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Typography in Web Design:

Typography in Web Design:

A very important but often underplayed element in website design is web typography.  Typography itself is as old as the earliest writing systems and has since developed into a very specialised field.

Typography originated after the invention of printing from movable type in the mid 15th century and has come along way since then. Today we find a large number of typefaces on the web.

How you approach typeface in your design, will either enhance or diminish the visual impact of your website. Function and aesthetics are intrinsic in web design and how well your design works is just as important as how it looks.

New liberty in Web Design: sIFR Text

Creative uses for typeface in web design were limited until recently. Today’s new operating systems have made it possible for website designers to move away from the limitations of using standard system fonts.

Scalable Inman Flash Replacement, better known as sIFR text are giving many website designers creative leeway. In simple terms, sIFR text is a flash rendering technique whereby designers can replace on-screen text elements with flash equivalents. In order to display correctly on someone’s web browser, sIFR requires the following: JavaScript and a Flash plug-in.

sIFR allows website headings, pull-quotes and other elements to be styled in whatever font the designer chooses. It is Search engine friendly and will display the website content as text and not an image.

Important Typeface Tips:

The web is saturated with tips on website design and typography. Here are a few tips that can help you with the choice and placement of your typeface in web design.


Take note of the line spacing/ leading that you give your text. The space between your words will impact the readability of your copy.


Consider the colour of your design and choose the colour of your text accordingly. The colour of your text should neither overpower your design nor be consumed by it.

Font Size:

Consider the theme and style of your web design and choose the font size accordingly.  Certain typefaces have been designed as small fonts and will therefore not have the same effect if it is too big.

Take into account that your text size should be readable to different users who are making using different browsers and technologies. Don’t make your text too small or too large.


Take your user into account. The emphasis in web design today is on user-centric design. Remember that your website is there to communicate information. The objective is to encourage people to read the information on your site.

Too many fonts

Don’t use too many fonts throughout your website, rather make small adjustments to the existing font. This will help you to maintain a sense of continuity throughout your design. We suggest you use two types of font at most.


Any windows operating system lower than vista, does not apply “font-smoothing” as a default setting. This could radically change how the viewers see your text.

Lilo is a professional Website Design and Web Development company, based in London UK with offices in Cape Town, South Africa and more recently Sydney, Australia. We are a multidisciplinary agency, delivering expert and cost effective solutions that will meet a variety of your web development and website design requirements.

About Emma G.

Working in the marketing industry since 2002. This blog is one of my hobbies.

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