Last week we publish an article titled \u201cIf Content is Really King, Then What Is Design?\u201d Not only did this article inspire a \u2018Self-Expression Fridays\u2018 poster design, but it also had me thinking: If content is king, what can the design do to compliment the \u201cking,\u201d or in this articles case, the content?\n\n\n\nIf what you have to say on your website is so important, then what can we do to make it a more enjoyable experience and better complement the content with the way we design for it?\n\n\n\n If Content is Really King, Then What Is Design \n\n\n\nAppropriate typefaces\n\n\n\nTypography is not about picking a font that looks cool, but rather choosing a typeface(s) that compliment the medium and purpose. With recent advances in web typography (ahem, Typekit) we now have more control then ever over what typefaces we use for our content \u2014 but with more control, we must be even more careful and have a better understanding of type.\n\n\n\nWeb typography tips:\n\n\n\n\u00bb When choosing a font for prolonged reading, try something with a larger x-height (for smaller body copy) or study serifs for improved readability and reader comfort.\n\n\n\n\u00bb Choose typefaces that compliment the content, look and layout\n\n\n\nFor more on font pairing and web typography you can search these terms:\n\n\n\nOn Web TypographyThirteen ways of looking at a typefaceType inspired interfaces\n\n\n\n Breathing room\n\n\n\nWebsites or blogs with tons of reading require breathing room \u2014 or better yet, remember that white space is your friend. It\u2019s difficult to read and stay focused on any information that is, for example, being crammed up against ads, has tight line spacing, or has cluttered design elements.\n\n\n\nDon\u2019t worry, it\u2019s alright for users to scroll vertically to get to information. Don\u2019t feel like you need to cram it all in there.\n\n\n\nHere are a few design tips to help your content breathe:\n\n\n\n\u00bb Improve your line spacing of body copy: a good rule of thumb is 1.5 em line-spacing of your body copy font size.\n\u00bb Remember, white space is good and less is more\n\n\n\nEstablish an information hierarchy\n\n\n\nWhen it comes to readable content, one thing to remember is people do not like to read \u2014 they like to scan and get the information they want quickly. Establishing a strong hierarchy allows the reader to easily scan your website, blog, article, etc. for information without spending too much time on information they do not want to see or read.\n\n\n\nA hierarchy guides your readers around the page and creates a more enjoyable experience for them.\n\n\n\nAllow for digestible information\n\n\n\n If your website or blog has length passages of information or words, try designing in a way that breaks up the content into smaller, digestible blocks of text. A possible solution could be having a home page with short excerpts of articles\/information that lead to the entire story by clicking on a link.\n\n\n\nUse color and use it well\nColor should not only be used to create a mood, but also to draw attention to specific areas or text. Websites that use color sparingly and well typically have great results because of it. It helps readers scan and draws attention to important information.\n\n\n\nA few tips on color usage on the web:\n\n\n\n\u00bb Reversed out (white) text on dark backgrounds can make for difficult, prolonged reading.\n\u00bb Using too many colors can distract the user and can cause confusion over important content\/information\n\u00bb Use color to communicate a mood\n\n\n\nContrast and call to action\n\n\n\nContrast and call to action allows information to be broken apart and also (like a good hierarchy) easily scan-able. Contrast can be used in typefaces as to separate headlines from body copy, while it can also create areas of darker\/brighter color to draw attention or call upon a certain area of your screen.\n\n\n\nContrast can also be used to create tension and set a mood for the content. Try complimenting your content with appropriate typefaces or color. Also note that establishing call to actions early on in the sites preliminary stages is important content management and structures the users experience.\n\n\n\nWhile all of the above factors seem simple in practice, it is often easy to just begin designing and forget about the content and medium in which we are designing for. Remember, content is king, but design is the land of which the king rules. If you have the above thought out and planned before you start designing it will pave the way to a more successful and relevant design.