Why is a $10 Logo a piece of s**t?

Being someone who has had ample experience in the advertising world I can’t stress enough on the importance of a good (and when I say good, I mean great) LOGO DESIGN! So rest assured you’re taking notes from an expert.

You might have invested millions on your business/brand but it’s astounding how the wrong logo design can bid farewell to any ROI, especially if you’re aiming to be a high-end brand.

Now you may be in harmony with the perception that a logo is merely a few Illustrator or Photoshop tools used right but allow me to burst your bubble: a logo has the potential to make or break your company. Let me fill you in on the significance of a logo before imparting knowledge on why cheap logo design is a big no-no!

I’ll need your undivided attention for the next few lines and you can decide whether or not you’d like to know more. Do we have a deal? Let’s begin.

The face of your brand! 

Cheap Logo Design

The face of your brand!

Have you ever seen any brand without a logo? Not even supermarkets or very small retail brands operate without an identity, right? That’s precisely what a logo is! Imagine a human without a face (creepy). That’s exactly how your brand will look if you make the absurd decision of not having a logo.

Let’s take the same example since it’s easiest to comprehend. Admit it or not a person’s physical features are the first thing we notice. Apart from the usual beauty and a gym-made body we might also make first-opinions about a man who “looks” rude or a woman who may “seem” innocent. Bam! That’s exactly what your logo does: create first opinions. So as Google says “Logos are intended to be the face of a company. They’re meant to visually communicate the unique identity of the brand and what it represents”. Now you’ll probably have a less vague idea of what Google Guru’s trying to say here.

You’ll need your logo for literally everything!

Well, that’s everything except your Facebook page cover (no lies) and that’s just because your logo needs to be right there on your DP.

To put it in a net shell, without a captivating logo that has great recall and can actually fit right there on everything from your work stationary, social media pages, website, Google advertisement adapts to going outdoors (OOH advertising) and can perform well on the big screen as well, you’ve just left a loophole (and a big one) in the overall business plan.

Just imagine the power that a logo possesses considering it is literally not only the prime requirement for your entire marketing and business plan/tools but also is the first impression of your brand and the key to brand recognition in the long term.

Now is not the time to stop reading because things are about to get a lot more interesting.

Let’s cut to the chase and finally drop the bomb: even if you’ve spent millions on your company/brand, a cheap, non-creative logo with zero or little thought process can drown your effort and the captain must sink with his ship.

Here’s why you should never be brainwashed by anyone offering a cheap-logo service:

Low price means less literacy:

No offense to any designer out there but there’s a fine line between a designer and an educated designer. To elaborate, a designer who has had some fun with all the logo-making software gradually learning along the way will probably have skipped to Z very quickly without learning the ABC of what a logo stands for and all the other particulars (apart from mastering the software tools) which I shall discuss later.

Just for your GK, there are certain questions that a professional logo designer will bombard you with before creating your brand’s identity aka logo.

Amidst the questions asked might be:

  • What are your products or services?
  • Who are your main competitors?
  • What kind of personality do you want your brand to have?
  • What should your logo represent?
  • Which brands are your benchmark?

And these are just a few, to begin with. They may further opt for brandscaping, a marketing tactic that shows you what competitors with similar visions or brand identities have done or might be doing (in the design area of course).

To make it simpler to comprehend, an expert designer or professional logo design company will scrutinize your brand for the best outcome.

Any designer quoting an amount that you carry in your pocket on a daily basis (unless you’re Bill gates) will either skip all these steps or is most likely to not even be aware of their existence.

The cheaper logo means no lifetime warranty:

Excuse me for speaking like a salesperson here but the fact is that a cheaper logo can never guarantee long term success. Why? It’s just an empty vessel: a design without a vision.

You deserve more than just a stock image traced or a regular font with some color change. The gist of the matter is the more effort, research, and creative thought-process is devoted to logo creation, the more are your brand’s chances of being in the spotlight and vice versa.

