With the evolution of the internet and various websites, you can create a logo in just a few clicks. Of course, that doesn’t mean the logo will be any good. Your logo needs a good amount of thought and consideration before you go public with it. 

Since your logo is a visual representation of your business, it needs to be as good as possible. Don’t let this paralyse you though. Plenty of businesses rework their logo multiple times over the years. 

But to help you get it right the first time, we’ve listed our favourite logo design tips for small businesses. They are: 

  • Search for inspiration
  • Keep it simple
  • Avoid cliches
  • Know your brand
  • Have different logo forms
  • Create your own ideas
  • Not all feedback is equal

Making a successful logo

For your logo to be successful, it needs to be easily recognisable and represent your business

Since you’re a small business, your logo should also relate to the industry you’re in. Looking at well-known logos, like McDonalds or Apple, you might wonder why. 

These large companies benefit from being extremely well-known. Small businesses don’t have that luxury, and need to give people more information. 

Top logo design tips for small businesses

It’s a good idea to have a logo already designed before you start promoting your business. This can give your audiences an image to connect with, rather than a featureless and forgettable social media page.

Search for inspiration

It can be hard to come up with the right design straight off the bat, so look for inspiration. Ideas for your own logo can come from many different places, like something happening on your premises or even a competitor’s logo. 

Competitors

One good place to get inspiration for your own design is by looking at a competitor’s logo. Some questions you may want to ask when looking at their logo are:

  • How does their image relate to the business?
  • Is it a successful logo?
  • Can you instantly tell who they are?

Of course, if you do use another business’s logo as a starting point, you must make it different enough than the original. If you don’t, your business may be in danger of copyright infringement, which can carry some serious penalties. 

Keep it simple

Some of the most effective logos are incredibly basic. A logo is meant to draw in customers, so if too much is happening, potential customers may turn away.

The easiest way to stop your logo from looking overcrowded is to keep it simple. Use basic shapes or only a couple of colours. The Alienware logo follows these principles, being a black, simplistic alien head.

Avoid clichés

The last thing you want your logo to be is dull and uninteresting. So don’t let it be a cliché

An electrician using a lightbulb, or a plumber using a tap for their logo doesn’t do much. You know what field they’re in, but it’s easy to forget the logo. 

Instead, think about how you can avoid doing what everyone else does. Try to stand out as much as possible. The goal is to be memorable, and you can’t do that by blending in. 

Know your brand

Your brand is everything that speaks to your customers and clients. Who you are, what you do, and how you do it. You should know your brand better than anyone else, and this should shape your business’s logo. 

If your brand is fun and interactive, you may want something colourful and exciting. On the other hand, a more professional brand would need a logo to match.

Have different logo forms

A simple image won’t suit every situation. At the same time, having your business name spelled out won’t always work either. 

So get all your bases covered ahead of time. Have a range of usable images, some which just include the logo, some for your business’s name, and some that have both. 

If you’ve developed a tagline, it can be a great idea to combine this with your logo too. 

Create your own ideas

While you could outsource the entire process from the get-go, we don’t recommend it. A freelancer (even if they’re someone you know) has very little to do with your business, and won’t have the same knowledge that you do. 

Your best bet is to at least come up with initial ideas by yourself. If you lack the ability to turn your design into a fully formed idea, then hire someone to do that for you. 

But by getting someone else to do the entire thing, they might not register certain aspects you find important. This sort of disconnect could mean that your logo isn’t as effective as it could be. 

Not all feedback is equal

When showing potential designs to friends, family, and customers, it can be tempting to try and take every piece of feedback on board.

Don’t do this.

Listening to all the feedback you’re given can be very overwhelming, and end up damaging your creative process. Instead, look to see if your reviewers have spotted anything you missed

For instance, your logo may appear inappropriate from a certain perspective. If one person spots this, you can be sure that many others will too. 

Minor feedback and adjustments can typically be disregarded. Otherwise you can completely change your logo, and realise it no longer represents your business.

Organise your logo costs with Countingup

Whether you made the logo yourself, or paid someone to make it for you, it probably still cost you money. 

Since this is a business cost, you should be able to file it in your Self Assessment. Of course, this would be a lot easier if you had some accounting software to help.

The Countingup app is a two-in-one business current account and accounting software. Designed to make your financial admin run smoothly, it has several time-saving features (like automatic expense categorisation). 

So give yourself a helping hand, download Countingup for free

Building better branding

Your logo is important, but not as important as your business’s name. It’s an essential part of your brand, but it can be difficult to think of the right one. 

If you’re struggling, check out these Company Name Generators for ideas.

But to give your business the best start, you need to understand why branding is important in the first place. 
Check out our guide ‘Why is branding important in business?’ to learn more.