This question comes up a lot when people think of the beginning stages of billboard construction. And, if you’re planning on doing this with a smaller team, it’s good to be aware of what you may need to fish out. The key factors influencing the cost of building an outdoor billboard are the size of the billboard, material for the structure, the configuration of the supports, and the height of the structure. The second most important cost factor is whether the billboard will be single or double-faced. It completely depends on the type of billboard that you are constructing.
The cost of putting up a billboard ranges from a couple thousand dollars to over a million. A small wooden billboard is the cheapest to erect. Bigger billboards and more elaborate billboards up the price. The most expensive of all is an LED billboard. These are digital billboards that can change the ad display every few seconds, using digital technology to project the most eye-catching displays. Before deciding where to build and for what dimensions to build around, ask yourself what you’re planning to buy.
Wood is the Cheapest
Wooden billboards are the most common smaller form of billboards. This industry began with wooden construction, and much of it has returned to those early roots, so newer billboard designs find common ground with old school wooden appeal. To build a wooden sign, you must have telephone poles, some 2” x 4”s and some plywood. You stick the poles in the ground, nail 2”x 4” stringers horizontally to connect the telephone poles, and then nail sheets of plywood on top of the stringers, to create the face of the advertisement.
Typical sizes are 12 feet high, with the top being about 25 feet above the ground. Widths can range from 25 to 48 feet. These types of signs can cost between $10,000 and $20,000 to build, based on height and size.
Double Faced Wood
The cost for double-faced wooden billboards is about twice the price of single-faced ones. Single-faced boards can have angled supports at the rear while the structure for double-faced boards must be smooth on both sides. While these sizes vary, the approximate cost of building the 12 feet high billboard, with the top about 25 feet above the ground and the width ranging from 25 to 48 feet is between $20,000-40,000.
The smallest steel monopole sign can cost as little as the wooden billboard. Its name is “8-sheet” because it took 8 sheets of wallpaper to cover it in the older days of advertising. It’s around 5’ x 12’ in size, and is nothing more than a single steel pole and two metal frames.
Single-Faced Steel Monopole
They’re supported by one steel post, either in the middle or at one end. Single-faced steel monopole billboards are expensive compared to the wooden ones. Typical face dimensions range from 12 by 25 feet to 20 by 50 feet. The 40 feet high billboards cost around $40,000 to build the smaller boards and $90,000 for the largest. If you were to place the pole at one end instead of the middle, it requires more strength and adds up in the total cost.
Single-Faced Steel Multipost
Overall, multipost boards are slightly less expensive than monopole billboards for smaller boards that stand 40 feet high or less. Supporting the billboard with several steel posts increases the cost for supports but decreases the cost of the board structure, since it is supported at several places. Boards with heights ranging from 10 to 12 feet and lengths from 22 to 50 feet range in cost from $35,00 to $77,000. This is slightly less in price than the corresponding monopole boards.
Double-Faced Steel Monopole
For the smaller boards, the increase in price is about $10,000. For the larger boards, the increase is less than $5,000. So adding a second face to a steel billboard requires a slightly stronger structure, but does not increase the cost. This is an important tip to remember when looking at billboard faces and their assigned costs.
Double-Faced Steel Multipost
These boards have an advantage in that they can be easily arranged in a V-shape format that allows for better visibility from both directions and, also, is more stable of a construction. With smaller supports and frames, double-faced multipost steel boards are also slightly less expensive than their monopole versions. These boards typically stand 40 feet high and have dimensions ranging from 12-by-25 feet to 14-by-48 feet for each face. The costs pertaining to these range from $60,000 to $90,000.
So now that we’ve examined the costs of building all versions of wood and steel billboards, it’s now time to envision which version you could see your brand on. After looking at monopoles and multiposts, remember that steel billboards will cost significantly more than wooden ones due to their extra properties. Happy billboarding!