Characteristics That Make Infographics Go From Good To Great

As competition between businesses increases in the online sphere, more businesses now look to implement advanced tools and technology to consolidate their presence. Though the audience for Web has grown exponentially during past few years, the fact remains that, people do not read each and every word that is published on the website. Rather, they will just skim through the content to look for bits of information that excites them. To fix this, web design experts in the web development industry have come up with infographics which helps them in transforming dull or unexciting content into ‘digestible’ and attractive visuals.

Apart from the content, these infographics also vary to a great extent in terms of design. However, some characteristics remain common to each of the infographics creates.

Value

Web design services lay a great deal of importance on the value of info-graphics. Like any other content on the web, even info-graphics should be necessarily delivering value. For this, the web designer will highlight certain subject matter for capturing the reader’s attention and also inspiring art direction. Paycor has done a commendable job with its infographic created for Payroll and Tax Deductions. In this, they answer a dynamic question (What is taken out from your paycheck?) in an easy-to-read and intuitive design.

Data Accuracy

Data accuracy has to be an integral characteristic for the infographic created by your web designer or web developer. As per a report released by one infographic from The Atlantic, nearly 95 percent of all info-graphics are stuffed with misleading or incorrect information. To create effective info-graphics, the focus should be on cross-checking all the facts that the website design firm wants to incorporate in the infographic. For instance, you may observe that one research has reported that nearly 80 percent of buyers are interested in your product. On the other hand, five other research studies claim that only 50 percent of consumers are interested. By being little more careful on the front end, your business can win reader’s confidence for the long term.

Clear Visual Path

As mentioned above, the sole reason why an infographic is created is to convert a complicated or a dull topic in an attractive and clear format that excites the reader. One common mistake committed by many web designers is that they do not give enough importance to user flow. To put it in simple words, it is essential that the developer guides the reader while digesting the data in an effortless and seamless manner.

Readability

More often than not, a website that is featuring an infographic will, at a bare minium, incorporate at least one teaser image (thumbnail) for alluring the reader to view the data in full. For instance, the reader can either externally open the link or choose to locally enlarge it and view.

Shareable & Accessible

The infographic’s share-ability and accessibility can be enhanced by offering readers an HTML-enbed code as well as seamless connectivity to key social networking platforms and a lot more. Infographics need to be embedded correctly in the website, in a way that does not obstruct clear navigation of the website.

Infographics – The Good, The Bad, The New Perspective

We all prefer graphical representations to long textual facts and figures. The reason being that they are more interesting and give a consolidated glimpse of the data which can be compared easily. Even statistics have proven that 40% of the audience respond better to visual representations in comparison to text based information. This may be attributed to the fact that the human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text. Infographics are being shared over social media and are getting good responses from the users. While many may believe that the use of infographics is fairly new, it is safe to say that similar representations have been in existence since ages. However the problem with infographics is that the more they are used, the more chances exist for them to become so common that they may lose popularity with the masses and eventually resulting in weakened marketing efforts. The only way to ensure effective use of infographics is to constantly innovate and understand the finer nuances associated with visual representation of complex or lengthy data.

The Good:

  • The most alluring aspect of infographics is the visual appeal and simplicity of presentation. While becoming overly creative may seem to be a good strategic approach, most users prefer simple presentations that have clarity and can easily be understood for comparison.
  • Considering the benefits of infographics in online marketing, it aids the SEO functions by earning incoming links in accordance with subsequent increase in traction.
  • Being a visual representation, the inclusion of the brand’s logo would go a long way in promoting and sustaining market position for the business. However this requires proper placement of the logo within the acceptable confines of premium positioning in the infographic.
  • Another benefit pertains to the portrayal of one’s expertise which is achieved by making an effective comparison of internal data with data from the applicable industry, thereby providing a comprehensive portrayal of well researched data.

The Bad:

  • Infographics that are used solely for the purpose of increasing “linkbaits” have often resulted in poorly executed efforts. It is due to such poorly executed content that infographics having immense potential are not given due consideration.
  • In keeping with the amount of research required and the manner in which it is presented to the customers, infographics may be an expensive undertaking for small businesses. The costs incurred are high only when extremely striking infographics are to be made. Simple representations can be made at lower costs.
  • It is not uncommon for unrealistic expectations to be kept from infographics wherein the purpose tends to become focused on making the content viral rather than emphasizing on proper content creation with backed up facts and statistics to prove its worth. It is this expectation which at times has been known to cause more harm than good.
  • While it is feasible to outsource data for statistical representation, its use may not reflect the actual points of concern for the customers. In order to manage this, it is better to conduct research by identifying key points that have direct impact on the business as well as the consumers.

