Infographic Design

Looking for help creating your own infographics?  Randy’s infographic and data visualziation design company:

InfoNewt Infographic Design

About

Randy Krum infographic designerRandy Krum

President of InfoNewt.
Data Visualization, Infographic Design, Visual Thinking, Product Development and Marketing professional fascinated by good infographics.  Always looking for better ways to get the point across.

DFW DataViz Meetup

Join the Meetup Group if you’re in the Dallas/Fort Worth area!

Search the Cool Infographics site

Custom Search

 

Subscriptions:

 

Feedburner

The Cool Infographics® Gallery:

How to add the
Cool Infographics button to your:

Cool Infographics iOS icon

- iPhone
- iPad
- iPod Touch

 

Read on Flipboard for iPad and iPhone

Featured in the Tech & Science category

Flipboard icon

Twitter Feed
From the Bookstore

Caffeine Poster

The Caffeine Poster infographic

Google Insights

Entries in internet (186)

Friday
Oct102014

5 Great Online Tools for Creating Infographics

Professional infographic designers rely primarily on a core vector graphics software program to create their infographics designs. The main advantage is that all the icons, charts, images, illustrations, and data visualizations are treated as separate objects that can be easily moved, resized, overlapped, and rotated. No matter where you create the individual design elements, the final infographic design is usually put together in a vector graphics program.

Creating infographics using online tools has never been easier. In the last few years a number of online tools have emerged that allow anyone to create great visual content.  Whether you are working on a project for work, personal use, or social media, each new project starts with a template. With the dimensions laid out for you, you can focus your attention on quickly creating effective designs. Search, drag, and publish - it can be that simple.

These new tools are vector graphics applications that run in your browser as a replacement for using an expensive professional desktop application like Adobe Illustrator to put your infographic design together.  Each one offers different tools, image libraries, charts, fonts and templates as a starting point.  None of these have the full capabilities of a professional desktop application, but you probably don’t need that much power to create a simple infographic.

In this article, we take a quick look at 5 of the best online tools for creating infographics: Visme, Canva, Easel.ly, Piktochart, and Infogr.am. All of these tools are evolving quickly, and this is just a snapshot of their current capabilities.

 

Visme screenshot

1) Visme (visme.co)

Visme allows you to create interactive presentations, infographics and other engaging content. With tons of templates, and huge library of free shapes & icons to choose from, Visme has you creating awesome visual content right away.

The templates are set up simply and beautifully. If you wanted, you could just edit the placeholder text, insert your own, and publish your infographic.

One of the greatest aspects of this service is changing percentages within the charts. All you have to do is click on the graphic you would like to change, enter a new number, and the chart changes to reflect the new information automatically. Saving you hours of frustration trying to do it on your own.

Pros:

  • Creates infographics, presentation, animations, ad banners, and custom layouts.

  • Insert and edit chart objects directly by changing the data values.

  • Large library of icons and images.

  • Embed YouTube videos directly into designs.

  • Special pricing for students & teachers.

Cons:

  • The basic free version is limited.

    • Only 3 projects.

    • Must include the Visme logo.

    • Limited access to charts and infograph widgets.

  • JPG download is still in Beta, with a few bugs.

Price: Basic version is free with pricing plans available

 

Canva screenshot

2) Canva (canva.com)

Canva just celebrated their 1-year anniversary last month, and has made a big splash in the online design space.  Your experience kicks off with a great “23 Second Guide to Beautiful Design,” where they walk you through a brief introduction to their design program.

After finishing the brief tutorial, you can start a new design. Canva is filled with options, whether you are working on a project for work, personal, or social media. Each new project comes with a template for the project you choose to work on. With the dimensions done for you, you can focus your attention on creating beautiful designs in seconds.

Pros

  • Excellent (and short) intro tutorial to get you started, and many more on advanced concepts.

  • Templates for social media, blogs, presentations, posters, business cards, invitations, and more.

  • Easy and intuitive to use.

  • Large library of images to choose from.

Cons

  • No editable chart objects. You need to import your own data visualizations as images.

  • Have to pay for different image assets individually, instead of a monthly subscription.

