The right logo can do wonders for any business. It makes you stand out from the online crowd, distinguishes you from your competitors, symbolizes what your company stands for, and makes your brand stick in people's minds.
In Company Logo Dos and Don'ts, we outlined important tips to get you started with designs. We’ve also discussed the basics of logo design elsewhere. What’s great about modern technology is you can now use a free Logo Maker app to create quality designs. The sky’s the limit when it comes to playing around with logo ideas, experimenting with what they mean from different perspectives, and seeing how different versions look across a range of mediums.
Another aspect of making cool logos which many business owners may not be aware of is the importance of font typography in your logo. This communicates brand feel as strongly as the rest of the design, so it’s important to get it right. Taglines in logos are also super important because they encapsulate what your business is all about.
As the visual representation of your business, your logo — and the font you choose to use within it — plays a significant role in communicating what your brand stands for and the role your company plays in your chosen industry. Here’s how a font can shape business logo:
There are innumerable fonts out there, with many new ones being introduced every day. How do you even begin to select from such a vast library? These five proven and popular logo fonts can help narrow down your choices.
This modernized sans serif font preserves a little bit of flair through its signature “squiggles” without giving up readability. This font is clean, simple, and fun, which is excellent for brands looking to communicate relatability in their logo. This font is also versatile and can be put to work on your brand’s website, signage, and more.
Bold, easy to read, and widely used, Futura is a popular choice for many brands looking to make a memorable statement. This modern font lends itself well to logo design due to its use of geometric shapes and straight lines. Global shipper Fedex and German car manufacturer Volkswagen are among two of the more prominent brands that use Futura in their logo.
This update to a classic sans serif font is one of the most ubiquitous in branding. This font is a go-to for logos because of its crisp and clean appearance as well as its readability. These factors also make it an excellent choice for digital applications, such as websites and apps, to support ease of use and a positive visitor experience. Prominent examples of Helvetica Now used in logos are the car brand Jeep and the electronics manufacturer Panasonic.
This sans serif font is a very popular logo choice for its clarity and memorability. It retains easy-to-read qualities while adding a bit of character. Online service provider AOL and media company Bloomberg use variations of Avenir in their logos.
You may recognize Garamond from email composition or your chosen word processor. This group of serif fonts is celebrated for its timeless look and its simplicity. Luxury watch brand Rolex uses a modified version of Garamond for its logo, while clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch uses this font in bold as its logo.
Before diving into the details of business logo fonts, let’s get some terminology out the way:
Now that we’ve cleared that up, the following list covers the main typeface families. We’ve created examples for each one using our free Logo Maker so you can get a good idea of the awesome options at your fingertips.
Serif fonts have small lines (those squiggly bits, otherwise called “feet”) at the ends of letters. A well-known example would be Times New Roman used in newspapers. A variation would be slab serif fonts, which are bolded and thicker, designed to be seen from a distance.
Use the serif typeface in your logo if you want your business brand to say: traditional, academic, and classical.
This basically means any clean font without the squiggly serif bits. Most websites use sans serif because it’s easiest on the eye. These neutral fonts go well with almost any visual design. Ultra-modern san serif fonts tend to use capitals more and play around with the letters, such as using “A” without the horizontal line or adding a letter back to front.
Use the sans serif typeface in your logo if you want your business brand to say: straightforward, streamlined, modern, and hip.
This typeface is so named because it’s designed to look like handwriting—typically cursive. The thing to bear in mind if choosing this style for your logo is sizing since script fonts can be hard to read in small form. An example of branding that works with script is Instagram.
Use the script typeface in your logo if you want your business brand to say: elegant, formal, and classical. Different script fonts can look fun, childlike, and playful, and they have lots of personality when used properly.
Fonts that don’t fit into the above three categories tend to be more decorative and unusual. Major brands like Disney have a display font custom designed for them to really stand out as one of a kind. But because they’re generally highly creative, these fonts are used sparingly. They’re not clean enough for longer text and taglines that need to be easily readable in smaller sizes.
Use a display typeface for a brand name only to be very distinctive, bold, and unique.
Now that you know the main typefaces and what type of feel each one conveys, these are the important things to keep in mind about your individual business:
With business logos, fonts need to resonate with your target audience. Here are some examples:
You may have a good font style for your industry and your audience, but it won’t matter if it can’t be seen or doesn’t look good in different sizes. For example, will it look good if printed on apparel? If a large part of your business involves transport, you’ll want to build brand recognition by having your logo printed on your cars and trucks. Does the logo font look really strong and clean so people can easily read it as they walk or drive past your vehicles?
On the other hand, if you have a social media or digital consulting business where everything you do is online, you won’t need to think about big sizing. But you will need to stand out in the noisy online space, so be creative. An example would be using a modern sans serif font like we described, where the “A” is missing the horizontal line — a logo with triangles would communicate being at the top of a mountain with the best view of your client’s needs.
A key design tip is to use at least one main eye-catching element in your logo, such as having a sleek icon image, your brand name in a very unusual, bold font, and the slogan in more of a clean, neutral font. The unusual, stand-out font style for your company name would cause people to look closer, so the image and slogan would have a better chance of being memorable to people.
Or you could go the opposite route by having a really eye-catching icon image, then going for a clean, easily readable and neutral sans serif font to offset it. Play around with contrasts between your font, icon, and slogan to stand out from the crowd.
While font contrasts in your business logo are great at grabbing attention, make sure they compliment each other. First, choose the brand name font that most represents the energy and values of your company using the guidelines above. This should be the strongest statement font.
Your slogan and taglines should have a more toned down sans serif font because their purpose is to be easily readable. Also, bear in mind that a script font with another script font isn’t a good look as it will appear too busy instead of simple and clean. A good way forward is to get creative with trying out different versions of the same font: sizing, bold, italic, and upper and lower case letters.
This article gives you the need-to-know details for choosing fonts for your business logos to get a suitable and fully professional look. We’ve provided an overview of the four main typefaces (font families), what impression each one tends to give, and other important factors to keep in mind for business logo fonts — audience, placement, and grabbing attention through contrasting but complementary choices.
As you absorb these tips and think about how they apply to your brand, consider how the font you choose will help reinforce brand values and grab your customers’ attention while remaining easy to read. The five popular and proven fonts we list here provide great examples of how these font choices are used every day in the real world. And once you’re feeling inspired, head over to the Namecheap free logo maker to create your logo — no account required.
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