Your website is the digital storefront for your brand. Whether you are designing a site that sells products, book appointments, or just provides brand information, the website is where visitors will learn what your organization is about.
Your logo is one of the first things that visitors will see when visiting your website, receiving your products, or looking at any of your marketing materials. It doesn’t matter how big or small your brand—the logo will help define you from everyone else.
So, your know how web design logo should pack a punch—telling a story and making an impression on your visitor. It should immediately communicate the characteristics of your brand and appeal to your target audience.
Tips for a Designing Logo that packs a punch
Understand your Target Audience
First and foremost, you really need to understand who you are as a brand. It will help you know who you are serving. If your logo is going to speak to your audience, you have to know who they are. You can’t assume you know what your audience wants or needs. Start by building buyer personas.
Choose 3-5 of your top customers who have distinctive perspectives and roles. Give each buyer a name to help distinguish the different people. You might have Marketer Sally or Homeowner Hank on your list. To create your buyer persona, you will need to define each buyers:
- Age range
- Professional occupation/title/industry
- Geographical region
- Hobbies and interests
- Behavior traits
- Pain points
You will use these personas to better dial in on your branding before making your logo. These buyer personas will also help you communicate your needs if you outsource content or marketing tasks in the future.
Scope out the Competition
Before getting started on the logo design, you should check out the competition. You may find that your competitors are already using the imagery or shape you imagined in your head. Part of a good branding decision is to make sure you aren’t going to be confused by your competition.
Only generic brands and knock-offs try to look like a popular brand that already exists. For a long time, Pepsi-Cola looked a lot like Coco-Cola. It added blue to the logo in 1950 and then dropped the “Cola” to go with just Pepsi in 1961. This has helped define it as a very different brand of soda. Other generic brands tend to look like those two leaders, like Sam’s Cola, RC, Shasta Cola, Cola Soda, and others.
You want to be the leader and have your own identity. So, learn what the competition is doing so you know how to be different with your colors, imagery, and font choices.
Go Out and Get Inspired
Look at other brands that are attracting your target audience in other industries. Your target audience doesn’t just need the product or service you offer—they are out there buying other things. So, seek out the brands and influencers who are popular with your crowd. Look at the aesthetic that appeals to your audience before nailing down your branding.
You may also find inspiration in your own products, services, area, industry, and more. Jot down notes for all imagery, colors, artistic styles, and characteristics that you may want to incorporate in your branding and showcase in your logo.
Decide on The Type of Logo
There are a number of different logo types you can go with. Consider what kind of logo you want to use before you start figuring out the specifics of style, imagery, color, and other details.
- Pictorial marks that literally depict part of your brand (like Apple, Target, or Twitter)
- Abstract marks that give a feel for your brand, but aren’t literal (like Pepsi, Nike, or Airbnb)
- Mascots take on the face of your brand as part of your logo (like Wendys or KFC)
- Logotype is a design using only your brand name with a special font (like Google or YouTube)
- Monograms or abbreviations are just a few letters making up the design (like CNN or IBM)
- Letterforms are one letter that creates the icon (like the Pinterest “P” icon or McDonald’s “M”)
- Emblems are a logo confined within a shape (like Starbucks, UPS, Ford or Bertolli)
- Combinations may contain imagery and logotype or letters (like Crown Royal or Adidas)
Experiment with Typography
The font you choose is very important. The font has to be easy to read, even when very small. It needs to feel professional, well-spaced and consistent.
The font also needs to have visual characteristics that support the nature of your brand. Do not choose a soft and flowy font if you are an edgy company appealing to a more aggressive and active crowd. You don’t choose an old-timey font if you are a cutting-edge tech company. Ignore using a technical font if you are a nature-based brand.
Try different fonts to see how they play with your colors, composition, and imagery. You can narrow your fonts down to your top 3-5 choices before moving on to finalize your logo design. Ultimately, you will probably only want one font in your logo, though some brands will use two fonts to help set apart the brand name from the initials, letterform, or emblem details. Harley-Davidson and Heineken are examples of logos using two fonts in their designs.
Explore Color Combinations
Color is going to be a huge factor for your brand as a whole—and it’s all defined by the logo.
Use your logo to establish the colors that represent your brand. In most cases, you will want between 1 and 3 colors, though some brands do use more. You will want to know the meaning behind colors before you decide which ones best represent your brand.
For example, red is fiery, symbolizing passion and sparking action. Blue is calming and represents dependability. Yellow is sunny and provides happy energy. Green represents life, growth and potential. Black and white logos are classic and showcase power through minimalism.
Make sure your colors help you stand apart from your competitors. Similar color combinations can make it harder for your audience to recognize your brand right away.
Create Multiple Versions
Don’t just go with one version for your logo. This is an amateur design move.
An expert graphic designer will often start with tons of little thumbnails to test out ideas and very loose compositions. Then, the designer (or client) will choose the top 3-5 versions to be turned into larger roughs. These start to show the color use and more specific composition. The favorite version is then fine-tuned to become the final logo version.
You may find yourself doing many versions before you get it just right. There are almost always major design flaws in the first several versions until you work out the bugs.
What if you swap out one color for a slightly more saturated version or a different hue altogether? What if you move that logotype up just a couple of pixels or down a hair? What if it is curved to follow the design or straight across to contrast against it?
There are so many options within any specific design idea. You can easily explore slightly different versions when you make a logo in Photoshop.
Ask for Feedback
You can even test your versions on your audience or stakeholders. This can be tricky because some people will always have something to say, while others will be fine with just about anything. It’s best if you can get the opinion of a professional. You might also consider polling your audience or testing your logo options out with A/B testing.
Sometimes, it’s hard to be honestly critical of your work when you’ve been looking at it a long time. Professional designers spend hours and hours in group critiques for their projects during graphic design school. Getting fresh eyes on your design will help you make sure you are communicating the things you want to express with your logo.
Finding the right logo can be tricky, but these tips will help you start off on the right foot. Once you’ve created your logo, you will have a much stronger brand. Still, if you have any queries, don't hesitate to contact us.