What is an infographic or information graphic?

As defined by wikipedia, infographics are visual representations of information, data or knowledge. These graphics are used where complex information needs to be explained quickly and clearly, such as in signs, maps, journalism,  technical writing, and education. They are also used extensively as tools by computer scientists,mathematicians, and statisticians to ease the process of developing and communicating conceptual information.

When did infographics become popular?

Infographics were encouraged by early innovators like American statistician Edward Tufte and writer for The Sunday Times Peter Sullivan in the 1970’s, 80’s, and 90’s. Peter Sullivan encouraged newspapers to use more images, which were popular for getting your point across in a educative and comprehendible matter.  In October of 2008, a visual thinking company called XPLANE launched the Obama campaign finance infographic, and ever since social networks sites like Digg, Reddit, and StumbleUpon have been saturated with creative infographics. Topics range from business and politics, to sports related and entertainment. I’ve provided an infographic below highlighting the different infographic trends with have reached the front page of Digg in the last 30 days based on categories.

As you can see from Google Trends data, the keywords "infographic" and "infographics" has slowly starting to become a demanded search term. People are searching for easier ways to learn about their interests, and infographics are an easy solution.

Should I create an infographic for my niche?

If your infographic goes viral you can expect anywhere from 1,000 to 100,000+ hits in a matter of weeks, depending on the popularity of course. If you spend the time and resources to create something fresh and resourceful I think you have a great chance of going viral. Let’s say you spend $500 developing an impressive infographic which refers 50,000 hits. In comparison to your CPC campaign, $.01 cent per visitor isn’t much. Not to mention the SEO benefits, which include: increased number of back links, improved Alexa rank (bragging rights), increased brand awareness, and new RSS subscribers.

Cool infographic examples

So what’s next?

Well, Mint recently launched a video visualization of an infographic called One Trillion Dollars Visualized. 

You can see the original infographic of one trillion dollar visualized here.  Video seems like the next logical move, its slightly better than an infographic, but it just a starting point.  After the infographic trend passes, I think programmers will begin to develop more advanced graphics, or flash objects where users can contribute data and feedback on the fly.  I haven’t seen an interface like this yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it gains in popularity soon.  If you discover an interactive graphic as I mentioned above, be sure to add it in comments section below.


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Inder@SeoNext • 9 years ago

Initally I belong to different industry where InfoGraphics is soemthing very critical for any presentation, when I decided to move in SEO's, I figured out It doesn't matter to be visually appealing of your information, barring those were my inital days, now InfoGraphics is something you must have, it gives you the extra edge of staright eye-contact.

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San Diego Web Designer • 9 years ago

Great post on the use of visual diagrams, maps, and images to show flow and represent ratios, etc. Google analytics uses infographics extensively in showing end user behavior on websites. Thanks for sharing

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