At Imarda we are truly tuned in to the fact that our users demand and deserve a gratifying, simple and elegant experience in their use of our online systems, including our corporate website and i360, our flagship fleet management software
With this in mind, we are currently in the process of defining and designing a large library of icons, which will be key in illustrating functionality within these systems, and will be instantly recognizable to users.
Over the coming months the new icons will slowly but surely permeate all out outputs, including – alongside the aforementioned online systems – our offline, printed and internal marketing collateral. This will not only be useful to our existing clients, but will also be instrumental in our internal messaging, helping to further company identity and employee fidelity.
Among the other benefits associated with the creation and use of a coherent icon set are the following factors:
- Icons transcend language. Reducing concepts to universally understood visual symbols helps to minimize the need for translations, which can often be complex in the telematics market.
- Icons save space. Icons as a replacement for text can be a huge aid in space-saving, and are often more consistent than text content, which is highly variable depending on the language it is displayed in.
- We are accustomed to icons. Humans are naturally extremely visual animals; we respond well to, and have a highly developed memory for visual stimuli, including form, colour and meaning.
Wikipedia offers the following definition:
“A computer icon is a pictogram displayed on a computer screen and used to navigate a computer system or mobile device. The icon itself is a small picture or symbol serving as a quick, intuitive representation of a software tool, function or a data file accessible on the system. It functions as an electronic hyperlink or file shortcut to access the program or data. Computer icons, in conjunction with computer windows, menus and a pointing device, form the graphical user interface (GUI) of the computer system, and enable the user to easily and intuitively navigate the system.
While this definition is technically correct, inasmuch as it refers to the use of computer icons on a screen, it falls short as an explanation of the far-reaching nature of icons as a communication device. True, icons allow a “user to easily and intuitively navigate [a] system”, but they are in reality so much more than simply a navigational aid (though they are an extremely efficient one).
The use of a coherent and consistent set of icons is a powerful tool in any designer’s branding kit, and one which, when leveraged correctly, is instrumental in forging a long-lasting and impacting brand, both in terms of external projection and internal marketing.