There are not many websites that feature only a single type of typeface. It is emphatically a rare thing to find these days. Considering how much texts an average website contains, it needs at least a couple of types of typefaces. It is something that attracts and engage readers.
When we say a couple at least, it means that it has one dedicated for the headline and the other one for body text. Choosing a pair of matching fonts is another thing to consider wherein the pair should be notch identical while being unique at the same time.
Web design and development usually includes pairings of sans-serif family where the strong sans-serif goes for the headline. The simple Serif is dedicated to the other headlines and also the body texts.
To effectively make the best use of multiple typefaces in website design, consider the following tips:
1. Stay Alert of Size and Proportion
It is quite natural to keep multiple fonts having a similar proportion and scale. A designer might consider blending the typefaces like Verdana with Georgia that echoes similar shapes while being distinctive in terms of sans serif and serif respectively. The key is to closely observe any specific characters in each font type. And then, check how similar or different they are by differentiating an entire set of words later on.
It is not to be misunderstood as keeping the fonts identical based on their scale and proportions. Web development should consider looking either very similar fonts or highly contrasting ones. And when considering fonts for the UX/UI design, it is better to place the kind of similar fonts apart from each other. The problem of using overtly similar font face even in mobile app design will mean that the texts will generally carry the same weight on screen. Equipping a web design with multiple font styles to allow designers to play around the font faces and maybe put it up against each other that brings emphasis on one while complementing the other.
2. Do not ignore Load Times
An ideal, intuitive UX/UI design always considers the fast to load fonts. If the ones that designer wants to go for looks quite leggy, look for another one. This holds for web design as users aren’t that patient with slow websites. Though the typeface can be an ideal or maybe even a branding-worthy material, it is best ignored for good. Look for the ones that load quite speedily and keeps the user interaction fast.
Here’s how to do that efficiently:
- Go with a limited number of typefaces for a website.
- Each typeface should be accompanied by only the styles you intend to use.
- Select only those languages that you’ll implement for a specific font.
3. Start with the Fundamentals
No matter if you are into mobile app design or web development, working with typeface will demand commitment similar to any given typography assignment. Consider following the below-mentioned fundamentals.
- The Serif Dilemma: As described above, these are the two major categories of font type and most of the web app developers will be choosing between these two. Usually, Sans Serif is a primary choice for many.
- Positioning Issues: One can simply not ignore the alignment and positioning factors like leading, tracking and Kerning. This is because the surrounding space to the typeface is equally as important as the typeface itself. This means the amount of space between the texts, the height between the lines and below/above is important. This is called Leading. The spaces between each character are called tracking and typeface selection should be followed by precisely calculating the required tracking. And there is Kerning which defines the space between the letter pairs and must be thoroughly planned.
- Readability: Web design and development involves working with texts where characters per line are also crucial. Accessing readability is important to gauge where the text will appear on the screen and whether, complemented by design, makes way for an easy reading experience.
- Justification & Alignment: Using multiple typefaces is going to create some alignment issues. This holds for large content blocks which sometimes leave the edges rugged. Justifying it either right, centre or left is essential if one is dealing with more number of typefaces.
- Many typefaces: As a rule of thumb, a classic mobile app design and web development project will have a maximum of three typefaces. Though, if the design demands and have considerate reasons to justify, using more than three may do fine occasionally.
- Consider Contrast Aspect: Regardless of number and type of typefaces used, maintaining the contrast between background and text is crucial to web app development. The key is to make the fonts readable in the easiest possible manner. Therefore, considering the contrast elements like space, size, colour and stroke weight makes much sense.
4. Prioritize Texts to Emphasize Different Fonts
An ideal web design should include prioritizing texts that are a must to highlight. And, emphasising each type need to be considered. This is because each font face conveys something or the other quite naturally where some draw more attention than the others.
Using the right typeface is needed to lift the user experience while balancing it right too is not an easy job to do.
There are ways to trade-off either heavier or lighter fonts. One is to manoeuvre the size and the other is to add font and style decorations.
This includes making it strong, oblique, underlined, etc. which can help to highlight some font over the rest. And then there is the changing of the font colour to emphasize or de-emphasize some parts of the font as per the requirements.
Lastly, using a grid is the best way to deal with multiple typefaces. Not using the grids will jeopardize all the efforts put in with regards to font style, colours, spacing, etc. Without the grid, it will always appear notch below the professional sites that is devoid of structure, symmetry and balance.
Grids help in building a visual hierarchy that dictates the size and structure of each typeface put to use. And this, in turn, helps to put the content and media in the right section of the page.
When choosing multiple typographies, look for the impact that each one brings on design. Following the above tips will get that done right in a way that it attracts the users and engages them better.
Shahid Mansuri Co-founded Peerbits, one of the leading Top mobile application development company USA, in 2011. His visionary leadership and flamboyant management style have yield fruitful results for the company. He believes in sharing his strong knowledge base with leaned concentration on entrepreneurship and business. Being an avid nature lover, he likes to flaunt his pajamas on beach during the vacations.