alternatively, you can always buy your own furniture, especially if you plan on attending multiple exhibitions.

Audiovisual Rental (2%)

Incorporating audiovisual elements into your stand design helps attract and engage new audiences and pave the way for lucrative leads. It is the best way to showcase your business activities and demonstrate your products.

Hiring a 40-inch TV for two days might cost you around £285. Some people prefer having several screens on their stand, so consider this as you plan your exhibition stand.

Travel, staffing, and accommodation (7%)

During the exhibition, your booth must be attended to at all times. So, you can consider having enough staff members. You might need four staff members for a two-day event if you have a medium or small-sized stand.

This way, there can always be someone to mane the booth as people take breaks. As you allocate your budget, do not forget to factor in their hotel and travel costs. Expect to spend at least 7% of your total budget to cover these costs.

Pre-show marketing

When you are set to exhibit at a show, it is essential to ensure everyone is aware of it. For this reason, you may allocate a portion of your exhibition stand budget to pre-show marketing.

You might also want to increase traffic on your stand by introducing games, prize giveaways, competitions, and putting up flyers and posters. Sometimes, you may land the chance to sponsor the entire trade show. This can increase your brand awareness and bring more people to your stand.

While you can spend the most or the least on marketing, it is important to always remember that it makes a significant difference in your return on investment and achieving your show's goals. Spending 5-10% of your budget on such efforts is advisable.

Miscellaneous costs

These are the unforeseen costs that could alter your entire financial plan. To avoid such scenarios, it is advisable to always put aside a percentage of your exhibition budget. This category of expenses might include internet spare costs, lead gathering, and unexpected maintenance.

By having a breakdown of all the expenses, you are likely to incur, and you may have a clearer picture of the estimated budget. The good news? You can always opt for rental stands. But this may be a costly option if you are going to exhibit at several shows.