How to Make a Logo:
Designing a logo can feel overwhelming — especially if you don't have advanced graphic design skills — but it doesn't have to be a daunting task. When you embrace the challenges that come with logo design, it can be an exciting, fun stage of your branding journey. Follow our steps below to design a great logo.
Do the groundwork.
Define your brand.
A logo is a visual design element that forms part of your brand identity, so before you start designing a logo, you need to have a solid understanding of the type of brand you're building. Think deeply about what makes your products and/or services unique from those offered by competitors.
To help define your brand identity, ask yourself the following questions:
What is the goal of my business?
What are the demographics of my target audience?
Which core beliefs and values shape my company?
What should customers associate with my products, services, and brand name?
Which three words best describe my brand?
Which three words should customers think of when they see my brand?
What will I do to ensure my business stands out from the competition?
Still haven't decided on a name for your business? Try NameSnack.
Consider the purpose of your logo.
Clearly defining the role of your logo will help you create a design that checks all your boxes. Think carefully about how your logo will help shape your brand perception. Some questions to ask include:
What kind of first impression would you like your logo to have on potential clients?
What do you want your logo to tell people about your business?
What kind of brand image should your logo project to your target audience?
Will your logo appear on websites, billboards, products, promotional stationery, company vehicles, and similar surfaces?
Would you want people to easily recognize your logo?
Will your logo comprise an abstract symbol, icon, text, mascot, or all of the above?
As you start conceptualizing your logo, look at your competitors' logos for design ideas. Write down your favorite and least favorite logo designs, and be sure to note what makes each one effective or ineffective. Write down any inspiring thoughts or ideas that come to you while examining existing logos.
To get the most out of the brainstorming process, remember to:
Try to put yourself in the shoes of someone from your target audience.
Write down all the keywords that describe your brand.
Write down all your ideas; even the bad ones may serve as inspiration.
Create a mood board and use this as a visual representation of your logo ideas and designs.
Get feedback on your design ideas from friends, family, and people from online communities.
Get input from trusted industry professionals and mentors.
Don't restrict yourself to your own industry. Look at logo designs of successful brands from other fields and see if there are principles you can apply to your own logo design.
Consider what sets your brand apart from your competitors and how your logo design can reflect these differences.
When designing a logo, analyzing the logos of competitors is crucial, not only to learn from their strengths and weaknesses, but also to ensure elements of their logos are not unwittingly copied in your logo design.
For more logo design ideas, visit sites like Logo Of The Day.
Design your logo.
Choose a style.
The way the different elements — icons, colors, typography, space, and scale — combine to form your logo will determine its style. Different styles work better for certain businesses and there is no one logo style that works for everyone.
If none of the typical logo styles work for you, feel free to mix and match styles until you find the perfect design aesthetic.
Opt for a classic style if you want to create a timeless logo that won't need redesigning in the near future. Redoing a logo can be costly and time-consuming.
A vintage style will add a nostalgic twist to any logo design. Hand-drawn illustrations pair well with this aesthetic and can also give your brand a premium feel.
For an ultra-modern logo, try a minimalist style with plenty of white space, clean lines, sharp angles, and a limited color palette. Geometric shapes often feature in modern logos; think triangles, rectangles, trapezoids, and similar shapes.
A fun style may appeal to companies with a younger audience or a dynamic brand. Characterized by its positive and often whimsical energy, a fun logo style uses quirky illustrations and mascots to create character.
Create simple sophistication or vibrancy with your logo by using a handmade style. Hand-drawn lines are perfect for businesses that want to convey a sense of tradition, quality, and authenticity.
Choose your logotype.
Now that you've determined the style of your logo, you need to decide on the type of logo that's most appropriate for your business. There are seven different logotypes to choose from:
A monogram or lettermark typically consists of two or three letters that can be accompanied by a graphic, but typically stands alone. The initials of the brand name are commonly used in a monogram. Some examples include NASA, H&M, and BBC.