Price: Free, but you have to pay for Pro quality design assets individually

 

Easelly screenshot

3) Easel.ly (www.easel.ly)

Easel.ly is a great program, but lacks some of the guidance, and features, that come standard in other programs.

Easel.ly lacks a “How-To” introduction section to their program, and just kind of throws you into the design process right away. Their focus seems to be primarily based on infographic design. Whereas other programs offer a plethora of design project options.

If you’re just looking to design an infographic, this program will work well. If you want more variety, you’ll have to utilize one of the other programs in this list.

Pros:

  • Free.

  • Very basic design layouts and assets.

  • New charts feature allows some basic editable charts in your design.

  • Easy downloads for JPG and PDF versions.

Cons:

  • Not a very large selection of themes, called “Vhemes”.

  • Small library of image assets. You’ll want to upload your own images and icons.

Price: Free

 

Piktochart screenshot

4) Piktochart (piktochart.com)

Piktochart is one of the best looking programs on this list. All the information you need to get started is provided in their tour.

Their program is easy to use, and offers tons of freedom in building and editing your infographic using their simple graphic tools. They have categorized icons, resizable canvas, design-driven charts, and interactive maps to utilize.  

Their intuitive user interface is where Piktochart truly excels. All the tools you need to create are laid out intelligently, making your new job as a “designer” so much easier.

One of the coolest aspects of this program is that they show how versatile infographics are for different projects. Whether you’re creating for a classroom, office, website, or social media setting - Piktochart gives you the heads up on how to use infographics effectively.

Pros:

  • Themes and templates are of high design quality.

  • Intuitive. Allows you to edit anything and everything with ease.

  • Create infographics, reports, banners and presentations.

  • Embed videos from Youtube and Vimeo in your design.

Cons:

  • Limited selection of free templates. Higher quality templates are available with a Pro account.

  • $29 per month is a high subscription price compared to the others.

Price: Start for free with pricing packages available

 

Infogram screenshot

5) Infogr.am (infogr.am)

Infogr.am has got the best charts. For illustrating data, there are more than 30 different types of charts to choose from. Anything from bubble charts and tree maps to simple pie charts.

Editing data can be easily done in Infogr.am’s built-in spreadsheet, or you can import your own XLS, XLXS and CSV files.  Once your infographic has been edited and beautifully designed, you can save it to your computer as a PNG or PDF file with a paid subscription.

Pros:

  • Ability to create and edit great charts by changing data

  • Built-in Spreadsheet. Can also import your XLS, XLXS and CSV files

  • Widest variety of available chart types

  • Educational and Non-profit pricing plans available

  • Embed videos from Youtube and Vimeo in your design.

Cons:

  • Only creates infographics and charts

  • Small selection of infographic templates

  • No image library, you must upload your own image assets

  • Download options require paid subscription

  • The White Label subscription service is the most expensive options of the group

Price: Basic version is free with pricing plans available

 

Which design sites have you tried? Which tools are your favorites? Post in the comments.

Friday
Sep262014

The Interactive Purriodic Table of Internet Cats

The Interactive Purriodic Table of Internet Cats infographic

The Interactive Purriodic Table of Internet Cats is a fun way to make sure you’re up-to-date on all of the top Internet cat memes!  Just in case that’s something important to you.

Earlier this week, we launched our latest ‘CATSterpiece’: The PURRiodic Table of Internet Cats. The PURRiodic Table is an amazing interactive graphic that serves as a reference point for the internet’s amazing cats.  Within these pages of the interweb, you can find everything you could ever want to know about your favorite feline, all wrapped-up in a baseball card style view (see image of Grumpy Cat below).

The interactive PURRiodic Table allows users to click on an image of any of 50 felines to learn their stories and view their social-media-star stats.  One of our favorite discoveries in putting the PURRiodic Table together was learning that more than half of these cats are rescue cats, which emphasizes the importance of animal adoptions.


Based on data from the Friskies 50: Most Influential Cats, the design obviously builds on the visualization idea of a periodic table.  Grouped by CATegory and ranked using the Friskies data set, each cat is clickable to get more information and all of their social media links.

This is definitely a design built to entertain audiences! The challenge for interactive infographics like this one is s share-ability and Avalaunch Media has done a fantastic job of preprogramming the social media sharing buttons on the infographic landing page to include a static image to include in posts.  

