The Art of a Favicon

By Ben Hall

When you browse the web, you'll notice that each website you visit has a tiny icon in the browser tab next to the page title. This icon is called a favicon and serves a much bigger purpose than its small size might suggest. A favicon is an essential part of any website's branding and design, and it can convey a lot about a website's purpose, tone, and identity.

What is a Favicon?

A favicon is a small image, typically measuring 16x16 pixels or 32x32 pixels, displayed in a website's browser tab and bookmarks bar. It is usually in the form of a tiny logo or icon that represents the website, and it helps users identify and remember the site.

The Importance of a Favicon

A favicon is an important part of a website's branding and design for several reasons. First and foremost, it helps users identify and recognize a website quickly and easily. With so many websites available, a unique and recognizable favicon can help a site stand out from the competition.

Additionally, a favicon can add to a website's overall look and feel. It's a small detail, but a well-designed favicon can make a website look more professional and polished. It also serves as a subtle but effective way to reinforce a website's branding and identity.

Designing a Favicon

Designing a favicon might seem straightforward, given its small size, but there are several design implications to consider. When creating a favicon, it's essential to consider the website's branding and identity, as well as its overall tone and purpose.

A favicon should be simple and memorable, with clear shapes and colors that are easy to recognize even at a small size. It's also important to consider the contrast and readability of the icon, especially against different background colors. Finally, a favicon should be consistent with the overall design and branding of the website.

Meaning Behind a Favicon

A favicon can also convey a lot about a website's purpose, tone, and identity. For example, a website dealing with finance or banking might use an icon representing a dollar sign or a piggy bank, while a travel website might use an airplane or a map. Similarly, a website that caters to a specific audience might use an icon that appeals to that demographic.

Favicons can also change over time. For example, Google's favicon has evolved over the years from a simple lowercase "g" to the now-familiar multicolored "Google" logo. This change was made to align the favicon with the company's overall branding and design.

A Little Touch With a Big Presence

The art of a favicon might seem like a small detail, but it has a significant impact on a website's overall branding and design. A well-designed favicon can help users identify and remember a website, add to its professional look and feel, and convey important information about its purpose and identity. So, take the time to design a favicon that is simple, memorable, and consistent.

Want to see some of our favicons in action? Just take a look at our website case studies!