by Adam Noar
When it comes to PowerPoint presentations, the devil is in the details.
Nice looking icons can make a BIG difference – nobody wants a presentation that looks like it came from Windows 98 (although one day, maybe late 1990s graphics will be in style, so who knows). Right now, contemporary design trends in 2016 favor minimalist and eye-pleasing simplicity in everything from logos to design layouts to color schemes.
A hugely important part of the contemporary “less-is-more” style is the use of icons, which have been slimmed down in lieu of the flashy graphics and bouncing 3D buttons of the past. Just like last week when we talked about not all professional presentation templates being created equal, neither are presentation icons.
There are many types of icons out there to choose from, each set of them like a unique grouping of patterns and shapes and style. Here at Presentation Panda, we love the simplicity of outline icons (icons that are not filled in) because they are clean and minimalistic.
So, in case you’re looking for the perfect set of icons for an upcoming PowerPoint presentation, or perhaps a website redesign, we’ve rounded up 5 of the top sets of FREE outline icons to help you create your best presentation designs yet. Use these icons to better sell your services, simplify complex ideas, and enlighten your audience without having to pay an expensive graphic design agency to do it for you!
Note: each of these icon sets are free for personal and commercial use but do require attribution. Please read the license agreements before using – nothing sucks worse for a graphic designer than finding icons they created on someone else’s site without proper credit being given. Also, please note that if you want to modify the icons (e.g., change the color, resize, etc.) you will need Adobe Illustrator.
Lynny Presentation Icon Set – 450 Beautifully Crafted Icons Across 8 Categories
Lynny icons are outline icons, which are modern, whimsical, and uncluttered.
Outline icons work perfectly with minimal design and are a great way of bringing your presentations up to date easily. These sorts of icon sets look fantastic superimposed against high-contrast backgrounds; that means that whatever color you set the icon at, you should set it in front of white or other bright backgrounds that bring them out to the forefront.
The Lynny presentation icons pack features 450 beautifully crafted icons across 8 categories. Pretty much every type of icon you can think of is here. The categories include the following:
- General, featuring quirky designs such as a house, paper plane “send” icon, and musical notes
- Electronics, featuring the iconic “save” floppy disk (remember those?), TV screens, and Bluetooth, among others
- E-Commerce, which gives you bucket load of shopping cart icons, money icons, and major currency symbols
- Web, which gives you upload/download symbols, cloud and wifi symbols, and major social media network logos
- Location, the smallest subgroup in this set, but still featuring useful icons such as maps, location setting icons, and symbols of the earth
- Arrows, featuring arrows that point in every direction (*gasp*) and in a bundle of different styles depending on your taste or need
- Weather, featuring the different phases of the moon, plus icons of the sun and various cloudy days
- Miscellaneous, because sometimes you really need a bowtie icon for your PowerPoint presentation
The files are supplied in .ai, .eps, and .png format, so they’re flexible enough to be used for just about every kind of product.
Here’s the kicker …
We liked this pack of icons so much that we used them in our Influencer Template (you might be interested in this if you don’t have time to create a whole presentation from scratch).
For anyone who downloads the Influencer Template, we have even created a separate PowerPoint file that contains over 500+ icons (including the ones from the Lynny icon set) … saving you tons of time and energy! You can see some of the icons that are included in the image below.
All of the icons in the Influencer Template and the additional Icon PowerPoint file are 100% editable meaning you can resize them and recolor them however you want!
It doesn’t get any easier!
Linea Presentation Icons – A 730+ Icon Set that Has Something for Everyone
Linea is a whopper of a free set, including more than 730 icons across seven different categories. Like Lynny, these presentation icons are flat designed and minimal, so they make for pretty flexible usage and look great without having to think to much about it. Here’s a taste of what you get with this set :
- Basic, which features icons such as maps, globes, anchors, video game consoles, postcards, and a handy magnifying glass we assume is for web searches
- Music, where you can find everything from the fast forward button to volume symbols, boom boxes, and rad-looking turntables that throw things back to the 90s.
- E-Commerce, with shopping carts, currency icons, dollar bill icons, and other icons perfect for a presentation about how to improve your online shopping cart
- Software, with plenty of icons that depict everything from chisels (if you need to talk about shortcodes) to pen nibs and lots of formatting icons. This is definitely a category that’s worth downloading if you do a lot of presentations about Photoshop or graphic design
- Basic Elaboration, featuring icons such as happy message boxes, cloud icons for downloads, design clipboards, and file icons for everything from music to images to bar graphs
- Arrows going every which way, in every possible variation, in many different styles, in case you need to point your audience in the right direction. That was a bad pun. We’re not sorry though.
- Weather, featuring just about every conceivable combination of sun, clouds, rain, snow, lightning, and wind. The guy who designed this set really has a thing for getting his weather icons right!
The files are supplied in .ai, .eps, and .png format, so they’re pretty much good to go whichever format you use.
