Your logo is a crucial part of your company's visual and brand identity. When customers or clients see your logo they associate it with your services, goods or operations. Your logo can live wherever you want your brand identified: on social media posts; on merchandise packaging; on business cards and brochures; on your website; in your email signature; on the side of your company car; on billboards; on bumper stickers; on your storefront — you name it! Logos can be made up of your chosen brand color palette, design and type. When designing a logo for you, graphic designers, logo designers and marketing pros use color, design and type (font) to convey the spirit of your business or personal brand — such as bold, trustworthy, luxurious or hip. Logo colors can convey your brand; traditional colors like hunter green, gold and black might be a good choice if you offer financial services, while an interior designer targeting a younger demographic might want to use vibrant, modern colors. A good design delivers a strong first impression and is an integral part of your brand, so it pays to spend a little more time and money for a quality logo (or to update a cheap logo).
The font you choose and how it is arranged in your logo also affects how customers interpret your brand. For example, if you are a mobile car mechanic, choosing a playful, cartoonish font or an extremely ornate cursive script might send a confusing message to consumers who want a reliable, low-cost and handy car mechanic. Your logo design also plays an important role in telling your customers who you are and what to expect. For example, Michelin Tires has the Michelin Man, a man made of tires; he immediately conveys the company's mission. Often airline company logos feature wings and the design conveys a sense of motion. Not all logos need to have symbolic imagery. You may want a shape, or just text. Since 1885, Coca-Cola has done just fine with its text-only logo design.
Logos are everywhere you look. Businesses, schools, nonprofits, government agencies, public service organizations and people who want a well-defined personal brand can seek professional logo design work. As a client, you can hire a professional or freelance designer at any stage, including if you're already partway into the process and realize you need a pro's help. You may be uncertain what design you want, you may know exactly what kind of design you want, or you might have some ideas in mind but need help honing them. You can also hire a marketing professional or graphic designer to help you rebrand or get a new logo designed if your company has a logo but it no longer reflects who you are and what you do.
As you work with your design partner to create your logo, you may want to have them craft multiple logos and then allow you to choose which best suits your purposes. If you're working on a budget, you can opt for one logo design. Usually designers create your final logo in multiple formats (horizontal, vertical, etc.) to suit different sites and social media channels. This way your same logo looks terrific whether it's in your email signature or on the header of your company website. Logos may be text-only, text and image, or image-only.
What's in this cost guide?
- Hourly rate
- Set rate
- Elements of a good logo
- Hiring a logo designer
- Pro tips
Here are the factors that affect the typical price range and average cost of a logo design.
Many professional designers, experienced design consultants and design firms charge by the hour for new logo creation services. They may charge only an hourly rate, or may offer flat-rate packages and then charge an hourly rate for additional work beyond the scope of the bundle or package; the designer should always notify you before charging for work beyond what's covered in a package. Time on the clock for hourly rates can include consulting with the client, determining brand objectives, designing the new logo, fine-tuning the design with the client, outputting the final file and other tasks. Depending on a client's needs and how clear their vision is, working with a professional designer on an hourly basis may be cost-effective for people who just need help with refinement and graphic design production. New designers may often charge a lower hourly rate as they look to build new business and build their design portfolio, but they may need a more detailed creative brief or design brief and more revisions to deliver a great logo. Experienced designers may require less hand-holding to deliver a great design but will also cost more.
The right pay model for you and your company really depends on what your budget is, how far along in the concept process you are, and how much time you envision the designer will need. If you are just starting out and are unclear on what colors you want to incorporate or the general message you want to convey, you may want to consider purchasing a package or bundle for potential savings. Here is one example of an average hourly rate for graphic design services:
- $85: Per hour from BestDraft in Irvine, California.
Some professional designers charge a set rate for logo design once they ascertain the scope of a client's needs and goals. The set rate, based on the designer's hourly rate, accounts for the projected number of hours spent on the project, a specific number of designs or concepts, the complexity of branding involved and other elements. The larger the scope of the logo design project, the higher the overall cost. For example, Spark Logo Design in Astoria, New York, has a starting rate for logo design of $198.
Not all logo designers work this way because every job is unique and it can be difficult to estimate exact times. In addition, logo design costs may be lower or higher than their hourly rate if the logo services are being bundled with other graphic design services (such as designing promotional materials for print, like brochures). For this reason, as you are contacting designers about working with you, many can provide you an average cost so you know what to expect. When asking for average costs, let the designer know if you'd like multiple options created. Here are two examples of average cost for logo design:
Packages can offer you reduced rates on the graphic design services you need. You may buy a bundled package of a variety of graphic design services, or a package specifically targeted for logo design services. As with most package deals, you will likely pay more overall for the bundle but less per item than if each service was purchased individually. Packages provide customers savings and give designers expanded business, creating a financial perk for both parties. As you search for logo designers you can also look for any seasonal package specials or sales they might offer. Always ask what logo delivery includes, such as multiple formats of the logo, etc., so you are sure of what you will be receiving for the price. For example, each custom logo project from Spark Logo Design includes one final selected design in one layout. That final design is delivered in six file formats in primary color, alternate color, white on black, and black on white. The file formats are .AI (vector), .EPS (vector), .GIF (raster), .JPG (raster), .PDF (vector), and .PNG (raster). Additional layouts such as vertical or horizontal may cost extra; communicate clearly with the designer and get a written contract so you know what you'll receive. Here are some examples of average logo design package pricing:
Spark Logo Design in Astoria, New York:
- Three logo concepts for $198. Includes multiple concepts and unlimited revisions, a variety of format and color end designs, free file backup, and full ownership of final design
- 6 logo concepts for $298. Includes unlimited rounds of revision, a variety of format and color end designs, free file backup, and full ownership of final design
- 10 logo concepts for $398. Includes unlimited rounds of revision, a variety of format and color end designs, free file backup, and full ownership of final design
- Premium: $550 rounds of revision, a variety of format and color end designs, free file backup, and full ownership of final design, plus business card design, letterhead design, social media graphics and an email signature
- Elite: $850 for everything in the Premium package, plus custom brand guidelines, which outline a strategy for creating consistent branding in the client's business.
