“The Secret of Type is that it Speaks”*

Typography, your choice of font, has a huge impact on your business. 

You'll know if your font selection is successful as you won’t hear about it. A bit like spelling and grammar: if it’s good, no one notices. If it’s bad, people will question your professionalism and ultimately, won’t buy.

The quality of your content is the most important thing, but how you present that content is the key to actually getting it read and trusted.

To demonstrate the importance of font choice, take a look at the following sentences:

You are invited to a party

You are invited to a party

You are invited to a party

Despite the same words, you probably pictured entirely different scenarios.

You might have pictured a child’s birthday party for the first, a dinner party for the second, and some sort of themed party for the third. Each font gives a very different scenarios.

This same concept applies as you invite readers to learn more about your business. Your font has to match the tone you wish to convey.

How do I choose?

There are thousands of fonts, but there are just 4 main categories.

Serif. Serif is a classic font style that is defined by having the little embellishments you see on the edges of each letter. These fonts are typically considered more appropriate for print media, and they are often regarded as more ‘serious’ than other types of fonts.

Sans Serif. Without serifs, these fonts look simplified and open. Generally, it is easier to recognise and identify each letter. Sans serif fonts are recommended for both digital screens and text that will be read by younger readers.

Script. These fonts look more handwritten. Script fonts can be formal or casual. They are not typically recommended for general business use, because script fonts in the body of your website can look claustrophobic.

That being said, fonts in this category can sometimes be used for titles or important headings, but only if your goal is to convey a particular feeling or mood.

Decorative. Like script fonts, decorative fonts are not recommended for body text. But that does not mean they should be ignored completely. Decorative fonts can stand out to catch your reader’s eye.

So I’ve found my font…

Once you've found a font you like, it's worth researching where else it's been used. Your readers may subconsciously associate your font with other businesses who have used that font before. Fonts stick.

Check to make sure that font is available for a wide variety of devices and platforms. Unfortunately, few fonts are available on every platform. Fonts that are versatile are referred to as ‘universal’ fonts.

Can I have more than one?

Yes, 1-2 is usually recommended, and 3 is maximal. Different fonts break up or highlight different parts of your content. 

But be careful. Choosing a font that’s too similar to another one looks messy and confusing. On the contrary, something completely different can look disjointed. Avoid clashing fonts and seek out complementary fonts. To ensure a clean result, simply pick fonts that are similar in thickness and height.

Another alternative is to stick with the one typeface but mix it up by using different weights. You might use regular for the body text, italics for a caption and semibold for your sub-headings. Colour can also play a role in adding emphasis.

Connecting with customers

Physically, we use our voice, facial expressions. gestures and posture to convey a wide range of emotional cues from the subtle to the dramatic. Typefaces and the way they are used provide a similarly extensive emotional range. So choose your words wisely!

 *Paul Claudel