What’s Hot Now: Infographics for Your Site

Nothing seems to be hotter right now than the infographic.

You can thank Pinterest for allowing us to share them all and startups like Visual.ly for helping designers everywhere create data stories with ease.

How do you use the infographic trend on your website?

What is an Infographic?

Any visual representation of information is considered to be an infographic. They come in a variety of forms – data, text with images, even those popular memes.

What’s great about infographics is that they provide a way to present information that is easy for the user. Without a lot of heavy reading, a person can potentially get a lot of information about a certain topic through a combination of text and visuals. What’s more is that infographics can be a fun way to present information.

Infographics can be a great way to present information and combat the ever-decreasing attention spans of users. They are often sharable and can bring traffic back to your site when distributed over social media. No one can guess what will make a particular infographic popular but it is usually a combination of great information, search engine optimization, social media (and marketing) and visual interest.

The caution that goes along with using infographics is time. Often many infographics only last for a short time before the “newness” and effectiveness wears off. They may need to be updated often as information or data changes.

Making Infographics Work

To really make the most of an infographic you need a couple of key components – content (data, numbers or quick facts), visual elements and interest.

Creating an infographic can be about more though than just making an image that you will use to promote your site. You can use the trend to create a design for your site itself with a concept that focuses on big design.

Think of styling your landing page with big information and charts. Consider breaking some of the traditional rules and add an extra typeface or color to create a page with high visual interest. Use white (or empty) space to your advantage to showcase your data visualization.

When working with an infographic-styled web design, think about using the concept just for a landing page. Consider the scroll (and responsiveness). For an infographic to have the most impact it needs to be readable at a glance.

5 Tips for Success

Start with a great bit of information. What content do you have that people will love? A cool fact? Interesting numbers? Something totally odd or unusual?

Figure out how to represent that information. What are they key facts you want to share?

Gather great visuals. From photos to charts and graphics, the visuals are really what make an infographic work. Lacking great visual content? Opt for striking colors or fonts to create an artistic display for your information.

Do your homework. Make sure your infographic is accurate and the content corresponds to your site. (You do want people to share and visit your site, right?) Be an authority on your topic. Use a voice and language that speaks with authority and in simple statements.

Write tight and edit. Fewer words are better. But your infographic must be understandable. Edit your copy, let it rest for a little while and edit it again. Good, clean, simple copy is very important.

Infographic Tools

There are a couple of options for creating great infographics (and infographic-based design schemes) – you can draw everything from scratch, use a tool that creates a graphic for you or a combination of the two. Many designers like option No. 3. By using some ready-made tools, creating graphics is quicker and easier than drawing by hand, plus they have the control that automated tools don’t allow.

Here are two great tools to get you started.

visual.ly

Visual.ly: This tool allows you to convert data into a visual form quickly and easily. The tool is used by agencies, brands and businesses to help create super-graphics in no time. The tools are sharp, easy to use and come packed with tools to help you share across a variety of social platforms. (Visual.ly infographics are popular and gaining traction all the time; they can be found all over the web.) Infographics can also be embedded into your website. This tool, though, is not for building a site; it is a component piece that is promoted as a tool to drive traffic back to your site.

Magnolia Elements Pack

Magnolia Elements Pack: This data visualization element kit is packed with tools and is the perfect starting point for any designer who wants to build infographics or a site based on an infographic style of design. This set of elements includes more than 150 ready-to-use items – graphs, charts, diagrams, lines, table, shapes, icons, arrows and more – that can be further customized for almost any projects. The great part of this vector-based kit is that it works for everything. The tools work for creating simple stand-alone infographics or websites and the designer has complete control over how the final product looks – from colors to shapes to typefaces to size. All you need to make this work for you is a bit of inspiration and imagination!

Conclusion

The infographic style is fun, trendy and informational. If your site contains data, numbers or even just a few facts, this style can be a great tool.

Consider using an infographic to drive traffic or catch a user’s eye as a landing page.

And don’t forget to try some of the cool tools out there. Not every infographic will be successful. Using tools to help you create infographics quickly is a great place to start so you don’t invest too much time in something that may have a short shelf life.

Carrie Cousins has more than 10 years experience in the communications industry, including writing for print and online publications, and design and editing. You can connect with her on Twitter @carriecousins and Google+.

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4 Comments
  1. Jason Jan 12, 6:30 pm

    Is there are any other tools that can be used to create infographics. Because Magnolia Elements Pack is bit costlier for beginners I think.

    Reply
    +1
  2. Mildred Fierce Jan 21, 5:56 pm

    Most of these examples so not qualify as infographics in any meaningful sense of the word. They are illustrations.

    Reply
    +2
    • Gordon Hatusupy Feb 2, 12:56 pm

      Totally agree. The only valid example of information design are the Snowbird visualisations.

      Reply
      +1

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