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Jeff Nicholson standing in front of lockers covered with promotional stickers

Jeff Nicholson, owner of Freely Creative, Inc. attempts to write weekly about stickers... news, design tips, resources, common questions and small business marketing.

Static Cling Decals and Stickers Not Right For Cars

I’m not a big fan of static cling stickers and static decals for promotional uses on cars. Static vinyl is usually not the right choice for a company, school or organization looking for free exposure or a sticker product to sell. I’ll tell you why in minute, but first, here’s where custom static cling decals are appropriate and effective.
Custom static vinyl sticker or decal attached to product or window
White or clear vinyl with static cling on the back is great for temporary advertising and information when adhesives could mar product. Static material works well on televisions, computer screens, appliances, cooler doors – any smooth surfaced product where point of purchase promotions or product features can be communicated (and removed) easily.

Large static graphics are effective on store windows for temporary promotions and signage. You’ve probably seen these at fast food restaurants. It’s an easy way to place large, professional looking, graphics in windows without needing ugly tape or damaging the graphic signs when taken down. So, signage can be reused as well.

But for vinyl stickers on cars, whether you are a school, a business, a non-profit or anyone, just say “no” to static cling. Here’s why; Static stickers must be printed on clear vinyl material and have the static on the face. The only location that these can be applied is on the inside of a window. This severely limits the application (and exposure) of the stickers. They can’t be put on cargo boxes, skateboards, snowboards, bumpers, notebooks, helmets… nowhere, but windows. They cost more than white vinyl with removable adhesive and also usually require an added color (white) to cut down on translucence and weaker presentation. Also, many car windows are tinted and therefore static decals are extra difficult to see.

Another question I ask people thinking about static sticker for cars is, “if you are trying to promote something why make your stickers more difficult to put on, more difficult for public to see, and easier to take off (shorter lifespan)? At we hear all the time, “our customers don’t want to damage their cars with bumper sticker adhesives”. I explain that there are many adhesive options that are removable or even “ultra removable”. No damage, less costly, and a much more effective sticker and promotional piece.

If you are considering static cling decals for cars let us show you some cost effective alternatives. If you are in need of static stickers for point of purchase signage or information contact us for great pricing and personal service. “When you want your name to stick” we’re here to help maximize the exposure.


By Jeff Nicholson

Posted on: 4 Comments
Jeff NicholsonJeff Nicholson is the founder and Creative Director at Freely Creative, Inc. and, a marketing company specializing in the design and production of promotional stickers, decals and labels. He is the author of Stick This! Using Promotional Stickers To Build Identity, Create Word Of Mouth and Grow Sales.

4 Responses

  1. Kelvin says:

    I am planning to put a 4in by 4in stickers on the small triangle window of the rear door of a taxi for promotion. However, in hong kong for the purpose of car safety, all the stickers have to be removed for the annual motor inspection check.

    So, if I use vinyl car decals, the taxi driver/owner need to scratch off the vinyl car decals before the inspection, which may not be a straight simple task as those static cling stickers holding the paper permit on the windshield. And after the inspection, I cannot reattach the vinyl car decals.

    Please advise if there is any other options somewhere between ?

    • Jeff Nicholson Jeff Nicholson says:

      Sounds like a good argument for static in this case. Other options you could look into are ultra-removable vinyls or perforated vinyl (type you can see one way through but not other). Perhaps this style would pass inspection? Is the promotion for the people in the cab or outside the cab? If inside there are perhaps options other than the window for application.

  2. Paula Levi says:

    Thanks for stating the difference and where best to use those static decals. Got to know stuff to avoid regrets because decals can be very expensive.

  3. Brooke ( sales/quoting) says:

    I refer people to this blog post all the time when they inquire about static clings. It's a great resource and an excellent explanation. This is another great blog along the same lines:

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