Creative Exhibition Stand Ideas From Simple to Modern

Designing an exhibition stand is no easy feat when the opportunities are endless, but sometimes it’s difficult to know where to begin. If you’ve read How to design the perfect Exhibition Stand & Space you will know that determining your objectives are absolutely key. 

Exhibition booths at trade shows are where design meets objectives. A clean slate to create a unique exhibition stand, ready for your potential customers. 

The Objectives

Ahead of any creative ideas companies should consider their business objectives whilst being at the trade show. Following are the top objectives you should consider that will work to impact the design of your exhibition stand: 

  • Showcasing new products 
  • Generating leads from maximum visitors 
  • Showcasing a product demonstration 
  • Increasing brand recall and awareness 

With the trade show booth objectives in mind, consideration can then be given to the layout of the floor space.

What Not To Do 

Whilst there are endless possibilities when it comes to the design of the exhibition space, we want to start with our top 3 ideas to avoid: 

  1. Don’t overcrowd | a cluttered space can dilute your messaging 
  2. Don’t choose the wrong size | A stand too big can be just as detrimental as one that’s too small 
  3. Don’t only think about the short term | It is far more efficient and effective to design a stand that will last.

With these don’ts in mind, it’s time to let the ideas flow and the inspiration commence. 

The Structure 

We understand that different budgets account for different types of stands, and the creative ideas do not discriminate. It doesn’t matter if you’ve purchased a shell scheme or space only stand, we understand that regardless of that stand, your objectives are just as important and the creative ideas are ready to support them. 

Shell Scheme Stands

Stepping onto your shell scheme usually means your stand walls, power, lighting and signage are ready to make an impact. A shell scheme doesn’t mean a small exhibition stand, it means an opportunity to bring your brand into the space and make an impact on potential visitors. 

Bring The Branding

With a clean slate, your company has the opportunity to make an impact with their brand colours and identity without having to build the entire structure. Lean on companies like Exhibit Central to create high quality portable displays that work to reflect the quality of your brand and existing stand elements. From lightbox displays to fabric banners, this type of brand collateral brings an element of brand alignment and sophistication into your exhibition space. 

View Exhibit Central’s range here.

Accessorise with rentals

A shell scheme stand doesn’t finish with a bit of branding and a trestle table. Lean on exhibition hire companies to fit out your stand with their huge range of rental furniture. From plinths for products to lounge seating, companies (like ours), have every piece of furniture to make your stand the place to be. 


Don’t dismiss the lighting! Whilst the simplest way to attract attention to your exhibition stand, considering lighting makes a large impact. When designing lighting for your exhibition stand consideration should be given to its purpose as well as overall look and feel. Downlights and spotlights may be best placed to be utilised for showcasing products. Lamps and pendants however should work to create some atmosphere whilst on the exhibition stand. 

Space Only Stands

As suggested by the name, space only stands provide the physical space purchased without anything pre-built. In other words it is a clean slate for absolutely any exhibition stand designs. Considering the structure there are few ideas you can include in the exhibition stand to set it apart from the rest. 

Stunning graphics 

We’ve said it before (in How to design the perfect Exhibition Stand & Space) and we’ll say it again, but a picture speaks a thousand words and this should be the motto for incorporating stunning graphics within your exhibition stand. Consider the graphics within your stand as being your sales team, marketing team and personality all wrapped into one. Graphics within the stand should look to attract maximum visitors, often before exhibition staff have the opportunity to begin a conversation. 

Modular Exhibition Stands

A modular display system eliminates the pressure of an entirely custom build and are a great happy medium for those who aren’t ready to invest quite as much.  Modular systems have come a long way in the event industry. Once seen as cookie-cutter style exhibition stands, is now a leading environmental alternative that can continue to be reused show after show. Alongside is Aluvision, a modular design that offers endless combinations and creative possibilities with a wide range of materials and reusable products. Read more on Aluvision here. 

