logo variations

What Are Logo Variations & How To Save Time Creating Them?

 Did you know that nowadays only one logo won’t suffice? Yes, the modern world requires that the brand has multiple logo variations, most often than not. In today’s post, we’ll figure out what for, what types of logo variations there are, and how designers can, in fact, save some time on creating them.

Let’s keep it rolling.

What are logo variations?

It’s no rocket science, logo variations are just different, an altered version of the logo you use a primary one. For example, if your primary logo is horizontal, one of the variations would be to make it more vertical. 

Why brands need logo variations?

The reality is that the website won’t probably be the only medium where the brand’s logo will be placed. There are also printables, packaging, business cards, presentations, and a bunch of other things you will need your logo for. That is why it should be versatile. All logo variations are created to suit different mediums.

A more vertical logo will suit better for canvases with limited horizontal space – such as a business card for example.

What types of logo variations should a business have?

The list you will find below is just a preferred list. It may differ depending on the brand, and the potential usage of the logo. The decision of what types of logo variations to design must be made considering which service a business provides, how many mediums it will have, whether they will need any printed materials, etc. 

Primary Logo Design

The primary logo is the most widely used version of the logo. It is used to identify the brand, establish recognition, and create associations with your business. 

Linkedin logo variations
Logo variations examples: Primary Logo

Horizontal/Vertical (Stacked) Logo

Depending on the orientation of your primary logo, you might also want to have a design facing another direction. If your logo is vertical (also called a stacked logo), create a horizontal variation as well. As described above, there will be cases where you won’t have the space to put your primary logo in, so you need to be versatile.

Submark Logo

A submark logo is a simplified version of your primary one. Something small that still rings a bell about your brand. Most often than not Submarks are designed to fit in a circle (though not as a rule). Why would you need this kind of logo, you may ask? Think social media. Most of them have round profile pictures, you should make sure yours looks good in that format.

logo variations linkedin
brand icons snapchat
Logo variations examples: Submark Logo

Icon Logo or a “Brandmark”

This one is not a must, but it can be extremely useful as a further branding material. If your primary logo includes an icon, it’s good practice to use it on its own for something like patterns, or packaging, for instance.

Also, a favicon.

logo variations twitter
Logo variations examples: Icon Logo

☝🏻 Tip:  How to create an icon if the client only has a wordmark or one logo option. There are 3 ways to go about the situation:

1. If the logo has an icon incorporated in the logo then this icon should be saved separately as the main icon.

2. In cases where there isn’t an icon in the logo, use the Initials of the name to make a simple icon. If there are 2 or more names in the logo, use 1-2 initials in the same color of the logo or negative.

3. Another option is to take the strongest graphic element in the logo, it might not be the first letter but another one that is in a different color of another element that appears in the logo and make that the main icon.

Wordmark or a “Logotype”

There are instances where you need to put your name out there, yet space doesn’t work in your favor. If you upload the whole design with your icon as well as the name, it’ll shrink and make the text unreadable. That is why you might want to have a wordmark logo also prepared.

wendys logo
Logo variations examples: Wordmark

Color Options 

If your branding includes using different backgrounds (1-2), then you will need different colored logos too. 

What Are Logo Variations & How To Save Time Creating Them?

One-Color Option

One-colored logo variations work best for brands that want to:

  • Have the logo printed; since one-colored printing is the most cost-effective, you definitely need this type of logo.
  • Place their logos on image backgrounds and still want the logo to be visible.
  • Need to cater an option for other companies when showcasing the brand under a neutral color like in website partner galleries and such. 

Where should I get the logo variations?

Typically, if you’re a business owner, before contacting your designer for a primary logo, think of different usages it will have and then order a whole bundle.

If you’re a designer, creating all the logo variations can be tough work. Later presenting them as well. However here’s good news, there is a way for you to get some of them with no effort at all.

All you need to do is upload your designed primary logo into Gingersauce, and watch the system work its magic.

create a brand book online

Gingersauce is a professional platform that uses algorithms made with 20 years of design experience in mind. The platform will one by one offer you to choose the logo variations you need, and then gather everything inside an awesome brand book.

Note: We do not provide full-automatization of brand books. You come in with your own designs and creativity. We help you save time on generic tasks like tuning up the template or creating a lot of logo variations. We are the helpers, you are the wizard.

The logo variations offered by the system are:

Different color options. 

For different backgrounds.

brand book maker
brand book builder
how to create a band book

Negative space options.

For a subtle, yet creative look.

elements of a brand book

Upload your brand icon to create its variations as well:

brand icon create

Negative space options.

Just as for your logo, your icons also get a negative space look.

brand book create online

A submark.

To use on your social media.

submark logo examples

Secondary color options. 

The icon will be placed all over, meaning there needs to be a few color versions to fit different backgrounds.

secondary logo

When all these are created, you can further upload any other logo variation you prepared, and then present everything together in a professional and organized manner.


Save time with Gingersauce!

Gingersauce is a professional tool for creating brand guidelines, that combines smart automation and your creativity. It’s a professional tool – meaning, it won’t do a half-baked job, leaving you with a mediocre result. 

Upload your logo into the platform, choose your logo variations, and present your designs in a professional brand book. Time — saved, the client’s expectations — surpassed.

Create A Brand Book

The author

Josh Bloch
Josh Bloch

Josh is a multidisciplinary designer with over 20 years of experience in industrial design, exhibitions, branding, 2d and 3d animation, graphics for print and digital, illustration, and UX/UI for mobile and desktop apps.

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