What is an Infographic?
Put simply, an infographic is a visual representation of data – a collection of images, charts, graphs and text that serves to communicate something in a striking, unambiguous manner. And they are growing in popularity. Infographics are much more likely to grab someone’s attention than, say, a big slab of text or an email newsletter. Their prominence on social media, especially with regard to spreading knowledge about the Black Lives Matter movement, has been particularly striking. If you haven’t already, it is about time to get familiar with infographics, and how you can use them for your ecommerce website design to full effect.
Produce Original Content
An obvious one, I know, but infographics with data taken from an external source will never cause a big splash. Creating a new statistic or chart of some sort, based off your own proprietary information, gives the infographic a strong veneer of credibility. You are communicating something fresh, interesting and uniquely yours to the customer. One processes statistics and percentages much better when they are presented visually, but only if they are relevant and presented clearly. The combination of good colours, smart illustration and engaging numbers makes for a successful infographic.
Create a Narrative Ark
While statistics, charts and graphs are all useful when it comes to infographics, the act of merely clumping them together in uncoordinated fashion culminates in a decidedly unappealing result. Nobody, really, wants to read a load of data mashed into a small space. That is why creating a narrative ark, clearly taking the viewer from A to B, is a fundamental aspect of any infographic. You have to tell the reader a story, with all the ideas nicely integrated. Even if the infographic is just glanced at for a few seconds, the reader needs to be able to easily spot the flow from start to finish.
Choose an Appropriate File Name
You may be wondering how exactly infographics generate considerably more backlinks than blogs. The text inside the infographic, after all, does not get picked up by Google. However, the file name for each infographic is one of the main aspects that Google will look at to determine what your infographic is about and where it therefore belongs on its search engine. This means that a file name such as chart02.png, or anything vague, is a bad idea. It tells Google nothing about your infographic and will significantly damage your SEO ranking. Make sure that your file names are therefore short and clear, leaving Google with no questions regarding the subject of your infographic.
Optimise URL and Meta Descriptions
Your URL and meta descriptions are also fundamental when it comes to SEO. Google takes into account the URL length and path, as well as its keyword, so getting this wrong will mean that your infographic, no matter how beautiful, is a non-starter. You want to aim for a relatively short URL – no more than 60 characters – that contains three to five words. Any more words than that will not be weighted as much by Google’s algorithm.
Meta descriptions – the part that describes the contents of a page when it appears on a search engine – are often vested with less importance than titles and URLs, but their importance to SEO cannot be understated. Getting them right will help your infographic attract more organic traffic on Google’s search engines and gives a more professional look to your ecommerce website design. There are a number of rules to follow with meta descriptions. For instance, meta descriptions should be between 135 and 160 characters in length, include your keyword, accurately describe the infographic at hand, and, of course, have a call to action that encourages people to click through to your website. Abide by these four pillars and you will not go far wrong.
Keep it Simple
The popularity of infographics can be explained by their capacity to convert sticky, complex ideas into a simple visual reference that people, even at just a glance, can understand with ease. It is important to keep this in mind. Making an infographic that has many layers and demands the reader to ‘work’ to understand its message obfuscates the very reason why people liked and used infographics in the first place. And remember, if you cannot explain something in simple terms, you don’t understand it well enough yourself, and if this is the case, you shouldn’t be creating an infographic in the first place. Simplicity, after all, is a point of arrival.
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