I’m not a graphic designer, but I work with several, and I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last week. Therefore, I must be an expert. Okay, I’m not an expert, but I do work with experts. That’s something, isn’t it? Vehicle graphic design hierarchy is unlike any other design hierarchy in that most design isn’t moving down the highway at 55 MPH, at least we hope it isn’t. In design, visual hierarchy is the placement of design elements by importance based on how the human eye takes in visual content.


Before setting vehicle graphic design hierarchy in order, an organization must consider what messages take precedence, what is the hierarchy of your messages? What do you want to communicate and what do you want people to understand about your business. Consider the following and create a hierarchy from this list.

  • Logo
  • Branding
  • Tag Lines and Message
  • Products and Services
  • CTA (Call to Action)
  • USP (Unique Sales Position)
  • Contact Information


The critical elements of graphic design are also the key elements of vehicle graphic design hierarchy. The difference again is that the elements are even more important on a moving vehicle. While a stationary design such as a sign might be able to get away with design elements that don’t stand out, a vehicle wrap can’t. It needs strong and clear design elements to be effective.

  • Size
  • Color
  • Contrast
  • Whitespace
  • Placement
  • Copy, words and fonts

More Elements 

There are other design elements to consider for maximizing vehicle graphic design hierarchy. An experienced vehicle graphic designer can walk you through them. Here a few more advanced design elements.

  • Focal point: What point on the vehicle captures the most attention?
  • Repetition: With 3D design such as a vehicle graphic, it’s essential to repeat key elements.
  • Balance: It’s easy to go overboard and design one element that overpowers all the others and vice versa. The design needs to be balanced and pleasing to the eye.
  • Rule of thirds: The rule of thirds is used in photography as well as video creation. The rule of thirds is dividing a screen into thirds and then placing the primary element in one-third of the graph. This method draws the human eye into the composition rather than glancing at the entire graphic.

I’m Not a Designer But I Know a Few 

There are many more elements of design some of which might be important when considering vehicle graphic design hierarchy, but as I said—I’m not a designer. I do however work with some of the best in the vehicle graphics industry. Our team of designers has an average tenure at TKO of 14 years. They know what they’re doing. If you’d like to talk with one of our designers Contact Us, you’ll be at the top of our hierarchy.