Logo Design For Tightwads With No Design Skills

designing a logo

I have a troubled history with logo design. On the one hand, I've always respected the value of a gorgeous logo.

On the other, I've refused to spend money to get one 'professionally' designed. 

This meant many late nights in PowerPoint designing grainy logos that looked like bad clip art.

But I've had a revelation that I want to share with you: a super-simple, free way to design a high-resolution logo that will automatically add 5 points to your Domain Authority. (Not really.) 

Undoubtedly, logos are an incredibly important component of site experience.

Logos & Site Experience

Especially on mobile, your logo is the FIRST thing a user sees when they land on your site. Users will make a snap judgment about the quality of your site based on your logo design.

(Unless you don't have a logo at all- which I've been guilty of before.) 

You'll want your logo to look sharp and trustworthy- something that assures users they've landed on a reputable website that contains the high-quality information they're looking for.

To illustrate the negative effects of a bad logo, check out this design:

Logo Example 1:

bad logo example

How does it make you feel? What sort of immediate impression does it convey? Granted, it's for a bar and grill- so I wouldn't necessarily dismiss eating there. But, still, it screams 'internet 2002'- it looks dated, prehistoric and sloppy. I would assume that the site content is similarly outdated and probably useless. 

Logo Example 2:

bar and grill good example of logo design

I really like this logo- it's emphatic and cogent. The styling is sleek- it's the sort of brand imagery that conveys quality and authority. Granted- there's a good bit of custom design work going on here.

How To Design A Logo For Free

I'm going to walk you through how to design your own modern-looking logo without getting ripped off on Fiverr.  

I've applied this formula across all of my sites. And, not to toot my own horn, but I'm pretty happy with the NicheFacts.com logo: 

NicheFacts Logo

It's crisp and modern-looking. And I didn't have to wade into Fiverr or UpWork to hire a graphic designer to create it. 

Formula For High-Resolution Logo Design

I'm going to share with you a simple formula for generating an attractive logo for free. And, believe me, I have about zero design instinct- so this is something you'll be able to replicate if, like me, you have zero graphic design skills. 

  1. Create a Canva Account
  2. Grab a free icon from FlatIcon
  3. Create the logo in Canva

Canva

Using Canva Example

Canva is a fantastic, free resource for graphic design. Besides its ease of use, you can use its custom dimensions option  to create the perfectly sized logo for your WordPress theme.

FlatIcon

Reviewing FlatIcon

FlatIcon is one of many icon marketplaces you can find online. You use some of their logos for free as long as you provide attribution. 

I actually have a paid FlatIcon plan so I don't have to provide attribution. I like the style and diversity of the icons- plus they're only like 6 kb large so it helps with load speed. 

Anyway, there are free logos you can download- just make sure you provide attribution. They'll walk you through how to do that. Or you can search out a different icon marketplace.

Create The Logo

Now that you have a Canva and FlatIcon account, the next step is to head over to Canva and create a Custom Dimension graphic.

Use these dimensions 600 x 180. 

This is the real secret- Canva creates a large image that will scale down to a small size nice and sharp.

canva logo design example

Have you ever seen sites with logos that looked incredibly sharp? That's how it's done. It took me awhile to figure that out. I had been sizing my logos 50 x 50, for example, and it ended up looking grainy and ugly. 

On to design. Drag and drop your icon into Canva and then click it to insert it into the 600 x 180 canvas.

What I like to do is left align a FlatIcon image and then add some lowercase paragraph text- use the "add a little bit of body text" option. This lets you bold the letters- with headings and subheadings you can't bold them.

As you can see for the NicheFacts logo, it's all lower case, with the second half of the word bolded. 

Canva Text Example

This creates a modern-looking design that assures site visitors that your website is high-quality. I had to crop the image a bit by adjusting the width dimensions a touch- as you can see the layout is a bit wide for the text.

This will depend on your icon size and how long the text is. 

Optimization Options

Image Compression

The next thing I suggest you do is use this free image compression tool like Compressimage.toolur.com to make sure your logo's file size isn't too big.

You can reduce the image quality to 60%, as I did in the screengrab below, skimming  about 100 kb off in the process. 

Play around with this bit. It's likely that the logo file will be small to start- but every kilobyte counts when it comes to page load speed. 

Icon Image Compression Example


Color Schemes

Another thing- be mindful of your color scheme. I'm not great at this, but when you choose a logo, its colors basically become your brand colors.

Perhaps you already have an idea of the sort of brand colors you'd like to use- but if you haven't considered it, it's worth mulling over. You can play around with Adobe's color wheel and select a theme for yourself

Brand colors for website using Adobe

Final Thoughts

It took me way too long to figure out how to create a decent-looking logo. As we transition to a mobile-first universe, logos are even more important. If you're doing SEO and attracting primarily new visitors every day to your content, these people have NO idea who you are.

You only have a couple seconds to convince them to stay on your site and hopefully click an affiliate link or signup to your email list. Make sure your logo isn't causing them to bounce back to the SERPs to your competitor!

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