Getting Started With Engaging Designs for Your Publication
Written by Matt Berringer
August 15, 2022
Your magazine design layout should convey exciting and engaging information, resulting in better reading experiences. That’s why it’s vital to approach your digital publication design with the reader in mind to ensure your content educates and captivates your audience.
This guide will discuss how to design a digital publication that appears professional, informative and engaging, letting you keep readers on your site by creating positive user experiences.
Decide on a Cohesive Layout
While your digital magazine should appear visually exciting to readers, don’t overdo your design with too many different elements. Your publication’s style components should be consistent from cover to cover, generating a cohesive look. Choosing a central theme for your magazine looks professional and appealing to readers, giving your publication more credibility.
When creating your magazine design layout, verify that the following elements are uniform to ensure a positive impact:
- Color palette: Select one to three compatible colors and use them exclusively throughout your publication.
- Graphics: Use the same image borders, shapes and other graphic elements on each page.
- Typography: Your magazine’s typography elements, such as typefaces, point sizes, line lengths and type weights, should remain consistent.
- Page style: Page numbers and running headers should be congruous across your magazine.
Create a Visual Hierarchy
Imagine printing your magazine copy in long, dense blocks of text on each page. No matter how interesting or well-written the content is, it will be visually monotonous and overwhelming to the reader. All well-organized and visually appealing publications combat these effects by following a hierarchical structure. This layout makes copy easier to consume and more exciting to look at. Visual hierarchies create a purposeful, aesthetically pleasing flow that adds value to the page beyond the content itself.
Guide your readers through your digital publications starting with a large headline for your article. Following this H1, incorporate a mid-sized standfirst — a brief introductory summary typically written in its own distinct typography. Beneath the standfirst comes your small body copy broken up with H2 and H3 subheadings. You can also incorporate a mid-sized pull quote in the middle of your copy for further visual appeal.
Choose Images That Fit the Design
The photos you use for your digital publication design play a major role in its overall effect. Your magazine images catch the reader’s attention and supplement their reading experiences. That’s why these images should make sense within your layout:
- Correlate with content: Your magazine images should relate to your text in some way. For example, if your article is about healthy eating, you might use a photo of fruits and vegetables or a woman eating a salad. An image of the ocean or someone riding a horse wouldn’t make sense in this context.
- Use like colors: Choose photos that pull in colors from your magazine’s color palette. For example, if your main colors are pink and purple, you might use an image of pink roses on a table or a woman in a purple sweater.
- Consider shape: Make your images correlate with your design by framing them with corresponding shapes. If your theme uses circles in its graphics and borders, set your photos in circular shapes instead of traditional rectangular borders.
The better your images reflect your publication design, the more engaging they’ll be to your audience.
Learn the Basics of Readability
Content is the most important part of any digital magazine. What happens if it isn’t readable? It’s vital to organize your content in a way that’s easy for readers to scan through and find exactly what they’re looking for.
Consider the following best practices for improving readability in your online publication:
- Mind your line spacing: Providing enough blank space between each line of text allows readers to distinguish distinctive shapes from the letters in each line, making words easier to translate into meaning.
- Avoid long lines of text: Lines of text that reach across the page from margin to margin can strain the reader and cause them to lose their place more easily.
- Utilize white space: Implement multiple text columns separated by white space to create contrast on each page.
- Use capital letters sparingly: Uppercase type takes away from the distinct word shapes our brains recognize, slowing readers down. Try reserving all-caps text for titles and logos rather than body copy.
- Avoid text wrapping: Placing images in the middle of text columns disturbs readers’ left-to-right scanning, requiring them to accommodate by modifying their scanning rate.
- Keep subheads short: Try limiting your subheadings to one line, and avoid using full sentences.
Choose a Flexible Digital Publication Design Platform
Design the ideal digital publication layout using innovative solutions from Nxtbook Media. Our platforms enable publishers to create engaging digital magazines that generate interactive content experiences for readers.
Contact us to learn more about our products today!