Thanks to Mat for sending in the link!

Wednesday
Jul022014

Secrets of a Killer Blog Post: Images

Secrets of a Killer Blog Post: Images infographic

It can be hard to run a successful blog. Here at Cool Infographics, we strongly believe in graphics and images (big surprise right?). But if you still need a little persuading, the Secrets of a Killer Blog Post: Images infographic can tell you more great things about images and what they can do for your blog.

You already know that well-researched, high-quality content is the backbone of a killer blog post. But don’t underestimate the importance of a strong visual component when you’re composing your latest and greatest update for your audience

The human brain processes images in as little as 13 milliseconds—less than the blink of an eye.

A post with an image is far more enticing to the bounce-happy readers of the Internet than one without, and is more likely to be shared on social media as well.

There’s a lot of information in this one!  Everything this design mentions about photos and images applies to posting infographics as well.

Published by whoishostingthis.com

Tuesday
Jun032014

What the Heck is a Bitcoin

What the Heck is a Bitcoin infographic

The Bitcoin is the first widely traded digital crypto-currency that is decentralized and unregulated. Find out more from the What the Heck is a Bitcoin infographic by SumAll.

Exchanges rising and falling, disputes over inventorship, wild accusations, rapid inflation and deflation, anger, confusion, and sadness. We’re talking about everyone’s favorite unicorn money: Bitcoin. Bitcoin’s six year road to the spotlight has been fraught with more turbulence than a flight through a hurricane in a Learjet, and since mid 2013 it’s only gotten more crazy.

SumAll has just added bitcoin exchanges, mining pools, and mining workers to our range of data platforms to allow our customers to keep tabs on the market and the progress of mining pools. For those who own or mine bitcoins, SumAll is now their one-stop-shop for keeping tabs on all things bitcoin, monitoring their mining efforts, and keeping a close watch over their investments.

For those who don’t own or mine bitcoins, chances are you have no idea what we’re talking about.

If you have an interest in bitcoins and don’t want to be that out-of-the-loop guy at the party who just keeps nodding his head in agreement and staring at your drink, we made this handy infographic to explain a few basic concepts to get you started. Soon you’ll be buying all your pizza–and rent–with bitcoins

Good design that tells a story to the audience, but this one uses too much text.  I wish they had included some data visualizations about the difficulty to mine bitcoins or the strength of the encryption.  The one dataset they did visualize was the value of bitcoins from Jan-Dec 2013.  The value changes so rapidly, including that one data visualization can quickly make the infographic feel old and out-of-date.  For a longer Online Lifespan, the design should focus more on the long-term, consistent information about bitcoins and not the most recent trending data.

This is a good example of the company, SumAll, using an infographic as part of their email marketing campaign.  The infographic was included as the highlight in one of their email blasts to customers with a link back to the full design on their website!

Friday
May302014

What Makes the Perfect Blog Post?

What Makes the Perfect Blog Post? infographic

What Makes the Perfect Blog Post? infographic from blogpros.com takes information gathered from 100 highly ranked blog posts and puts it together so we can learn from those best practices.  Even though the infographic can stand on its own, it was published as a companion piece to a much more detailed article.

Always interested in what goes into the best content we can publish, we recently performed an analysis of 100 top blog posts across a number of popular sites, including Forbes, Mashable, KISSMetrics and SearchEngineWatch. The data speaks for itself, but the conclusions are up to you. What do you see in the data? Here’s what we think.

The simple color palette makes the data visualizations very easy to read.  Some of them are very well know publishing tips like providing social sharing buttons and including images.  I don’t believe that the number of characters in a title has any bearing on its success, but good titles are very important.

I don’t know if any of these factors had any influence on whether these blog posts were popular or not.  These are purely observations by the designer and may be considered to be correlated instead of causing blog post success.

Tuesday
May132014

Marketing FAIL: Infographics Hidden Behind Registration Walls

There’s a growing marketing practice that I think is a huge marketing mistake. I’ve seen a number of infographics being published by companies that require the reader to enter their name, email address and other contact information before they can even view the design. This “registration wall” is a way for marketers to gather the contact information from the readers so they can send out additional marketing emails later. In my opinion, publishing an infographic behind a registration wall just doesn’t make any sense.

