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DIY Logo Design Vs. Hiring A Pro: Which Is Better?

Starting your own business is thrilling yet terrifying. You have a vision for your company but limited resources and time. One of the first big decisions you’ll make is how to get a logo designed. Do you take a crack at DIY logo design to save money or hire a pro to do it right? It’s a tricky choice with pros and cons to weigh for your unique situation.

Creating your own logo seems appealing. You know your business best, so you can design something meaningful. You’ll avoid paying a designer and stay within your budget. The downside is you may end up with an amateurish logo that fails to attract customers or doesn’t scale well.

Working with a professional designer is the alternative. Their experience and skills can capture your brand in a memorable, versatile logo. However, design services don’t come cheap, and you have to invest time in briefing the designer.

Whether you take the DIY path or work with an expert, your logo shapes how people view your company. The decision ultimately comes down to your time, money, and confidence in your own design abilities versus the impact a pro can have. It’s not an easy choice, but with the right approach, you can end up with a logo you love without breaking the bank.

DIY Logo Design: The Appeal of Creating Your Own Logo

For small business owners on a budget, designing your logo may seem to be a great idea. You can save money and have full creative control over your brand’s visual identity. However, DIY logo design also comes with downsides that can end up costing you in the long run.

diy logo design poses a lot of risks for business owners

The Limitations of DIY Logo Design

When it comes to designing a logo for your small business, you have two options: do it yourself using an online logo maker or hire a professional graphic designer. Both routes have their advantages and disadvantages, so let’s explore them.

Creating a logo that will withstand the test of time also requires knowledge of current design trends and how to make a logo look contemporary yet classic. An amateur designer may latch onto the latest fads, resulting in a logo that quickly goes out of style. A professional considers current trends but focuses on concepts that will remain relevant for years to come.

For these reasons, while designing your own logo may save money upfront, it often ends up costing more in the long run. An unprofessional logo fails to make a strong impression, limits brand recognition, and has a short shelf life. For most small businesses, hiring an experienced graphic designer is the smarter choice for crafting a logo that will effectively represent their brand.

Lack of Expertise

A professional graphic designer has years of training and experience creating impactful logos. They understand the subtleties of color theory, typography, and layout that make a design effective.

Unless you have training and experience in graphic design, you may end up with an amateur-looking logo that fails to properly represent your brand. Logo design requires an understanding of color theory, typography, and visual hierarchy. Without these skills, you could make choices that turn off potential customers or look outdated quickly.

No Objective Feedback

Designing a logo also requires an objective perspective to determine what will resonate with a target audience. Business owners often have an emotional attachment to their company and ideas which can cloud their judgment.

When you design your logo, you don’t have the benefit of input from an outside professional. A graphic designer can evaluate your logo objectively and determine if it communicates the right message and feeling. They can suggest improvements to make it more memorable and impactful.

A Derivative from Template

Another limitation of DIY logo design is its lack of originality. Websites offering free logo templates provide little opportunity for customization. The result will likely look generic and fail to stand out or capture the spirit of the brand. A custom logo from a designer, on the other hand, is tailored specifically for the company and helps to establish a unique brand identity.

Easily Outdated

Creating a logo that will withstand the test of time also requires knowledge of current design trends and how to make a logo look contemporary yet classic. An amateur designer may latch onto the latest fads, resulting in a logo that quickly goes out of style. A professional considers current trends but focuses on concepts that will remain relevant for years to come.

For these reasons, while designing your DIY logo design may save money upfront, it often ends up costing more in the long run. An unprofessional logo fails to make a strong impression, limits brand recognition, and has a short shelf life. For most small businesses, hiring an experienced graphic designer is the smarter choice for crafting a logo that will effectively represent their brand.


Creating an effective logo often requires iterating through many concepts and drafts. This process can be extremely time-consuming for a small business owner who already wears many hats. Hiring a pro allows you to hand over the task to an expert and focus your efforts on other priorities.

While DIY logo design may seem budget-friendly upfront, working with a professional graphic designer is worth the investment for most small businesses. An experienced designer can create a logo that builds your brand for the long run. Focus on your business, and let the designers do what they do best!

