What is minimalism? Minimalism is an absence of extras, excessive elements, and wasted space.
The use of minimalism is everywhere these days. Whether it is in company logos, fashion design, websites, home decor, packaging, or artwork, minimalism is incredibly popular and worth talking about for retailers.
Minimalist designs are simple, yet effective. The purpose of minimalism is to focus on the product or design itself, rather than dressing it up to seem more appealing in the complexity.
Simplicity is the key element in minimalist designs.
Companies Using Minimalism
When looking at many popular brands’ logos such as Apple, Uber, Nike, and Louis Vuitton, we see a pattern. These brands are recognizable, meaningful, and memorable. People know the significance of the apple with a bite taken out, or the iconic swoosh.
Effective use of minimalism in branding occurs when your brand has the most impact while using the least amount of resources.
Some minimalist designs include just using the name of the brand as the logo. Using simple images or words evoke a feeling of sophistication.
Minimalism creates a sense of luxury, nothing unnecessary is included. It adds to the perceived value of the brand in the mind of the consumer.
In addition, fashion designs have also been influenced by the minimalist trend. Brands such as The Row, Theory, Else Lingerie, and Nanushka focus on quality pieces and elevated basics. These brands focus on well-fitting, clean garments that speak for themselves. We don’t see huge logos and branding on their clothes, which is part of the appeal. Instead, minimalism in fashion provides versatility, sustainability, and functionality.
Examples in Website Design:
When it comes to creating a minimalist style website, brands stick to the basics. Examples of companies with great minimalist style websites include:
Khaite an example of a minimal website design and branding.
These brands have websites with fewer pages, less text, and less clutter.
Navigation of the website should be easy and straightforward. Using a few colors, a lower number of fonts, and more white space add to the minimalistic feel.
According to the Nielsen Norman Group, the most defining characteristics of minimalist websites include flat patterns and textures, monochrome color palette, restricted features, maximized white space, and dramatic typography (Moran).
Examples in Packaging Design:
Using minimalist branding in packaging also creates a sense of luxury. Sleek and simple product packaging seems more expensive to customers.
Glossier product packaging example.
This strategy is popular among health and beauty brands as you can see from the brands listed above. Some products focus on minimal packaging for the sustainability aspect, and others focus on the sleek look strictly for a design standpoint.
Why consumers want to shop minimal branding, designs, and packaging
Sustainability aspects of minimalism are among many reasons to shop minimalist brands. There tends to be a greater focus on quality, ethically sourced products, and a tight supply chain.
Products with less packaging are better for the environment because there is less waste. The fashion industry’s use of fast fashion has caused pollution and many other negative consequences. Minimalist brands focus on slowing down and producing smaller quantities of pieces, and are less focused on short term trends.
People also shop minimalist bands for the aesthetic. Brands convey a sense of sophistication and luxury with minimal logos and designs. A sleek look can be enough for a customer to consider trying your product over a generic brand.
The minimalist look is considered trendy these days, so many people favor this style of design. Using minimalism on your website or social media can convince people to buy your products or want to work with you because of the look itself.
Strategies to distinguish minimalist branding
To improve your branding to be more minimalistic try using one color for everything including packaging, business cards, boxes, gift cards, etc. This creates a simple, cohesive branding message for in-store and online shoppers.
Choose a color that suits your brand, and that you would like consumers to associate your brand with. Similarly, use only a few colors on your website and social media for the same effect of cohesiveness.
When it comes to your logo, consider using simple geometric shapes, and declutter your brand’s image. Some companies use their name as the logo, or even a few letters.
Give your brand a personality by using specific fonts to represent characteristics. Because your branding is minimal, the chosen font will have an impact on how your brand is perceived (Goldring).
No matter what you do, remember that less is more.
This is the most important aspect to consider when designing minimalist logos, websites, fashion brands, or packaging: Let the brand speak for itself.
Creative, The Logo. “10 Famous Brands with Minimalist Logos - Logo Design.” The Logo Creative | International Logo Design & Branding Studio, 6 Feb. 2022, https://www.thelogocreative.co.uk/10-famous-brands-with-minimalist-logos/.
Goldring, Kira. “30 Minimalist Logos That Make an Impact.” Tailor Brands, 7 June 2022, https://www.tailorbrands.com/blog/minimalist-logos.
Indvik, Lauren. “The Best Minimalist Stores for Online Shoppers.” Fashionista, Fashionista, 17 June 2016, https://fashionista.com/2016/06/minimalist-stores.Moran , Kate. “The Characteristics of Minimalism in Web Design.” Nielsen Norman Group, 12 July 2015, https://www.nngroup.com/articles/characteristics-minimalism/.