The Most Effective Responsive Logos

Sarah Porter
  • Senior Designer
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We’ve all heard of responsive web design. In fact, if you find a website that isn’t responsive nowadays, it’s a major disappointment! So it’s not surprising that responsiveness has branched out beyond websites… to logo design.

This isn’t a totally new idea – responsive logos have been on the rise for several years now. Even before responsive websites, as designers, we would consider logo adaptations to make it flexible for different uses; whether that meant stripping out finer details to retain clarity at a smaller scale, or having alternative orientations of a logo to work on all media (e.g. a version that would sit comfortably in a skyscraper web advert and a version that could lie horizontally along the side of a biro). I remember working on branding projects ten years ago and discussing with clients back then where their logo would most likely need to be applied, and how we would consider the flexibility of their logo design for both large and small-scale use. So being considerate of a logo’s implementation isn’t a new thing at all. It’s just that now, logos are consistently used in a much smaller and generally more square format – it has become standard practice to consider a much simpler representation of every logo to suit these formats. Small-scale logo usage goes beyond just responsive websites, where the logo needs to shrink and adapt from desktop down to mobile size, to include areas such as mobile app icons and shortcut icons.

In my opinion, this is great for improving the quality of logo design across the board, as logos now, more than ever, need to be recognisable and unique down to the tiniest elements. Yes, this makes the challenge more difficult… but the end result is certainly more rewarding!

The main considerations when creating a successfully responsive logo are:

  • Details – these need to be stripped out and shapes need to be simplified as the logo reduces in size
  • Colours – often removing colours or limiting the palette creates a clearer, more recognisable design as the logo gets smaller
  • Stacking Elements – decreasing the width by stacking letters, etc. can create an effective logo for a smaller scale (the Bang & Olufsen logo shown below is a great example of this)

With these factors in mind, I have selected a variety of logos below that I feel demonstrate responsiveness well whilst retaining their brand integrity…

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Are there any responsive logos that you think work particularly well? We’d love to hear about them…tweet us @gmdesignltd.

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