There are several design factors that contribute to the readability and identifiability of a website logo. The ones we address in this article include shape and border.
If you have an existing logo that is either round or square, or if you have a logo and it has a border around it, you may want to consider designing an alternate version for your website. (If you don’t have a logo yet, this information will help you avoid spending time and money on a logo that isn’t going work optimally on your website.)
How does the header affect the space available for your logo?
Before we begin discussing how to create a logo that will display well on a website, let’s talk about the element of the site where your logo will be placed. This is called the header.
The header is the section of a website that sits at the top of every page. The header, at a minimum, should include the company name and the navigation bar for the site. This section is consistent from page to page. The position of each element should not change as you navigate between pages.
There are several standard header layouts. Below we illustrate two of the most common. The first (A1) positions the logo and navigation side-by-side. The logo is on the left and the navigation is to the right. The second (A2) illustration positions the logo above the navigation.
Why website headers should be as shallow as is practical
A website header should make it easy to identify whose website you are on. It should also be large enough to interact with easily. However, the header should not be the main focus of the page.
When someone lands on a site, they’ll likely look to the header logo to see whose website they’re on. They’ll probably also glance at the main navigation links. But primarily their focus should be on the content of the page. (See related article “Make My Logo Bigger.”)
See our related blog post for more details on why we like to design website headers as shallow as is practical.
How does the shape of a logo affect its readability?
In general, rectangles are the best shape for logos on a website. This is because the header imposes both a width and height constraint to which the logo must conform. A rectangular shape usually fits this space best.
See our related blog post for more details about how logo shape affects readability.
Should a website logo have a border?
There are always space constraints to displaying a logo. In most cases, you’ll want your logo to be displayed large enough to be both readable and identifiable. When a border is part of a logo design, everything inside the border has to be made smaller to fit in the same space.
See our related blog post for more details about how a border can affect the readability of a logo.
How to design a logo that will display sell on a website
For simplicity, we recommend logos that are rectangular, wider than they are tall. We also recommend avoiding a border around the logo. Both these features will allow your logo to be displayed as large as possible on most website layouts.
See our portfolio of logo designs. If you’d like a new website for your business or organization, give us a call at (518) 392-0846 or email [email protected]. Also, if you have an existing logo that you would like reworked to fill a different shape, we can do that, too.