Trade Show Booth Design

[Part 1 of 3]: How to Create Your Best Trade Show Exhibit

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or new to exhibiting, it’s universally known that a trade show booth is the first impression attendees will make of your company on the show floor. How do you create an exhibit that will not only wow your audience but helps you achieve your show goals in the process?  

Much of your company’s success relies on proper planning and making the most of your resources. Here, we share a few prerequisites all exhibitors should complete before beginning the design phase of a booth.


The first step in developing a successful trade show program is identifying which show or shows your company will attend. Start by compiling a list of the key events your company is considering, and refine that list based on factors such as your goals, the investment you will incur as an exhibitor and whether the projected return on investment justifies the expense.

Exhibit Configuration

Next, it’s time to decide on the best exhibit configuration that works for your goals, budget, and availability on the show floor. There are three primary exhibit configurations: peninsula, inline, and island. Peninsula exhibits are exposed on three of its four sides. Both peninsula and island configurations tend to be larger (20×20 or larger) than inline exhibits (10×10 and 10×20 are the most common).

Larger trade show booths allow exhibitors to get creative with more elements such as towers, meeting stations, hanging structures, product demonstration areas, and more. Work closely with your trade show management and design team to determine the best exhibit configuration for your brand’s needs.

Booth Space

Now that you’ve nailed down which show(s) to attend and how you need your booth to function, it’s time to contract your space. The booth space that’s right for your company hinges on two main factors: your overall goals for the trade show and your budget. Keep in mind that about 30% of your overall event budget should be earmarked for contracting the booth space which is usually sold directly by the show management. In general, the earlier you apply for a booth space, the more likely you are to get your first choice. Some venues, however, give preference to previous attendees and/or event sponsors.

Once you have completed the above prerequisites, it’s time to look for an exhibit builder that can realize your vision and help bring it to fruition. At Nimlok NYC, we have over 40 years of experience in designing and building custom trade show booths of all sizes. We are proud to offer full-service solutions for companies attending trade shows in the United States and abroad.

Ready to see what our award-winning design team can do for your business? Get in touch to request a free quote today.