Sometimes called symbolic or iconic logos, pictorial marks are logos comprising distinct images without text. These logos typically use one or two colors but are easily identifiable without any color. The Nike swoosh and Twitter mascot, Larry the Bird, are some examples.
Also called logotypes, wordmarks use the full name of the brand or company as the logo. A unique font and a distinctive name create a good wordmark. Focus on typography, font, and color when designing a wordmark. Some examples include Coca-Cola, VISA, and Disney.
An easy way to create an approachable brand is by using a mascot logo. These logos use characters as their focal points, which help to build rapport between the brand and the audience. These logos are frequently accompanied by brand names, but a really good mascot should be able to stand on its own.
If you're looking to create a logo that carries prestige and status, opt for an emblem logo. These comprise icons or symbols with textual elements inside them. Think of a school badge. These logotypes are favored by organizations, institutions, and government agencies.
Abstract logos offer unique, unlimited design options and retain their relevance even when the nature of the company changes. These logos have no intrinsic connection to your brand.
If none of the above appeal to you, a combination mark may be the answer. Combination logos use both text and graphics — icons, mascots, or symbols — to represent a brand. Both text and visual elements should exist in harmony within the logo.
Before committing to a single logo design, try out a few options and see what works best.
Wordmarks and combination marks are better suited to new businesses that are not yet established, as they contain the name and/or an image and slogan of the business.
Consider logo variations for your brand.
Because your logo will invariably appear in several different spaces, having multiple versions of it will make it easier to integrate across platforms and to display on promotional products. A logo variation is essentially your main logo, just in a slightly different format.
No matter where your logo's going to appear, choose from the following logo variations for the perfect fit.
The primary logo is your main logo from which all other variations are created. This logo comprises your business name, slogan, graphics, and brand colors. This logo is typically visible in your store, on your website, and other marketing materials.
The elements of your primary logo can be rearranged to create a secondary logo. The easiest way to do this is to switch the orientation from stacked to horizontal, or vice versa. A secondary logo may be found on labels, social media branding, and other printed materials.
The simplified version of your logo, better known as a submark or brandmark, includes the full brand name and a small icon. In some cases, submarks also use the initials of your business name. These can be found in small spaces, such as footers on websites or emails, business cards, blog graphics, and more.
If you have an icon in your main logo, you can use this on its own as a brand element. The initials of your business name can also be turned into an icon that represents your business. Brand elements can be replicated to produce patterns on your website, or they can be used as favicons, adding a perfect finishing touch to your website.
Use the right colors to convey meaning.
Color plays a crucial role in marketing and advertising. By choosing the right colors for your logo, you can expand your brand narrative and evoke certain feelings and ideas you want your brand associated with.
Make a note of the colors your competitors and other top brands have used in their logos.
Test various color combinations and shades until you find the best color scheme for your logo.
Combining colors can be tricky, so get some input from others before making a final decision.
When it comes to logo designs, keep it simple. Create a logo that's easy to replicate, comprises one to three colors, and is recognizable even in plain black.
Be mindful of font, typeface, and typography.
The typeface, font, and typography (arrangement of letters within your logo) all play a vital role in the appearance and overall appeal of your logo, so you'll want to pay close attention to them. The typeface and font you choose should complement the style of your logo.
When choosing the textual elements of your logo, be sure to:
Do thorough research and planning. Look at the fonts used by other brands within your industry. Can you spot any common fonts? How are the text and graphics arranged in your competitors' logos? Can you identify any popular patterns? Note your observations.
Understand how typeface affects logo style. Serif fonts (classical letters with "feet") lend a timeless look to your logo; sans-serif fonts (without "feet") work for modern logos; script fonts resembling handwriting have an elegant flair, which is great for a vintage-style logo; and display fonts with big personalities are great for fun logos.
Feel free to combine fonts, but do not use more than two different fonts within the same logo.
