Font-Display Optional

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How to Use the Font-Display Optional Property in CSS to Avoid Layout Shifts?

The CSS property font-display determines how a font is rendered depending on its download date. This property can be used to avoid layout shifts. The following example shows how to use it to render fonts depending on the date they were downloaded. So, read more to get information on this Font-Display Optional.

However, if you want to use it to avoid layout shifts, you must include this property as a requirement. If you don’t, you need to remove it from your CSS.

Optimizations to get font files to the browser quicker:

The W3C Web Fonts Working Group is actively researching ways to optimize font performance. One such idea is progressive font enrichment, a concept that reduces the initial size of the font file while improving rendering speed.

It’s possible to see a demo of this concept at Google or read more about it in Jason Pamental’s blog. There are many ways to optimize fonts for web pages. Preload is another method to optimize font file performance.

  • By including the “font” tag on your web pages, you can force the browser to download the file early, even before it’s needed.
  • This technique will increase page loading speed, as the browser will include the font file in the rendering process.
  • A simple example of preload usage is shown below. This is a powerful technique for increasing page load time.
  • By decreasing the number of fonts, you can improve the performance of your web pages.
  • This will reduce server overload, as fewer fonts are needed to produce the same page.
  • Also, reducing the number of font files will make your web pages load faster.
  • However, be aware that if you use 11 font files, the browser will block the main thread, so make sure you reduce the number of fonts used.

Fallback fonts:

There are two types of browsers: those that require fallback fonts and those that do not. Both render the same page but use different fonts. When font display is optional, browsers only render the custom font when it is available quickly.

When the custom font cannot be rendered quickly, the browser will fall back to the system font. The fallback font may be smaller or larger than the system font, which results in layout shifts and other issues. The best fallback font is the one that is rendered almost immediately.

Features of Fallback fonts:

Fallback fonts allow the user to read the content of the page without having to wait for the Webfont to download. The Webfont is still downloaded in the background. This way, if the web connection is slow, the fallback font is automatically rendered.

Fallback fonts are also faster than web fonts. The downside to using fallback fonts is that they waste resources. The fallback font is not visible until three seconds after the page is loaded. This is a common problem when a browser is using a slow connection. With fallback fonts, the user can see a font while waiting for the Webfont to load. This process is known as “font preloading”.

Using the font-display property to avoid layout shifts:

Layout shifts are caused by images that do not fit into the browser’s available space. Browsers allocate space for images only after they have finished downloading. Because images appear later, the layout of the page shifts down. To avoid this, you can specify the image’s dimensions in CSS.

The following article will explain how to use the font-display property in CSS. We will also discuss some other ways to solve the problem. The font-display property allows you to change how custom fonts are rendered on your page. This will prevent layout shifts if the custom font is not visible when the user loads a page.

When the system font loads, it may take up more space than the custom font. To fix this issue, simply reserve the necessary space to load the content. If the custom font is positioned too high on the screen, then it will be visible on the page.


Unexpected layout shifts can ruin the user experience. Unexpected layout shifts often lead to higher bounce rates and lower conversions. Google understands these issues and has made several changes to improve the user experience.

By using the font-display property, you can avoid unexpected layout shifts by using CSS and other techniques. You can also use the font-display property in combination with link rel=preload to avoid layout shifts.

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