Wireframe Planning: Build the Body of Your Infographic

By Justin Beegel, MBA, The Infographic World Team

After you construct a clever title and insightful introduction for your infographic, the fun can begin. With 80–90 percent of the visual space in the infographic being devoted to the body of the piece, ensuring a smooth flow of visuals and information is key.

Every bit of information included in the infographic should serve to reinforce the title, intro, and basic premise of the graphic. If a bit of data is interesting but ultimately doesn’t help you make your point, get rid of it. Your readers will appreciate a tightly focused infographic that tells them only what they need to know to understand the point.

Make sure the body of the graphic supports and is supported by the title and intro. At the top of the graphic, you introduce the topic; but the middle of the infographic is all about proving your point.

One major benefit of using a traditional, vertical arrangement of an infographic is that you can easily lead the reader through your information. Using a horizontal graphic can prove more challenging, forcing readers to go in the direction you desire.

Either way, you must ensure the flow of information is logical. People should learn one bit of information before they learn the next, and each subsequent bit of data should naturally build on what came before.

Organizing information in an unnatural way, like in the following outline, does not create a logical, effective flow:

Incorrect flow of information

        Title, intro

        Offer solutions to problem

        Introduce problem

        Explore history and context of problem

Here is a much better approach to organizing information that creates a logical, effective flow:

Correct flow of information

        Title, intro (lead-in text)

        Introduce problem

        Explore history and context of problem

        Offer solutions

The job of an infographic designer is clear: You do all the work as the writer/designer/developer to make sure readers get the information they need and nothing else.

In the previous example, it may be tempting to reveal the solution to the problem first, particularly if that’s the newest bit of information you have. But that would mean that you wouldn’t be building your case for the solution first: rather like knowing the end of a book before you read it.

Proper flow can also help eliminate any misinterpretation of the data. By placing data in proper context, you ensure that readers get an accurate, complete picture of the thesis of the infographic. When you’re working on your wireframe, consider any of these elements to help you organize your data:

  • Section headings and subheadings

  • Clearly labeled charts and graphs

  • Consistent use of color throughout

  • Illustrations that connect accurately to data