To identify interesting fonts, use an app like WhatTheFont.
Try an online logo maker.
If you need to create a logo quickly, try Zarla. This intuitive logo maker can help you create hundreds of logo designs in minutes for free.
Navigate to the home page.
Enter your brand name and click on "Create Your Free Logo."
Start typing an industry, then select one from the drop-down menu. Click on "Next."
Enter your slogan (optional), then click on "Next."
Click on "Choose icons for me" or "Search for icons."
Browse through the logo designs and click on the best one.
Customize your logo, then enter your email in the top-right corner and click on "Download."
Check your inbox and follow the prompts to access your free logo files.
Evaluate and integrate your logo design.
Finalize your logo design.
Set your logo options side by side and evaluate the best ones. Get input from friends, colleagues, potential clients, and trusted mentors to help you make your final choice.
The logo should be instantly recognizable and also effectively communicate your brand message. When evaluating your logo design, be sure to ask the following questions:
Is your logo professional and does it complement your brand identity?
Will your logo give people an idea of what your business does?
Is your logo memorable and does it stand out from competitors' logos?
Is your logo versatile enough to be printed on all the products or materials that carry your brand name?
Will your logo stand the test of time, or will it need a redesign later on?
Will your target audience find the logo attractive?
When evaluating your logo, make sure you've avoided these common mistakes.
Integrate your logo.
Once you've decided on the perfect logo, you will need to integrate it into all aspects of your business. Choose the best logo variations for your business cards, package design, website, email, social media pages, company vehicle, and more.
Be sure to establish brand guidelines for the typography, colors, and possible color combinations of your logos before requesting any branded material.
Mistakes to Avoid When Designing a Logo:
1. Clichés in the industry.
Avoid overused motifs — ideas, designs, concepts, shapes, icons — that you've identified in competitors' logos. For example, if you are a yoga company, you don't necessarily need your logo to feature a silhouette of someone in the lotus position. Using a fresh approach will help you stand out from the competition.
2. Complicated logo designs.
A clean and simple logo is more memorable and can be printed on multiple branding materials, such as vehicles, storefront windows, stationery, and other promotional items. If it's easy to draw your logo by hand, you're off to a good start.
3. Choosing a trendy logo instead of a timeless one.
If your brand needs a modern logo, go for it, but don't prioritize modernity over timelessness. Choose a logo that will age well and one that won't need a redesign in a few years. Redoing a logo can be a costly and time-consuming task, as it often involves removing logos from existing materials and assets.
Why do I need a logo?
A logo is a quick way for people to identify your brand or company. It also helps to build trust, emotional connection, and loyalty between your business and customers.
How do I create a professional logo?
- Consider the type of image you want to project to potential clients.
- Do your research and examine the logos of competitors to get inspired.
- Choose the colors, icons, fonts, and logo styles that will complement your brand.
- Use a logo generator to create the right design for your brand.
How do I create a small business logo?
You can follow our steps to create a small business logo.
What are the golden rules of logo design?
- Ensure your logo reflects your brand values.
- Avoid adding too much detail to the design.
- Make sure your logo works well in black and white.
- Create a logo that can be resized.
- Ensure that your logo is unique, recognizable, and memorable.
How can I make a logo online for free?
You can use Zarla to create, edit, and download hundreds of free logos. Simply enter your brand name on the home page to get started.
What should I not do when designing a logo?
- Don't use clichés in your industry.
- Don't create a complicated logo.
- Don't follow trends if you can help it.
What is the easiest way to make a logo?
The easiest and fastest way to make a logo is by using an online logo maker.
What are the different types of logos?
- Monograms or lettermarks.
- Symbolic or iconic logos.
- Wordmarks or logotypes.
- Mascot logos.
- Emblem logos.
- Abstract logos.
- Combination marks.
What is a text logo called?
A text logo is also called a logotype or wordmark.