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What is too small a font according to Google? Can you be penalized?

 6:33 am on Jan 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

To decorate the pages sometimes you need to use smaller fonts, it improves scanability but what is small font according to Google?

Does it penalize you for that declaring it to be hidden content.




 7:28 am on Jan 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

This would mostly be a "hand check" kind of thing, because it can be a bit subjective. It's true that if you are posting content in a font size that is hard or impossible to read, you may be penalized. For example, it takes at least an 8px font size to render all the lowercase letters reperly, so anything smaller than that is definitely a problem.

The thing is, you KNOW if you are trying to hide content - so just don't do that and don't try to see how far you can push the envelope. If you are honestly styling your text to communicate with your visitors, then it is not very likely that your fonts are too small to pass a Google check.


 8:18 am on Jan 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

My min is font-size:10px; and it is very much visible (for almost all users). There is no intention of hiding content, wanted to make sure Google is as smart as our users :).

Is there a standard for fonts and its sizes? Is there a way I can check if it is ok from users point of view as well?

Thanks for the reply tedster.


Robert Charlton

 7:18 pm on Jan 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

It depends on the font as well as the size. I keep this note to myself about Arial and Verdana...

- greater than or equal to 12px => Arial
- 9px, 10px, 11px => Verdana

Verdana is wider and slightly more legible at the smaller sizes.

Regarding the question about hidden content, Google is always concerned about intention. So, if you have a list of keyword-stuffed text at the bottom of a page in an illegible font, Google might assume that your intention is to hide keywords.

If you have a legal disclaimer in an illegible font, Google probably wouldn't care, but, if there's a problem related to that disclaimer, someone's lawyer might object in court. ;)


 12:31 am on Jan 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

Iagree with both replies.if it smells like a duck or walks like a duck ... Basically if you can't justify the font size to human visitors then you might some trouble justifying to SE's.

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