Unless you’re a designer, you probably don’t care much for fonts. However, choosing the right one can actually improve the readability of an article or the design of a logo. You don’t have to be a designer to spot a bad typeface. Of all the things we read throughout the day, we rarely pay attention to the font until we see a terrible one.
Fonts are an important and often overlooked feature of a website or logo. Finding the perfect font may be challenging, especially with the endless options available on the internet. You can choose to have a few different fonts on your website. Headlines can be written in one typeface, articles in another, menu lists in yet another, and so on.
What do you need to look for in a good typeface?
A typeface is a font family – multiple fonts can share similar characteristics and fall under one umbrella typeface. The following characteristics determine a typeface; width, weight, condensation, style, italicisation and ornamentation (or stylistic flairs).
Firstly, a good font needs to be legible; the audience should be able to read it with ease. Secondly, it needs to be somewhat unique. You can find a certain font from a typeface family that looks very similar to familiar favourites, such as Times New Roman or Arial, but is actually quite unique.
When looking for the perfect font, consider the leading (vertical space between lines), kerning (distance between two letters) and tracking (distance between each letter and word). These spacing variations affect the legibility of fonts. If the letters or characters are too close together, it can be hard to decipher what the words are; if they are too spread out, it can make it difficult to read.
So, choosing the right typeface for your website is likely to be a harder task than you initially thought. Luckily, we’ve selected our favourite websites that offer free typefaces, so that it will narrow your selection down just a bit.
Of course, Google has its own font website – the company has a site for virtually everything nowadays. Most font websites display the names of typefaces in that particular font, giving you only a few examples of the letters. The amazing thing about Google Fonts is that you can customise the sentences in each font window, allowing you to see what any sentence looks like in that particular font.
You can adjust the size and thickness of the typeface too, giving you precise control over what it will look like on your website. You have complete customisation and control over the typeface options.
Not only are the fonts free to download, they also come with a unique embed code that allows you to use them directly on your website. This option allows you to easily use different typefaces on different sections of your website. You just need to copy and paste the embed code into the backend of your site.
Fontfabric offers both free and paid fonts, geared towards designers and artists. Their fonts are particularly useful for logos, rather than standard copy text. The layout is easy to navigate and the price of the font is clearly marked on the top right-hand corner of each font window, allowing you to find free fonts with ease.
This website is the perfect place to look for typefaces if you’re wanting to create a business logo or a new header for your website. The fonts are typically bold, unique and easy to read. Fontfabric has some of the most beautiful typefaces available that can’t be found elsewhere on the internet.
Fontspace has a large library of free and unique fonts. Browse over 36 000 fonts for the perfect typeface for your purpose. Fontspace has categories for each typeface, such as weddings, hand-drawn, cartoon and script.
Thousands of designers contribute to the library, so the fonts typically can’t be found elsewhere. Downloading a free font is as simple as clicking a single button. If you like a certain font, you can also click on the designer’s name and see what other typefaces they have created.
Note that some fonts are only licensed for personal use, meaning that you can’t use them for logos or on websites.
Besides downloading any type of free font, Fontstruct allows you to actually create and customise your own fonts. You do need to create a username and password to create your own typefaces, but the website is free to use.
The constructor also allows you create your own geometric shapes that you can use for your logo. Downloading your own shapes and fonts is a simple process and gives you the chance to create something entirely bespoke for your business and website. You can also tweak existing fonts available on the platform to add your own personal style.
This simple website boasts over 14 000 fonts for free download. Abstract Fonts also allows you to copy an embed code to install the font directly onto your website. Search by category to find the perfect style of typeface for your needs.
Like Fonstspace, you can also browse for typefaces by designer. If you have a font that you really like, you can look at the designer’s portfolio and see what other fonts they have created. This means that the typefaces available are unique and trendy.
1001 Free Fonts
Despite the name, 1001 Free Fonts actually offers over 10 000 fonts for free download. The website is pretty basic but the offering is fantastic. At the top of the site, you can search for fonts alphabetically (if you know 6the name of a typeface, this is a great option to use). You can also click on one of the 64 categories to narrow your search.
The licensing for each typeface is clearly marked on the top right-hand corner of each font window, so you can see if you’re allowed to use the font for commercial purposes, or if it’s restricted to personal use only. However, you do have the option to buy commercial licenses for restricted fonts.
1001 Free Fonts also allows you make donations to the designers, so if you really like a font – if it’s exactly what you were looking for and you thought you’d never find it – give a small cash donation to the designer to make them feel appreciated.
Hopefully, these websites will allow you to choose the right font for your needs and narrow your choices down. They all offer quality typefaces and each site has something unique. Create that unique look and feel with a one-of-a-kind font for your website or logo by using some of our suggested websites in this list.
Sorted Design Agency is a creative company that constantly looks for solutions to other people’s problems. These problems come mostly in the visual format, such as graphic design, logo and illustration, but we’re experts in brand development, website design, and digital SEO campaigns as well.
Based in Pretoria and Cape Town, Sorted has been in the content marketing industry since 2006. We assist your company with its corporate identity by communicating core values through content and articles written for your website, blog and news area. This content is supported by AdWords and social advertising, which facilitates wider reach and audience growth. Turn your website into a business tool.
Sorted also owns two other businesses; InkFish Print Studio – a printing company that handles a range of promotional materials for businesses and other services for individual customers, and Pampiri + Kie – a gifts and stationery store selling online and in-store. Both of these companies operate from Cape Town and Pretoria.
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