I was recently introduced to the world of favicons whilst developing a website. Although subconsciously we use them on a daily basis, their significance can be overlooked by the everyday web visitor. 

What is a Favicon?

A favicon (short for 'favourite icon') is the small image that appears on the left hand side on the tab of the website that you are viewing. The 16x16 pixel icon usually contains the logo, the first letter of the brand, or a generic image that represents the business type.

The image file is placed in the root directory of the website, which will also appear in browsers' viewing history and their bookmarked URLs.

Why Favicons are Important: 

Two benefits of using a favicon make them a must for your brand's online profile: 

1. Branding

Favicons act as your website's logo and are used by the visitor to recognise you. The alternative to a favicon is an image displaying a blank document, and therefore, they work as a great form of identification. 

Additionally, passing on the option to use a favicon can damage your website's credibility, especially when compared to competitors. 

2. Usability 

Favicons are an excellent way to save users time when they are navigating through website history, bookmarked URLs, and what can sometimes be an infinite number of open tabs in their web browser. The image makes identification a quicker process than reading the text containing the website name.