Designing logos for a multi-device world


Logos are a crucial part of your brand. For many brands, is the single most recognizable visual representation.In the past, your logo would appear on your store, business card and perhaps the local newspaper if you did advertising.

But these days, a logo has to work even harder than it ever has before, given the sheer variety of sizes that is required. Logos have to look good whether it is viewed as a full page magazine advertisement, or as a tiny favicon. Today, we are going to look at how some brands have managed to do this well, and the lessons we can draw from there.

Here are some great examples


The four logos above are some of the most recognizable logos in the world – and we have some great lessons to draw from there. Let’s go.

1) Keep it Simple, Silly.

The best logos are kept simple so that it is flexible enough to work in different contexts. Take the McDonald’s logo for example. Its logo is simple and yet effective whether it is used on a billboard, or on a napkin.

Skype too, understands the need for simplicity as many of their customers experience the logo when it is just an app icon on their phones or computers. As such they have created a different version of the logo just for smaller formats.


The smaller version, while very different, fits and looks like the main logo.

2) Be distinctive

When Nike dropped the wordmark from their famous Swoosh, they were the first major brand to do so. It was seen as a daring move at the time, but the underlying principle then was that the Swoosh was already synonymous with what they stood for – a passion for being at the top of the game. What is your logo associated with? If it had to be shrunk down to a size smaller than a postage stamp, would it still be recognizable?

If you look at Google’s recent redesign of their logo and consolidated their mobile logo into the multi-colored G, the logo design itself was a departure from the previous one. But at the same time, the primary colors that Google kept made it very distinctively Google as well, making it clear from a bookmark bar or app screen which logo that was.

3) How does it work if there are no words?

Every once in awhile, a fun article about logos stripped of their brand names and it is really telling – for some brands it is as if nothing has changed, and for others it is a real challenge.

Creating a logo that works with or without your brand text also has the added advantage that it would work cross-culturally no matter the language. Just take a look at the Apple logo.

Logo design is a very deep field within branding, and we’ve barely scratched the surface. But hopefully, this gives you some helpful tips to start thinking about making your logo great for multiple sizes.



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