Infographics are extremely important for anyone who designs a website or even a Twitter profile.
In this article, we explain not only the importance of infographics as visual presentations of information that the administrator wishes to display but ways to use them.
After having read this article, we hope that you will know how to make your infographics more exciting and engaging to the viewer. When this is achieved, you will have also given the viewer information that will stick in the memory and stay with that individual permanently.
In addition to that, we explore the possibilities offered by infographics in practical use.
- Infographics may be a presentation of the user’s content. They may express the user’s messages regardless of their complexity to viewers is such a manner as to make them easy to comprehend.
- Infographics may also include images in addition to written content. But infographics by definition convey a message or idea that is self-contained.
- It is important not to present too much information making as presentation too difficult to absorb. Infographics should rather compress information and display it in such a pleasing, easy-to-understand manner in order to ensure that no one will misunderstand the message.
- The beauty of infographics is their ability to quickly, and very clearly present sometimes quite complex data to the viewer in such a manner that there is no misunderstanding. In addition, worldwide viewers understand and can, therefore, be considered internationally effective. Mere words alone could never have so dramatic an impact on visitors to a given website.
Infographics is the key to great website design. But going even further, infographics is equally important in laying out a Twitter profile Some of the opportunities offered by good infographics are:
- To present a message
- To analyze data
- To discover relationships
- To monitor certain parameters and their routes
- Infographics open doors that have never before been opened and offer the possibility for the viewer to analyze complex data and other information in a manner that make the information easy to understand in its most compact form. This may be graphs, pictures, or through animated drawings.
The three important elements that form the composition of infographics are:
Colour is of vital importance. Colour has a dramatic impact on the viewer. It is therefore important to choose colours that will please the eye and possibly even have considerable influence on the viewer.
These may be arrows or other “wingdings” that lead the viewer from one idea to the next in an orderly manner and from that to the conclusion.
As stated earlier, graphics play a most important role in the presentation of ideas. It doesn’t matter if it’s a PowerPoint presentation, a Facebook or Twitter profile, your own blog or your business enterprise. The proper use of graphics can make or break the difference in your success.
A great idea for those who are not sure would be to visit other websites, not with the limited idea of buying something as most visitors do, but with the idea of studying the overall appearance of the site. What makes it appealing? What colours are predominant? What is the layout?
When a website is well planned having taken colours, fonts, pictures, etc. into account, it is much more likely to attract more visitors than an amateurish website pieced together in a haphazard way that screams novice.
Content is also composed of three important elements:
A time period
Content must have a timeline.
Statistics and all information relating to the subject.
Whatever the subject, the background should be researched and links provided as the viewer moves along from on point to the next.
Ancillary information including references.
As an adjunct to the above, the builder or designer of a website should research the subject thoroughly. Through the internet, a person may quickly and easily research any aspect of any subject. You can easily and quickly accomplish this without leaving the computer and all in a matter of a few minutes. What you learn in a few minutes can amply reward you by indicating a path you might want to follow in the design of your site.
Once a school teacher said that in researching material for class, she often learned more than her students.
The usefulness of the internet should never be forgotten when presenting an idea or a product.
Infographics include any and all facts related to the content.
Having said this, it is important not to pack too many facts or other information onto one page. You have to be constantly aware that what the visitor sees may instantly determine whether or not he/she will read further or return to your webpage.
Infographics: A Brief History
Long before the age of the computer, early man was using infographics. Perhaps ancient peoples didn’t call their work infographics, but as early as five thousand years ago people were creating cave paintings to express their messages.
Five thousand years ago, Egyptians used infographics in the form of hieroglyphics to communicate with those who would come later.
Even later, masters such as Leonardo da Vinci created an infographic in a text in which he combined content with drawings.
William Playfair published The Commercial and Political Atlas in 1786. In this volume, we have what may be considered the first example of our modern infographics. Following this Otto Neurath spend a lifetime trying to create what he hoped would be a language without words through what would be an international system of typographic pictures.
Here in the United States, a number of publishers began using infographics. This included The Chicago Tribune, Fortune magazine as well as The New York Times.
Of course, the birth of the computer instantly formed a new and exciting realm of possibilities for web developers. Newspapers had less and less need for skilled artists and relied more and more on programs such as “MacDraw” from Apple.
