Although web fonts provide an efficient way to exceptionally representing the web pages that may keep you one step ahead of the competition, they can surely create certain hindrances and optimization issues leading to worst UX and website speed. One good thing about web fonts is that many successful businesses around the world use this utility to generate great visitors as compared to those who don’t – which certainly affects rendering speed of pages due to bad optimization. Follow us through this article, we will try our best to answer every possible query or related questions regarding optimizing web fonts for better website performance.
Use of Custom Fonts
Before we get to the actual point, let’s clear the concept of utilizing custom fonts to promote better UX for our novice readers. Almost every popular virtual brand on the internet owns a style, signature, and custom design on their website that makes them stand out to others. In the same way, the effective legibility, readability, and beautiful typographic styles on your website define your brand as much as your brand logo.
The best way to define your brand through the typographic material is by adding custom fonts to your WebPages. They are generally those fonts that are not already installed on your visitors’ browser. Since most browsers available are now compatible with CSS @font-face, these customized web fonts have been utilized more and more now. The custom fonts certainly have a larger file size which can on the out-front result in slow page loading and bad user experience. Therefore, one must employ all necessary web fonts optimizing techniques when using custom web fonts on a website.
How to optimize web fonts files?
Here are some of the best ways to optimize web fonts for better website performance.
- Browser Compatibility
Following are the four major font formats available:
- True Type Font: Also known as TTF, it is the most common font format released in the 80s.
- Web Open Font Format: Also known as WOFF, it is utilized with extensive metadata and compression and was developed in 2009. WOFF is a True Type or Open Type font format.
- Web Open Font Format latest: It is also called WOFF2, it was an improved version of WOFF with better compression.
- Embedded Open Type: Also known as EOT, it was specially designed to be used as web fonts on web pages by Microsoft.
You can either embed all of these formats in the @font-face declaration, but it is recommended to use only WOFF and WOFF2. Also, WOFF2 provides efficiently compressed files and extra speed. In case your browser is not supported with the WOFF2, simply add WOFF in the @font-face declaration.
- Fewer TypeFaces for Better Optimization
As there are millions of web font styles available, do not make a mistake by adding tons of style to your website. It can simply make your website bulky and slow. It is recommended to use fewer typefaces together to form a better appearance of your web pages. The combined typefaces can give a dramatic and engaging look to a website while having no negative impact on its performance.
- Load Required Styles
Load the style that you’re actually going to use for your website layout. There are tons of font styles and variant available i.e. bold, italic, and more, adding extra variants to your font file will just make them more heavy and bulky. Such bulky font files tend to lower the website performance and affect page speed low too. Therefore, it is recommended to avoid the use of extra variants in the @font-face code.
In case you need an italic font, adding the <i> function only can add the specified icon and the browser will automatically load the italic style aft wards. You can set the font-style to <i> icon permanently to prevent the browser from downloading any additional files.
- Load Required Character Sets
Make sure you don’t a large number of character sets to your web pages. The more the character sets, the larger will be your font files, and the lower will be your website performance yet UX experience. That’s the same case with blogging, people starting a blog tends to add so much character sets based on an aim to make their web pages look efficient. In the end, this practice affects the website performance to much extent.
Web Font Loader
It is a utility made by Typekit and Google to load web fonts gathering from a number of files i.e. self-hosted, Google Fonts, and Typekit files. The purpose of this utility is to keep the use of fallback fonts while the custom fonts still remain in the memory and loads perfectly. It is recommended to adjust a time frame for which the custom fonts must be loaded into the web page. Still, after the time limit passes, users will be able to see the fallback texted form of text.
This is a sensitive task; therefore it is important for a website to have a minimum downtime. An efficient web hosting services ensure a great uptime, therefore conduct a thorough research and select the best website building options for your site.
CSS Font Loading API
It is the most common yet traditional way of controlling and giving a new look through web fonts on your website. You are free to keep using web-safe fonts till the custom web fonts are being loaded in the memory.
In the end, we would like to conclude this post as, besides web fonts give a unique appearance to your business, brand, or service, they surely impacts the website in both positive and negative way. Business owners must employ the mentioned techniques for better optimization of web fonts on their website. Because the custom web fonts promote the attractive look of your web pages can also increase your website visitors, organic audience, buyers, revenue, and engagement.
In case of further questions or suggestions, feel free to contact us.