If you’re a regular GraphicRiver user you may have noticed that a new category has appeared in the menu – Logo Templates. It’s a bit of a controversial category to launch, in fact we’ve had a few lively threads on the forums already in response to it!
The Envato Marketplaces let authors sell virtually every type of creative asset imaginable. In fact we are constantly adding new classes of digital goods and expanding into new areas. Selling some form of stock logos has been on the books for some time, as there are some rather large libraries around online that seem to indicate that it’s something both authors and buyers are interested in.
Logos as stock, however, is tricky for a number of reasons. The primary one is that for a regular branding and logo design job, there is much more than just picking out a neat little icon and arranging it with some text. A logo designer needs to deliver a solution that reflects the unique business and branding issues of the project.
Moreover a logo is something that is meant to represent a business and potentially be trademarked. So how can multiple businesses use the same imagery?
After a lot of internal debate and research, we have come to the conclusion that both issues can be addressed and we are beginning our foray into the controversial world of logo templates. Let me explain.
Logo Templates Suit Certain Situations
For many years prior to Envato I worked as a professional designer both at agencies and freelance, and during that time did work for clients as varied as multi-nationals, government, small business, non-profits, and just about everything in between.
If there was one thing I learned, it’s that there are a million types of project (and client). And importantly each project has different requirements and different budgets.
Logo templates are for a particular end of the market – namely the low budget end. Frankly if a client has a decent budget for a logo, I highly recommend hiring a designer and getting a good piece of custom work done. And, no I don’t mean running a logo contest! If you’re stuck finding a designer, you can always post a job ad up on our sister site FreelanceSwitch which is home to some fantastic talent!
But for situations where there is little or no budget, then we are hoping to offer a very viable alternative solution – a self-serve, non-exclusive logo template for a very affordable price of $29.
What kinds of uses could these have? Here are some places where a visual identity was needed, that I have personally dealt with:
- One-off events – I have made little logos for quite a number of conferences where there needed to be some sort of brand, but it was basically a throw-away at the end of the event.
- Internal projects – Not every project is for the world to see. Oftentimes companies and organizations have projects with limited audiences but still need a visual identity.
- Non-profit and community projects – I’m not sure why, but I get roped into non-profit projects constantly, from religious organizations to sporting teams to open source projects, and most of the time I am replacing some nasty bit of MS Word art that was the previous ‘logo’. Hopefully in future I’ll be replacing at least something which is a bit nicer than Word Art – no offence Microsoft!
- Little businesses with no budget – Every freelancer has turned away a project where the client just couldn’t afford their services. To some extent this is just the cost of doing business, but there is space for an interim step while the business is getting started.
- Highly local or otherwise limited reach businesses – Uniqueness is extremely important for the logo of a business like Envato because we operate on a global stage. The other day I was searching vacation homes just out of town for a little holiday. This is an example of a small, often family run business where the reach is very limited. In this case the logo only needs to be unique in a very small pond.
- Speculative new businesses – I have a few friends exploring launching internet businesses. They each have little to no budget, and have very little idea if their intended business will gain any traction online at all. In these cases they need a polished logo, but depending on the situation may not be practical for them to invest in having custom branding developed. Often they couldn’t even if they wanted to because they haven’t defined their business idea enough to brief a designer effectively. In that case I suggest a polished interim stock solution, followed by the investment in custom design once they have defined their business and have a good idea they will get a return on investment.
Anyhow those are a few cases that I can think that a logo template could be a good solution. And there are lots of situations where a logo template is probably the wrong solution too! And for those there are plenty of better options ranging from freelance designers to the big branding agencies.
Logo Plans on the Marketplaces
Since we launched a couple of weeks ago, the sales on the logo templates category have been a lot higher than I think any of us had expected. We’ve had a very quiet launch with the category currently tucked away under the ‘more’ menu, and no mention in our newsletter or any other of our regular launch channels (until this post).
Despite that in two weeks we’ve seen about 150 logos sold. It’s quite exciting to see, and bodes well for the category!
Over the next couple of months we’re working on building up content and slowly spinning up promotions to see how the new items fare. And then we have plans for building an ‘exclusive logo’ system for one-off purchases for buyers who have a bit more budget, but still not enough to go fully custom.
We’re also building up not just single logo templates, but some very flexible logo maker packs like this one. The more flexibility there is in these template packs, the more useful they will be to a larger set of people.
What are your thoughts?
So that’s my take and why I feel OK about us moving into this area. What are your thoughts? Do you think there is enough flexibility in the designs on sale to allow for buyers to tweak and use? Do you see logo templates on GraphicRiver taking off?