How Important Is A Favicon?

I received an interesting email from a reader who made a point that I honestly haven’t thought much of until now. The reader had visited one of my websites and said that he felt it didn’t look as professional because it didn’t have a favicon.

Just to make sure we’re all on the same page, a favicon is the little icon you see next to the URL in your browser. For example, on my blog here you can see the little circle with my face in it.

I have never cared too much about favicons however this really got me thinking, and evaluating other sites. It does look like just about every major website does have a favicon and now that I look at it a bit deeper, I do think it adds to the overall branding of the site.

So my question to all of you is, how important is a favicon?

{ 10 comments… add one }

  • WPHead February 16, 2012, 6:38 pm

    I’d say it’s important mostly due to the fact that most RSS reader apps, whether they’re for your comp or phone, display the favicon next to the feed. So, the favicon is an easy way for the reader to identify your blog, site, or brand.

    • Morgan Linton February 16, 2012, 6:39 pm

      Really good point – definitely makes sense!

    • adamstrong February 20, 2012, 11:12 am

      I’ll add bookmarks to this. Just today I was trying to organize my bookmarks and the ones with favicons really make that easier. As a bonus for those sites it definitely drew my eye in and made me want to go back to those sites. . . .

  • John Kenney February 16, 2012, 6:50 pm

    Important. If you have multiple tabs in your browser, the favicon is a key mechanism for remembering what’s in each tab and I think it speaks to professionalism as well. If you have just the default icon for Wordpress or Drupal or Joomla, that looks weak. Just today I was advising my brother to spruce up the favicon on his site – it wasn’t consistent with the branding of his site.

    • Morgan Linton February 17, 2012, 1:10 am

      Excellent point John – thanks for sharing!

  • James February 16, 2012, 7:00 pm

    In addition to RSS as already mentioned, it also shows up as the icon for anyone who bookmarks the site. Definitely reinforces branding and it takes 1 minute to make and install one (with photoshop and drag and drop FTP). No reason not to!

    • Morgan Linton February 17, 2012, 1:11 am

      Good point James, it really does seem like this should just be a standard part of my development process…with 220+ sites it’s going to take a while, but about time for me to do this based on the feedback I’ve heard so far!

  • impulsecorp February 18, 2012, 8:34 am

    I rarely use favicons, but one thing I have noticed is that when I check the server error logs for each of my sites that don’t have favicons, there are always lots of errors showing the favicon did not load. I guess the user’s browser automatically tries to load it every time they go to my site. When I upload a favicon to the site, the error goes away.

    • Morgan Linton February 19, 2012, 4:42 pm

      Thanks for sharing Eric – that is interesting to note, I guess it does show that in general it has become something that is expected.

  • Favilandia January 25, 2015, 6:58 am

    Excellent article. Thanks for sharing! 🙂


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