A website is incomplete without the appropriate font. In fact, one could say that this is something of maximum importance, and therefore every web designer should pay a special attention to this criterion.
In this post, I will share the important aspects one must take into consideration, in order to end up with the right font for his or her website. This first thing one should do is to find the right typeface. You could either purchase it or you could download it for free. If you choose the second option, then you must make sure that the typeface is perfectly designed. In case you wonder how it is possible to observe the quality of the typeface, then you should check these pieces of advice.
The Letter Forms
Maybe it sounds a bit drastic, but if you want your website to be defined by words as perfect or professional, then you will definitely have a look at the forms of the letters. Here you must check if they create a unified image, if they are equal, and if they complement each other. The point is that they should present a correct image, where no letter is different from another.
Mind The Spaces
There are various typefaces which need to be kerned. For those who don’t know what kerning means, I must say that it refers to adjusting the space between letters, in order for them to look right. Yes, it is an assiduous work, but if you respect your readers and if you want them to come back again, then you will go through this process. Anyway, you have two options: you either use a font kerning trick on your website (such as flipping the typeface upside down) or you simply avoid using a typeface with unusual and open spaces.
The Whole Package
There are many situations when a typeface is incomplete, for instance it doesn’t come with commas or with question marks. Or, these are necessary items that can not miss from your texts. In this case, you should forget about using this typeface or you may take the missing parts you need from another font (do this only if you are missing punctuation!). Anyway, it is advisable to do so, only for smaller parts and not for longer texts.
Make Sure Your Text is Legible
If you want your text to possess this property then you should check if one letter-form is easy to tell from another. Other things that you could do in this respect would be to pick accustomed letter-forms, instead of some that have excessive ornamentation; and to go for a typeface with plenty of space. This will make the eyes process the text faster and thus your readers satisfied.
Do Not Forget About Readability!
At first, readability and legibility may seem to be the same thing, but as it turns out these aspects are different. If a text is readable it means that there is the dynamic interaction of the type style, size, color and other properties that stress out the importance of your message. If you want your text to get this property you must use a typeface designed for this purpose and you must align your text to “right ragged” so that the reader will have continuity when reading it.
However, finding the right typeface is a tricky thing to do, especially because of the large diversity. But, let’s imagine a situation when you don’t have time to ponder because your deadline is closing soon and you must choose something quickly. You should not panic; on the contrary, you should remain calm and think about the obvious solution, which in this case is going for the classic combination. This classic and stylish combination is the one that brings together neutral serif and sans serif, which protects the accuracy of your message. So, when the time is not your best friend and you must speed things up, do not compromise the quality of your work, but go instead for something that others before you used.
It is advisable for the web designer to experiment with various typefaces, so that he or she will find the suitable one. Check what style will fit your text best, change the size of a few elements and most importantly make every adjustment at a time, so that you will be able to process the modification. Not to mention that asking for opinions will really help you. Sometime when working hard on various projects you are too deep in them and it is difficult for you to notice the whole picture. The opinion of a friend or two will definitely help you observe the things you’ve been missing.
Sometimes, one typeface is not enough to express the message of your text. Therefore, before actually choosing a typeface it would be best if you would take a moment to understand what your text needs and what would be your best options. Try to use one that is fully equipped with everything you need or combine two or three typefaces, in order to get the desired result. What you need to understand is that you must do things properly and you should not rush into choosing something that won’t suit your text.
It is normal for you to believe that going for the obvious things will solve your problem. By obvious things, I refer to those situations when web designers go for Comic Sans when their text is funny or for Future when their topic talks about the future. It would be best for you, if you would manage to avoid trite correlations. Pick something that will take your readers by surprise and that would make your website look fit for an expert and competent web designer.
Or, you could simply forget about the rules and pick something that you like. It is not uncommon to go by the book and still believe that you have done something wrong. This “mistake” that you believe you have made is the fact that you have ignored your preferences and you have chosen what others advised you to choose. So, once in a while, listen to your heart and let it make some decisions.
Adrian is a passionate blogger and chief of the team behind DesignModo website. This blog is a great resource where you can find tons of tutorials, freebies and Big collection of Web UI Kits and Icons; Professional and pixel perfect User Interface packs for Designers and Web Developers.