How to Design a Free Logo
Because I specialise in low cost web design and web design for start up businesses, many of my clients just don’t have the extra budget for a logo to be designed. Like web design, the cost of having a logo designed can vary wildly. It can cost anything from under £10 to thousands of pounds. I include a free text logo with all my website packages, but what if you want more than that? Here are some resources to help you design a free logo.
Things to Consider when Designing a Free Logo
If you are going to design your own logo, make sure that you think about these points first:
- Colours – decide on the kind of colours that suit your business, before you start designing otherwise you might get carried away and end up with something wacky!
- Font – rather than trying out lots of fonts within the logo design software itself, it’s wise to narrow it down to a few fonts first. You can browse fonts at Google fonts. When you find fonts that you like you can click on the page and type your company name in, so that you can see what it will look like in that particular font. This is a great way to try different fonts quickly. If you’re overwhelmed by the sheer number of fonts, use the filter options on the right hand side to narrow it down.
- Image – don’t think that you have to include an image in your logo. Many companies just have a font logo and are instantly recognisable. For example Coca-Cola, Kodak, Google, Ray Ban, Swatch etc
Free Logo Design Tools
The below is just a selection taken from the first page of Google.
Canva lets you design free logos. They have a library of templates that you can use a starting point and for inspiration and they have a drag and drop interface that’s easy to use. You can add and change text, colours and add elements such as shapes and icons. Canva is also great if you want to produce any marketing and promotional materials, Facebook covers and Instagram posts.
While designing your logo in Canva is free, your options are limited when it comes to downloading your design. You can download your logo as PDF, jpeg or png. All these are standard formats, which is great. However ideally you’d like your logo to be downloaded as a png with a transparent background. This means that your logo will look good on any colour background.
They do offer a 30 day free trial, so in theory you could sign up and use the trial to download the logo with a transparent background. Or you could splash out and sign up for a month as it only costs $12.95. Pricing can be found here Annoyingly the pricing isn’t obvious when you first go into Canva.
Designmantic is a step by step process for designing a logo. The first step is to decide whether you want your logo to have an abstract, symbol or lettermark design. Click next and it will take you to an option to choose the font style (you can further narrow this down at a later stage). Next choose whether you want 1, 2 or 3 colours in your logo. You then enter your company name and choose your industry, or all industries if you want more choice. It will then show you a choice of designs that you can then edit further.
Many of the designs are out of date and not the kind of logos you would want to use. There are however some decent logos in there that could be customised to suit your needs. Colours and fonts can easily be changed at this point and layers repositioned.
As mentioned, many of the designs are very out of date. To actually get your design you need to register. The company also create custom logo designs for $49, so presumably they will try and sell you this service. To be honest I think that’s fair enough as they are offering a free tool and I don’t have a problem with that, as long as they give you an option to unsubscribe and don’t spam you forever.
This potentially looks like a good tool, although as with all the free tools the designs are pretty basic. However I couldn’t get it to work in any of my browsers on the day of testing. If you can get it to work then they low res logo is free. If you want to upgrade then it’s €34 and this includes PDF, Photoshop and SVG files which is pretty great.
Gimp is similar to Photoshop, but is free. It’s a brilliant piece of software and although it can have a steep learning curve, there are plenty of free videos on Youtube to help you out. Unlike the above it’s not browser based, so you would need to install it. It’s free and can be downloaded at https://www.gimp.org/downloads/
To find some tutorials for creating a logo in Gimp simply go to Youtube and Google “create logo in Gimp” or similar.
Although you can create pretty much anything you want in Gimp without restrictions, it’s a steep learning curve
Logo Design Tools that aren’t free (or if they are, you have to provide a credit)
If you Google “free logo designer” or similar you may come across some results that aren’t, in fact, free at all. To save you wasting time, here’s a list of ones that aren’t free. They may be great logo designers (I haven’t tried them), but you cannot get a free logo with them. Make sure that you don’t click on any that say “ad” next to them. These are paid for adverts, which means that they are selling something so unlikely to offer a free logo.
Some of the below do offer a free logo on the condition that you include a credit to them on your website and social media. This basically means that you have a link to them on your social media and website. If your website is just a hobby website then this is fine. However a credit back to a logo design tool will look incredibly unprofessional on any other kind of site, so I wouldn’t recommend it.
Logo Joy – minimum is $20 and that’s for a low res logo. It then goes up to $65. Pretty hefty for a DIY logo. I do commend them for showing a menu with Pricing however. At least you can find out the price before you start creating your logo.
Logomakr – you can have a free logo with Logomakr. However you have to put a credit to them on your website and social media which I really wouldn’t recommend. The free option is also a low quality logo. For a high quality logo without a credit then it’s $19
Designvo – I was pretty impressed with Designvo. Unlike some other free logo designers, the choice of logos was more modern and fresh and there were some great options such as gradients. I originally was going to include this in the above section of free logos. However, when I went to download a logo that I created, this below pop up appeared.
Aaaaaaagh, what a shame. It’s not that they’re asking you to do this that I find annoying, it’s the fact they’re not transparent about it. Below is a screenshot of their pricing. As you can see, there is no mention of this at all. There are some good options here though and if you create a logo that you really love, then $19.99 is very affordable.
Paid for Options
Designing your own logo might not be for you. It’s time consuming and unless you have an understanding of colours and fonts you might end up with an awful looking logo. However if you have an idea in your head for your logo and you want to try and bring it to life yourself, then the DIY route can be a good option.
Obviously if you want to have your logo designed then you’re not limited for choice. Make sure you opt for somebody whose style you like and make sure you ask these questions in advance:
- What format will I get my logo in?
- How many revisions can I have?
- How long will it take?
- What if I really don’t like it, do I still have to pay?
- If you might need it printed (for banners etc) ask if it’s print ready
If you want a cheap logo designed then I’d recommend Fiverr. Fiverr is a website where you can get (almost) anything done for $5. Once upon time, everything on the site cost $5. It has changed in the last 12 months however and a quick search shows people selling logo design for over $1000!! There are still plenty of $5 gigs though and some of them have designed some beautiful logos. For $5 you have nothing to lose.
If you do use them, then make sure that you read the reviews and check all the questions above have been answered.
All the best for your new logo.
Disclaimer: The link to Fiverr is an affiliate link
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