There are so many different materials you can make signs or banners on today that you can print a sign or banner onto practically any surface. There are, however, some basic materials used some of these materials and there main uses are as follows:
Aluminium - This is used in many different places for signs mainly out doors because of its high resilience to the weather. Most road safety signs are made of aluminium because of them being at the sides of roads with little shelter they need to last in all weathers whether it is a storm or extreme heat. They are best for this purpose because the colour rarely fades and they are very sturdy, meaning they are clear for drivers and pedestrians alike.
Corrugated plastic - This material is very popular for temporary used for promotions, events and even estate agents because of its versatility. It can be cut into many different shapes and sizes and is also very light weight making it a good material for indoor promotions as it can fit in any shop display. It is popular with travelling displays, such as circuses, as you can make collapsible signs that can be easily transported.
Magnetic - These signs are great for use on vehicles that have more than one purpose, they are very strong and can be removed at any time. They come in any colour as the image or text is printed directly onto the magnetic material so any design is possible. They need not be temporary either if they have the right care they can last for years and because of the material the colour rarely fades.
Acrylic - This tends to be used for more permanent signs such as front of shop it has a high gloss finish so gives the premises a professional image. It is also versatile in the way it can be heated into many different shapes and there is a selection of colours available. One down side with the product is its not as hard wearing as other materials as it can shatter or chip on impact.
Wood - It is one of the oldest materials used in sign making as it is strong, reliable and versatile. Due to the flat surface of the material you can have any image you like printed onto it and the choice of how you print the image onto the sign is made even greater if you have a layer coating the sides made of vinyl or aluminium.
Nylon, vinyl mix - This is used for banners and is used both out doors and in doors, it has durability when it comes to the weather. The material may be strong and resistant but can be cut to any shape or size depending on your needs.
There are many materials now on the market so research what is on the market and what would be most suitable for your needs.