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Icons have been used for an incredibly long time in web design, however that doesn’t mean choosing the right icons is going to be an easy task. I’m sure you’ve come across websites before where the logos don’t make sense when compared with the rest of the design. In this case they don’t add anything, but it’s a fine line between detracting form your site’s design.

It takes a lot of time and thinking to determine the correct use of each icon. Sometimes it’s the small details that are the most important. Besides just navigation, icons can help a reader to understand the context of your website, and even aid in understanding the overall message of your site.

In this article we’re going to cover the importance of choosing the right icons for your site. Make sure you don’t gloss this over.

Icons need to be appealing

Your icons should be appealing to the eyes. You’ll want them to stand out against your screen and catch the eyes of your readers. Viewers tend to remember things that are beautiful, rather than not, so you’ll want your icons to be in this category.

However, make sure they aren’t too loud, as they’ll stick out from the rest of your site.

Icons need to be universal

Your icons need to be clear. Your goal should be to avoid as much confusion as possible.

Think of your icons as signs that are pointing your user to the next destination. You’ll want your icons to be unique, meaning not the same as the last site, but not too unique that they leave the reader baffled as to where the icon is going to lead them.

Icons should have consistency

If you forget about consistency in your icons, then you’ll end up breaking the flow of information on your website. You’ll also want your icons and your cool scheme to be in alignment. You want your design to have a balanced feel once your icons are included.

The last thing to make sure you do is that your icons retain a consistent shape throughout.

Icons need to be complimentary

You’ll war the theme of your website and your icons to be in alignment. Just like you choose certain fonts to bring certain elements to your site, you’ll want to do the same with your icons.

Will your icons be simple, outlandish, or funny? The choice is yours.

Your icons need to be purposeful

When you’re choosing your icons you’ll want to make sure they’re functional. Don’t just choose a set of icons, because you think they’re “cool”.

The main purpose of your icons is to direct them to an area of your site, or take a certain action offsite. Make sure not to include any stylistic elements that will make them difficult to use. Keep your icons on point, and they’ll do exactly what they’re intended to do.

You need to have a good understanding of the purpose behind choosing the icon set in the first place, the above areas of focus are a great place to start. Even the smallest things can make a huge impact in your website’s design.

I hope this article has illuminated the effect that logos have on your design.

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