Typography Tips Every Designer Should Know

Computers & TechnologyInternet

  • Author Sarah Hudson
  • Published November 10, 2011
  • Word count 578

Creating a website is not just about the general layout, structure, and design. Although these things are important, it should not become so important that your content suffers. After all, your visitors are on your page to look at the content and read the information you have to offer. Therefore, formatting your content is one of the most important steps to take, and you should pay special attention to the way you display your text.

Ensuring your page has defined sections and hierarchies is the first step. Just like a newspaper has headlines and subtitles, your web page should also have headings and sub-headings. Larger font draws the eye in and helps to organize the page in neat sections; it is an expected courtesy to format your pages in a way that makes them easy to scan and pick out desired information. As much as we want our visitors to read every word we so painstakingly crafted, that isn't the way people work. It has been proven that Internet users scan pages to glean the information they're looking for, so make it easy for them and they may go back over your site and spend a little longer. Remember, though, it's not just the amount of hits you receive, but the amount of relevant hits you receive.

Color contrast is the next thing you should keep in mind. Although you may be tempted to go crazy and pick out as many bright colors as you can to attract attention, too many colors can be an eyesore. Not only is it in bad taste, but you want your visitors to be able to read your text without having to strain their eyes. As a general rule of thumb, you want to mix dark and light colors for your background and text. Usually, it's best to pick a light color (like white or a tint of a color) for the background and have darker text; this yields the best results. However, if you use the right tones, you can use complementary colors too (such as dark blue and light orange). Just be sure to conduct user testing before launching the site and listen to any feedback or concerns you receive.

Be consistent with your font choices by using CSS and external style sheets to apply fonts throughout all your pages. When choosing fonts, make sure you use between two and four consistently. Generally, it's best to have a different font for each different type of text; serif fonts and decorative fonts are best used for headings and sans-serif fonts for body. Sans-serif fonts such as Verdana and Tahoma were specifically made for viewing on the web, so they are your best choices for body text.

One last word of caution: text should not be centered. Aligning your text to the left margin yields the best appearance - and it's easier to read too. Centering text can cause the sides to look ragged and break up the flow of your webpage. Generally, it's best to left-align all elements, including headings.

Now that you know how important styling your font is, you can pay closer attention to those details. When working with a web designer, you can better communicate your vision for your site and what kind of impression you want to leave on your visitors. Even if you are not a designer, if you are looking to create a web site, you should have an idea of what you're looking for.

About CODANK Web Design

CODANK is a top rated Web Design and Internet Marketing firm located in Charlotte, NC. We are dedicated to providing the highest quality, cost effective custom software development services, delivering a broad range of business consulting and outsourcing services.

For more information, visit us at http://www.codank.com

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