Let the basic foundations of your website reflect your brand, message, and purpose by thoughtfully selecting your fonts.
Constructing a website means making dozens of small choices that collectively shape the “face” of your business and, in general, the first impression many people will have of you. While it’s important not to get bogged down in tiny details, style choices that permeate your luxury real estate website design as a whole—like fonts—warrant a strategic approach. These best practices and resources will leave the text on your site feeling polished and true to your brand.
Narrow Your Style
Whether you’ve got dozens of design projects under your belt or you’re a first-timer, it’s always helpful to start with a few bite-sized decisions to narrow down your options and prevent you from being overwhelmed. For example, a manageable first step might be to decide what categories of fonts you’d like to consider: serif or sans serif? Monospace or proportional? First, it’s important to look into what these bits of font-related lingo actually mean!
For a slightly more decorative and frilly look, opt for serif fonts. They’ve got a classic look with small strokes at the end of each character for an elevated style. Serif fonts are generally easy to read and have been around for hundreds of years, so they’re a safe and established bet that will always be readable on mobile and web pages.
Dig into the sans serif bucket for a stripped-down, clean, modern look. Sans serif characters don’t include any more lines than absolutely necessary, so they show up looking crisp and pleasantly simple.
With monospaced fonts, each letter will occupy the exact same amount of horizontal space. These often give off an antique, classic feel since they date back to the typewriter days. Some fonts, like Arial, come in monospaced varieties as well as proportional. In proportional fonts, letters occupy only as much space as each of them needs. For example, a lowercase “L” will take up less horizontal space than a lowercase “O.”
Nailing down a few style constraints and categories that feel in line with your message and voice gives you a great jumping-off point for choosing your website fonts.
Match Your Brand
Studies show that font selection plays a role in the way you and your brand will be perceived by your website visitors. Select your font styles by considering the tone of your messaging and the prevailing voice of your brand as a whole. Do you employ no-frills processes and methods to get things done in the most straightforward way possible? Crisper, no-nonsense sans serif fonts are likely the best fit. Have an eye for the finer things and prefer to lead with intuition and heart? Browse the serif collections for elegant options that match your approach.
Once you’ve done some narrowing of categories, allow some degree of taste to take over. Choose what draws your eye and feels most in line with the graphics, themes, and layouts you might’ve already chosen. Play around in draft mode and on mockup pages, and consider which fonts draw you in and feel true to your voice. Preview a block of your copy in each of the fonts you’re considering, and choose which ones best communicate your intended voice.
The styles you choose should feel true to you! After all, the purpose of website design is to communicate not only through the words on the page but also through the design elements that help make it unique and personalized.
Above all else, remember a font does you no good if people can’t easily read it. It can be good to push boundaries of style and even begin experimenting once you’ve established your overall design, but if you ever find yourself doubting that people will be able to read your text without extra effort, choose a new font.
Fortunately, most of the popular fonts are plenty easy to read! Beyond selecting the font itself, look over the size and color of texts on your website—both the desktop and mobile version—to make sure the words are large enough to read without straining. Choose colors that contrast with your background design to prevent any blurring appearance and keep your thoughtfully-chosen letters looking crisp.
Strike a Balance
As long as it’s easy to read and in line with your branding and tone, don’t be afraid to think beyond Times New Roman and Arial in favor of something new! Consider the mood of your website or the particular page you’re working on. If there’s a content-driven reason why the tone of the page might be playful, choose a font that reflects that!
Aim to strike that delicate balance between familiar enough to easily read and appearing clean and unique enough to capture and keep attention. A slightly different font than the norm can be enough to draw the eye and keep someone reading! Clean and easy-to-read does not have to mean standard or boring. Who wants to browse a whole site in Arial?
Your website should have a cohesive flow and design that works together between pages. Fonts are no different! While it’s great to choose fonts depending on the mood and tone of a page or piece of copy, overall, the font selections throughout the website are best kept consistent or within the same family.
Choose a few go-to fonts for your site that don’t contradict each other in style, and stick to them throughout each page. That small variety will add to the visual interest on your website without making it feel disjointed or confusing. Check out headings, captions, and varying text sizes in each of your chosen fonts so you’re ready to use them dynamically in articles with headers and titles without losing the look and feel you’d hoped for.
Where to Find Fonts
Most web builders and CMSs come equipped with a nice collection of preloaded fonts to choose from. However, when you’re ready to branch out and get a little more intentional about your fonts, there are plenty of free resources to find them!
Google fonts are available for free download, and they’re easy to browse and experiment with. You can filter by style (choose from serif, sans serif, display, handwriting, and monospace), thickness, slant, and width. There’s even a nifty tool for testing out your copyright on the platform before downloading the font, so you can try a little “test drive.”
Find a huge selection of free fonts on Font Space. Browse by style to narrow your search, and be sure to check the “Commercial Use” box to be sure you’re downloading fonts that are licensed for business purposes.
There are dozens of free font resources available online to browse, and many of them are free and licensed for any use (just double-check licensing details before downloading anything for use on your real estate business website!). There’s no shortage of options, so you’re sure to find fonts that feel true to you and communicate your brand flawlessly.