Display Prices in Smaller Font Sizes

Customers equate visual size with numerical size.

$30 original price with $25 sale price that is a smaller font size


Prices seem cheaper in smaller font sizes.


  • Misattribution. If you see $50 in a large font, you think: Hmm, how big is this price? Something feels big. The price must be high.
  • Processing Ease. Customers are faster to evaluate sizes, especially when a sale price is visually smaller than a retail price (Coulter & Coulter, 2005).
  • More Attention. Based on eye tracking, customers pay more attention to promotions when they see different font sizes between prices (Aggarwal & Vaidyanathan, 2016).

I've seen big wins from A/B testing this principle in the field.

But large fonts can work too (Bhattacharyya, Jha, Guha, & Biswas, 2023).

$59.99 in large font with "reg $69.99" in small font

So which size is better:

  • Use Small Fonts to Convey a Good Deal. Small fonts orient customers toward the larger retail price, depicting a better deal (Aggarwal & Vaidyanathan, 2016). Therefore, use small fonts for price-sensitive customers or steep discounts.
  • Use Large Fonts to Convey a Good Product. Large fonts orient customers toward the product messaging (Aggarwal & Vaidyanathan, 2016). Therefore, use large fonts for value-sensitive customers or shallow discounts.

Other takeaways:

  • Insert Any Font Size Difference. Small fonts are persuasive, but they can look weird in some scenarios, as if you're trying to hide a price. In these scenarios, try enlarging the font size. Any font difference captures attention and increases willingness to buy.
  • Insert a Reference Point. Sizes are relative You need something (e.g., large font of retail price) to trigger this effect. Perhaps a large shape could work too.
  • Use Large Fonts With Multiple Products. We've been considering a discounted price and retail price, but what if you're showing multiple products, like SaaS plans? Perhaps large fonts work better because the differences feel larger: Hmm, how big is the price difference between these products? Something feels big. The difference must be big.

  • Aggarwal, P., & Vaidyanathan, R. (2016). Is font size a big deal? A transaction–acquisition utility perspective on comparative price promotions. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 33(6), 408-416.
  • Bhattacharyya, A., Jha, S., Guha, A., & Biswas, A. (2023). Should firms display the sale price using larger font?. Journal of Retailing, 99(1), 17-25.
  • Coulter, K. S., & Coulter, R. A. (2005). Size does matter: The effects of magnitude representation congruency on price perceptions and purchase likelihood. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 15(1), 64-76.