Popular DIY Logo Design Makers: Canva, Looka, and More

DIY logo makers like Canva, Looka, and GraphicSprings make it easy to create a logo on your own. They provide templates, icons, and graphics that you can customize with your business name and industry. The interfaces are intuitive and you don’t need any design experience. However, the end result may seem generic or amateurish. The limited options can also mean your logo resembles many others.

For a small fee, some sites offer premium graphics and the option to hire a designer to create a custom logo. Even so, a DIY logo design may not capture your brand’s unique qualities and personality. Your logo is the face of your company, so a generic option could reflect poorly.

On the other hand, hiring a professional graphic designer to create your logo is a more customized approach. A designer will get to know your business, understand your brand, and design a logo tailored to your needs. They have the skills and software to craft an original logo that will make a lasting impression. However, design services do come at a cost, typically a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.

The choice comes down to your needs, priorities, and whether you want to spend more now to build a strong brand identity. Both options have merit, so evaluate what will work best for your unique situation.

Why Hiring A Professional Designer Is A Smart Move

There are several benefits to hiring a professional graphic designer for your business logo rather than attempting a DIY logo design.

Experience and Expertise

Professional logo designers have years of experience and expertise in creating impactful logos for businesses in all industries. They stay up-to-date with the latest design trends and tools to craft a logo that will look professional and help your brand stand out. DIY logo design software may seem easy to use, but it lacks the creative skills of a professional designer.

Brand Strategy

A good logo designer doesn’t just create a visual graphic. They develop an entire brand strategy to help define your business and connect with your target customers. They will work to understand your vision, mission, values, and goals to design a logo that is a perfect representation of your brand identity. DIY logo tools can’t provide the custom brand strategy that a professional designer offers.

Objective Feedback

Professional logo designers can provide objective feedback and advice on your logo options. They can tell you what is or isn’t working with different designs and help steer you toward the best choice for your business. When you design your logo, you may struggle to see its weaknesses or limitations since you are so closely connected to the process. An experienced designer brings a fresh, unbiased perspective.

Visual Appeal

Logos designed by professionals simply look more polished, visually appealing, and high quality. They have the skills and tools to create logos that use color, fonts, and graphics in an aesthetically pleasing way.

DIY logos often look generic, amateurish, or unbalanced in comparison. Your logo is the face of your brand, so visual appeal matters.

Long-Term Value

A custom logo from a professional designer is an investment that will provide long-term value for your business. It will give your brand an identity that resonates with your customers and helps to build loyalty over time. Although DIY logo design is inexpensive, the logos produced tend to look outdated more quickly and lack brand consistency. For a logo with lasting power, hiring a pro is well worth the cost.

In summary, professional logo design helps to establish a strong, memorable brand identity that connects with your target audience. For small business owners, the investment in a custom logo from an experienced designer is one that will pay off through brand recognition and loyalty.

a professional logo designer is busy crafting a logo for his client

How Professional Designers Create Brand Identity Through Logos

Professional graphic designers are trained to create logos that effectively communicate a brand’s identity. They understand how to:

Conduct Market Research

Designers research the client’s industry, competitors, and target audience. They identify trends to determine how a brand can stand out. This helps them develop a logo that is unique yet still fits within the industry.

Establish Brand Positioning

The designer works with the client to determine the brand’s key attributes, voice, and messaging. They establish a brand identity that aligns with the company’s vision and resonates with the target audience. The logo is then designed to visually represent that brand positioning.

Incorporate Visual Elements

Designers thoughtfully choose colors, fonts, shapes, and other elements to achieve the desired brand image. They understand color theory and how different fonts evoke different emotions. The visual elements are balanced to create a logo that is eye-catching yet still simple and versatile.

Ensure Broad Appeal

Professional designers create logos that appeal to a wide range of people. They avoid anything too niche, controversial, or offensive. The logo should resonate across geographic regions and connect with people of all backgrounds.

Consider Scalability

A well-designed logo works at any size – from a smartphone screen to a billboard. Designers make sure the logo maintains its impact whether it is displayed small or large. All elements remain clear and the overall concept is still communicated.