The New Perspective:

Simplicity shall always hold priority for creating impressive infographics. Proof of this may be seen in the infographic created by Dell which utilized a yes / no based flowchart for captivating the interests of programmers who are familiar with this type of representation. This helped the company to connect with its audience and potential customers. Current trends in infographics indicate the those with longer layouts with vertical flow of data would be successful in retaining their effectiveness in communicating the information to the audience. While the best practices for infographics may have possible differing aspects, the need for incorporating innovative methods to captivate audiences has gained paramount significance especially in light of the widespread use of infographics which poses the risk of obsoletion.

The infographic designs that are presented currently mainly comprise of static graphical representation of data that is provided in interesting ways to the audience. However, there is a dire need for improving the presentation methods for achieving the next level of infographics. One such possible approach would be to use Parallax Scrolling which is the key transition for conventional designs to be presented as interactive web pages. The reason behind its potential effectiveness lies in the fact that the images in the foreground move either slowly or independently in comparison to the images in the background. This results in an interactive experience for the user wherein the content needs to be scrolled or moved in order to see further information.

Some of the benefits of using this relatively new approach include enhanced interaction, better user retention, faster captivating rates, and increased sharing of content. This is really crucial in driving more traffic to the intended web pages. Another benefit of using parallax scrolling pertains to the fact that the text can be made to crawl. This facility enables infographics to be positioned at the bottom of the layout and transcribing it accordingly. Additionally, internal links from the content itself may be provided which is practically better than transcribing the same.

From the marketing perspective, parallax scrolling enables infographic to be re-purposed easily. This results in the infographic being submitted to dedicated directories, online document sharing platforms and creation of micro-blogs, There is even the possibility of these infographics being turned into video presentations if the content and its purpose permits it. The question about parallax scrolling becoming the infographic template of the future still remains unanswered but possibilities are constrained only by the limits of one’s creativity.

What Are Business Infographics?

Infographics, in one form or another, have been around for many years. They are used by businesses, media, government or brands to convey information, data or knowledge in a visual manner. The basic premise of an infographic is as follows:

– Condense large amounts of information into an easily absorbable form
– Display data and information through use of visual elements
– Combine these elements to present an overriding message or insight

Two common examples of an infographic that you might see most days are a subway map, or the T.V. weather report. Both use graphical elements to represent things such as weather patterns and rail lines, and have an explicit, functional message they need to convey. They follow the archetype structure of the infographic, made up of three parts – the visual, the content, and the knowledge.

Visual

This covers the colors and graphics used on an infographic. Graphics can either represent specific pieces of data (theme graphics), or point towards particular areas of information (reference graphics).

Content

All the information you need to convey the main message. Facts, figures, and statistical breakdowns.

Knowledge

This is the message you want to convey to the reader. In the two examples previously mentioned, this would be informing viewers of the coming weather forecast, and instruct commuters on how to reach their destination.

Infographics have become ubiquitous with modern day communication. This can be understood as the internet and social media providing a great platform for a communication method that shows information quickly and simply in a visual manner; and also as a necessity due to a trend towards a lower attention span from internet users.

It is no surprise that this effective form of communication is used in all forms of business, for a variety of tasks. An infographic is suitable for whenever you need to convey data or a corporate message to the workforce.

A sales team might want to show their performance over a certain time period, with a breakdown of different products/divisions/locations. Charts, graphs, and other indicators can be used to display corporate data and statistics, and split information into clearly defined sub-sections.

Management might want to communicate a basic workflow for each division of the company, visualize business strategy and decision processes, or display a certain business training concept. In this case, an infographic can be more text heavy, and use illustrations to establish a timeline, process, or step-by-step sequence of events.

The marketing side of a business can use infographics to relay information and marketing strategies internally amongst the workforce, or as a tool to educate consumers about the business model or product.

The benefits of using such a visual method to convey your business ideas are tied to what we know about human behavior when learning or processing new information. The majority of people are termed as ‘visual learners’ – so infographics have a broader influence than other methods of communication. Vision is our dominant sense; we process images faster than text, and can much more easily retain information that is accompanied by a visual cue. So a well designed infographic has the power to be more persuasive and striking than a simple block of text. They are user-friendly to design – large amounts of information can be divided and shown in a clean, effective manner. Graphics and icons are eye-catching, and easy to understand without the need for too much context.