Why your logo is not the most important element on your website.
When presenting a new client with a website mockup, the single most consistent piece of feedback we receive is, “Can you make my logo bigger?” This request is so common throughout the industry that there are even parody videos about it.
The largest percentage of website visitors leave within 0-8 seconds after briefly viewing your landing page, according to a MarketingSherpa.com case study. Therefore, a cursory glance at your homepage must immediately give the reader a clear idea of who you are and what you do. A logo that is too large pushes the most important content further down the page, overpowering the design, and making it less likely that the site visitor will ever see the information that is likely to convert them from a site visitor to a customer.
Can the brand be properly represented when the logo isn’t the dominant feature?
This concern is shared by many business owners. It’s important to understand, however, that there is more to a brand than the logo. There’s even more to a brand than the colors used or the fonts employed.
Branding can be equated with personality. Your brand is your name, how you present yourself, your positioning within the market, and your company values. A logo is just one tiny piece of your brand.
This is not to say that branding isn’t important. In fact, you should think about branding in everything you do. When presented with a business opportunity, ask yourself, “Does this fit the personality of the company? Is it consistent with our mission? Will this make sense to my current customers?”
While branding is important, the key concern for most small businesses is sales. Small companies can’t afford to spend huge amounts of money on brand awareness. Closing deals and selling products are the most pressing goals, and logos don’t sell products. Understanding who your customers are, providing details to support your assertion that your product will solve their problem, and including compelling calls to action are the keys to making sales.
How being too big can negatively affect sales.
Look at your website from the perspective of the user. In most cases, they are trying to find a solution to a problem. They don’t really care who solves the problem for them. They certainly don’t care what the logo looks like. What they want to know first and foremost is, “Can you solve this problem for me?”
Whoever it is that landed on your page is there for a reason. They are looking for something. Maybe they don’t know what time your restaurant opens. Maybe they have a flooded yard and need to find a contractor to fix it. Whatever they’re looking for, you can be sure it isn’t your logo.
Let’s look at some examples:
Let’s say that you sell gutters and the user has googled, “Hudson Valley Gutter Removal.” It is likely that they will land, not on the homepage, but on another page that specifically addresses this issue. Let’s say that they have read the content, and they like what they see. What’s the next thing they’re going to want to do? Well, try to contact you, probably. Does a large logo help them do that? No.
Let’s take a different example with a new person. Imagine this person has heard about your fabulous Sunday brunch. They Google your business name and nothing else. Once they land on your website, probably the homepage, they are going to look for details about the brunch. Can they find that information easily? They have googled your business name so they don’t need to be knocked over the head with a giant logo reminding them who you are. As long as your name is at the top of the page, where they expect to see it, it doesn’t need to be large.
Finally, let’s say you run a small cultural arts venue. In this example, the person in question wants to learn about upcoming events. They open their computer, Google “Hudson Valley events March 12,” and land on your calendar. Now they want to know: what’s going on? where is your venue located? how do they get there? None of these questions will be answered with a large logo.
So how big should it be?
More important than being a specific size, your logo needs to be at the top and in the same position on every page. It needs to be big enough to be legible and clickable, but that’s about it. Each individual page on your website should have its own purpose and the logo should not detract from that purpose.
Still not convinced?
Spend some time visiting the websites of the most successful companies: Apple, Amazon, CVS, Target, WalMart. You may be surprised how small their logos are. These companies understand which elements of a website are important. They know that the logo does not have to be large to be effective. Take a lesson from these successful businesses. Trust your designer. A large logo will not drive more traffic or convert new customers.