Today, Cloudflare turns six years old, and if you’re reading this on our blog, you may have noticed that we look a bit different today than the cloudflare.com that you’ve visited in the past. More on that a bit later in this post.
What we’re most excited about today is that over the past six years, we’ve made the Internet safer, faster and a more reliable place for any domain whether it’s used for a website, web application or API.
We currently count more than 4,000,000 customers as members of the Cloudflare community, and we’ve been working very hard to bring the best of the modern Internet to you.
Levelling the Internet playing field is Cloudflare’s mission and it’s what gets us out of bed every morning and into one of our offices. Last week, we took away what we think are the last excuses for any domain to not be encrypted with our three launches during Encryption Week.
Yesterday, we announced the 100th city added to the Cloudflare global network of data centers. In the coming days, we have more exciting products that we’re opening up to the public for early access that will expand our offering to customers who want easy to manage dedicated SSL certificates, cloud based global load balancing, or intelligent traffic management for protection against unwanted traffic spikes.
And today, we’re launching a new brand and new marketing website.
In the face of the other news, a new brand seems almost frivolous, especially when what we care about the most is our customers, the future of the Internet, and the employees here who help build Cloudflare every day.
But, we wanted to follow our own advice: never stick with something just because it feels comfortable, or because it’s a lot of hard work to change it. The Internet is constantly changing, technology is constantly evolving, and we felt that the smart, hard work that our team has been doing since 2010 deserved to have a signal to the world that their work is evolving too.
So we redesigned our logo, we updated our typography, and we changed what had become a pesky capital “F” in the middle of our name. All to be more streamlined, more scalable, and, we hope, more appealing.
Some details about the redesign:
Ninja Kitten Video, Retired
One of our guiding principles in refreshing the brand and the homepage video was, to be frank, don’t screw up something good. More than 5.6 million people have viewed our previous homepage video which taught people that they could easily “Supercharge their websites.” But when we launched in 2010, we had 1,000 beta users and 2 data centers. So Ninjas, Kitten videos, and lasers were fun and felt like the right things to reference for our community of webmasters. Yes, webmasters.
Since then, we’ve signed up not just bloggers, but financial institutions, Fortune 500 companies, and some of the most rapidly growing companies on the planet. And we’re way beyond webmasters, as is the Internet. What was the web is now apps running on smartphones, mobile optimized websites, and machine-to-machine communication.
So we needed to show the scale breadth of everything that we’re doing today, and where our business is heading in the future. We’re industrial grade infrastructure! We have servers running in 100 cities on every continent but Antarctica! But we’re still as open, and engaged with our community as we were back in 2010.
Our old logo did a lot of great things: it stood out and reflected our company’s personality. Cloud logos have become much more common as more companies have launched as cloud native. So we needed our new logo to continue to be recognizable and a strong symbol of our company.
Our old logo also had a lot of complexity, which made it really hard to reproduce on t-shirts, signs, stickers, and anything else we wanted to use it for. We ended up making a flat version of it, but our design team was never satisfied with the end result.
So our new logo did two things: We kept our “Cloudflare orange and yellow” and we kept a flare in the center of it, to represent how our network responds to things in real-time in such a powerful way. We also kept the essential shapes of the cloud from our previous logo. This was our way of keeping what was good about the old logo, while updating what needed to be fixed. And that 2.0 thinking is what pushed our other redesign elements too.
Also, we looked at the typeface, where, while our founders were still in business school, the entire name was capitalized in letters that were blocky, but with rounded edges. The typeface was strong, and felt a bit reminiscent of technology, but our long name made it difficult to read. So the “C” and the “F” were made slightly larger. Today we say goodbye to the capital “F” in CloudFlare and hello to “Cloudflare.” Cloudflare has always been a single word name, and this will help to alleviate confusion. Thanks to all of the journalists who got it right for us all these years. We really appreciate it!
Expanded palette and gradients
A lot of what we do on the marketing team at Cloudflare is explain how aspects of the Internet work and how we make them better. That calls for icons and glyphs that make up diagrams. Lots and lots of diagrams.
As it turns out, drawing diagrams of how different protocols work can be pretty intricate, and our previous style and color palette was mostly made of very bold colors and geometric styles. These were fun and approachable, but they made doing work that showed a level of nuance or dynamic movement very difficult, so we looked at a palette that would still maintain our personality, while allowing us to demonstrate how, say, content gets cached at our edge, and served up to visitors from one of our closest data centers.
Cloudflare’s brand will continue to evolve and change, but we’re proud of the work that our team has done.
If helping to build the next part of Cloudflare’s future sounds interesting to you, we’re hiring.