Most vinyl banners will be around 13 oz., which is the weight per square foot of material and also is a fair predictor of wind resistance and durability. Vinyl comes in varying degrees of smoothness as well as in gloss and matte finishes. Many clients prefer the matte finish as it keeps the banners from looking "plasticky." Gloss vinyl, though, is more frequently used outdoors because it doesn't start looking dirty nearly as quickly as dust doesn't stick well to slick surfaces.
The other major category of banners, which are increasing in popularity for many reasons, are also a type of poly banner, but they are polyester fabric banners. Polyester has the benefit of being both outdoor durable, but with the dye sublimation printing process used for polyester fabric banners, they also have amazing color durability.The reason for this durability is that during the heat and pressure application of the printing to the material itself, the cells of the fabric expand and open and accept the ink, which is converted to a gaseous state due to the heat and pressure, and actually is fused with the fabric, becoming an integral part of the material.This creates a beautiful continuous tone print that, when used with full color printing, appears similar to a photograph, rendering these banners.
Within the category of fabric banners, there are several types of polyester materials that are available. The most popular are the poly knit materials, one of which utilizes a stretchy fabric which makes this material ideal for trade show and hanging displays, whereas the non-stretchy version makes attractive banners and can be hung from the ceiling in most trade shows. With weight in the bottom pole pocket, these banners hang smooth, taut, and beautiful.Other fabrics are the satins, which are hard to keep from wrinkling and must be shipped rolled up, to the sheer fabrics, which contain an image, but can be seen through to varying degrees. There are canvas-like materials that look like artists' canvas, lightweight knits, medium knits, and heavy-weight knits. Recently, double sided polyester materials have also become available, although they have an almost light gray tint to the fabric due to the black block-out layer between the two layers of white polyester fabric.