Font selection for your email campaigns

Web-safe fonts...ever heard of them? Well, it’s really important to know and understand what web-safe fonts are all about. In this article we’ll unpack how you can choose fonts for your email campaigns that will render beautifully no matter what email client your subscriber uses.

First things first…

Not all fonts are created equal. Let me qualify that statement, not all fonts used in your email campaigns will appear the same in different email clients. Why is that? Well, it’s because not all fonts that are designed are web-safe fonts.

Web-safe fonts are fonts that will render correctly just about anywhere where you use them. You might recognise some of these web-safe fonts:

  • Arial
  • Times New Roman
  • Georgia
  • Tahoma
  • Verdana
  • Courier

Not very excited that you’re limited to web-safe fonts? Let’s take a closer look at why these are actually not a bad choice:

  • When you send an email, it’s easy to just assume that your subscriber will have the same fonts installed on their device that you have. This means that even though you design your campaign with a beautiful brand-appropriate font it might not show in the subscriber’s inbox. Therefore if you use web-safe fonts, everyone who sees your email will see it rendering in the same way font wise.
  • Web-safe fonts load quicker than other types of fonts.

What are the cons when using web-safe fonts?

  • There are limitations in terms of the number of fonts available.
  • Web-safe fonts might not align with your branding
  • You can feel like your emails lack creativity as these fonts could be used by your competitors.

What is the difference between typeface, fonts and typography?

  • Typefaces are characters that share common design features.
  • Fonts are certain sets of typefaces in a particular weight, style, size and effect.
  • Typography is the style, arrangement and appearance of the text. Simply - how text is organized in words and sentences when organised for printing or web design.

Sans-Serif and Serif fonts

The below example illustrates the difference between sans-serif and serif fonts. You can see Sans-serif fonts are modern and don’t include extra strokes like Serifs do.

“serifs
###A famous example of Serif fonts as used in a logo

“tiffany
###A famous example of Sans-serif fonts as used in a logo:

“netflix
##Why does it really matter what font you choose? You might think it’s just some text, people will read it no matter what font I use. This isn’t true. Let’s take a closer look at why fonts matter. ###Fonts create a certain emotion A font can evoke certain emotions in a reader, think about how putting something in bold emphasizes things or how bold fonts can give you the sense that something is exciting and important. Fonts are able to convey a certain mood and even help you appear reliable or authoritative, which is extremely beneficial if you’re trying to sell something. ###Brand awareness Fonts need to make sense in your specific industry. If you use a font that is old-fashioned but your brand or industry is super modern, it can be confusing for a subscriber. Similarly, if you use overly casual-looking fonts but your company is in a more formal industry - you won’t be taken seriously. You need to find something that suits your brand. Specific fonts can also create great brand associations as people get used to seeing your brand fonts and recognise them. ###Strengthens your message Fonts can really help you to strengthen your message. A well-chosen font is able to make your message stand out and really reach your target audience in an effective way. ###Conversion optimisation Fonts can really help you optimise your conversion rate. Studies have shown that just changing the font in your ads or campaigns can vastly improve the conversion rates you achieve, even if the message is exactly the same. ###Ensures legibility Fonts can really affect the legibility of your email campaigns. Not only can the wrong font choice make it hard for your reader to digest your content, it can also actually slow them down. ###Creates order Using a good combination of fonts and different font sizes helps you to create order within your campaign. Bigger text sections should be used for headings to help anchor your reader and to introduce larger text sections, whereas smaller text sections should be reserved for readers wanting to find out more. This applies to your calls to action buttons too. Have you learnt anything valuable about fonts from this article today? Tell us in the comments below.

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