Since 2006, when the first ‘viral’ infographic was launched, Internet users and SEOs alike have become avid fans of these creative designs. Infographics are a great way to visualize large amounts of information and are a cost effective method for gaining a wide variety of inbound links and traffic to your site.
Data from Google trends supports this statement, showing the number of searches for the term ‘infographics’ is increasing exponentially.
So how can your website capitalize on this growing trend? Keep on reading to find out everything you need to know about infographics.
Infographics – A Success Story
One of the great things about infographics is that they are very affordable and yield a large ROI, making them a perfect marketing medium for small businesses. Time and time again we have seen small business websites rise from obscurity to a viral sensation because of well-designed infographic.
Blisstree.com is blog that focuses on the emotional and physical health of the modern women. They put forth highly resourceful content that garners a lot of unique page views, and an average of 20 comments per post. A common topic in the health world of women is the subject of smoking, and helpful tips for quitting the habit. Author Wade Meredith wanted to take the benefits of quitting smoking and illustrate this visually to her readers, via an infographic. Overnight, Meredith drastically increased traffic to the blog by taking this useful information and making it visually appealing, and easy to consume for readers. Within several days the blog post had received 2,587 Diggs, 1,000 Facebook Likes and over 4,000 comments on the blog post itself.
Blisstree.com is not the only small business to have success with infographics. As we can see in the chart below, a successful infographic post by Ok Cupid gained upwards of 600 inbound links from unique linking domains and over 1,200 Tweets.
Image via: Distilled.com
Large sites, such as Mint.com, Visual Economics and Hitwise, have also seen that a strong infographic can gain almost as many, if not more, inbound links as the homepage of the blog.
What Makes a Good Infographic?
Gaining viral fame with an infographic sounds so easy, right? Well simply posting an infographic on your site won’t work marketing wonders for you; a successful infographic must be well designed and strategic.
So what qualities do all successful infographics have in common? They are:
- Creative – Beyond being chock full of interesting data, one of the reasons infographics have taken off in popularity is simply because they are fun to look at. With so many infographics out there you will have to find a creative angle that is new and exciting. If you want to see examples of creative infographics check out these below.Resources:
- Resourceful – As well as being visually intriguing, your infographic should also present resourceful, interesting and data-driven. Readers want to be both entertained and informed by an infographic, so make sure to use credible numbers and research to teach the reader something they did not know before reading your infographic.
- Sharable – As you may know, the attention span of your average Internet user is relatively small, and even the most entertaining infographic will not be passed along if it takes too much effort to share. The more shareable your image, the higher the likelihood that a user will pass it on to their friends. Follow these tips to ensure maximum shareability:
- Make the image embeddable – allow users to take the image and easily place it on their own site, or social network. However, also be sure to embed a link back to your own site within the image so you still receive inbound links from these types of shares.
- Use social sharing buttons – Surround your infographic with social sharing buttons that will allow visitors to easily Tweet or share a link to your site on popular social networks.
- Be proactive – Assuming users will share the image on your site assumes that users are already on your site. Get a head start on the viral effect and bring your infographic to your users. Tweet, Facebook, +1 and share the image on LinkedIn. Add your infographic to sites like StumbleUpon and the newly redesigned Digg to help generate random traffic.
- Easy to follow – It’s easy to make an image more complicated than it needs to be. People love infographics because they are an easy way to simplify large amounts of data and make it easy to comprehend. Find the balance between a fun, colorful image and an image that is clean and easy to comprehend. Make sure data is easy to read and flows logically throughout the image.
- Keyword focused – Creating an infographic around any old topic is not the best business strategy. The content of your infographic will influence the anchor text of inbound links and the types of domains who give links to the image so make sure the topic you choose is relevant to your business and website. The search engines will be suspicious if your site suddenly receives a large amount of attention around keywords that are unrelated to anything on your site.
How to Repurpose your Infographic
A good infographic is the gift that keeps on giving. There are many ways you can repurpose your infographics to achieve the maximum viral effect.
- Break the infographic into smaller pieces and share via image sharing sites – Take your large infographic and break it down into smaller images to share on image sharing sites, like Flickr and Photobucket. Place a link back to your site in the user profile across each of these sites to increase your inbound links and drive interested traffic to your site.
- Put your infographic in a video – Now that you have the imagery designed bring it to life in a video. Use the smaller images from the tactic mentioned above and narrate each image in video form, or use websites like Jing and Prezi to add and capture movement within your infographic.
- Turn your infographic into a poster – As online marketers we sometimes forget that a lot of marketing potential exists offline as well. Turn your infographic into a poster and list off your website, Facebook page, Twitter etc., or even include all this information in a QR code they can scan. Capture and drive brand awareness in an audience you would not have been able to reach online.