When people first design infographics to promote their business, they frequently wonder where they should get the data from. This thought comes from the understandable, but somewhat misguided belief that all infographics must contain complex data visualization. These are visual representations of hard numbers, such as bar charts, pie charts, and scatter graphs. While these visual elements can help clarify confusing figures, they aren’t always necessary in order to create winning visual content.
Here are four ways you can create a killer infographic, even if you don’t have a single statistic on hand.
1) Clarify A Process
The world only works because of countless, elaborate, step-by-step processes. Think of the process of how a bill becomes a law. Or the process of how gasoline powers a car’s engine. Or the process of a debit card transaction withdrawing money from your checking account. Despite how important they all are, these processes are bewildering to everybody who doesn’t work in those fields.
Processes are difficult to explain in words, but they can be effectively communicated by laying out the process visually. By visually representing every step, and showing how each step leads into the next one in an infographic, you can make even the most convoluted process sensible.
For example, take a look at the infographic Steps To Take: Debt Consolidation to Bankruptcy. It shows each step a person in uncontrollable debt should take in order to regain control of their finances. While climbing out of debt is confusing and stressful for people who aren’t financial advisors, it clarifies when a person should seek debt consolidation, credit counseling, or bankruptcy.
2) Create A Buying Guide
Barry Schwartz, author of The Paradox of Choice, observed that “Learning to choose is hard. Learning to choose well is harder. And learning to choose well in a world of unlimited possibilities is harder still, perhaps too hard.”
We all want to get the most bang for our budget, whether we’re buying a a new pen or a new house. But when confronted with a vast sea of options for every product we buy, we can never know if we’re truly making the smart choice. A well-constructed infographic can help consumers better understand their options.
For example, look at the infographic The Complete Guide To Picking Out A Sunscreen. When sun worshippers go the sunscreen aisle in a supermarket, they’re confronted with dozens of choices. How can they possibly pick? This guide helps consumers make sense of the terms on those bottles, like “SPF,” “Broad Spectrum,” and “Water Resistant.” Plus it explains the difference between all of the chemicals on the ingredients list.
3) Compare Two Options
Modern, web friendly infographics have to be as wide as a blog post, but can be as long as you want them to be. That makes them a perfect format for a side by side comparison chart. By adding illustrations and playing with the typography, you can make a simple comparison between two things more dynamic. For example, check out the infographic Where the US Presidential Candidates Stand on Health Care. It explains in simple terms where Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump stood on health care issues in the run up to yesterday’s presidential election. Simply seeing it in infographic format helps clarify how they differ on policy.
4) Tell The History Of your Industry
The vertically-oriented design of web infographics also makes them a perfect format for a timeline. The history of an industry can quickly risk becoming boring if explained in mere words. But if that same history is laid out in a timeline, complete with illustrations or historical photos, it can reveal how your industry evolved. For example, look at the infographic The Evolution of Bridal Lingerie. It explains how fashion in that industry changed from decade to decade, cleverly using visuals to show the clothing in each era.
Think Outside Of The Box Of Data
Infographics can tell your brand’s story, educate your ideal customers, and position you as an expert. While raw data can be helpful in achieving those goals, it’s hardly necessary. With or without data, there are endless creative ways to make an infographic accomplish things that typical written content just can’t.