Gap Scraps Crap Logo

This might be some kind of record. Only a few days after The Gap unleashed its spare new logo to a rousing chorus of boos, the clothing retailer has backtracked and ditched the updated branding entirely.

This morning, Gap.com, where the new logo had made its debut last week, had returned to the good ol’ logo we’ve associated with the company for decades.

In a statement on its Facebook page, which had never updated its logo, Gap wrote:

We’ve heard loud and clear that you don’t like the new logo. We’ve learned a lot from the feedback. We only want what’s best for the brand and our customers.

Unfortunately, this means that Consumerist’s Tax Cat will now have to go back to his old logo.

Gap’s logo back to blue after fans gripe about new [Yahoo]

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  1. Bativac says:

    No corporate speak? “Thanks for making your voices heard! We’re quick to react to what our customers want! Change for the sake of change is not necessarily a good thing and we’re please to celebrate our heritage by going back to the old logo!”

    Can they get a refund from the firm that designed the new logo? “We liked this but we ended up not using it.”

    • redwall_hp says:

      I would assume not. Designers are contracted to make the logo, and are usually paid half up front and the other half after the design is approved. It doesn’t matter whether the final result is used or not, nor should it. (That would be like not paying the mechanic who fixed your car because you decided to get a new car instead…)

      • Bativac says:

        Yeah, I was kinda joking. I do a lot of freelance design and illustration and that’s one of the things that comes up frequently. “I don’t need this logo anymore! I won’t be paying you for it! Thanks!” “But I already spent two days on it.” “Oops! LOL!”

      • amuro98 says:

        Oh come on, how long do you honestly think it took someone to draw a blue square with Illustrator? And GAP spent how many millions of dollars on this? Not to mention the millions more they’re going to be scrapping on rebranded stationary, signs, price tags, etc.

        I don’t know which is worse – wasting your money on a bad logo, or wasting your money on a bad logo and then not using it.

        • summeroflove says:

          I’d say wasting the money on bad brand managers that don’t know what they’re doing. Not only have they wasted the money on a useless redesign, they are wasting the money on a salary for someone that doesn’t know what they’re doing.

        • Skankingmike says:

          you fail to understand how logo design works. First the company contracts you to design a logo, it starts with how many logo ideas you want and how particular they, a company like gap I would imagine they would be very particular. Then after the first round is done, you get to pick a a few, then you keep narrowing it down until you have 1 idea, from that 1 idea you usually create multiple variants of that idea. It’s a long process and what you start with isn’t always what you end with.

          I understand this logo is horrible and looks like it took no skill. But I would wager that this is the process of months of working on it, and some stupid executive destroying it.

      • 99 1/2 Days says:

        Like a prostitute. And she doesn’t give the money back either.

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      at least we can be pretty sure what the designers who came up with it WON’T be putting in their portfolios.
      “oh hey, you made that crummy gap logo. um, yeah, don’t call us, we’ll call you”

  2. hills says:

    This is good news – enough people rag on the Gap already, so they didn’t need the crappy new logo. I still love the Gap – just stopped by yesterday and took advantage of their 40% off sale – $4 t-shirts! Love their basics.

    • FatLynn says:

      I guess it depends where you live, but that same t-shirt is probably $2 at Old Navy.

      • Robofish says:

        Old Navy is the same company as Gap. So is Banana Republic. But from working for Old Navy for a while I can tell you this much. You may pay more at GAP but you are getting a better quality product. Quality wise Old Navy is the least expensive but you also are getting what you pay for. My shirts from ON only tend to last a year if that. Gap’s much longer. Banana is on the higher end of the quality scale. And yes, I shop at GAP

        • trentblase says:

          I have BR shirts that are like a decade old. And, believe it or not, aren’t obviously out of style (I choose more classic styles to begin with though). I haven’t bought anything from Gap, but I get white shirts from Old Navy that last about a year. That’s OK, though, because white shirts get gross so it doesn’t make sense to pay BR prices for a decade-old stained white t-shirt.

      • hills says:

        Yeah but, Old Navy isn’t down the street from me – I can walk to the Gap!

  3. redskull says:

    This is pretty much iron clad evidence (to me, anyway) that the whole thing was a publicity stunt. Why would a company spend millions on a new corporate identity and then use it for less than a week? They’ve never seemed particularly concerned with what the public thought before.

    Gap sales have supposedly been way down lately, so what better way to grab attention and possibly generate some sales than with a carefully orchestrated logo debacle?

    • BuyerOfGoods3 says:

      have to agree… I think the Marketing director for Gap said this exact same thing:
      “Gap sales have supposedly been way down lately, so what better way to grab attention and possibly generate some sales than with a carefully orchestrated logo debacle?”

    • 99 1/2 Days says:

      They’d like you to think that they are that smart. But somehow I doubt they told the logo designer to purposefully design a crappy logo. And if I was a designer, I wouldn’t do it.

    • The cake is a lie! says:

      I’m not sure where people are getting that it cost them millions to do this. Clearly that isn’t a million dollar logo. They had it in use for a week and then scrapped it. That isn’t enough time for them to have rebranded the entire corporation. All I saw it on was their website, so putting it up and taking it down again probably cost them just about nothing.