The Gallop Organization initiated the first deep investigation into the possibilities of infographics. Their possibly not surprising conclusion was that graphic elements always capture more attention and leave a greater impression on viewers than words alone in any presentations. Bearing that consciously in mind, the designer will constantly direct attention to every aspect of the presentation: Colour, Font size, and style, Arrangement in order of graphics and printed material leading to the desired impact upon the reader.
As may be seen from the above, the Internet and Infographics form an alliance made in heaven. To expand upon the statement made above more clearly, a few words of explanation may help.
Infographics come in more than one type
- Explanation. There is the infographic that explains the relationships between the moment of concept and the physical expression. It is cause and effect. As an example the study of causes of our most recent recession and effect on the global economy.
- Timeline. One may present infographics in the form of a timeline. This method would follow a particular event from the moment in time when it happened and continue to follow it through time to its conclusion. In doing this, the viewer would be in a position to analyse the relationship between various stages of a given process by following a timeline. As an example, the growth in sales by each agent of a product over a period expressed in a graph. This would be a chronological infographic.
- Data as statistics. In order to be able to express considerable statistical data quickly and clearly, you might make use of charts, tables, lists and graphs. Pie charts are sometimes useful. Any or all of these are useful to summarise a great deal of data making it easy for the viewer to absorb and understand.
- Navigators. Infographic navigators are another useful tool for infographics. The viewer is able to navigate easily through all necessary information. This may be done by forming one bit of information in such a way that it leads the viewer to the next, or through the use of arrows and icons or links.
- Visualisation. Through the use of infographics, it is easy for anyone instantly to visualise a procedure clearly without the tedium of having to read through sometimes lengthy instructions.
Our world grows smaller each day with people of many languages traveling through other countries. With this new world comes a new way of communication. More and more we see public information posted in the form of infographics, iconic pictures that are readily understandable in any language. This may be something as simple as the depiction of a hand throwing trash into a trashcan to indicate a waste container, or a drawing of a soft drink, etc. to indicate a snack bar. Restrooms are indicated by depictions of men, women, or increasingly today, simply both to indicate that anyone may use them.
Industry now has come to use infographics much more frequently than the simple depiction of a human figure on the door of a restroom or a stylized figure that expresses the idea that a particular facility, even restaurant seating, is accessible to handicapped persons. Procedures for the appearance of the various dishes are posted in colour photos so that employees need only glance at them to understand the way a certain dish should appear before the diner.
Visual infographics may be divided into three categories
The Static Infographic
This class of infographics offers a quick, easy informational package that is in itself complete and will have an immediate positive impact on the viewer. Product manuals are commonly used in this way so those language barriers are eliminated.
The Motion Infographic
This is the type of infographic used constantly in the motion picture industry as well as in presentations. Using this method, the information is presented in sequence and in an ongoing manner. This might include such presentations as animated graphics and the popular program PowerPoint.
- Last, there are the interactive infographics. Interactive infographics offer an opportunity for the viewer to participate in use of the program. As an example, a website may offer information that is both simulated and instructive. This might be quite complex and engaging.
When designing a website, it is better to keep all infographics as simple as possible. The infographics should be presented in a concise and clear manner. Well-organised graphics offer visual simplicity will ensure that visitors quickly and easily understand.
Where possible, the designer should point out the relationships between cause and effect in the presentation. Through infographics, a designer may reach viewers throughout the world as well as enable them to express their thoughts through comment boxes.
It is important that the designer has a clear idea in mind for the presentation, and limit it to that. Attempting to convey too much information at one time is self-defeating. It must be remembered that the average person does not have a long span of attention. Trying to offer too much too soon can only befuddle the viewer and ultimately lose him/her.
The designer may visualise the best way to engage the viewer with the best and shortest way is much more likely to have a positive impact on the visitor than too many questions or too much information all bundled together.
It should be remembered that for most people, colour plays a major role in decision-making. A web designer must be aware of this and take advantage of the opportunities to use colour in order to have a positive influence on visitors. Choosing colours is of an importance that cannot be underestimated.
.It is pleasant to play around with different fonts as well as with different sizes. Although in the finished website too many different fonts should be avoided, any designer should be able to see two or three that go well together and offer a pleasing effect on the eye while conveying the desired information to the reader.
The designer should present information that will ensure that the viewer comes to the desired conclusion. A well-designed infographic will permit the reader to learn more and acquire more data if they have an interest. It is well to present relevant links along with each part of the infographic.