How to Design a Logo for a Small Business
Wondering how to design a logo for your small business? Whether big or small the approach to logo design is the same, keep reading.
A logo is the first impression a customer gets of your business and the brand you’re hoping to impress with. A logo is important for all marketing aspects of your business from business cards to your website and every email you send. Your logo is the focal point of your brand communication.
Whether you own a coffee shop or a realty business, you want a logo that will give potential customers something credible to identify with. For example a trendy real estate brand logo can be the difference in a customers’ mind that separates you from the 12 thousand other agents you’re competing with.
The good news is that creating the perfect logo doesn’t have to be difficult, as long as you consider a few basic pointers.
How Will Your Logo Be Used?
Before you even start thinking of a design or wording for your logo, ask yourself what you’re going to use the logo for. Will you be using it for online marketing, social media pages and product packaging or will it be printed on the actual product? Knowing where you want to use your logo will give you a clearer idea of the design you should create. For example, a very detailed logo may be difficult to produce on the surface of your product, especially if screen printing, so you’ll rather keep it simple.
Get the RIGHT Inspiration
A phenomenal logo starts with a simple idea. Think of what your product symbolizes. It’s important to be different from your competitors but still relevant to the product. Your customer base must be able to identify your logo design with your product.
Avoid using clichéd phrases or statements that aren’t true as well as overused symbols and icons. Your logo will be more effective if it’s fresh and original. It shouldn’t be too elaborate either. Think of the Nike swoosh. Often enough, simple is best.
Research Your Competitors
Research websites and social media pages of companies offering the same products or services as the business you’re creating. Ensure that your logo ideas aren’t too similar to theirs. Identify their weaknesses and anticipate how you could avoid those same pitfalls.
Design Points to Focus On
The Basic Components
It’s important to create a logo that’s not only effective but also one that you can be proud of. Avoid the most common design mistakes by following these design tips when picking basic elements:
- Fonts: Remember that you’ll probably print or use your design on different mediums. The font you use should be legible in various sizes and formats. Use a common font such as Aerial, Verdana or Helvetica. Test your font in different sizes before committing to one.
- Colors: Choose colors that have a high contrast pairing. Red and white for example, are very effective for KFC and Coco-Cola. Don’t overdo it with too much coloring. The object is to have your logo remembered for the right reasons and being over the top in your designs may be offputting to some customers. Color experts recommend colors like red, navy, teal, white or black. Several designers suggest not using more than three colors.
- Illustrations: If you use illustrations, make them relevant and realistic. Large corporations can use symbols because they’re well-known, but as a small business owner, keep it simple. If you sell coffee, show us coffee. If you sell house, show us a house. Remember, it’s how you interpret these images that’ll cause them to stick in your potential customers’ minds.
Negative Space is Your Friend
Few people understand the effect negative space has on logos or websites. While the eye is drawn to the design, your mind subconsciously wonders about “what’s not there”. This is what keeps the person’s attention. Think of the Facebook or WhatsApp symbols. Even people who don’t have social media accounts recognize those simple designs.
Types of Logos to Consider
A striking logo isn’t necessarily made up of an image or illustration. Type-only logos contain text only, such as the name of your company. Examples of this would be Google, Disney, Sony and the ever-famous Coca-Cola. It’s not impossible to create a remarkable logo using only your company name in a unique and interesting manner.
An alternative to a type-only logo is a combination of an illustration or image and a tagline. An example of this is Nike. They have the “JUST DO IT” slogan with the swoosh symbol. If you are considering this option, make sure your logo aligns with your company’s tagline and mission statement.
Always Test Before Finalizing
When your logo design is complete, don’t put it out there until you’ve given its reception a small test run. Show it to people, get various opinions to determine if it’s good enough and confirm whether it’s easily associated with your product or service. Also test how it’s viewed in different format sizes. Is it as clear on your mobile device as on your laptop or tablet screen?
A prominent logo is crucial to the successful image of any business. Keep it simple, unique and don’t rush the process. To maintain stability and create brand recognition you should take the time to create an effective logo that people will associate with you and your company. This increases the chances of your small business quickly becoming recognized in the community AND your industry. These steps and tips will help you get it right!