A Modular Exhibition Stand is a display made up of different components that fix together to create an exhibition stand.  The components are generally made of lightweight aluminium frames which fold away easily.  These are then fixed together in the chosen configuration and graphic panels hung on them, usually secured with magnetic strips.  The whole stand can generally be self-built with no requirement for specialist contractors or tools.

Benefits of Modular Exhibition Stands

  • Sustainability – modular stands can be re-used for future shows, if you need them to fit in a different space they are easy to re-configure. For a fresh look, you can simply update the graphics and fit them to the existing stand.
  • Economical – re-using them for other exhibitions creates economies of scale.
  • Portable – they fold down into small packing crates which can be transported in an estate car or small van with no need for large lorries or fork-lift trucks.
  • Easy to assemble – they can be self-built with no need for specialist contractors or tools.
  • Easy to store – you can store the packing crates yourself quite easily saving money on expensive storage requirements of a custom-built stand.

Modular vs. Custom Built

Originally, all exhibition stands were custom built by teams of exhibition contractors.  They were constructed with traditional materials like wood and metal, fixed together with nails or glue.  These were difficult to store, transport and re-configure so tended to be discarded at the end of the show making them an uneconomical and unsustainable option.  Most companies now want a stand that they can re-use for future events.  Modular stands were originally quite simple – just a basic frame hung with graphics.  These will still suit some, especially if you are new to exhibiting.  But if you’re looking to have a real presence and stand out at a show without the cost of a custom-built stand, the custom modular stand offers all the benefits of a modular stand.

Custom Modular Stands

For a more bespoke look to your stand, and to really make an impact, a custom modular stand will give you the presence with all the benefits of a modular stand.  It is a reusable system and also 100% reconfigurable. This means you can use it at every event and adapt the shape of it to suit your needs.

What makes this type of stand better than its more basic counterparts is the design. A custom modular exhibition stand can be built to your specs, for any floor space – shell scheme and space only.  It allows you to build bespoke showcases into your exhibition stand, use seamless floor to ceiling graphics, lighting and audio visual equipment to attract attention.  You can even add a photo floor and built in product or literature display panels.

Custom modular exhibits are a great sustainable option. The framework is reusable and reconfigurable so you can continue to use your stand throughout your entire exhibition calendar. Yet, there is absolutely no compromise on design – this type of exhibition stand will look great and really attract attention.  You will have all the benefits of a custom-built stand but with the sustainability of a modular.

Tips for Designing your Stand

If you are talking to an exhibition stand contractor about purchasing a modular stand we have the following suggestions to make sure you get what you want:

  • Tell your contractor all about your business – the products and services you sell, your values, your typical customer, whether you trade internationally or just locally, the more information you can give them the better.
  • Tell them about the shows you plan to attend – the dates, where they are held and the spaces booked. They should be able to show you how to re-configure your stand for each show.
  • What space and configuration have you booked? Will your stand be standard booth, linear booth, perimeter wall booth, peninsula booth or island booth? Will it be open on one, two, three or four sides? Do you require a private meeting area or storage? What type of flooring do you want – standard flooring, carpeted flooring, raised platform?
  • If you don’t have further spaces booked yet still talk about re-configuring options. Your stand contractor should demonstrate how the stand could be altered to fit different spaces.
  • If you’ve exhibited before, tell your stand designer about your previous experiences of exhibiting at trade shows. What worked in the design of your last stand and what didn’t? Have you seen other stands either at exhibitions, in magazines or online that you like? Do you have any ideas that you’d like to explore?
  • Discuss your budget, if you are up front with this you can work out exactly what you will get from the start.
  • If you plan to self-build your stand get your contractor to show you exactly how to erect the stand.
  • Dedicate time to the graphic design with a professional exhibition stand graphic designer. While the structure is modular, you need to think about your graphics too. What stands have you seen that you like? Do you want any logos, images or text on the graphics panels? It would help the stand builder get a feel for your company if you could supply them with a copy of your brochure or some marketing material.
  • If you have continuous graphics across a modular structure, you’re going to be limited on how you can re-arrange them resulting in needing to buy more graphics for a different configuration.  But if you design each panel as a stand-alone graphic your stand will look disjointed and busy.  A professional designer will group sets of panels in a cohesive joined up design, while allowing the order of the groups of panels to still be re-arranged.
  • Although you want an economic stand that you can re-use time and time again in different spaces, you still need it to grab attention at the show – high level branding, photo floor, AV, and integrated product displays are all great ways of doing this on a custom modular stand.


Modular stands provide a convenient, economical and sustainable solution to exhibiting at a trade show.  Buying an exhibition stand can be a significant investment for a company so it’s worth doing your research and making sure you use a reputable firm.  We have been building custom modular stands for over 20 years and employ some of the best experts in the field.  To talk about your exhibition stand requirements call us on 01202 723 500 or email designteam@quadrant2design.com.