Swifticons -144 Creative Presentation Icons That Come In Many Different Styles
This little goodie pack of icons contains 144 icons in a bunch of editable variants.
Keep in mind that this is the free version of a much larger icon set containing upwards of two thousand different icons! That one costs $98, so if you want to save a bit of extra money stick with this version. Among a smorgasbord of categories include the following:
- Science, including icons such as line graphs or temperature icons or test tubes and beakers, and even cool interplanetary images including meteors
- Medical, where you can find icons such as heartbeat graphs, speeding ambulances, lungs and kidneys (who comes up with this stuff?), and other health-related icons. Perfect for presentations about everything from hospital care to biological experiments!
- Kitchen, in case your presentation is in need of food icons such as apples, mason jars, cooking utensils like pots and pans, and other food prep stuff
- Activities, for everything from talking heads to falling fruit to vibrating alarm clocks
- Marketing, with plenty of arrows that go up to the right, “buy” icons, and some of the bigger online entities such as the logos for Spotify
- Transport, in case your presentation requires a penny farthing icon or maybe an icon of a plane taking off into the sky
- Household, with featured icons including everything from overstuffed living room chairs to modernist dining tables to bookcases and refrigerators
- Holidays, with icons for lots of different celebrations, including Cupid’s arrow for Valentine’s Day, decorated pine trees for Christmas, and various menorahs for Hanukkah
- And many more besides this! In other words, you have a lot of choices (although keep in mind, the free version isn’t as plentiful)
One of the nice qualities about this set is that you can choose between having the font outlined in simple black and negative space, filled in so that the icons are on grayscale, or colored in for an extra playful experience.
Like all the other icon sets in this list, Swifticons are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. You can use the icons in your commercial as well as your personal projects, including software, online services, templates and themes. You may modify the size, color or shape of the icons. No attribution is required. The only thing you can’t do, however, is resell icon bundles or individual pictograms, because that’s cheating.
You will be able to use and edit these icons in many different programs, since the files are supplied in .ai, .eps, sketch, SVG and .png format. Ready to try Swifticons out?
Sketched Social Presentation Icons – 270 Hand Drawn Looking Social Media Icons
Sometimes you want something that looks a little bit more rustic, a little bit less computerized, yet still modern. That’s when it’s a good idea to give your PowerPoint a couple extra notches of style with hand drawn icons.
Sketched Social is a set of over 200 sketched (mostly) software-related icons. Pretty much every major social network plus a bunch of other tech and software companies are represented here.
There are handsomely drawn icons for the usual social media suspects, such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. But you can find icons for companies including Apple, Microsoft, Skype, Yahoo, and Adobe. On top of that there is a limited number of icons for things such as email (there’s the ubiquitous @ sign and also an Outlook Express envelope), phones, the peace sign, and lots of other symbols and logos that show how much thought went into this project. In case you don’t feel like unloading a humongous zip file of over 200 icons, you’re able to download individual icons. Of course, you can also download the full set if it tickles your fancy!
These image files are supplied in SVG, EPS, PNG, PSD and Iconfont.
Birply Presentation Icons – 40 Random Icons That Will Make you Smile
As the tongue-in-cheek name suggest, Birply icons is about having fun with graphic design.
This quirky, humorous set of 40 miscellaneous objects is available in two different styles: one is partially filled in and in grayscale, while the other style has them in white with light blue accents for a stylish touch. If you’ve been searching for an icon of a flag waving on the moon, look no further!
Here are some of our favorite icons in this group:
- Watermelon with a glass containing a straw. Will probably make your audience want to be somewhere warm and breezy, rather than in a conference room with you.
- Polaroid camera icon. A great choice if you want to add a retro hipster vibe to your presentation!
- Multi-tier birthday cake with three candles on top. What a fun way to brighten up your presentation – everyone loves cake!
- Target with arrow in the bullseye. A surprisingly useful icon in this whimsical grouping, since this is a popular sort of icon to use in marketing, sales, or biz dev related presentations.
- Porthole looking out at a body of water. A bit nautical themed, but maybe you want your presentation to make a . . . splash? OK, we’ll stop now.
All Birply icons can be downloaded for free and used as you wish for personal or commercial reasons. The files are supplied in .ai and svg format. Despite this being such a small set of icons, it’s been downloaded over 6,000 times, which says quite a lot for how much people like it!
So, now you should have an arsenal of beautiful, slick, minimalist, outline, hand-drawn, and whimsical icons at your disposal, all for free! Take advantage of the fact that you can download literally hundreds of presentation icons to use for a more creative PowerPoint presentation without having to pay a cent!
But before you go, I’d like to know your thoughts. Which set of icons did you like the most? Generally, when you deliver a presentation do you rely very much on icons, or do you usually stick to images and display text? Maybe now is the time to try something different!
Lastly, do you have a friend that could benefit from learning about these presentation design tips? If so, email them the link to this post.
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