Whether you’re in the process of branding your Etsy shop or next major business venture, your logo is the foundation of it all. It’s the essential part of your brand’s identity that helps customers recognize your products. Much like a default photo on a dating profile or meeting someone face-to-face for the first time, your logo is the first thing a customer notices about your company, and making a good first impression is key to a great relationship for years to come.
The best logos in the world are simple ones - but that doesn’t mean thinking of a great logo design is easy! It takes thought and creative energy to come up with something that speaks well of your brand, is memorable, and has a timeless appeal. If you have no idea what you want your logo to look like, a good place to start is a think-session on what you want your brand to represent. Create a mood board to help to distinguish logo styles you like, the overall aesthetic you gravitate towards, color palettes, and typefaces.
Branding and logo design take a lot of thought, but creating a strong brand identity is what will set you up for success for years to come. The best news is, once you have your ideas ready, BeFunky’s Photo Editor can help you whip up your logo design in minutes! You’ll be so proud of it you’ll want to print your new logo on everything.
What Makes A Great Logo
In order to understand what makes a great logo, you should first know what a logo is used for. In its simplest form, a logo is used for identification. It’s stamped on your packaging, business cards, website, and store signage. It speaks your brand identity using shapes, typeface, and colors that evoke emotion.
Before you whip out a piece of paper and start sketching possibilities, there are specific components that you should be thinking about when it comes to your logo. Here are some tried-and-true tips for whipping up a successful logo for your business:
Keep It Simple
If we told you to think of a logo, what would be the first that comes to mind? Chances are, the top-of-mind brand recognition goes to the simplest logo designs. When you're standing in front of aisles of products like laundry detergent or wine, the simple designs are the ones that stand out and are the easiest to remember.
To keep things simple, choose a maximum of two complimentary fonts and make sure your logo is more legible than intricate. It's important to stand out amongst the competition, so find the balance of going bold without getting your brand name lost in the design.
Make It Memorable
When all is said and done, your logo should leave a memorable impression that sticks in a consumer's mind even moments after they see it. Aim to tell a story with your logo; a good logo tells a story, and a great logo tells a hidden story on top of that. Get your consumers to resonate with the initial design and do a double-take to notice a deeper meaning. Adding in elements in the negative space of a simple logo can have this effect on a person. Take the FedEx logo for instance:
Once you see the arrow between the ‘e’ and the ‘x’, you can never unsee it! It takes a moment to see hidden messages in logos, but when you notice them, they stick with you for a while.
Versatility is Key
A logo that is versatile is the only thing you should be producing. This will ensure that the integrity of your logo will be maintained on many different formats, including tiny profile icons and also on the side of a billboard or storefront. Keeping the design simple and refraining from delicate details is one way to prevent your logo from looking like an ink smear when it shrinks to fit something small.
Another good way to test the versatility of your logo is to make sure it looks good in both grayscale and color. If all of the creative elements are lost when draining the color from your logo, you might have a problem when printing in an ad that requires black and white. A good way to ensure versatility in your color scale is to create the initial design in a single color, then add your chosen color palette afterwards.
Make It Timeless
A great logo can grow with a company through its lifetime. A company shouldn’t need to redo a logo every few years to stay relevant to the population. Ask if what you are creating will be relevant in 10 years, 30 years, 50 years? Take Coca Cola, for example. Their logo hasn’t changed since 1886.
Be sure to refrain from using pop culture references and symbols that might be lost on the next generation. The fonts and color schemes that are trendy at the moment might not always be, so try to find the balance between representing your brand well and giving into the current branding trends.
Now that you know the keys to creating a great logo, it’s time to start brainstorming, sketching, mood boarding, and spending a good amount of time thinking about how you want to represent your company. When you’ve got a solid idea of what your logo should look like, you’re ready to make it a reality with BeFunky!
How To Create Your Own Logo With BeFunky
With your design ideas in mind, head to BeFunky’s Photo Editor and upload any photo. The photo that you choose can be literally anything - we will be transforming it into a transparent background and resizing it to serve as the canvas for your logo design.
