How to design your own small business logo
Have you ever wondered how to design your own business logo?
Every business needs an identity so that your customers can identify the value your business provides and relate to it. A logo or a symbol is the most visual element that a business can use to convey everything that it stands for. Think about all the memorable logos that come to your mind like Nike, Apple or McDonalds. This is what you want to create – a piece of art that creates an impression with your potential customers immediately and projects a positive relationship with your business or service.
There is a lot that needs to be considered before designing your small business logo.
Here are some easy steps to get you started and successfully brand your business in the marketplace with a great logo.
1. Assess your business.
This is a crucial step before you start any design work.
- Take a good look at your business or service and write down a few keywords that you may use to describe your business. Look online for some inspirational keywords or ask for your friends and family.
- Make a note of what you want to portray about your business – is there a unique selling point? Are your depicting seriousness or are you going to be light-hearted? Is there a particular business mission or goal you want to project?
- It is also important to understand your target market and what their needs are. This way you will be able to understand what kind of images they would positively respond to.
2. Business name
At this point, you will have enough information to be able to assess how your business name fits into the overall design of your logo. Do you want a logo that concentrates only on the business name like Coca-Cola? Would you like to design a symbol along with the business name? Or is it more appropriate to design a memorable symbol like Nike?
Your business assessment and the decisions you have made regarding the overall design will now give you a clear idea about the main colors you want to incorporate into your design. Are the colors projecting the image you want to create in the mind your potential audience? Are they detracting the overall message? Are you using the same colors in other aspects of your business – website, advertising, uniforms, store-front and other marketing material?
4. Look at your competition
You can get some inspirational ideas by looking at successful logos of your competitors. It will give you an insight about what you want to incorporate in your logo design. What kind of styles and color are they using? What are they representing with their designs? How can you differentiate your logo from theirs so that it stands out? Have a look but don’t copy, even though it might be tempting to design something similar. This will only send a wrong message to your audience of laziness and no integrity.
5. Start designing
Now that you have done your research it’s time to start sketching your ideas. Make some rough drafts and drawings. Make multiple designs so that you can decide which ones stand out and are appropriate for your business. You can refine them later on.
6. Using images and vectors
There are plenty of images and vectors graphics online like the ones available on Freepik, which you could use to design your logo. Typically you should use a vector graphic to design your logo as they can be altered easily while their high resolution stays the same giving you a highly defined design.
However, you will need appropriate software like Adobe Illustrator and CorelDraw to design with vectors. If you’re looking for a free option, try Inkscape which is an open source vector graphic program. But all these require you to have some sort of graphic designing skills or you can refer to their help menu and start learning.
Let me show you with an example how you can put together a logo using ready-made vectors. Let’s say, you’re running a gift wrapping service and are designing a logo for this business.
- Look for the appropriate vector graphic by entering the term “gift” or “gift box” in search.
- Download the vector graphic that you want.
- Open Inkscape (or any other program) and import the vector onto the page.
- Ungroup the vector. Now you are ready to modify it. Change the colors if you like. Add your business name or add other elements to it.
- Your logo is now ready.
7. Consult a designer
This is a crucial step and one that is most recommended. Even if you have successfully designed your logo using the above steps or if you have just sketched a few options, it is a vital to seek the opinion of a designer for a number of reasons.
- A designer will create a custom design based on your ideas, which will make your logo stand out in the target market.
- They will give you advice on what colors are appropriate.
- A designer will let you know if your logo design will transfer well on other applications such as store signs or other kind of printing.
- They will provide vital feedback on your design and assist you to make any other changes if necessary.
A few things to keep in mind when designing a logo for your business:
- Make sure your logo can be reproduced in black and white to, so you can use it in photocopies, faxes and other areas where you require black and white options.
- Keep the design clean and simple – making it versatile to be used on various items like stationary, giveaways, store signs, packaging and more.
- Try and minimise the number of colors you use. Two or three colors are ideal or you may run up expensive printing costs if your design has too many colors.
- Your design must be scalable. Your logo must retain its resolution and overall design when it is enlarged or scaled down to be used on a variety of items.
With the above steps, your unique small business logo is ready. You can now use if on a variety of applications and market your viability to your potential customers.