How do I choose the best font for a logo?

May 13th, 2018

A logo needs to be clearly readable at small sizes, so avoid fonts which are too thin. Outlined fonts may also be a challenge to work with, as the logo can easily get lost amongst other dominant brand elements, like imagery or background textures.

Choosing font style

In terms of character and style, your choice of font will depend entirely on the needs, personality, values, and target audience of your client’s business.

For example, serif fonts are great for adding a sense of tradition and formal authority. Sans-serif fonts are clean, easy to read, and often a good choice for corporate logos with a younger, or broad, target audience.

Test the style with dummy text

Think about fonts in terms of what they communicate in their character design. To get an initial impression, use dummy text (like ‘lorem ipsum’) and do a test with different types of fonts you think could be appropriate. Pay attention to your own reaction and mental associations with each font choice. Ask people you know who belong to the intended target demographic what they think, and take note of their initial reactions to various font choices.

Once you have your final choice of font (or fonts) narrowed down, apply them to the actual logo text to ensure that the letter forms work well and convey the brand concept in the way that you want. You may even wish to manipulate the characters as vector shapes to create a uniquely customised logotype.

Choosing a logo font to pair with an icon

If you are also working with a logo icon, make sure you pair your font selections with the icon to assess whether they complement one another. Some fonts may look great and work well on their own as logotypes, but may not suit your icon design.

When choosing a font to work with an icon, a good place to start is to look at the visual style of the icon and try out fonts with visually similar characteristics. What is the overall icon shape? Is it narrow, wide, round, squared? Will it work best to the side, above, below, or between the text? Decide whether the logo icon or the logo text should be more visually dominant, or whether both should have equal visual weight.

Work in monochrome to check the form and concept

Work in black and white initially. This will give you a better impression of whether the logo form and concept work without complicating it with colour. Once you feel the font choice is working well in monochrome, then introduce your colour palette (if needed).

Lorem ipsum font samples - black on white

Lorem ipsum font samples - white on black