If you’re looking for the ideal way to promote your business at market fairs, shows, street markets, or events such as motorbike and car racing, outdoor advertising products (such as portable shade gazebos), are probably the most cost-effective solution. Strong and durable, these structures are typically made of fire retardant and waterproof fabrics. Featuring your business logo, name and custom message printed on it, outdoor shade structures can be designed for a specific purpose and business needs. But if it’s your first time buying this kind of unit, there are a few things to look out for in order to make sure you’re buying a quality product.
Not all gazebos, tents, marquees and canopies are made equal. For example, a folding gazebo could be fine for a street market, but not for a larger gathering like a market fair or show. Instant marquees are commonly seen at events that require a quick, hassle-free setup. A trade show or racing event will obviously require a professional shade structure printed with your business logo, message and name, and supplemented with different promotional accessories. Once you figure out how you’ll be using your new outdoor shade structure, you can work out the ideal size based on the number of people who will come to your event, and how much traffic there will be under the actual structure.
Most structure frames are made of either steel or aluminium. Steel is stronger than aluminium, but it’s also bulkier, which makes it less portable. Steel frames are usually powder-coated in order to prevent rust, but the coating might start peeling after a while. On the other hand, aluminium is lighter, thus more portable, and it can be anodised to prevent rust. Aluminium naturally forms aluminium oxide, which is a hard substance that becomes the first layer of the frame, preventing the forming of rust. The ideal way to figure out if the roof material is right for you is to measure its thickness. This is known as a denier, and it’s determined by measuring the weight of a fibre 9.000 long in grams. For instance, if a 9.000m long fibre weighs 500g, its denier would be 500. However, higher denier value won’t guarantee more strength, as every material has a different strength.
Some lower quality structures are made of polyethylene, with the canopy fabric being vinyl-coated polyester. Many people prefer PVC-coated polyester fabrics simply because they’re lightweight, low-maintenance, and provide better protection against rain and UV-rays. Polyester structures are flame-resistant, which is not something to overlook.
The joints on the structure’s frame are another important factor that will determine its durability and strength. Most shade structures on the market either have nylon or plastic joints on the roof, which are a cheaper alternative to metal ones. If you want the structure to last for as long as possible, you’ll want metal joints in the roof, as they can withstand pressure from lateral movements and wind, whereas plastic joints will weaken and eventually give way. Metal joints act as a suspension in the roof, absorbing and preventing movement from high winds. Polished aluminium joints are popular as they’re lightweight, durable and boast decent rust-resistant properties.
The reinforcements on the structure are an added bonus that adds considerable strength to the bars in the structure’s frame. Light-duty structures usually don’t come with any type of reinforcements, whereas commercial-grade structures will have them in the roof bars. Pop-up tents, on the other hand, have reinforcements in the roof bars and lower legs, preventing the bars from bending and keeping the tent locked in a braced position.
With that said, when you’re looking for a portable structure, be it for exhibitions, trade shows, promotional work, or events, it’s important to know what you should pay attention to when buying. Unfortunately, most people don’t know what they’re looking for, and oftentimes end up buying the wrong product that’s either not big enough, or not strong enough to withstand the harsh Australian weather.
Get informed before you spend your business’ hard-earned money, and always go for heavy-duty, commercial-grade structures that are made to last. A quality shade structure should be strong and durable, while easily portable at the same time. Lastly, make sure you get a product that’s easy to set up and take down and it doesn’t require too much maintenance to be kept in decent shape.