Switch to ‘Comic Sans.’ Ok, that’s not true. The power font of choice is Calibri .
Usability News has a fascinating article about the impact of the font of an email on the reader’s perception of the writer of the message. The article is dated January 9, 2007 and the results are really interesting and worth a browse. The three fonts tested were : Calibri, Comic Sans & Gigi (Study funded by MSFT Advanced Reading Technology Group.) While we would expect fonts like comic sans to be taken less seriously than other more formal fonts, it’s really interesting to see a rigorous approach to the subject. (I realize this is probably old hat to people in the offline publishing world so my apologies if I’m boring you.)
The table below lists the fonts that were chosen as most suited for email in an earlier study:
The study goes on to talk about the perception of the writer and attempts to correlate it to font choice. The conclusion from the paper was that font choice impacts things like the perception of stability, practicality, professionalism etc. These are all things that we know anecdotally.
As a side note, if you’re still sending out rainbow text in Script, please stop.