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A Smooth User Experience with Icons & Symbols

Featured photography: Hans

What’s the difference between an icon and a symbol?

Both are simplified drawings of actual things that are easily and universally recognisable.

An Icon is a simple graphic representation of an object or a being.
A Symbol is the representation of an idea or a concept.


n a world where information is mainly consumed through visuals, icons and symbols are more and more relevant. They’re everywhere; from your basic website to airports and roadsides.

Icons and symbols are information put in its simplest, but most accurate form. And in today’s culture, we rely on them to navigate through life.

What makes a good icon?

A good icon shows minimal characteristics of an object or concept but very accurately. When looking at the icon, the meaning of it is undisputable and not open to interpretation.

Here are a set of icons we created for Pyreken Pyrethrum (see this article) which appear on their website :

Why use icons for your business?

Using icons for a business is an excellent way to deliver a message in a quick manner. Especially, as not all of your potential clients will have the same level of literacy.

Icons work well on a website when you consider that visitors will spend less than 15 seconds on your home page. Visitors initially scan the page for visually interesting content before deciding to stay longer on the page.

It’s also very smart to put on your car stickers if you choose this form of advertisement. When well executed, a simple glance can give your potential customers all the info they need without impeding their safety.

“an excellent way to deliver a message in a quick manner”

How to use icons for your business?

We’re not talking about navigation icons which are just a simple click to add to your website (like social media, login, arrows, cart, etc.) but the ones that make our graphic designers’ hearts sing!

Think about what information could be a determinant for your customer to buy your product/service instead of someone else’s. This is what should be prime and foremost.

Here are some examples of the usual information worth raising to the icon status:


Our Tips

  • Use icons in uneven numbers. Odd numbers force the eyes to look at them individually whereas when even, our brain naturally reads them as pairs.
  • Use icons to visually break up your page content. A well-formatted page will be less intimidating and easier to read for your visitors.
  • Use icons when space is very limited (e.g. on product labels)

“easier to read”

Icons say a lot without a lot of words, if any!

You can find many standardised icons here to make your website visually attractive but we recommend the help of a skilled graphic designer when looking for personalised icons.

Our Creative Director here has 25+ years of experience, designing many icons and symbols in that time, and will be more than happy to assist you.


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