Test and Refine

Designers evaluate initial logo concepts to determine what works and what doesn’t. They get feedback from the client and target audience and make revisions to improve the logo. Multiple rounds of testing and refinement result in a polished final logo design.

Logo Design Pricing: What to Expect From Professional Designers

When it comes to logo design, hiring a professional designer typically means paying a premium. However, the impact of a custom, professionally designed logo on your business can be well worth the investment.

Pricing for Custom Logo Design

Professional logo designers typically charge between $500 to $5,000 or more for a custom logo design, depending on their experience, skills, and demand. Established designers with an impressive portfolio of major brands can charge on the higher end of that range or above. For a small business owner on a budget, $500 to $1,500 is a good range to aim for.

Some designers charge by the hour, around $50 to $150 per hour. Others charge a flat project fee based on the estimated time required. It’s best to get multiple quotes from different designers to compare. Look for those with experience designing logos in your industry.

The logo design process typically takes 10 to 30 hours for research, brainstorming concepts, revising designs, and finalizing the logo. The total cost will depend on the complexity of your logo and brand as well as the number of revisions requested. Additional services like brand strategy, color palette creation, and style guides will also add to the total cost.

While DIY logo design using online tools may seem like an affordable alternative, professional design services provide significant benefits. An experienced logo designer will strategize your brand identity, create customized concepts, and ensure your logo resonates with your target audience. They have the skills and software to produce high-quality, versatile designs that will represent your brand for years to come.

For any small business, a logo acts as the face of the company and makes a first impression on potential customers. Investing in a custom, professional logo design is worth the upfront cost to build a strong brand image that will drive sales and growth over the long run. While pricing varies, a professionally designed logo is invaluable for communicating your brand message and connecting with your audience.

Questions to Ask When Interviewing Professional Logo Designers

When interviewing professional logo designers, there are several questions you should ask to determine if they’re the right fit for your business.

Experience and Portfolio

Ask about their experience designing logos, especially for companies in your industry. Request to see examples of their work in a portfolio. Look for logos they’ve created that you find visually appealing and align with your brand identity. See if they have experience with your preferred logo style, whether that’s typographic, illustrative, or abstract. An experienced designer will be able to provide logos they’ve created for a range of companies.

Process and Timeline

Inquire about their creative process for designing a logo. A good process will include research into your brand, mission, and target audience. They should provide you with a project timeline, outlining key milestones like presenting initial concepts, rounds of feedback and revisions, and final delivery of logo files. Make sure their projected timeline works with your needs.


Discuss how they ensure all logos they design are unique and original. They should never copy or mimic existing logos. A professional designer will describe their process for researching similar logos to avoid unintended copies or derivatives of other marks. They should provide examples of how they’ve designed completely novel, distinctive logos for previous clients.

Range of Formats

Ask what file formats they will provide for your new logo. You should receive digital logo files in multiple formats like AI, EPS, PNG, and JPG. Request vector files (AI, EPS) that can scale to any size without loss of quality as well as high-resolution raster files (PNG, JPG) for digital and print use. They should also provide guidelines for properly using and displaying your new logo.

Costs and Usage Rights

Inquire about their rates and what usage rights are included. Logo design fees can vary but may range from $500 to $5,000 or more for a professionally designed logo. Make sure you understand what you’re getting for your investment, including full ownership and rights to use the logo as you wish in perpetuity. Negotiate the best deal possible while still paying a fair price for quality work.

With the right questions, you can determine if a professional logo designer has the experience, skills, and process to create an iconic logo for your business. Doing thorough due diligence during the interview stage will ensure you find a designer you can trust with this important task.

How to Find the Right Logo Designer for Your Business

When hiring a logo designer, the most important thing is finding the right one for your business and brand. There are a few key factors to consider:

Expertise and Experience

Look for a designer with experience creating logos in your industry or for similar brands. An experienced designer will have a better sense of trends, what works and doesn’t work, and how to capture the essence of a brand in a logo. They will also work more efficiently, having created many logos before.

