“Making the web more beautiful, fast, and open through great typography and iconography,” reads the header message on the Google Fonts website.
According to Google, Google Fonts makes it easy to bring personality and performance to your websites and products. It helps you collaborate with open source “making beautiful typography and iconography accessible to anyone for any project”, and make the web faster as Google servers “will automatically send the smallest possible file to every user based on the technologies that their browser supports.”
But what exactly are Google fonts and how they work? Let’s explore.
What are Google Fonts?
In spite of the emergence of new technology and web businesses, rich and elegant web typography has been lacking in recent years.
With its portfolio of 1,291 free licensed font families and APIs for easy use via CSS and Android, Google Fonts can help. For typical tasks and items, the collection also offers entertaining and wonderfully made icons. They can be used in your Android, iOS, and web-based digital products.
Google Fonts is a collection of interactive application programming interfaces that allow users to use web fonts on their websites. It was first released in 2010 as Google Web Fonts. Google hosts this service, and all fonts and bandwidth are provided for free.
What is Google Fonts API?
The Google Font API is a free online service that enables website owners to use fonts that aren’t part of the Web-safe fonts family in a simple, convenient, and resource-efficient manner. The Google Font API is a new addition to the Font-as-Service market, which also includes TypeKit, Typotheque, and other services.
In other words, Google Fonts API is a web service that allows you to effortlessly incorporate high-quality open source a files in your web projects. The font selection will presumably continue to expand, allowing you to choose from a wider range of typefaces.
Google Fonts API has several advantages, like being more SEO-friendly (using HTML text instead of images or CSS background-image replacement), not affecting individuals who use screen readers, having a high uptime infrastructure, and minimizing your web server’s responsibilities.
Who Uses Google Fonts?
Graphic designers, UX designers, researchers, developers, web designers, bloggers, social media managers, entrepreneurs, artists, students, instructors, photographers, and others all use Google typefaces.
Billboards, posters, presentation decks, wedding invitations, websites, and books all use Google Fonts. They’re ubiquitous because they’re highly effective and are available for both commercial and personal use. Anyone can use the Google Fonts website to select and use different fonts for their own creative needs.
Who Makes Google Fonts?
Font designers, type foundries, and the design community from all over the world contribute with Google Fonts. The fonts you see on Google Fonts are created by these people and organizations. Łukasz Dziedzic, for example, is an independent typeface designer who created the popular Lato typeface. The typeface PT Serif was created by ParaType, a typeface foundry.
Google is concerned with typefaces because they aim to make open-source web fonts more widely available. They aspire to create a web that is faster, more attractive, and easier to explore and utilize. They developed Google Fonts in 2010, when a service like this was much required, and thereby solved yet another Internet problem.
The Pros and Cons of Google Fonts
Typography is a big component of web design, and Google fonts has been a huge weapon in most designers’ arsenals since its inception in 2010. If you create a product that is both free to customers and highly easy to use, its popularity will skyrocket, just as it does in other business areas.
The best part about Google Fonts is that you can utilize 877 free web-optimized fonts. That’s fantastic. It has an interactive web directory that allows you to look for certain font kinds and try them out in your browser. However, there are certain drawbacks too.
Advantages of Google Fonts
- Google Fonts typefaces are available for business usage at no cost.
- The fonts are easy to implement on your website, so no trouble with font embedding.
- Licensing will not be a problem for you.
- You won’t feel any burden from the typefaces because you won’t have to upload them to your server.
- If you don’t require specific characters, you can limit the character set to save time loading.
- There are numerous options for a free library.
- The typefaces can be downloaded and printed as well.
- The quality of typefaces continues to improve, and libre copies of well-known designs such as Baskerville and Franklin Gothic are beginning to appear.
Disadvantages of Google Fonts
- Because the typefaces are widely used, using them to develop your brand typography may not be a good option.
- Many websites are adopting Google Typefaces as the industry standard, which implies that many, if not all, of them will use the same fonts.
- Many of the typefaces only come in a few weights and styles (though this is becoming less of a problem).
- Despite the fact that the Google Fonts library is outstanding for a free resource, the selection is still limited. Or, more accurately, certain styles considered fundamental to the collection are lacking. It’s difficult to find good serif typefaces.
- Typefaces aren’t always of the same high grade (although many if not most do perform very well, and some even outperform paid typefaces).
- This may be fixed at this time, but loading the fonts used to be a bit of a pain a few years ago.
- Because the fonts aren’t on your machine or server, you won’t be able to present them to a client when you’re showing them a website offline.
How to Choose the Right Google Font
Fonts might be contemporary, bold, delicate, sophisticated, or playful, and their “personalities” should reflect your brand’s personality. If you want your website to have a more feminine feel, you can use two typefaces that share that personality, even if they seem different.
There are a few websites worth visiting that advocate specific Google font pairings and show you exactly how they look. Choose one of their combos and go with it if you don’t want to reinvent the wheel.
The Google directory itself will help you understand things lot better. Under the “Pairings” tab, Google’s directory offers pairing suggestions in addition to a useful filter and examples. If you already have a favorite font (we’ll use Pacifico in this example), look it up in the directory and compare with another.
There are several aspects to consider while deciding which Google Font to use. Readability, purpose, Google font combinations, popularity, and intuition should all be considered when selecting a web font. Here are some suggestions to assist you figure out which typefaces to use in certain situations:
Purpose: Choose a typeface that suits your needs. You can’t go wrong with a handwriting font for wedding invites, for example.
Readability: If you’re writing a book, blog post, or anything else with a lot of text, you should use a serif font.
Combinations: When selecting a typeface pair, think about how complementary they are to one another. In this regard, the Google directory and a few other websites might assist you.
Popular Fonts: You could believe that with over 900 fonts, any of them might be used for every occasion. Most designers, on the other hand, tend to stick to a small number of typefaces that function well in most situations.
Preference: Sometimes a typeface appears to be correct, while other times it appears to be incorrect. While some of the aforementioned principles can assist you in selecting the appropriate font, there are simply too many Google Fonts to make precise standards for.
10 Best Google Fonts of 2021
- Open Sans
- Source Sans Pro
- Slabo 27px/13px
- PT Sans
The Bottom Line
It’s all about the user experience on the current web. Companies spend a lot of effort and money to make sure that their website visitors have the greatest possible experience when browsing their site. The aesthetics of the website rely heavily on text representation. It doesn’t matter how good your material is; if it isn’t enjoyable to read and too cluttered for the readers, all of your efforts will be for naught.
Whether these words excite or terrify you, the reality is that the right typographic choice always represents the project’s unique goals. These are aesthetic, technological, and practical requirements, yet you can only know so much from a dropdown menu’s pieces of text.
While certain typefaces are excellent for headlines, others work well for paragraphs. Special characters and international scripts can be included in some font families. You’ll have more possibilities for fine-tuning the design as the project proceeds if the font is offered in a variety of styles (such as italics or minuscule caps) and weights (from hairline to ultra-black).
Although you have a variety of typographic options, Google Fonts is the quickest and easiest way to obtain access to hundreds of professional fonts (for free).