BestDraft in Irvine, California:
- Three logo design options: $870. Comes with three revision cycles, which allow the client to change colors, text and design elements. Hourly rate of $85 applies if more than three revision cycles are requested.
- Six logo design options: $1,380. Comes with three revision cycles. Hourly rate of $85 applies if more than three revision cycles are requested.
Ladybugz Interactive Agency in Southborough, Massachusetts:
- Small business starter kit: $6,000. This package includes a logo, a business card design, and a custom-designed WordPress website.
You don't want to create your logo in a void. You want your logo to be part of your larger marketing strategy that carries a cohesive brand message to customers and clients through all aspects of their interaction with you. Decide whether you need print materials such as brochures or tri-folds, need help with a letterhead design, or want assistance creating or spiffing up your website. For an additional fee, you are usually able to add additional services to your logo design project to carry the branding to other formats. Purchasing add-on services from your logo design can often result in lower costs per service overall, so think about your long-term goals before signing on for a stand-alone service. Here are some examples of average costs from Spark Logo Design when you add onto one of their logo packages:
- Business card design added onto a 3-, 6- or 10-concept logo package: +$100
- Social media graphics added onto a 3-, 6- or 10-concept logo package: +$100
- Email signature added onto a 3-, 6- or 10-concept logo package: +$100
- Letterhead creation added onto a 3-, 6- or 10-concept logo package: +$100
- Presentation slide added onto a 3-, 6- or 10-concept logo package: +$200
- Brand guide added onto a 3-, 6- or 10-concept logo package: +$400
If you want illustration incorporated into your logo design, the logo designer may also enlist the help of an illustrator. This could result in a higher cost than standard text treatment. Illustrators typically add an average of $200 to $500 or more to the overall cost of a logo depending on illustrator prices in your area.
A great logo is more than just colors, letters and shapes; it's the strategic use of those colors, letters and shapes to create an easily identifiable image that represents your brand, falls in line with your business model and conveys your company's core values clearly, succinctly and memorably. Type, design and color palette are some of the most important components of your brand logo. Your logo designer will guide you through this process and take most of the work out of it for you. Here are some key considerations as you begin the logo design process:
- Aim for an overall visual that is appealing to look at and easy for people to quickly understand; avoid intricate letters or cluttered imagery that makes customers squint, think too hard, and then dismiss the image.
- Choose the appropriate scale for your text as well as the right arrangement and font to convey your message to your target audience. For example, if you are selling services for seniors, avoid small type in light colors that is hard to read.
- Showcase your company's colors front and center in your logo. Usually you don't want more than two or three colors so as to avoid visual overload.
- The "design" of your logo is the way all the shapes, colors and text are arranged together to tell a story or send a message.
A marketing or design agency with a good reputation in the design industry or celebrity or well-recognized clientele may charge higher rates than a new or lesser-known business. When researching prospective logo designers, look to their former clients as well as their training and background.
For small-business owners, investing in marketing services like logo creation is important. A solid logo design is key to your company's brand strategy and marketing development. Although hiring a graphic designer might feel like an unnecessary cost when your cousin will do it for free, consider your long-term goals. Ideally you will end up with a professional logo that will translate beautifully across any number of media — everything from print to online platforms. Your logo is more than just a design; it tells your customers and clients what to expect when they interact with you. If you look at at Apple, you see a crisp, simple and modern logo. The color, design, and clean lines tell you the company is forward-thinking and innovative. Consider what you want your logo to say for your brand, then begin to identify logo designers that can help take your ideas and translate them into a winning design. As you start to consider professionals for hire, think about what, if any, additional services you need. You can save money by bundling your logo design with other marketing and graphic design services. Here are some helpful tips for hiring a logo designer who will help you create this foundational piece of your company's visual identity.
- Read reviews for the logo designer you're considering hiring. Do prior customers have positive experiences?
- Look at the designer's online portfolio. Do you like what you see? Does the designer offer a range of unique logos? Do you understand what type of services those logos represent?
- Make sure the designer has been successful with clients who have needs similar to yours.
- If you are a nonprofit, educational or governmental organization, ask if the designer has lower rates than for a corporate client.
- Before hiring the designer, talk with them and tell them your goals. Make sure they are receptive to what you are saying and that you are compatible.
- Many high-end designer firms also offer market research services in addition to logo design. If you just need a basic logo for your small business, market research may well be overkill for your needs.
- Read client reviews and follow up with references to make sure you're choosing the right logo designer for your project. For more, check out our tips for smart hiring.