by Yaritsa Arenas | Creative Business
Logo design pricing can be a frustrating subject for designers and clients alike. To a designer, it’s obvious that a logo should cost more than $100 or $200. So why is this not obvious to the client as well?
The reason why is quite simple. Go to your search engine and look for “logo design”. Chances are you’ll get something that looks like this:
Custom logo designs for $50, $100, $149. No wonder a client will expect to get a similar figure when they receive an estimate. This is the first thing they see!
Perception is important, and a logo will set the tone for your company’s brand. It will be used on your business card, letterhead, website, products, sales collateral… in essence anything that you sell or use as a selling tool. You want to ensure the proper message is presented to the customer. You want to inspire confidence, recognition and trust, while showing the company’s personality.
Someone who is charging $200 can’t possibly be spending the proper amount of time on research. There’s more to logo design than drawing a pretty picture. There has to be a clear understanding of the brand’s message, who your competition is and what sets you apart from them.
Clients don’t always understand what goes into designing a logo, and it’s really a comprehensive exercise:
A logo must have longevity. Chances are you won’t be reinventing your brand every few years. It’s important to remain recognizable and constantly changing your logo will only confuse your customers. A logo should be considered an investment, not an impulse purchase.
First impressions count, and they’re not always easily changed. Anyone can type a company name and pick a clipart image to go along with it, but is that what you want your logo to look like? Something that was put together in Word with whatever default font your computer brought? Absolutely not! Regardless of whether you run a suit-and-tie type of business or a more fun, relaxed one, attention to detail is very important.
The truth is, there isn’t a magic dollar amount. Can you pay $200 for a logo? Yes. Can you pay $2,000? Yes. Can you pay $20,000+? Yes. Design fees will vary depending on your needs and who you hire:
The size of your company can affect pricing. The larger your company, the more extensive your needs will be, and therefore will require additional research and possibly more initial design options and revisions.
Some clients know exactly what they want, they just need someone to execute their vision. Others barely have their name selected and really don’t even know where to begin. The amount of time and effort that will go into your logo will affect the fees involved.
A more experienced designer will have higher fees than someone who is just starting out. A new designer is still building their portfolio and acquiring skills; they might take lower paying jobs in order to get their name out. Depending on your needs however, you might want to go with a more reputable freelancer or a branding agency.
Just as a new designer might take a pay cut in order to add more pieces to their portfolio, any designer can have a personal interest in a brand. It can be a cause they believe in, a new industry they want to tap into or they may be doing a favor to someone. This of course, is always at the designer’s discretion.
A way to bring costs down is to limit the number of initial designs and revisions included at no extra charge. Designers can lower their prices in order to accommodate a client’s budget, but this should never be done without applying some additional limitations to the project scope. They may provide 3 initial designs instead of 6, or 2 rounds of revisions instead of 3. When doing this, clear communication is essential.
Cheap isn’t always bad and expensive is not always better. You have to find a designer that has a body of work that feels right for what your needs are. A good logo is one that you’ll remember, that inspires you to learn more about the company. A dollar figure won’t get you this, but a clear communication and a good relationship with your designer will.
Your logo represents your company and you want it to be something you’re proud of. If you have the budget for it, I recommended working with a seasoned designer who has branding experience that can help you flesh out your vision. If you don’t quite have the budget yet, you can work with someone who is starting out at a reduced rate or plan to save a little longer until you have a budget that works.
Take a look at When is the Best Time to Invest in Your Branding? to see if you’re ready.