Rigged Banners

Go bigger, go better and go higher. Be seen by everyone within the exhibition hall by rigging signage to halo your exhibition space. One of the most effective trade show booth practises, rigged signage will attract maximum visitors to the exact space of your exhibition booth.

Incorporate LED Screens 

Led screens can replace anywhere and anything within your exhibition stand and the more imaginative the area, the better the outcome. Farewell to straight lines and edges, Led Screens can wind their way through the stand literally curving from the floor to the ceiling. 

“One tile, endless solutions: transform the most versatile LED tile into 5 different configurations.” – Aluvision 

The LED Screen is a revolutionary, versatile ingredient working to draw attendees onto your exhibition stand. Creating movement, colour and action from every single angle makes it impossible not to notice.

On the Exhibition Stand

Once the fundamental structure of the exhibition stands are designed, the focus of the target audience moves from a visual element to engagement. Following details a number of incredible engagement opportunities we have seen within a stand design.  

Face to Face Exhibition Space 

Prompted by this heading, consideration can be given to more than just a face to face design. Whilst we let your mind wander, these are our top engagement ideas we have to incorporate as part of your exhibition stand design.


The atmosphere of your exhibition stand is everything, and a sure way to attract visitors walking past. The atmosphere of your stand is not only dictated by its look and feel, moreover it is to do with the staff within the exhibition stands. There are a few simple additions that can work (in conjunction with your striking images) to help create the atmosphere. 

  • Consider a focal point for the stand for more traffic to circle around 
  • Product displays with company’s products will help generate conversation whilst on the stand
  • An interactive design will create a positive hum within the exhibition stand (but more on that later) 
  • Lounge space to encourage sitting and relaxing within the exhibition stand
  • Free wi fi with comfortable seating to facilitate further conversation or work within the exhibition stand 
  • Coffee cart to prompt conversation and drive more traffic to the stand (because good coffees are exhibition requirements!)
Education Pieces

There are a number of ways companies can tap into educational elements within exhibition stands. Each works to attract maximum visitors and engage with the target audience once they’re on the stand.  

  • Product Trialling: Allowing the target audience to utilise and explore products within the stand by themselves, with staff on hand to support with any queries 
  • Guest Speakers: Hosting industry experts on the stand to provide their insight and education on specific topics 
  • Demonstrations: Utilise the exhibition stand design to accordingly to showcase product usage or industry demonstrations 
  • Q&A: Hosting Q&A sessions within the stand to encourage visitors to ask questions and learn more about the company. 
Giveaways & Competitions 

One of the more common exhibition stand design ideas includes the incorporation of giveaways and competitions. Both work to entice visitors onto the exhibition stand and draw attention to your attendance (be warned about aisle creep if you have a small exhibition). Giveaways provide the opportunity for exhibition visitors to walk away with collateral and something tangible from the stand. Competitions work as an interactive element and are a great example of a lead generation facilitator. Both play an important role in the overall sales and marketing strategy.

Lead Generation 

Furthermore to competitions and giveaways, lead generation plays an important role when considering exhibition stand ideas, particularly with its connection to the overall sales strategy. Lead generation can be achieved through a myriad of ways from having staff onsite to liaise with visitors to engagement driving exhibition stand ideas. Companies may like to consider QR codes displayed on their exhibition stand screens or walls to attract visitors to scan, enter their details and learn more. Lead generation often works more successfully when incentivised. Within the exhibition stand design, companies should consider advertising an offer or benefit to help drive further lead generation. 


Not only a driver for lead generation, gamification can work to engage your target audience in a compelling way. At times gamification can be coordinated by the event organisers between other exhibition spaces to help encourage visitors to liaise within the exhibition show floor. This is a more familiar engagement piece within the exhibition industry and is one that should be tapped into to create the sense of engagement within your exhibition stand.


What goes on within an exhibition stand does have a key role to play whilst on the show floor however, the impact must go beyond the physical exhibition stands. Following are a few ways your exhibition stand can have a virtual impact.