Once you upload your photo, select the Background tool from the Edit menu on the left. Make sure that the box next to Transparent has a green checkmark, and your entire photo will transform into a transparent background (it will look like a checkerboard). Click the blue checkmark to confirm this change.
Next, click on the Crop tool from the Edit menu on the left to crop your canvas to the desired measurement of your logo. It’s best to think about all of the places your logo will end up and size your canvas accordingly. For example, while a commonly used website logo size is 160px by 160px, a Twitter icon dimensions are 400px by 400px. A good rule of thumb is to design on the larger canvas size, then resize images for smaller channels as needed (it’s better to shrink a logo than to stretch it larger than its original size).
Now that your canvas is ready, here’s where the creativity begins! With BeFunky’s wide selection of graphics and free fonts, you’ll be able to design a logo that looks super professional and fitting for your business. First, click on the Graphics tab on the left menu (the heart symbol) and take a look at all the graphics in each category. When you find one you like (or a few to arrange together) click on the graphic to add it to your canvas.
Each time you have a graphic selected on your canvas, a Graphic Properties toolbar will appear for you to change the Color Overlay, Opacity, Blend Mode, and more! You can resize your graphic by clicking and dragging the blue circles around it, or rotate it using the top center circle. Using the Shift button while dragging a blue circle will allow you to unlock the aspect ratio and elongate a shape.
When looking for graphics to use in your logo design, feel free to be creative with graphics and use them to build on one another. For example, the the bottom of the sailboat in this logo design was created by selecting one of the shields from the Design Elements category, then holding down the Shift key while resizing to reshape it. The same process was used on a rectangle graphic from the Geometry category, then both were made the same color to make them look like one sailboat graphic!
With the graphic portion of your logo complete, now it’s time to add some text! Click on the Text tab in the menu on the left (the T symbol) and select the Add Text button at the top. Remember, the simplest logos are best, so refrain from adding anything more than your company name and perhaps one line of subtext.
Click on the text box and start typing your company name. You’ll notice that a Text Properties toolbar appears for you to change the font, colors, opacity, and more! Notice that in the Font Family selection, you can choose from BeFunky’s huge library of free fonts in the Ours tab, or select any font stored on your computer (including any downloaded fonts!) by clicking on the Yours tab.
If you have any second line of text you’d like to add, choose a secondary font that compliments your primary font. A general rule of thumb for font selection is to pair hard and soft, thick and thin, or serif and sans serif typefaces instead of selecting just one font to use throughout the design. Font pairing is extremely important for logos and brands, so play around with different looks, making sure that the typefaces you’re using work well together and follow the aesthetic of your brand.
To quickly add a new line of text, click on any textbox and press the ‘D’ key on your keyboard. This will duplicate the format of the selected textbox, and you can tweak everything from there.
When your logo is looking perfect, click the Save button at the top of the Photo Editor to save your file to your chosen destination.
It’s important to note that when saving your file, you must save it as a .PNG to preserve your transparent background. This way, you can place your logo on any image or file without having a white or checkered background behind it.
How To Create Design Mockups With Your Logo
Now that you’ve got your logo saved as a .PNG file, you can test out the design in a variety of mockup scenarios to make sure you love it. BeFunky’s Designer offers tons of free design templates for business cards, letterhead, Facebook ads, and more. Adding your logo to these templates will show you exactly how it will look in these formats.
Other great resources for design mockups are free stock photo sites like Pixabay and Pexels. You can search for free images of things like product tags, store windows, and more. When you find a photo you want to add your logo to, download it for free from the site, then upload it into BeFunky’s Photo Editor.
Select the Layer Manager tab (the first icon in the left menu) and open your .PNG file. This will allow you to add your logo right onto the photo mockup. You can resize your logo using the blue circles around it and use the Layer Properties menu to tweak the opacity, color overlay, blend mode and more! Play around with your new logo and see how it looks in different scenarios.
Now that you’ve seen your logo in action (and love it!), you’re ready to commit. With the foundation of your branding set, all that’s left to do is be unstoppable! We wish you all the best in your business ventures, and remember, BeFunky is the ultimate resource for your business needs. From business cards to social media ads, photo editing, and everything in between, we’ve got you covered!