      Now, if it would have been rolled out on all their tags and stores and everything else before it was recalled, then that would be something that cost them money. Tropicana recalled their new branding after they realized that sales were dropping. Gap recalled it because nobody liked it. If it would have cost them money up to this point, then they would have waited for some sort of drop in sales to warrant removing it.

    • Crass says:

      Its like New Coke all over again!

  4. FatLynn says:

    Does this mean they are going to scrap their crap strategy to compete with Express and BR as well?

    • Bunnies Attack! says:

      FYI Gap and Banana Republic are the same company… also Old Navy, Piperline and Athleta (the last 2 I’ve never heard of before looking it up)

      • FatLynn says:

        Yes, I’m well aware. Yet, they continue to cite BR as one of their biggest competitors when discussing their brand image. That is why it is a crap strategy.

        • minjche says:

          Would you be so kind as to cite sources of this?

        • MFfan310 says:

          As for Banana Republic and Express being big competitors to “the flagship Gap brand”: That is where the real trouble lies. When the Gap brand starts to tread on the hipness of Express and the classic look of Banana Republic at the same time, while owning Banana Republic, you lose focus. Lack of focus leads to brand-infighting. Good if you’re selling 5 brands of detergent like P&G, but bad in fashion. And brand infighting was also the downfall of “old GM”: Think Chevrolet vs. Saturn vs. Pontiac, Cadillac vs. SAAB, HUMMER versus every other GM brand selling SUVs, and so on.

          Same store sales for the most recent quarter for the infighting Gap Inc. brands show this. Gap flagship brand (US/Canada only) is down 4%, while Banana Republic (US/Canada) is up 3%. Meanwhile, Express Inc., a more focused competitor with only one brand (Express), is outperforming Gap’s two infighting brands, with a 6% increase. Guess what malls are fighting for?

          • jamar0303 says:

            Anecdotal, but on at least a couple of items in Banana Republic I find Japanese clothing tags that read “Gap Japan”. So maybe they could take a clue from the other side of the Pacific and roll the “competing” stuff back into Gap?

  5. GyroMight says:

    Some poor graphic design student worked on that logo for a whole 15 mins! Poor kid must be heart-broken.

  6. Scurvythepirate says:

    Makes me wonder how many millions of dollars they wasted on this.

    • The cake is a lie! says:

      Why do you think it cost them millions? Unless they actually put it into effect, it didn’t cost them a whole lot. It was probably some employee who submitted the idea as part of a company contest for an extra 30 minutes for lunch or something. They put it out there to get feedback BEFORE they invested millions putting it into use. The only place I saw it was on their website. I’m actually surprised not to see it in their Product Recall section now. lol

      • MMD says:

        I’m guessing the truth falls somewhere in the middle between “We paid a design firm 100 million dollars” and “Our high school intern drew this on the back of a used napkin”. But that’s just a guess. ;-)

        Seems like we’re all guessing – has anyone been able to track down the true origin of the logo?

  7. beaux_toxic says:

    They sure got a lot of free publicity from it. Makes me wonder if they’re laughing…

  8. Michaela says:

    I am so happy they listened to everyone and changed the logo. I understand that they can’t easily say “we made a mistake,” so I am willing to just enjoy the switch.

  9. ElizabethD says:

    That’s ridiculous. I mean, really. Where is their corporate confidence? You make a visible branding change… and then reverse it a week later? Now they just look like fools.

    While I wasn’t the biggest fan of the new logo, I didn’t think it was hideous, either. It moved away from an ossified J.Crew traditional look to something more contemporary.

    Fail x 2!

    • 99 1/2 Days says:

      Aren’t you paying attention? This was a brilliant marketing ploy, guaranteed to raise sales! Marketers never screw up, that’s why they are never ever featured on Consumerist.

      And yes, that was sarcasm.

  10. CaptainKidd says:

    They should have added “classic” to the bottom of their old logo.

  11. aloria says:

    Boring clothes, boring logo. They deserve it.

  12. nakkypoo says:

    It’s just another marketing tactic. No one remembers your brand, no one shops at your stores or buys your product. Come up with some crappy name/logo and get recognized again.

    Kraft did it with iSnack 2.0
    RadioShack did it with The Shack
    Tropicana did it with their logo
    and now Gap

    I’m not going to buy any of these brands (well, maybe Tropicana.) They sucked then, and they suck now. Bad marketing as marketing isn’t going to fix the problem.

  13. Theodore says:

    Dammit! Based on this logo’s success, I was in the middle of setting up of a graphic design company that specializes in typing in my client’s name and changing the font size to 48.

  14. rdldr1 says:

    Pepsi, take note.

  15. There's room to move as a fry cook says:
  16. Anonymously says:

    The crap logo generator needs to be changed to generate their old, crappy logo now.

  17. Compbl says:

    Seriously I don’t understand why people are even making an issue of this. Especially old logo vs new. The old logo is a blue box with GAP written is while capital letters… That would take five seconds to create in MS Paint.

    There is nothing intricate or classic about that… Just seems like a bunch of self absorbed people whining about nothing..