The Best Fonts for Business Writing (and Ones to Avoid)

Walking into DSW for the first time searching for a new pair of shoes can be overwhelming—so many options and styles to choose from! The same can happen to a writer as you start scrolling through that long list of font styles in MS Word. And with hundreds of fonts—even thousands online—to choose from, you may be wondering which are the best fonts for business writing. Let’s consider why selecting the right font is so critical. And discover the top five fonts appropriate for business.

What Are Fonts?

Fonts are graphical representations of text. They are the letters, numbers, and symbols within a specific typeface. The typeface (or type family) is the “design” of the characters. Helvetica is an example of a typeface. The characters of Helvetica will all share common design characteristics. A font is differentiated by size, weight, and style while still falling within the “type family.” For example, the typeface Helvetica encompasses over 50 fonts such as Helvetica Light, Helvetica Bold, or Helvetica Regular.

Choose Fonts Wisely

Fonts are powerful—creating memorable ad campaigns, breathing life into a PowerPoint slideshow, or skillfully used to sell a book or magazine. Simply put: fonts can make or break an advertising campaign or presentation.

Therefore, choose your fonts wisely. Otherwise, your business writing and communication may fall flat. Or be disregarded altogether because it lacks the appropriate level of professionalism. Depending on what you are writing and how it will be presented visually, a particular font may or may not be appropriate.

The Best Fonts for Business Writing

When you reach into your writer’s toolbox, which fonts should you pull out? Which are best for business documents? Here are the top five business-appropriate fonts to use:

These fonts are staples in the business world for good reason: they are polished and don’t distract from your message. In contrast, decorative fonts can weaken your words and detract from the text’s serious tone or nature. Instead, opt for fonts that complement your level of professionalism, are easy to read, and provide a cohesive backdrop.

Stick to One Font at a Time

Using one font on a business document ensures consistency, professionalism, and makes it easier to read.

Resumes should only use one font. When you need a word, phrase, or section to stand out, you can simply increase the font size. Or you could make it bold or underlined. Just be sure to maintain the font style consistently. For example:

THREE MAPLE MOUNTAIN

Camp Counselor

  • Coordinated outdoor activities for all ages
  • Planned daily menus
  • Supervised children aged 14-16

The above text uses bold, italicizing, and different sizes to add definition and a little style.

Fonts to Avoid Using in Business Writing

There are fonts available for just about any subject, mood, age, or emotion. Which is fine for composing a funny card, a baby shower invitation, or a press release for an art gallery opening. Of course, if you work in advertising, you will be using creative writing techniques and fonts that appeal visually to the reader. However, when it comes to professional business writing, some fonts are definite no-no’s. Here are just a few fonts that would be entirely inappropriate for a business letter, contract, employee handbook, resume, financial reports, or similar:

Sure, these are “fun” fonts—they evoke a laid-back feeling. But they also scream out “unprofessional” and “juvenile.” If you feel you need to add some fun to your writing, do so through solid writing techniques. Don’t simply rely on fonts to do it for you.

Fonts are powerful tools to use in writing, presentations, and advertising. And when you learn how to effectively harness that power by choosing the best fonts for business writing and communication, you’ll be typing your way to success!

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