What the Font?

Choosing the right font to represent your business is a lot like choosing the clothes you wear for work everyday. Your clothes quickly depict who you are and separate into the realms of “professional,” and “unprofessional” very quickly while also showing your personality through small accessories. Your clothes serve specific functions for identity and general usefulness.

The same should be done when choosing a font for your logo, website, or letterhead.

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Fonts should be “reasonable” above all else. When we talk about fonts this usually means one thing: it has to be easy to read. The ultimate job of a font is to convey information. On a website for instance that means making sure that the body text is easily readable and conveys information quickly. Helvetica is often the typeface of choice when it comes to body text. Why? Because it’s really good at being readable.

Created by Max Miedinger with input from Eduard Hoffmann, the goal for helvetica font was to create a neutral typeface that had great clarity, no intrinsic meaning in its form, and could be used on a wide variety of signage. The font is inoffensive, clear, and very easy to read from far away and at close range. Not to mention that a variety of line weights give the font lots of range in meaning for designers.

Helvetica is a font used by the likes of Facebook, Buzzfeed, Tumblr, and even in the New York City subway system and Target.

So where do you fit personality into your type? Display type. This is the type you use for titles, headings, or your logo. Display type oozes personality, but can quickly wear-out its welcome if overused. To use the clothing analogy again, think of Helvetica (or other inoffensive body text) as a neutral set of shirt and pants. Your display type is an accessory with “loud” colors or designs; it can be a bright pink belt, a lime green watch, anything that draws attention. The accessory still has to match, but definitely makes a statement.

While display type is great in small bursts, filling a page with it can be the visual equivalent of wearing a plaid shirty with striped pants. And some types come with cultural connotations you may wish to avoid, Comic Sans for example is a font that is generally regarded in disdain across the internet and is associated with stupidity or a child-like worldview. And bizarre newcomers like this cat-based font should be avoided except on special occasions (like if you wanted to host a cat-themed party).

Good website typography strikes a balance between fonts that are emotionally appealing or striking, and fonts that are very easily readable and reliable. The reasonableness first and personality second.

And if you’d rather offload the task of typography and design to a team of website experts, call The Primm Company at 800.292.0299 to schedule a meeting today. We offer website development, branding services, and print media generation all in-house.