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What Are the Best Fonts for Websites?

Published: Monday 20th February 2012 by Ryan Fitton

What Are the Best Fonts for Websites?

People who are not skilled in website design can sometimes go crazy with all the available fonts at their disposal. Unfortunately without researching the best fonts for websites, they go ahead and pick the most stylish and attractive fonts that pique their interest. Some would even use cursive fonts trying to mimic a handwritten text. So what could be the problem?

What happens next is they excitingly show off to their friends their newly created website. They go over to a friend’s house and use a different computer. Voila! They are shocked to see a different font on their site. What happened here is quite simple: the friend’s computer or web browser does not have that intricate, hard-to-find font. The font is just replaced with a different font and in some cases a lot different from the original.

You should avoid this mistake and it is really quite easy. Just stick with the web safe fonts and you can be sure your website will load on every browser and every computer just as you have designed it.

So what are the best fonts for websites? If you’re new to web design and aren’t familiar with the advanced techniques and font resources that are available, It would be wise to suggest that you stick to using only sans serif fonts. Simply put, these are fonts that do not have those hooks on the end. Some examples of sans serif fonts are the following:

  • Arial is often called the generic sans serif and since the early 1980s has been among the most frequently used fonts in the computer industry including on the web. What makes it a favourite among web designers is its subtle curves which are ideal for web browsing. All of the latest computers and web browsers use this font.
  • Helvetica is closely related to Arial and is often the second font of choice by most website designers. Because of its popularity among computers installations, it is a safe first or second choice in any web page design. Outside of the internet, Helvetica is widely used by the United States government including NASA as well as having been the long-time preferred font by CNN.
  • Neo Sans is described as an ultra-modern typeface. It actually looks futuristic that is why you should be careful on selecting it as it may not be the ideal font for most websites.
  • Verdana is another good choice having been designed by Microsoft specifically for easy viewing on computer monitors. It was released by Microsoft in 1996 and because of the popularity of its products, including the MS Office suite and Internet Explorer, Verdana is a safe font selection.
  • Comic Sans MS - If you are feeling a bit good-humoured, and if your website concept fits the bill, then you can use Comic Sans MS. Often simply called Comic Sans, it was designed to look like the font used by comic books for decades. Just keep in mind that this font should not be used on a web page that has a serious tone or subject.

So there you have it. For your next web project, choose among the best fonts for websites presented above. Don’t use a font because it simply looks cool. Always aim for what is practical and easy on your readers’ eyes. Stay tuned to Punch Buggy's blog to find out how web designers implement creative intricate fonts that aren’t mentioned above.

Tags: web design, web development, web fonts, web safe fonts

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