Let’s take the human example again. You’d mostly want to flaunt an attire that makes you stand out but not in a tacky or repulsive way, rather in an unforgettable and graceful manner but that designer-dress will cost you a lot more than anything that falls under the “ordinary” bracket.

A fine-dining restaurant may charge you at least twice the amount in comparison to a regular one but can the latter beat the former’s presentation?

You get my point.

A cheap logo-maker never predicts change:

To put it into less offensive words, a cheap logo design never adapts to change. Trends change and your logo need to be a masterpiece that adapts to a change of plans. A creative logo designer should also be a strategist to serve the purpose of looking ahead i.e. he/she must possess foresight. That’s precisely where the extra charges conveniently fit in. Remember the restaurant example above?

Your logo should cater to changes in package designs, vision, and expansion strategies. As the business steps up the growth ladder so should your logo. These examples might help you out for better comprehension:

Apple Logos - Cheap Logos

Apple Logo Evolution

Nike Logos - Cheap Logo Design

Evolution of Nike Logo

Visa Logos - Cheap Logo

Visa Logo Evolution

Observe the logo of (late) Steve Job’s everlasting legacy: Apple! The logo starts off with a multicolored apple, mentioning the brand name but gradually the apple alone is enough as an identifier. So the primary logo remains the same which represents the brand identity but just a few changes here and there and it seems like a 21st-century creation!

That bitten apple cost 50K FYI!

Cheap logo design won’t tell you a brand story:

as I mentioned initially, a logo is much more than just a few tools used right, at least a great logo is and that will cost you some serious cha-ching but money spent wisely comes back in the best of ways (said by me, experience by professionals).

Cheap Logo Design

Every great logo tells your brand story. It is sketched by the designer, keeping in mind what your brand represents.

Here are 4 famous logo designs which convey a story:

The popular red and blue logo symbolizes moments of “before and after”. The red color represents the moment when you are exhausted and need an urgent drink to cool you off. The blue color signifies the moments after you’ve had the coolest drink that exists (you may have differing opinions on that). BTW, Pepsi spent $ 1 million on the red and blue ball that never makes you forget the name!

Pepsi Logos - Cheap Logo Design

The popular red and blue logo

Nike is a name assigned to the Greek Goddess of victory and the logo is an abstract that represents the flying wing of a goddess. For a simpler analysis, the logo also represents correct (meaning this is the correct choice) and swoosh (means to move with a rushing sound). P.S: the tick was created initially by a graphic design student who was paid $ 35. Still not a $ 5 logo! Today this logo has a worth of $ 26 billion (yes the logo not the brand).

Nike Cheap Logo Design


You may think at first sight that this is just an abstract of a steering wheel but that’s the beauty of a great creative logo: it’ll have multiple aspects to it. The famous automobile logo says: Mercedes Benz, dominating the land, sea, and air!

Mercedes - Cheap Logo Design


My personal favorite, this ingeniously designed logo represents a struggle towards success. The bars move in an inclined, upward direction indicating that this is the brand for you if you’re moving up the slope to success.

Adidas - Cheap Logo Design


If these 1400 words didn’t convince you to NEVER settle for a cheap logo design and ALWAYS keep a big fat budget for your brand’s logo, perhaps taking a look at some cheaper logos might change your mind. You can make the comparisons yourself.

Cheaper Cheap Logos

Cheaper Logos

which of these brands can you recall? I’ll leave the decision to you.

Now, you are wondering I surely can’t spend $1m on my logo, what should I do then? Share your details with me. I’m not very cheap but not super expensive either. You can expect great value for money at affordable prices.


  • A Picture of Waqas D.

    Waqas D.

Waqas D. is the co-founder of the branding and website agency, FullStop™. He supercharges brands by crafting memorable logos, brand identities and engaging websites. Besides thousands of startups and medium-size businesses, FullStop has worked with likes of Microsoft & L’Oréal. View our portfolio or get in touch.

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