Why Did Google Change Its Logo?


Founded in 1998 Google is the world’s largest search engine company headquartered in Mountain View, California. Regarded as the world’s most powerful brand across categories and in its class of search engines it leads by leaps and bounds. “Google” is actually derived from the misspelling of “googol”, which means the digit 1, followed by 100 zeroes. But even the world’s most powerful brand needs a change now and then, to keep pace with changing consumer demands and expectations.

Google was initially nicknamed the “Backrub” that meant supplying infinite information on any desired topic. Over the years Google has evolved and experimented a lot with its logo constantly improving and adding innovative designs to keep pace with the growing portfolio that is now has. Google also played around with a logo on the loading page and till date they have created more than 1500 “Google Doodles” as they call that incorporates different events and occasions. But these are more to make sure that events and occasion across the globe are acknowledged and keep the global perception alive in the consumers mind.

The brand logo of Google showcases an extremely strong and dynamic brand that is one of the world’s most popular and instantly recognizable logos. All the colours used in the Google brand logo represent precision, uniqueness, growth, elegance and excellence. From 1998 to 2015, the Google logo has gone through various changes but the latest one is the most significant one. Feel that the new logo is more dynamic and approachable as it looks smoother and yet retained its colour scheme of red, blue, green & yellow.

Over time Google has made minor changes like tweaking letter spaces and shadows etc but the change done in Sept 2015 has major changes in the font and style. Google has updated the logo with sans serif typeface, which incidentally is Google’s creation, that look more fashionable and relevant. Also this font gives the flexibility to offer more legibility than other fonts and works well on responsive sites and screens.

Google has even updated the favicon that appears on the screen when you load a google site on the browser tab with the 4 colours and G in caps to give it more colourful yet an extension of the new logo unit.

That’s not all the biggest thing Google did with the logo change is that they made the logo interactive or animated which very few brands have done. The earlier one was completely static and now the letters in Google transform into a series of four dots that morph and orbit with life. During a voice search the Google logo will transform from ‘Google’ into the dots they will become like an equaliser, reacting to the sound of vocalizations. The moment your done the waveform will transform back into dots and spin as Google once the results are out.

So if we try to understand there is a lot of meaning to this change of logo that has happened and it’s not just a change because the new management wanted to show something new. Yes agree new management comes with a new perspective but that perspective has to be in the interest of the consumers and not that “Change is the only constant” phrase. The change also signifies that Google believes in its future products and ventures and this logo incorporates all those values and beliefs for a better future. The entire idea of the change in logo was to make Google better and make it more accessible for all consumers because logos are icons and if the icons are friendly it will make sure more and more people use Google.

Am sure that everyone at Google would have worked really hard to bring about this change of making Google more Googley, as it would have been a collaborated effort to make the brand more friendly and dynamic. And they have shown that it doesn’t take a radical design shift to showcase that you have changed it just small things that make a big difference about how consumers perceive changes.