Here’s an example of what you might see on one of these registration wall pages:

Infographics Registration Wall Fail Example

I completely understand putting valuable content behind a registration wall as a method to capture the contact information from potential leads. I get it.  Assuming the hidden content is closely related to the company’s business, the audience interested in that content is likely to represent a pool of potential customers. If they’re willing to give up their valuable email address to gain access to that content, they are probably a fairly strong potential customer (or a competitor checking out your valuable content!).

However, infographics are the wrong type of content to use for this purpose. The companies I see that are hiding infographics behind registration walls are missing the benefit of infographics, which is to deliver easy to understand information to the audience in a format that’s also easy to share because it’s completely contained within the image file.

First, online infographics are meant to be shared. Infographics are popular online for two reasons, easy to understand information and easy to share. Much easier than text articles or blog posts. As soon as one reader shares the hidden infographic image file on their blog or posts it in social media, the infographic is released to the public and available to everyone without registering. Even if you ask people not to share it publicly, the accepted practice online is to freely share infographics.

Second, the research commissioned by Janrain from 2012 indicates that 86% of people may leave a website when asked to create an account. Most of the audience will just leave instead of going through with the registration process to gain access to the infographic. They never see the infographic, never read the data and never hear the message. 

Lost Infographic Audience

Third, the search engines can’t see past the registration wall. No keywords, no meta-data, no text. The search engines can’t index the content behind the registration wall, so your infographic won’t show up in search results. Only the short, publicly accessible teaser information on the registration page has any chance of being indexed to appear in results.

Here’s what I recommend. Use a compelling infographic as a top level summary of the more detailed content you put behind the registration wall. All of the people that share your infographic, are effectively advertising your more detailed information. You could even make the infographic landing page on your website also the registration page to get more information.  

This way the infographics are available publicly to view and share, and the free content draws in readers to the registration page. The truly interested readers will also give you their contact information to gain access to the more-detailed report or white paper that you have available behind the registration wall.  Now you have built your brand credibility with a widely shared infographic, and you have gathered a pool of potentially valuable leads.

For more statistics and information about registration walls, check out The Registration Challenge infographic from Janrain:

The Registration Challenge infographic

How to Solve the Online Registration Challenge infographic published by Janrain in 2012.

How often have you become frustrated filling out online registration forms? There is a better way. Janrain has compiled data on some of the most challenging aspects of online registration forms and simple solutions to improve the user experience…and conversion rates.

Monday
May052014

The Explosive Growth of Cloud Computing

The Explosive Growth of Cloud Computing infographic

Cloud computing is definitely a growing trend. Are you in the position to enjoy all of what cloud computing has to offer? The Explosive Growth of Cloud Computing infographic from Eclipse lets you know what you could be missing if you don’t join their network. 

Now is the time to get on the growth curve of cloud services as we are seeing ever-increasing demand for these services – look at how they have developed in the home with subscription services such as Netflix and Love Film. There is a real on-demand economy and as a result, a new, smarter way of working.

So, if it’s time to investigate cloud services for your business it’s also time to look at your connectivity partner, and a partner who provides both connectivity and cloud services will know exactly what you need to ensure a robust internet connection. Look for a partner who is prepared to really understand your business needs and the role of both the cloud and connectivity in those needs; a partner that will tailor-make solutions to your exact business requirements and stay away from the one-size-fits-all mantra; and a partner who provides a high service assurance accompanied by easily accessible monitoring systems so you can be ‘in the know’ regarding your network’s performance.

Great use of doughnut charts, bar charts, logos and icons to tells the story of the growth of cloud computing.

Thanks to David for sending in the link!

Monday
Mar312014

Map of the Internet 2.0 Poster

Map of the Internet 2.0 Poster

Designer Martin Vargic has released an updated version of his Map of the Internet 2.0 that creates what looks like a vintage-style map.  However, this version plots out the major websites and technology companies, with related sites grouped together on the same continent.  The sizes of the websites on the map are scaled relative to their number of visitors, so bigger sites show as bigger geographic regions.

Second version of our flagship project, the Map of the Internet.

