5 logo design trends to avoid this year

5 logo design trends to avoid this year

Many of you are probably looking for the newest logo design trends of 2019. But we’re putting a twist on that to tell you about the logo trends to avoid.

Why does it matter?

Because, first impressions are everything. Studies show that it takes only seven seconds for a potential customer to create their first impression of your business. With such a small amount of time to keep potential customers interested in your products or services, your logo is the key to your brand; it should tell your customers what to expect from you and your company.

Avoiding poor logo design is a lot like choosing an appropriate outfit. While a Hawaiian shirt is great for wearing  on the beach, you wouldn’t wear one in the boardroom. On the other hand, you wouldn’t wear a suit and tie at the beach.

Keeping up with logo design trends is one way to make sure your business doesn’t look out of touch.

How can you protect yourself against old logo design trends?

Choosing a poor logo design is easy if you don’t know what to look for. Therefore, investing in an experienced logo designer is one of the best investments your business can make to avoid following old (fashined) logo design trends.

In this blog post, we’ll help you avoid overused and outdated logo design trends. We’ll be pointing out stereotypical and exhausted trends of the past decade, according to experienced designers.

Number 1 - Helvetica font type

Simple, minimalist and elegant. These are the words most often used to describe the Helvetica font type. This sans-serif font has become a staple  in the world of design. Once a symbol of a clean design aesthetic, this admired font choice has become the top typographical cliché of the last 10 years. Sorry Comic Sans, your reign of terror is over. Developed by Max Miedinger in 1957, Helvetica saw a rise in popularity during the minimalistic rage of the 2000s, mainly due to Apple’s dominance over the world of design at the time. Helvetica has become the stereotypical choice for older companies trying to streamline and modernise their design. It is also a common choice of start-ups trying to prove an air of maturity. Large corporations such as McDonalds, BMW, Gap, Motorola and Panasonic have used the logo to try and convey “design zen”. If you want your brand’s logo to stand out from the crowd, using a commonly used font will result in the opposite effect.

Number 2 - Swooshy human figures


At first glance, using a human figure in your company’s logo seems like a fine idea. It conveys a certain level of familiarity, humanity and friendliness. However, it also shows unoriginality.  I’m sure you’ve seen them around – the one-legged gender-neutral fellow with arms held high above a perfectly curved torso. 99designs rightfully calls these swooshy figures completely “devoid of originality”. A company that uses a faceless human figure in their branding definitely suggests a lack of emotion and personality to their audience. Add in the fact that this is used as the figurehead for so many companies, and you have yourself one boring design choice.

Number 3 - Other swooshy human figures

We couldn’t help but include these as well – linking to trend number 2, but worth its own point too! In addition to the faceless human figures with their arms held high, you may also find the dancing ballerina, the man thinking or even the group hug. All of these conventionalised human figures are used as logos for  companies that are people-centric, such as staffing solutions, nursing homes, recruiters or consultancies. Once again, there’s nothing unique or memorable about any of these logos that sets them apart from the competition. They are all a mish-mash of human figures twisted to form a logo. We suggest you try harder to make a more significant point, instead of just picking out one of these non-descript figures from a stock website and adding your company name… in Helvetica.

Number 4 - Arc over text

Now, just because it works for Amazon, doesn’t mean it will work for you. Amazon use their logo arc in a very clever way to show they sell everything from A to Z… not just because they fancied it. The use of the arc in modern logo design has become another definition of unoriginality. The goal of the arc is to help show movement and forward thinking, but really, what it relays to the customer is laziness and a lack of inspiration. The generic use of an arc shape makes it seem like a safe choice for some business owners. But we need to stress that safe isn’t necessarily synonymous with effective. Design Shack says that it is impossible to maintain “any semblance of a unique identity” when you include a standard arc in your logo design. Any good designer worth their weight in gold would never throw a design element as flat and standard as the curved arc over (or under) your company’s name and call it a decent design.

This is one you’ve probably seen everywhere – a property dealer or construction company logo that incorporates a house or roof in some way. Far too many automotive companies have cars or wheels for their logo. Too many doctors and hospitals incorporate a red cross or stethoscope in some way. Most internet and software solution companies try to use a web icon or a netted globe within their logo. Try to step out of the comfort zone of these industry-specific logo design clichés, and differentiate yourself by infusing new meaning in your logo. Why not experiment, look at some different and fresh ideas, get rid of old drafts and start anew. Do whatever it takes, but rise above the competitors and do something different. Dare to be unconventional!

What’s the Bottom Line?

It is true that cliché design may look like the safe road for your company. But the only thing you’ll achieve with this is to prove to your customers that you are just like the others, not worthy of their attention, with nothing to set you apart.

We understand that everything in your body might be telling you to keep it safe and simple. It’s important to let your designer be creative. Just remember, your company’s logo is the most visible part for your brand identity. When customers think about your business, there should be a creative logo that subconsciously pops into their minds every single time.

As designer Neville Brody once said, “Digital design is like painting, except the paint never dries”. Your digital brand, no matter how new or how old, will always be a part of your image. Even if you have already made a bad design choice, it is never too late to revitalise your company’s brand. The paint never dries, and neither should your ambition.

Let's all get creative together

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