From the eye of an individual who isn’t familiar with graphic design, creating an infographic that’s both effective and appealing can seem unachievable…a task that’s best left to those who have an eye for design. But that’s far from the reality. In this day and age, there are several online tools and resources out there to help beginners like you design infographics for your site, even if you have never done it before.
If you want to create infographics that educate, brief, and engage but don’t know where to start, this blog post is for you.
What Are Infographics & Why Should You Care?
Infographics aren’t that complex to understand. It stems from ‘information’ and ‘graphics’. In most instances, infographics visualize data, timelines, hierarchy, data findings, and several other kinds of information. What makes them useful is that they make complex information a breeze to understand.
Keeping that in mind, there are a variety of reasons why a site owner would want to leverage infographics. This visual content is capable of:
- Compiling long posts, documents, or ebook chapters into a single page.
- Engaging people with enticing visuals that are more pleasing to look at.
- Improving boring text content with illustrative images.
- Simplifying complicated reports.
Love infographics or hate them, they are an in-demand content tactic for attracting and engaging audiences. They’re also one of the most shared types of content and hence one of the fastest and the best ways to communicate information to your visitors. But how many people are familiar with this aspect of graphic design? Not many.
Because not everyone has learned how to create this popular type of content, here’s a step by step guide you can follow to make infographics. Let’s jump in.
Step-By-Step Instructions for Making Infographics Like A Pro
1. Discover an Interesting Topic
Before designing an infographic, ask yourself, why you want to design one, and what information you want to convey. Every shareable infographic should start with an interesting topic. Choose a topic based on the pain points of your audience, what they’re asking about, and what existing ideas could be better communicated and expanded upon. For example, people might be asking what’s the best way to use an iPhone? You could turn the answers into an infographic.
2. Conduct Research
Once you’ve picked a topic, it’s time to carry out research. Search everything you can around the subject starting with the bigger resources, and then move onto the extra pieces of information that may be relevant. It’s also worth mentioning that every site owner shouldn’t be afraid of spending time into this stage, because research is the core aspect of an infographic. And while you’re at it, look for numbers. Numbers and stats perform incredibly well on infographics because they portray a ton of value. Next, incorporate a story. It’s a good idea to bring the infographic to life by considering the bigger picture. Select a metaphor or theme that aligns with all the data you’ve mentioned in an infographic. That way, your infographic will read as an interesting chapter of a book, offering curiosity and a sense of excitement to your audience.
3. Take Inspiration from Existing Designs
After determining the stats, data, and story, it’s time to collect visuals ideas for infographics. Sites like Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Behance have tons of graphics for visual inspiration. Ask yourself, what formats are you drawn to? What styles do you enjoy reading? Which design formats are currently people sharing? How are other infographic publishers conveying stories?
The goal of taking visual inspiration is to ready your mind for the creative parts of an infographic design n, not to simply copy the things you see. Once you take inspiration, ask yourself how it can be enhanced, and why is an infographic successful? Only you can develop an infographic that does justice to your brand or the topic you are aiming to talk about, so take your inspiration and run with it!
4. Start Making Your Infographic
It’s a good idea to take full responsibility for the infographic rather than outsourcing it. Whether you’re just starting or have some design experience, here’s what you can do.
Leverage free tools
Tools like Canva, Visme.co and Infogr.am will allow you to easily launch the design process. There’s also a range of video tutorials if you prefer working in specific software. Next, pick a color scheme. Consider what scheme will portray the topic you’re going to illustrate best and find color palettes that result in the same scheme. You could use a tool like Adobe Kuler for the purpose. In general, there’s going to be three or four main colors and two or three accent colors. Together, they’d make a six color or a five-color scheme that brings both consistency and vibrancy in the final design.
Choose Vital Elements to Highlight
Like in a novel, there are specific parts that are more crucial than the rest of the content. The same rule applies to infographics’ design, which is known as a visual hierarchy. For leveraging this phenomenon, derive subtopics out of the main topic that you’re going to cover, and distinguish every subtopic in a slightly different manner throughout the infographic. Start small and work your way up to the main subject matter.
5. Be Wise When Choosing Images
Here’s the thing: a lot of solopreneurs, nonprofits, small companies, and schools don’t have the capital or equipment to shoot their own high-quality images. So, they end up using stock images. But the following should be kept in mind: Just because you’re going to use stock images, it doesn’t mean you start incorporating cheesy stock images into your infographics. You know what those are. They populate several home pages, corporate websites and B2B Blogs. Visitors can identify these immediately and they’d usually close the webpage and move onto something else.
Fortunately, you can source non-cheesy stock images from sites like Pixabay, Unsplash, and Shutterstock. Even if you have no option left but to use stock images, you could still change them up for the better, so they look good on your infographic. For instance, rarely you’d want to incorporate a whole picture in your infographic. In most instances, you’d want to use a part of a picture. That can be done with the help of image frames; these allow you to insert a cleaner, more rounded design into your infographic template. Additionally, you could add a colored filter on the pictures to make them match the infographic’s color scheme. You could either drape the whole picture or cover part of the picture by using a shape.
6. Add Style to The Layout
This is the exciting part – changing the design to increase the aesthetic appeal of your infographic. Begin with your text. Keep it simple. Think of the design as a visual excerpt – the text has to be there for supplementing the images and explaining major concepts. However, it could be kept at a grade 6 reading level, with short paragraphs. Also, a readable font should be used for the majority of the text.
Other than that, insert some extra graphic elements to provide the infographic’s compositions some visual interest and rhythm. Another thing you can do is incorporate icons for reinforcing vital concepts from the infographic’s text. Keep the style, size, and color consistency, and use additional background shapes to keep things together. However, make sure to align the repeated elements while you’re at it.
7. Incorporate Negative Space in The Design
White or negative space refers to the aspects of a webpage that don’t include any images or text. Ask any designer and they’d tell you that the negative space is just as crucial as any other design element. Just as you snap a picture, you try leaving space on both sides of the subject, you should consider leaving some space around every primary element grouping in your design. That implies making sure that the infographic’s edges have margins around them.
8. Inset a Call to Action (CTA) and Give Attributions
This is the last step. Your infographic contains noteworthy data and has a beautiful design, so it’s the ideal time to add the important call to action button that will instruct the viewers into doing what you want them to do next. Should they share the infographic? Or sign up for a subscription? Or enroll to receive your email newsletter? What’s that one thing you want them to do?
Ideally, you could ask them to share the infographic. And to save yourself to legal trouble, give references/credits where they’re due.
While it might look a little challenging at the beginning, it’s entirely possible to make an infographic on your own. Begin with your main idea or topic, and invest time into researching it, because all great infographics include data. Then, choose a design service or app that you find easy, and incorporate the story you want readers to listen. Lastly, get a second option and then publish it for the world to see.