This conceptual work of cartography treats major internet sites and enterprises such as Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, HP, and Apple like sovereign states, on a classic map of the world. To explain the dominance and relationships of these entities, they were all given a visual hierarchy that gives prominent treatment to companies with the most users (or sites with the most visitors), surrounding them with smaller countries representing related websites and services.

This poster includes one full map of the internet, 4 minimaps showcasing NSA surveillance, most used social networks, most used internet browser, and worldwide internet penetration, list of Alexa Top 500 websites, quick timeline of the Internet History, top software companies and much more!

The map includes more than 250 separate websites/enterprises as sovereign states, and more than 2000 separate labels.

A high-resolution version is available online, and you can also order 24” x 36” printed posters on Zazzle.

This what I call a 2nd level design, which means it’s a highly detailed design that is meant to present a ton of information to the audience.  This type of design isn’t trying to communicate a key message in a few seconds, but is intended for readers to zoom-in and explore.

Map of the Internet 2.0 Poster Zoom

 

Found on Business Insider

Monday
Feb102014

The Internet Map

The Internet Map is an interactive, zoomable design that uses a combination of algorithms and the Google Earth API to display 350,000 websites as sized circles representing their overall traffic.

Designed by Ruslan Enikeev, the color-coding shows the country affiliations.

Like any other map, The Internet map is a scheme displaying objects’ relative position; but unlike real maps (e.g. the map of the Earth) or virtual maps (e.g. the map of Mordor), the objects shown on it are not aligned on a surface. Mathematically speaking, The Internet map is a bi-dimensional presentation of links between websites on the Internet. Every site is a circle on the map, and its size is determined by website traffic, the larger the amount of traffic, the bigger the circle. Users’ switching between websites forms links, and the stronger the link, the closer the websites tend to arrange themselves to each other.

Semantic web

The map of the Internet is a photo shot of the global network as of end of 2011 (however, baloons show actual statistics from Alexa). It encompasses over 350 thousand websites from 196 countries and all domain zones. Information about more than 2 million links between the websites has joined some of them together into topical clusters. As one might have expected, the largest clusters are formed by national websites, i.e. sites belonging to one country. For the sake of convenience, all websites relative to a certain country carry the same color. For instance, the red zone at the top corresponds to Russian segment of the net, the yellow one on the left stands for the Chinese segment, the purple one on the right is Japanese, the large light-blue central one is the American segment, etc.

I even found Cool Infographics on the map!

Found on Fast Company

Monday
Jan062014

The Evolution of Reddit

The Evolution of Reddit Through Time infographic

The Evolution of Reddit Through Time infographic from Randal Olson.com covers the history of Reddit for the past 7 years. With thousands of active subreddits, the visual above displays the 24 most active. Track the popularity of each subreddit through the years!

The graph below shows how 24 of the most active subreddits have changed over time. I ordered the subreddits by the time that they first appeared on Reddit. I recommend zooming in so you can see it better.

(I should note that I purposely excluded /r/reddit.com from this graph because it dominates the entire graph until about 2008, then screws things up again when it got closed down in late 2011.)

The biggest thing that you may notice is that there were very few subreddits from 2006-2008. In fact, there was only one subreddit before 2006 (/r/reddit.com). The majority of the content in 2006-2008 was focused on more techie-friendly subjects: programming, science, politics, entertainment, and gaming. Major subreddits dedicated to solely picture and video content started becoming popular in mid-2008, and even then their posts only comprised less than 1/4 of Reddit’s content. It wasn’t until 2011 did the picture-related subreddits really start taking over, and Reddit never looked back after that.

This graph covers so many changes in the Reddit community that it can’t explain what happened by itself. In the following sections, I will take a closer look at how the Reddit community evolved on a year-by-year basis.

Love these data visualizations of the reddit’s evolution over time from Randy, a 3rd year Computer Science graduate research assistant at Michigan State University.  In his original post, he actually visualizes each year separately, and you can see some major milestones and clear changes in the reddit universe.

The Great /r/reddit.com Spike of 2009

The total growth of reddit over the years is lost in the 100% Stacked Area chart; however, you can clearly see the growth of subreddit content as a portion of the whole.

Found on Flowing Data!