What Logo File Types Should you be Getting?

A good graphic designer should include a number of file types in a good Logo Design package. Any design that is created for you is so much more than the design itself. It’s also finding out how you’re going to be using your logo, and knowing what kinds of file types and sizes are best for you.

Vector is Best Practice in Logo File Types

If you are paying someone to make you a logo, they should be making you a vector graphic. That means they should be building it using Adobe Illustrator or another program that creates vector graphics.

What does Vector Mean?

Graphics are rendered in two primary ways: vector and raster.

Raster graphics have pixels. If you zoom in, eventually you will see that the image is just a bunch of squares stuck together. It’s actually rather interesting to zoom way in to complicated images, the colors are not always what you would expect and lines are much fuzzier than you might believe. Here’s an image of a graphic I made, opened up in Photoshop. (which works with raster graphics)

Note how everything looks fuzzy and kind of square:

Vector graphics have math. If you zoom in, you will just see lines and no matter how far you zoom in, there’s only lines. Vectors are created by unique (and super complicated) equations. When you resize it, the equation just renders it for that size. What this means for you is that your logo will look good no matter what size it is.

This is a screenshot of the same graphic in it’s original vector format in Illustrator. Note how there’s all these little blue lines with dots? Those are the math lines. Also note how clean everything is compared to the first photo.

I cannot emphasize enough how important vector format is to your logo or design. I have had so many clients come to me with their graphics already made by someone else, and they only have a raster format file like a PNG or a JPG. They want me to create something large like a banner, or for print graphics. I can do it. (I have tricks for that) But if you have a gradient or complicated details it’s going to look grainy or fuzzy. Your target market will be able to tell. It’s way better, and more professional to have a vector graphic to work with.

File Types You should Get in a Logo Package

First make sure you’re getting an SVG file type. That’s a vector you can use. Also ask for the original file, which will often be an AI file. This is like asking for the blueprints as well as the house. If at some later date you might want someone to make modifications, you’ll need it.

Next you’re going to need raster versions too. Most of the time on social media, websites, and in print you will be using raster graphics. I recommend JPG for print or if there are a lot of colors, and PNG for web so that the background can be transparent. I also recommend getting each file type in different sizes. Resizing raster graphics is the fastest way to ruin a professional looking logo.

Recommended List of File Types in a Logo Bundle:

  • AI – Illustrator file. Should have all layers and elements
  • SVG – Vector graphic. Should only be the logo
  • JPG at around 4000px for print
  • PNG with transparent background at 1900 for large web graphics
  • PNG with transparent background at 300 for small web graphics

All my logo bundles include this as a base. From there we add on social media graphics, print graphic layouts, web graphics and more. This means that I’m giving my clients the ability to go to another graphic designer if they want, because I include the AI file. I would rather be the kind of designer that builds trust, rather than one that holds back important information to make a buck.

Graphic design is about so much more than just making art. It’s about utility. It cannot just look good. It has to function in the real world, and knowing how that works, is a big part of what makes a good graphic designer. Always make sure to clarify everything you will be getting in the contract at the beginning. There should be a section in the contract called “Deliverables” which lists what you’re getting. Always refer back to that list at the end, to make sure you’re getting everything you need.

If you’re ready to get take your logo to the next level so it looks great no matter where it lands, reach out and let’s talk.

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