Posters work. And size matters.

printing poster

People only seem to have eyes for their smartphones nowadays, so does that mean old fashioned printed paper has had its day? Well, as Mark Twain said when someone published his obituary, “rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated”.

In fact businesses keep using posters for one simple reason: they work. A recent research study found that six sheet posters can double recall of a brand and boost intention to purchase by 47%. But what exactly is a six sheet poster? How does it differ from the other kinds? Here’s your quick poster size guide: all about the different dimensions and how they are used.

6 sheets or 96?

The biggest posters are the ones better known as billboards. They vary in size from six to ninety six sheet. Why sheets? Because originally billboard posters were pieced together from standard sized sheets of paper. This is no longer the case thanks to modern large format printing technology, but the old terminology has stuck.

A six sheet (1200mm x 1800mm) is the type of poster you see in bus shelters, train stations, busy streets and shopping malls. What else can turn a traffic jam, a queue or a late train into a positive?


Bigger billboards vary from 16 sheet to forty foot, 96 sheet monsters the size of a building. However the most common size is 48 sheet (6096mm x 3048mm). You pass dozens of them on any urban journey.


 Smaller sizes from A to B    


Billboards cost a lot of money because you have to hire the site as well as print the poster, so you generally have to work through an agency or contractor. But smaller poster sizes are much more affordable and manageable for everyday promotional purposes. All you need is a message, some artwork and a printer. They are the sort of posters you see in shop windows, public spaces such as libraries, churches and doctors’ waiting rooms, at trade shows and exhibitions… Almost anywhere.

They tend to follow the standard paper sizes used by printers: from A4 (a typical magazine page) to A0 (1189mm x 841mm) and B2 to B0. An A1 poster (841mm x 594mm) is perhaps the most frequently used size. The B sizes fall in between the A sizes to provide additional flexibility. For example B4 is between A4 and A3.

But rather than choose a size and risk getting it wrong, here’s a much better idea. Talk to an expert printer such as Spiral Colour and Banner Printing Android about what you have in mind, what you’re trying to achieve and how much you’re prepared to spend. We’ll make sure your posters are the most effective (and cost effective ) size and specification for your precise needs. And we’ll print them beautifully of course.