A lot of buzz has been created on the web about Information graphs (infographics). They are used as a great marketing tool to communicate messages to target audience.
Infographics have a long history starting from the prehistory period with humans creating cave painting and later maps . They have been used across different areas like web, means of transport, exhibitions, television, magazines etc.
Information graphics aim to present complex information in a clear and instant way. An infographic can certainly make a webpage more pleasant and colourful but this shouldn’t be the only driving force; personally, I don’t like the idea of having an infographic just for the sake of it. An infographic should add value to your page and increase the user experience by serving its purpose; replace block of text and convey complicated information in an easy, pleasant and quick way. Overall, an infographic intends to enhance your message and give a nice visual appearance to your page.
But what makes an infographic effective? Is it all about design? What about usability? Should designers (& marketers) take into consideration usability rules?
Wait a sec…. what is usability of infographics?
Usability in general is defined as: “how well users can learn and use a product to achieve their goals and how satisfied they are with that process” . Infographics’ usability refers to how well the infographic can communicate information to users and how satisfied they are with that experience.
So, from a UX (user experience) point of view, there are issues to consider while creating an infographic:
- Design – Be creative enough to visually represent information in the best way. I am not a designer and I don’t like intervening, as this is not in my field, but design and usability are sometimes inseparable. It goes without saying that design can enhance or overwhelm the information and hence affect the user experience.
- Narrative – Make users feel like they are reading a story. This approach can keep users engaged to your work and allow them to complete their journey.
- Avoid too much text – Bear in mind that an infographic should be a visual representation of the content and not a graph with heavy text.
- Layout – Personally I prefer minimalist layouts. Overwhelmed infographics don’t allow users to focus on the content and break the user’s journey.
- Clients, clients, clients – Definitely clients add their bit while you are creating any piece of work e.g. design, wireframes, infographics…. All you need to do is to keep the balance between yours and clients’ preferences and achieve the best user experience.
- Less is more – Overall keep it simple and add value to your work. “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication” 
All these points can be married together to communicate information in the best way. Below are listed infographics that didn’t manage to convey messages to the audience in a user friendly way:
A vast amount amount of good and bad infgraphics can be found on the below sites:
3. Leonardo Da Vinci