The goal of every piece of church website content you produce should be clear, simple communication. And, there’s no better way to clearly and simply convey complex information than with infographics.
In fact, an intelligent, well-designed infographic also can bring to life dull, uninteresting church website content.
I recently created a simple infographic for my church’s website that received rave reviews (and many thanks) from members of our congregation.
Let me tell you what happened…
A huge transition is currently underway at my local church. We’re becoming a church of small groups, and with that change came a big update to our Sunday morning worship schedule.
For weeks, details about the schedule change were included in our weekly bulletin. But, I hadn’t been giving it too much attention.
You know how it is. I’ve already got loads of information to keep straight. So, I figured I’d wait until we were within a couple weeks of making the change, then I’d give it a look-see.
Now, all the details were there. But, holy smokes! I just couldn’t get my mind wrapped around that new schedule.
I read it and re-read it, and re-re-read it.
But, I just couldn’t wrap my head around all of the movement that would be taking place, especially during one particular time slot.
I’m a pretty linear thinker when it comes stuff like this. So, to help me make heads or tails of it, I thought I’d start by transforming those paragraphs of text into a simple two column list of times and activities.
And, that’s when it hit me!
This schedule had just enough complexity to make it the PERFECT candidate for creating an infographic!
After all, I couldn’t imagine I was the only one having trouble comprehending the details in that paragraph-based format.
Judging from how the infographic was received, I’d say my hunch was spot on.
What are infographics and why should you use them?
Information graphics or infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data or knowledge intended to present complex information quickly and clearly. (Source: Wikipedia)
The reasons to consider mixing in infographics with your church website content are many and compelling. But, they all boil down to this: as visually-wired creatures, our brains crave them.
What kind of church website content is best for making infographics?
Infographics have the potential to transform all kinds of church website content from ordinary to extraordinary.
Since graphic visual content simplifies communication, by far, content made up of complex information, data, and details are the best candidates for this type of treatment.
When should you use infographics?
Great website content serves people well. When visitors arrive at your website, they want content that answers their questions, helps them make a decision, or teaches them something new.
Infographics are an intriguing option for creating eye-popping content that awakens the senses while giving your visitors what they want. But, as tempting as it may be to create a website of infographics, don’t.
Use infographics sparingly and purposefully in your church website content.
More to the point, use them when you want to make information easier to comprehend, more persuasive, more engaging, or more shareable.
For example, consider using infographics in your church website content when you want to:
- Explain a process
- Make comparisons
- Create a timeline
- Simplify complex instructions
- Explain how to complete a task
- Create visual interest around a topic
- Tell a story
- Share a biography
- Report results
When your website visitors are able to easily digest, recall, and use content that’s also visually engaging, they’ll be more likely to want to share it with others (that’s what makes them a popular option for creating blog content).
Where should you use infographics?
You should use infographics in your church website content anywhere you want to better serve your visitors by making information easier to comprehend, more persuasive, and more engaging.
I added the infographic I created to pages where our Worship Service times are outlined.
You can use an infographic to
- Present the historical timeline of your church
- Break down a complex ministry process
- Help new visitors prepare for their first visit by visually leading them from parking lot to sanctuary
- Step parents through the nursery check-in process
- Create a visually compelling biography for your pastor or staff
- Summarize a weekly sermon or share the Gospel
How can you create infographics?
As you can probably guess, you’ll find lots of tools online for making infographics. I’ve listed a few of them below.
Like some website builders, most of these tools make it easy for anyone to build “an infographic”. However, “an infographic” is one thing; a well-designed infographic is quite another.
Well-designed infographics are eye-catching and interesting. They’re also much more effective at helping people to digest, retain, and recall information.
Like bad websites, bad infographics don’t benefit users. They frustrate, confuse, and create barriers to people understanding the message you mean to convey.
Producing a well-designed infographic takes learning. And that takes time.
You don’t need a degree in graphic design. In fact, these tools offer huge libraries of pre-designed, customizable templates.
But, as Warren Wiersbe notes,
Technology is only as good as the skills of the people who manage it.
–On Being A Leader For God
You may not be creating infographics from scratch, but you’ll make the best use of whatever tool you choose if you take time to learn and follow a simple process for applying some basic data visualization and design principles.
If you don’t have the time to commit to learning how to create infographics yourself, you can always outsource that Web work.
For further reading
13 Reasons Why Your Brain Craves Infographics (this page is really cool!)
by NeoMam Studios
When Infographics Go Bad Or How Not To Design Data Visualization
from Design Your Way
5 Ways Churches Can Use Infographics
by Katrina at SameVine
5 Steps For Designing Church Infographics
by Jared Brandon
What are the best tools for making infographics?
As I mentioned earlier, there are plenty of online tools available to help you build your own infographics.
Here are four tools to get you started with creating infographics for your church website:
I used this tool to create my infographic. Easel.ly is a free tool you can use to create eye-catching, informative, and fun graphics on the web. You’ll find thousands of free, customizable infographic templates and design objects. Using the site is as easy as dragging and dropping design elements. You can either choose a template from their extensive library, or upload your own background image and start from scratch. They also offer an app for iOS.
Piktochart is an easy-to-use infographic creator. Their point-and-click editor makes it especially easy for non-designers to create gorgeous infographics in minutes. Get started by choosing a theme from their huge library (more than 400 themes in 100 categories available). Their standard account is 100% Free. Need more features? Go Pro, with special pricing for Non-Profit users.
This is one of my favorite tools for creating all kinds of graphics for the web. Canva wants to make design simple and collaborative, and they truly do. Try using the “Blog Graphic” template to create quick, summary infographics. To use Canva for free, create your graphics using their free images or upload your own. Premium images cost just a dollar an image. They offer a free app for iPad.
Venngage enables you to drag and drop hundreds of charts, maps, and icons onto your canvas to create beautiful infographics. You also can upload your own images. The free version of this tool limits your access to assets and features. Premium pricing starts at $19/month or $190/year, and offers access to unlimited assets, removes their branding, and enables you to export your infographics to PDF and PNG format.
Where should you share your infographics?
People absolutely love to share infographics. So, some of the infographics you create should be shared, and shared as widely as possible.
The more beautiful the design and compelling the subject matter, the more widely it’ll be shared. The more widely its share, the more traffic should be returned to your website.
Examples of infographics that you can use for outreach include visual content that
- Creates visual interest around a topic or trends
- Summarizes a sermon
- Shares the Gospel
- Do not specifically relate to persons, places, or things within your local assembly
You should definitely check out Evona Wiktoria’s Ultimate Beginner’s Guide To Infographic Marketing. She shares tons of ideas and links to websites and directories online to share your infographics.
What do you think about using infographics for church website content?
Compelling idea or pure waste of time?
What would be your biggest challenge to creating and using them on your church website?
Have you incorporated infographics into your church website content?
Share your thoughts (and links) in the Comments below!