I recently performed a recode of my site and an evaluation on the assets I was loading on each page. At first, I targeted removing social sharing widgets like AddThis, loading my Twitter feed, and removing jQuery everywhere but the homepage. The results were great, and I was pleased with how my site was performing. Then, just last week I wanted to rework the design a bit, and make my site a little more polished. I took a hard look at the homepage slider, and couldn’t come up with a solid way of making it look good responsively. So I removed it, and with that, removed jQuery from the homepage as well. Not only does my homepage load faster without loading jQuery, but overall I think I gain more by dropping the slider. Now when you first visit the site, you get to see my lovely face, and not the thrown together graphics I’m using for my featured blog posts.
Death to the Slider
So I’m proposing, DEATH TO THE HERO SLIDER! It has become a crutch designers use on any given design, and I think it has seen its day. So what can we put in its place? Simple, well designed typography hero layouts. I love typography, and when done right, it drives many great websites. The best thing about typography in designs? Little to no overhead! Typography looks great on all devices, screen sizes, and DPI.
With services like Typekit, Fonts.com, and better yet, free services like IcoMoon and Google Fonts, we can utilize fonts and icon fonts to create some visually stunning websites that load fast and look great. Finally, for more advanced techniques, you can utilize FitText.js and Lettering.js from the guys over at Paravel to get total control over your typography. I recently used both in a quick, personal project that pulled in Google Image Results from a string in the URL and I was very pleased with the results.
Below are some of my personal favorite examples of great typography websites:
So what do you think, no more hero image sliders? Got any good examples of great typography?