Typography in Email and Why Fallback Fonts Matter

Understanding how typography can improve brand recognition in an email is a great way to boost your marketing efforts.

Typography in Email is important for a variety of reasons. One reason is that it helps your message stand out, as well as help to make the email more readable. Another reason is that fallback fonts are important because they allow you to use different fonts depending on what device the recipient has. Read more in detail here: google fonts.

Email has been in the picture for about four decades and is still one of the most efficient marketing channels, all thanks to the reach that social media lacks. In 2016, a survey jointly conducted by Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and Demand Metric states that Email manages to draw in 122% ROI. But this is not an overnight success; it is due to a combination of trial & errors and the corrections implemented from the takeaways.

Email has come a long way since it was just a plain text email copy. Since 1989, when email began to enable HTML code, it has opened the floodgates and made email more aesthetically attractive. Email text is vital nowadays, in addition to making emails aesthetically attractive. But, in addition to what your email message says, it’s also crucial to consider what feelings the colors and typefaces (a sort of typography used in emails) express.


The Emotions Conveyed by Different Fonts

Take a look at the following image:


The same statement has been written in 5 various fonts in the sample above, yet the tone of the message delivered varies dramatically depending on the font choice.

Serif At the end of each letter, typefaces like Times New Roman, Baskerville, and Georgia include little flourishes and swirls. When reading a text in this font, the eyes have a simple route to follow as they sift through the letters. When the font size is less than 12px, however, reading suffers. As a result, this is a common headline for large publications, and it lends authority to the content.

Sans Serif font Helvetica, Arial, and Calibri don’t have the flourishes of serif typefaces, and thus don’t have the problem of readability at reduced font sizes. As a result, most online and digital material uses this for both headlines and body text.

Handwriting Fonts like Lucida Handwriting and Pristina are inspired by cursive handwriting seen in old letters. When employed in type, it evokes feelings of nostalgia while also adding a personal touch.

Decorative Fonts are the next kind of typeface used on the internet. These fonts are typically employed in logos and brief bursts of writing, rather than in text. As seen in the image above, Comics Sans was the typeface used in comic books, therefore it has a casual comedy tone to it. The stencil has an authoritative tone and was frequently employed in military institutions.

Let’s look at how typefaces are utilized in emails now that you’re familiar with the various fonts.

In email, rendering the font

The availability of a given typeface in the device determines how email clients render it. If you look at the source code of your email, you’ll see something like:

<td class=”fallback-font” style=”font-family: ‘Montserrat’, Arial, sans-serif;”>Your text here</td>

If the typeface (Montserrat) is not installed on a device, the email client goes on to the next given choice in the example above (Arial).

The majority of email designers play it safe by choosing system fonts, which are fonts that are pre-installed on your device. Whatever happens, these typefaces will undoubtedly display on any device.

However, how many of your subscribers are able to view your emails in custom fonts?


This indicates that about 60% of the most popular email applications allow custom fonts.

That is fantastic news!!!

How to Choose the Right Fonts for Your Emails

When selecting custom fonts for emails, email developers adhere to a set of best practices.

1 – Selecting the Fallback Font for the Tour

Every character has an x-height and a gap between them to distinguish them (called Kerning). This has a big impact on the number of characters per line. As a result, your backup font must not take up more space than your main font.


The text in Arial occupies 9 lines, but the identical text in Calibri uses 8 lines, as you can see in the sample above.

It’s more crucial to pick your backup font first, then your main font depending on it, than than vice way. This is due to the vast number of fonts and typefaces accessible throughout the world, making it difficult to choose a fallback font that would not modify the layout in any manner.

The following are the several fallback alternatives for the most often used email fonts:


2 – Using Emphasis to Create a Visual Hierarchy

You may still focus your readers’ attention to certain portions of your email after you’ve chosen your font by stressing your content.

Emphasis may be created in a variety of ways, including:

  • Many fonts, such as Light, Narrow, Regular, Semibold, Bold, and Black, have many typefaces.


  • Italics and Underlines: Italics and underlines may be used to capture attention, even if an underline is only intended to distinguish a hyperlink from plain text.
  • Text Alignment: A left-aligned text is often favored in the case of extended paragraphs. Center alignment seems to be the best choice for brief bursts.

  • Font Color: Doesn’t the vivid font color sometimes make you go into a certain line as soon as you notice it, even before you read a text? That’s the impact of contrasting text color on a simple backdrop, and it’s something that a lot of businesses do.

Outlook has taken a turn for the worse.

Outlook isn’t a fan of fair play. Outlook will use Times New Roman instead of the fallback font set if the main font is not available. As a result, we’ll need to use the VML code below to ‘force’ the fallback font.

<!–[if mso]>

<style type=”text/css”>

body, table, td!important; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif



Bringing everything to a close

Fonts, colors, and text alignment work together to artistically keep the bricks (words) in place and make the message emotionally effective. Have you tried using various fonts in your email? Please tell us about your experience in the comments section below.

The “email safe fonts 2021” is a question that has been asked by many people. The “safe fonts” are those that are not used as the default font in email, but they can be used if the user would like to fall back on them.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do we need fallback fonts?

A: Fallback fonts are used when the strengths and weaknesses of a font cannot be used for their intended purpose, for example if your system has limited support with the desired typeface.

Why are web-safe fallback fonts important?

A: Web-safe fonts are used to display text on the internet. Theyre an easy way for designers and developers to make sure that their websites look consistent across all browsers, regardless of platform or layout

What is a fallback text?

A: A fallback text is the code that your site will display if a user attempts to navigate to an anchor on your website, but they cannot get there. For example, if you have a navigation menu and all of them link to empty pages or broken links when someone tries to visit one of those links it would be a fallback text for that page.

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