Amazon is an online retailer that first opened its digital doors in the 1990s — starting first as an online bookstore before becoming an online enterprise that took the world by storm.
Jeff Bezos was a Wall Street hedge fund executive before he became the founder of Amazon. He understood the power of the internet despite critics claiming the opposite, and ever since, Amazon has grown to be the largest online retailer that exists today.
In 1999, Bezos became Time’s person of the year — and that was just the beginning. Slowly but surely, Amazon began its expansion — offering more products from more businesses and organizations. It branched out into technology and other areas. In 2017, Amazon purchased Whole Foods and has expanded its food delivery services.
Today, this e-commerce organization is the largest Internet retailer that exists on this planet. So with a legacy as long as this one, it’s important they have a logo that stands out.
The Amazon logo design we all know and love didn’t always look the way it does now. It went through a number of iterations before designers landed on the design that we see on the sides of boxes, on the Amazon app and on the Amazon website today.
The original logo looks widely different than the one we are familiar with today. The original logo took the shape of a capitalized A. Inside of it, the company incorporated a rippling water effect with the A a lighter shade of blue, and the outside a darker shade. A winding river ran through the A, giving off a very aquatic design.
There were many similar iterations of this design — the capital A theme stayed in place, but the colors and designs within changed. They took on themes of fire, a zebra design and a plain purple color.
The next iteration looked similar to what we see today. It was the wordmark, but in place of the O in Amazon, they utilized a big, bright yellow circle. Another design kept the simple black wordmark and incorporated a yellow line beneath it.
Today, the logo looks vastly different than its 90s versions, and we couldn’t be more thankful.
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Amazon’s logo is simple, strong and powerful. It’s easily recognizable with its bold, black lowercase font and the yellow-gold arrow that sits beneath it.
There is no extensive design work in this logo, but that doesn’t mean that this logo doesn’t make an impact. The bolded “Amazon” name followed by the unbolded, sans-serif “.com” presents an eye-catching contrast that demands to be seen. And the overall simplicity of the design gives off a sense of familiarity and comfort.
Looking at this logo, you instantly feel good and welcome. You trust this e-commerce giant innately, as they seem to know exactly what they’re doing.
And the addition of the yellow arrow beneath the wordmark proves it.
On first glance, this just looks like a swooping arrow that moves left to right. It adds motion and a pop of color to the design that elevates it to a whole new level.
But upon seeing this arrow on packaging and on branded content, it starts to look like something else. You know how we said this logo design makes you feel happy? That’s because this arrow is in the shape of a cute little smile.
And how can you look at a smiling face and not feel a sense of glee?
Using hidden images with hidden meanings, this logo design evokes a deep feeling of happiness, trust and joy.
But the hidden meanings don’t stop there. If you look at the exact placement of the arrow, you also notice that it begins under the A and ends under the Z.
This is a reference to the company itself and what it sells — it sells everything from A to Z. Clever right?
Amazon does a remarkable job infusing wit and clever imagery into its logo to evoke deep emotions and affect consumers on a subconscious level.
It’s welcoming to feel like you’re interacting with a company that has a personality. The human element is easy to lose once you become as big a corporation as Amazon has become, but they still do their best to add some fun and flare to their online presence.
Amazon’s logo is simple but effective. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, nor does it pretend to be something it’s not. It’s clean. It’s bold. It’s memorable. It’s organized and easy-to-understand. It has a pop of color that grabs your attention, and the closer you look, the better you feel.
The colorful arrow under the wordmark resembles a smile that fills you with happiness, and its deeper meaning of offering everything under the sun to its users subconsciously gives you a sense of trust that can’t be ignored.
Amazon is the world’s largest e-commerce website, and this logo doesn’t let you forget it.