Style and Esthetic

Review the designer’s portfolio to make sure their style matches what you want. If you want a modern minimalist logo, don’t hire someone focused on ornate retro designs. Consider things like color palette, typography, and level of detail, and make sure it aligns with your vision.

Process and Communication

The logo design process should include research into your brand, target market, and competitors. The designer should communicate regularly, sharing concepts, and revisions, and explaining their design choices. Be wary of designers who just send a finished logo with no context. Collaboration and input throughout the process will lead to a better final result that you will be happier with.


Experienced designers will likely charge more, often several hundred to several thousand dollars for a custom logo design. Cheaper options like crowdsourcing sites may seem appealing, but you typically get what you pay for. Consider the logo an investment in your brand that will serve you for years to come.

Choosing the right logo designer for your small business is worth the effort. Look for someone with proven experience, a style you love, who provides great communication and customer service, and charges fair prices. Your new custom logo will establish your brand and set the right first impression, so make sure to find a designer who will get it absolutely right. With the perfect logo in hand, you’ll be ready to build a memorable brand.

DIY Logo Design vs Professional: Which Is Best for Your Small Business? 

When it comes to designing a logo for your small business, you have two options: DIY logo design or hire a professional graphic designer. Both options have their pros and cons, so you’ll need to weigh them carefully based on your needs, skills, and budget.

DIY logo design is appealing because it’s free or low-cost. If you have experience with graphic design software like Illustrator or Photoshop, you may feel comfortable creating your own logo. However, a DIY logo risks looking unprofessional or amateur. It can be difficult to evaluate how well your own design will represent your brand.

Hiring a professional graphic designer ensures an experienced eye will create a logo tailored to your business. They understand the principles of effective logo design and can craft a visual identity that aligns with your brand. However, custom logo design services typically start around $500 to $5,000 or more, which can be expensive for small businesses or startups.


For most small business owners, cost is a significant factor in the decision. DIY logo design is essentially free, while a professional designer charges $500 at a minimum and typically several thousand dollars for a high-quality custom logo. If the budget is tight, DIY may be your only option. If you can afford it, professional design is a worthwhile investment.


In general, a professionally designed logo will look more polished, memorable, and effective at representing your brand. DIY logo designs often appear amateur, cliche or forgettable. A pro designer has the skills and experience to create an impactful logo tailored to your business. However, some business owners are very creative and capable of designing a great DIY logo. It depends on your own design skills and talents.

Time Investment

A professional designer can complete your logo fairly quickly, usually within 1 to 2 weeks. Doing it yourself, however, requires investing significant time to learn design software, research logo styles, create multiple drafts, and get feedback. The total time to design an effective DIY logo may take 30 to 50 hours or more. For business owners with limited time, hiring a pro is more efficient.

In the end, you need to weigh all these factors and determine what will work best for your unique situation. If budget and time are limited but design quality is critical, you may want to start with a DIY option and then revisit professional design in the future as your business grows. The most important thing is that your logo reflects your brand in the best possible way.


At the end of the day, while designing your own logo can save money in the short run and allow for more creative control, hiring a professional is the smarter long-term choice for most small businesses. A great logo acts as the face of a company and helps to build brand recognition, so it’s worth investing in.

Professionals have the experience to create a logo that will visually represent a business in the best light and help them achieve their goals. For small business owners looking to take their company to the next level, hiring a pro to design an impactful logo is a step in the right direction. While DIY seems tempting, for something this important it’s better to leave it to the experts.

Professional Logo Design for Your Business

Your logo is the face of your business, and it’s important to make a good first impression. That’s why we at Waterfront Graphic Design offer professional logo design services that will help you create a logo that is both visually appealing and memorable.

We offer a variety of logo design styles, from simple and modern to complex and ornate. We can also create logos that incorporate your company’s name, tagline, or other branding elements.

Once we have created a logo design that you are happy with, we will provide you with all of the necessary files so that you can use your new logo on your website, business cards, marketing materials, and more.

Contact us today to learn more about our logo design services and to get a free quote.

We’ll help you make a splash with your new logo!

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