A favicon is a small image that is used by a browser to show the image of the website being visited. Isn’t this similar to a logo? Yes and no, a favicon acts like a logo in the sense it brands your website. A favicon though is very small and is only used in a web browser. In fact a favicon is usually only 16 pixels by 16 pixels, which is why they are usually very simple yet relevant to the overall look and feel of the website.
A favicon was first used by Internet Explorer to track favorites or bookmarks you created. The word itself is made of two words “favorite” and “icon.” Favicons were also used to estimate website visitors by counting the number of bookmarks for a particular page.
Favicons now are an important part of the user experience. All major browsers use favicons in the browser address bar, link bar, bookmarking area, browser tabs, and even in a shortcut on your desktop. If you don’t have one a generic one will appear instead and is not the best experience for the user visiting your website. Most online branding is a daunting and challenging task. A favicon is a simple and easy way to raise brand awareness.
How do you create a favicon? You can use any image editors with a ico file extension save option. There is an extension for Photoshop that you can download here athttp://www.telegraphics.com.au/sw/. Even easier there are many favicon generators out there. Simply upload an image and download the favicon file. One of our favorites is www.favicon-generator.org.
So I have a favicon, how do I use it?
- Insert the proper code into the HEAD section of your website. It should look similar to this code.
- Upload the favicon and the files with the added code to your server
- Enjoy your new favicon
Favicons are proof that great things come in small packages. They are small yet very effective from a user perspective, demonstrating attention to detail from a branding perspective. Bottom line is use and create favicons, and your website visitors and clients will appreciate this kind of detail and professionalism.