A Favorites Icon, also known as a favicon, is an often overlooked branding tool that every website should have. It is displayed differently by each browser, but in most cases is shown to the left of the URL or opened Tab. It also always appears in the Favorites Folder or Bookmarks, so people can easily find the site they are looking for.
A favicon can only be 16×16 pixels, which is very small. Here are some tips to keep in mind when designing your favicon:
Do not use too many colors
Do not use too much detail – less is more
Do not use more than 1-2 letters – will be too hard to read
Keep the background transparent – browsers have different color backgrounds
Test your favicon on as many browsers as possible before publishing
Take a look at some of the larger companies on the web and notice the simplicity of their favicon. Here are a few that are recognizable even if you don’t realize it: Craigslist.org, Google.com, ESPN.com, CNN.com, Facebook, and Twitter.