Charts and graphs don’t need to be boring

Charts and graphs are used in nearly every report, both professionally designed or created in-house. To make life easier, programs like Excel offer pre-made graph designs – but are they exciting to look at? Barely.

Snippet of a fancy little pie chart we designed.

Then there’s the moment of designing a report, and are provided Excel graphs to put into said report – do they match the rest of the client’s brand? Usually not.

The thing is: charts and graphs don’t have to look boring or flat, there are some nifty things we can do when it comes to design!

The first thing we look at is the information being conveyed – is the type of graph desired the right type for presenting the statistics (eg. bar graph, pie chart, table, etc)? Sometimes a different type of graph or chart makes the information easier to follow.

The second thing is we aim to make the style of the chart or graph match the client’s branding. If it doesn’t look like it belongs to your business, it will stick out like a sore thumb in your publication.

The third thing we look at is making it unique. If it’s relevant, sometimes a bit of a twist in the design can make a boring chart brighten up a page. The more intriguing a chart looks, the more likely a reader is to stop and read it, rather than just flick past.

Next time you’re doing a report, go back and review your graphs and charts, and treat them like their own images – you will be amazed at the difference a little bit of extra time on them can make.