It’s a familiar problem in ecommerce: Your online store lets you reach potential clients all over the world, but the lack of a physical location keeps you from interfacing with customers directly. How do you catch the attention of and connect with your audience?
A clearly defined brand identity that characterizes all your digital marketing media—executed with the help of branding tools—can help you navigate this dilemma. Here’s an overview of branding tools, plus guidance on selecting the right tools for your online business.
What are branding tools?
Branding tools are software applications that assist you in the task of branding, or the act of creating a distinct look and feel for your business. You can use branding tools to create assets ranging from graphics, logos, video content, and social media content. These tools let you work toward a unified look, sound, and feel across all your platforms, which can promote brand recognition among your target customers.
Commonly used types of branding tools include:
- Design tools
- Video tools
- Writing tools
- Audio tools
Why you need branding tools for your business
A well-defined brand helps you cut through a crowded marketplace. Your business may be quite similar to your competitors in terms of products and pricing, but it can stand out if it’s instantly recognizable to your target audience. That’s where branding tools come in. They help you in several ways, including:
- Recognition. Branding tools help you create a consistent look across all your public-facing materials—from your logo to your social posts—so that customers easily associate those messages with your business.
- Multimedia functionality. You can use branding tools to create all sorts of marketing assets. For instance, you can use a branding tool to design a great logo that appears on your business card, your website landing page, and your social media profile imagery.
- Team alignment. Branding tools assist your marketing team in aligning around a unified brand strategy. They help ensure that everyone on staff is creating materials with the same look, sound, and brand voice.
10 best branding tools for your business
- Shopify Logo Maker—Hatchful
- Shopify business card maker
- Vimeo Create
- Shopify slogan maker
- Hubspot email signature generator
- Shopify image resizer
Branding a business takes a concerted effort, and intuitive, easy-to-use branding tools can make the process more efficient. Here are some great tools to help you with various parts of your branding efforts:
1. Shopify Logo Maker—Hatchful
No single image will represent your business more than your brand logo. Shopify’s free logo maker offers hundreds of templates for you to customize into a unique logo.
2. Shopify business card maker
Once you have a logo, you can start featuring it on business cards. Use Shopify’s free business card maker to complete your card design. You’ll pay to print the cards, but the design tool is free to use.
3. Vimeo Create
Video branding tools let you create videos and animations with a signature look. Some of these tools can be pricey, but you may be able to address your branding needs with free video editing software.
Vimeo Create offers a useful free plan that lets you not only create videos but also host and distribute them across the internet. You can upload your own footage and logo and let Vimeo’s AI-powered editor suggest colors, themes, music, and fonts. The platform’s free plan sometimes brackets your videos with ads, so you may choose to upgrade to a paid subscription, starting at $12 per month.
Writer is an AI writing tool that creates content for blog posts and marketing. While generative AI may not match human writers in terms of originality and accuracy, the technology can help ensure a consistent application of your brand voice. With Writer’s Styleguide tool, you set guidelines for your company’s prose writing (much like a traditional style guide), and Writer nudges your team to follow these guidelines as they draft new content. This helps ensure that the team’s writing always retains a signature brand voice. Writer offers a free trial, after which you can subscribe to plans starting at $18 per user a month.
Creating a signature brand feel goes beyond the syntax of your prose. It also includes colors, fonts, and aesthetic details. Frontify helps you manage all of these, in addition to a prose style guide. This comes in handy as your brand grows, when you may have a wider array of people contributing content, whether that’s an outside marketing agency designing graphics or a freelance writer authoring guest posts for your blog. All of these features come under the umbrella of Frontify’s core product: a shared hub that aligns your team around anything related to branding. You can test out Frontify with a free trial, at which point a Frontify representative will get in touch with pricing options.
6. Shopify slogan generator
Creating slogans can be tricky, but Shopify’s free slogan generator can set you on the right path. Provide it with information about your business, plus key terms to include, and it can generate thousands of slogans for your consideration. You can either use one verbatim or tweak it to meet your exact needs.
7. HubSpot email signature generator
Whether you’re brand new to ecommerce or a longtime industry veteran, you probably send a lot of emails over the course of a week. Ending those emails with a branded signature helps reinforce your brand identity to each recipient. Instead of having each employee create their own email signature, you can design and share a company-wide signature for everyone on your team. Check out HubSpot’s free email signature generator to create one of your own.
Canva helps you design visual content to appear just about anywhere—from a website landing page to social media posts to printed brochures. Canva’s free plan is remarkably useful with a drag-and-drop editor and access to over one million free photos and graphics. Paid plans start at $12.99 per month and include advanced graphics tools and one terabyte of cloud storage.
9. Shopify image resizer
Whether it’s for an email newsletter, a social media update, or a product photo for your online store, correct image size supports your branding efforts. Among other things, a properly sized image looks better, helps your website load faster, improves your search engine rankings, and improves the user experience (UX) as people browse your site. Check out Shopify’s free image resizer, and crop your photos and graphics to optimal dimensions.
If you plan on launching a podcast, you may want a signature sound effect or jingle to appear in every episode. You can use Storyblocks to find royalty-free music and sound effects. You can also scale up and hire a composer or sound designer to create sounds and music unique to your company. Storyblock subscriptions start at $15 per month, but you get unlimited downloads when you scale up to a $30 per month subscription.
Branding tools FAQ
How do I choose the right branding tools for my business?
Choosing the right branding tools will hinge on two factors: the scope of your business and your budget. Depending on your marketing strategy, you may want to use branding tools to support image generation or video content creation. Or, you may choose to keep things simple and just use a logo generator to start. If you’re on a budget, check out Shopify’s free business tools, which include tools for custom branding.
Do website branding tools require coding knowledge?
You can use most of today’s website branding tools without any prior coding knowledge. Many employ drag-and-drop editors and customizable templates, which makes content creation simple and intuitive.
How can I ensure my branding is consistent across all platforms?
Ecommerce entrepreneurs use branding tools to ensure they maintain a consistent brand identity across all platforms. For instance, you can create a business logo using a custom logo creation tool and then apply that logo to all aspects of your online presence from your website to your social media profile. You can also use style guides to make sure that your written content has a unified voice, or an audio branding tool to make sure that any recorded content features the same signature sounds.
What are the key components of branding?
The key components of branding are a logo, color scheme, fonts, written brand voice, sounds, graphics, and video animations. You’ll also want a brand story to communicate your brand’s reason for being. The idea is to keep all of these elements consistent throughout your marketing materials so people intuitively associate them with your business.