10 Best Retail Company Brand Books

Sep 14, 2020

A brand book is like a blueprint into your brand’s core. Used right, it will be a useful tool to help your team increase brand awareness and become more recognizable and consistent.

Let’s take a look at some of the big retail companies: IKEA, Walmart and Decathlon – what do they all have in common? The have managed to create a strong brand identity that everyone recognizes immediately.

What is their secret?

There are many steps in the process of creating a strong brand. One of the most important elements in this process is consistency.

Being consistent in your communication is the foundation of building a strong brand identity. If you stay consistent with your voice and tone as well as with all your visuals such as logos, fonts and colors, it gets easier for your audience to recognize you.

However, making sure that everyone in your company uses your assets correctly is not always an easy task. That’s why it can be helpful to create a brand book with guidelines on how to communicate your brand effectively.

What does a brand book consist of?

A brand book consists of guidelines that lay out the company’s voice, tone and messaging as well as a manual on how to use logos, fonts and colors correctly. It outlines your brand’s identity and core values and ensures that your brand image remains consistent.

Most brand books are divided into different parts which contain at least:

  • The brand mission, vision and core values
  • Logo guidelines
  • Color palette
  • Typography

Want help creating a brand book? Download our free template here!

To give you some inspiration, we have collected some examples of our favorite brand books that may help you with the creation of your own guidelines.

Let’s get started!

10 best retail company brand books

1. IKEA

IKEA’s brand book is the perfect example on how to make the brand’s core values and guidelines clear to everyone. On every page in this brand book they give a short and clear statement with a more detailed description of each core value. They also use inspirational images to reiterate the brand’s voice and theme.

2. Walmart

Walmart keeps it short and simple. They have created a brand center on their website, to give everyone access to their guidelines. You get a short impression about the brand’s purpose as well as the right usage of logos and colors

3. Decathlon

Decathlon has created a very detailed brand book, consisting of 11 chapters. In these chapters you will find detailed instructions about the do’s and don’ts of logo usage, colors, typography and a description of their core values.

4. REWE Group

In order to give everyone access to their core values and guidelines, REWE Group has created a page on their company website where they have formulated their mission statement. They have also created a page about sustainability where they provide information about their guidelines and core values.

5. Kroger

If you take a look at Kroger’s website you will also notice that they put a focus on sustainability as part of their mission statement. They have created a sustainability report with detailed descriptions of their goals and vision.

6. Carrefour

Carrefour has created a brand center on their website where they focus on the correct usage of logos. They give exact instructions and examples to make sure that their guidelines are clear to everyone. This way they ensure that the use of logos and colors remains consistent.

7. Walgreens Boots Alliance

Another good example of how to give an overview of a brand’s core values is Walgreens Boots Alliance: with simple icons and clear statements they make it easy for everyone to understand their vision, purpose and values.

8. Coop Group

Coop Group has created a page on their website where they give an overview of their vision and mission statement. They have also created downloadable files with a summary of their core values.

9. Amazon

In order to make sure that everyone has access to their guidelines, Amazon has set up a page on their website where you can find links to all their advertising policies. One of these links brings you to a short overview of their logo guidelines. Amazon has also created a separate website to give an overview of their vision and core values.

10. H&M

H&M has published a brand book with a focus on their core values (“the H&M spirit”), where you get a detailed description of their guidelines as well as the company’s history. They also use strong images that help them tell the story of their brand.

Create your own brand book

We hope that with these examples we could give you some inspiration for your own brand guidelines. As you can see, there is never just one right way to create a brand book. It always depends on your company and your values, that you want to bring across.

As a conclusion, here are some additional tips for you to consider for the design of your brand book:

  • Start with a helpful introduction, where you can include your company’s story, the purpose of this brand book or a quick overview of the content.
  • Focus on the message that you want to deliver and be clear about your company’s voice and personality. Use short and simple statements to ensure that your core values are clear to everyone.
  • Use meaningful images to make your brand book more compelling for your readers. Make sure you use the same color scheme throughout your whole brand book and stay consistent with your design.
  • Give examples on how to use your logo correctly as well as on what is not allowed, to make your brand book more illustrative.
  • Make sure that everyone has access to your brand book. In case you update your guidelines, ensure that everyone is up to date on the latest version to avoid the usage of outdated designs.

To help you get started, we have created a free template that you can download here!

You might also be interested in:

10 best automotive brand books

10 best tech company brand books

Our all-time favourite brand books

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