Generic and common logo concepts

Some logo design elements have been used so many times that they can no longer be claimed as original creations, and thus will probably not be eligible for trademark registration. These clichéd, outdated-looking symbols are labelled "generic".

We discourage this type of work on 99designs by awarding Top Level status to designers who do the opposite: create distinctive, uniquely-tailored designs. We also reserve the right to terminate the accounts of designers whose work does not meet our quality standards.

While truly great design is measured by originality of concept, keep in mind it is also possible to render a common concept in a unique way and thus avoid the generic design outcome.

Here, we’ve created a guide to help both designers and customers recognize some of the most common generic logo elements. If you're looking to differentiate a brand from its competitors, steer clear of these.  

Common images and concepts

V-People/Abstract humanoids


Rings of abstract humanoids


Bar graphs


3D triangular links


3D spheres and cubes


Generic wordmarks





 Head to this page for more information on what fonts are allowed.

Generic Layouts 



Initials inside geometric shapes


Common images and concepts by industry

Accounting, Finance, Business Consulting




Real Estate

Computer, Internet, Technology, Communications




Medical, Health, Pharmaceutical







Generic book cover, t-shirt and print designs 

Article updated March, 7 2016

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