Live Streaming 

Previously we discussed having presentations, Q&As and product demonstrations within the exhibition stand design to further engage the target market. What if we said this could go further? Consideration should be given to live streaming any key presentations within the exhibition stand. Not only will live streaming increase the reach and awareness of the company and presentation, it also allows the presentation to be recorded and utilised in the future. Read our blogs to see why your future content is so important for your business. Blog 3: Creating 6 Months of Content

Social Media 

We all know social media is a powerful thing, so tapping into it whilst you’re on your exhibition stand can play an important role. Social media is often one the forgotten exhibition stand ideas as it’s not something that requires a lot of attention whilst onsite. When designing the exhibition booth consider a space and design that can be shared. A photo moment with the company’s contact details works well to encourage industry attendees to snap a photo whilst on the stand. You know yourself, when you attend an industry event it’s important to share it across your own social media pages (did you really go, if you didn’t post?). With this in mind create a stand design that encourages this sharable moment. Lost for ideas, we have a few! 

  • Balloon garland (Check the venue for balloon regulations first!)
  • Photo wall 
  • Instagram frame to snap photos in 
  • Cutouts to fill slot their face in 
  • Photo booth with lots of props

Tip: Place your contact details within each photo moment so once the photo is shared the industry can contact you easily. 

Virtual Stands

Thanks to covid exhibition booths now go beyond the face to face exhibition stand designs. For many exhibitions and in particular conferences the target audience goes beyond the exhibition attendees. By creating a virtual exhibition booth design, visitors from across the world can tap into your business. Within the booth ensure contact details are readily available for visitors to touch base, and that information is available within the booth for visitors to download. 

Tip: Ensure visitors details are captured as they go to download further information as a means of lead generation. 

Beyond the tradition exhibition stand design

We’ve covered a number of exhibition stand ideas to ensure your stand design remains unique and impactful. We understand however that some stand designs want to go beyond just eye catching, unlike the other exhibition displays, they want to make a statement that no one will forget. Here are our three top designs that are guaranteed to set you apart from everyone within the exhibition industry. 

Multilevel Stand Design 

Move over small exhibition stand, we’re going double story. If you’re looking to make a statement and design an exhibition stand that can be used well into the future, consider a multi-story exhibition stand. A balance of product showcasing, adequate meeting space, and room to draw a crowd, multileveled exhibition stands are designed to be remembered.

Shipping container 

Think outside of the box (but not literally). A slightly more common stand design seen recently includes converted shipping containers. Attractive to plan logistically, companies work to renovate shipping containers to include everything required for being at the trade shows. This idea can work as an alternative to a small exhibition stand with everything cleverly compacted within. If you’re looking for exhibition stand ideas that not only set companies apart from the rest, but can also be reused between trade shows, the shipping containers are a worthwhile consideration.   


The exhibition stand design of all stand ideas. Enter Optimus. Sleek, expandable, moveable. Optimus is the future of not so temporary exhibition spaces. Optimus is an expandable mobile showcase. All Optimus trailers are multi-functional, affordable, relocatable and easy to set up. Once expanded, they nearly double in size. They come in a smart, luxurious design with a high-end finish. Above all, our Optimus containers are fully customizable to meet your requirements. Perfect for use in a wide range of applications, from small corporate events to large exhibitions, roadshows, product launches, mobile clinics and many more. The Optimus puts all exhibition stands to shame, and is the answer to ongoing stand ideas.

Read more on Optimus here

Within a moment you can be inspired by so many exhibition stand ideas simply waiting to be adapted for all exhibition stands. Whilst initially when considering creative exhibition ideas it was easy to be narrow minded with deciphering how your stand may simply look, you are now filled with many avenues of what creative exhibition ideas can look and feel like. Don’t forget, every idea must come back to the primary objective of the exhibition stands initially confirmed. If there are simply too many ideas to choose from, let us help you decide.

Chat to our ExpoCentric team today!

Love what you’ve learnt, but still not sure where to start? Speak with one of our expert team members today.


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