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What does "Ratio Of Headline to Body Font Size" mean


Question

in a smashing magazine article, I read "According to our study, on average, the ratio between the headline and the body copy is around 2.5" - and this is the formula HEADLINE ÷ BODY COPY = 2.5

Does it mean that if my body copy is 16px, by heading one <h1> should be 40px (16 x 2.5). The only reason I think I am wrong is that in the same article and in all the websites I investigated, the body size is 16px and the heading font is 29px or 30px

On the other hand Tim brown says that we should multiply the body text by the golden ratio and select any of the results to be your heading size, is this the same thing but by using 2.5 instead of 1.618?

Can you please help me understand this

2013/05/21
1
1
5/21/2013 10:30:00 AM

Accepted Answer

It doesn't mean anything. Yes you are correct by way of what a ratio is in your understanding of what they're talking about. The better question is why are they talking about it at all?

In the Smashing Magazine article you can view how they conducted the research and the data. You'll find the sites chosen seem completely arbitrary and are far too small of a sample to have any sort of statistical merit. 50 sites out of millions, and these 50 include rather insignificant ones among them such as lessthan100g.com a site I've never even heard of and appears to have little to no activity on it including a twitter that doesn't even exist.

I would look at the data and ratio for purely entertainment and curiosity purpose then do as Joonas said - what looks good.

2013/05/21
2
5/21/2013 11:37:00 AM