SquareSpace's Logo Designer Is Great


If you’ve been in a coma for the past few months then chances are you missed the launch of SquareSpace’s online logo design tool.

Naturally, as a designer I was keen to have a play around and I was instantly impressed. Perhaps a lot of my positive feelings about it came from it’s incredibly sexy interface design – it’s super simple to use and it looks great – not only that, but as soon as you type your business name into it the first thing you see is a logo design with pretty nice typography (something rarely seen in budget logos).

SquareSpace Logo Designer

There’s a searchable icon database, options to change colours, fonts, font weights, font styles. It’s an incredibly well executed online tool, the whole thing is very slick.

Once you’ve created your masterpiece you then have the option of downloading a low res PNG (400×360px) or grabbing the high res version (5000×5000px) for $10. If you’re already a SquareSpace customer then the good news is that you can download the high res version for free.

There was quite a bit of buzz about this tool in the design community when it was first released and a lot of it was negative. Many designers saw it as a threat to their business and a direct competitor. I never really understood this stance, well that is, unless your business is creating $10 logos – in which case you have a point. If however you charge a little more for logos then it’s unlikely you’re going to lose any customers to this tool – I can’t imagine many users spending much more than 10 minutes using it to generate their logo.

Personally I think designers should embrace tools like this. Maybe you’re working on a project for a client that simply doesn’t currently have the budget for a logo. Do you just tell this client they can’t have one? Do you send them to another designer? Or do you try and help them out and show them there is still a way?

I’d be really interested to hear what other designers think on this one, but I love it! If you haven’t had a go – give it a test drive here.

Comments


Lee Gostelow:

27 Jun 2014 18:07:44

Hey there Dave,

My primary source of income is from Logo designs, so I’ll admit this tool does frustrate me somewhat, even if the designs available are aesthetically pleasing. It’s not so much that it’s offering cheap logos, there are plenty of designers out there already that do that (even if a lot of them do breach copyright but that’s another issue). It’s the fact that; 1) The logo cannot be copyrighted or trademarked by the company using it due to the inclusion of unedited stock components, hence leaving them vulnerable to all sort of nasties without protection, and 2) Because, alongside an ever increasing number of web based applications and platforms, it is devaluing the logo market as a whole. An ever increasing number of prospective clients looking for logos are getting the idea that any and all logos are, in effect, cheap to produce. The reality of the matter is that a properly created logo, carefully tailored to the client and their company, can take weeks to produce. As an example, the Instagram logo took over a month to produce and refine. Whilst I understand that some clients may not be able to afford such well made logos and should have cheaper options available, it is frustrating that tools like this are giving the impression to able companies that anyone charging over £50 is charging too much. So, whilst it isn’t direct competition, it is still driving away business. I fear for the day when all logos are budget logos made from repackaged stock. When all company images look the same. And when one of the key elements from design is lost. Passion.

Loving the site by the way, great work.

All the best

Lee Gostelow

Dave:

27 Jun 2014 19:48:38

Hi Lee,

I had no idea about the copyright issue. It does make sense though. I guess it’s similar to using stock vectors as part of a logo which effectively brings the same issues.

I think there are two ways to look at the tool and what it’s doing to the industry. You can either see it as a threat, either direct or indirect, or you can see the opportunities. These businesses that start out using something like a Squarespace logo will eventually need to progress to the next level and will need the services of a professional designer. From that point of view I see it as an opportunity.

Matt:

06 Apr 2017 02:53:55

My best advice: embrace change. The sad truth is that if a job can be automated, it will be. If it can be reduced to a few customizable choices, that will happen too. Of course Ikea will never be what well-made, custom furniture can be, but to many, that is okay. A part of my livelihood comes from logos too but I can’t fight this. No one will support us for our sake. I filled my little apartment with Ikea because I like it well enough and can’t afford a home designer or at least that is not where I want to invest my limited resources. Talk with your clients about what it is they need. Some need something custom and others will need something less. You can find a role to play in that space, if you want to.

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