Creating effective design is crucial, whether it’s a tangible poster, a social media post, or a website. Accessibility should always be at the forefront of your design strategy. Your design materials should serve the purpose of informing your audience about your event or service, leaving them with clarity rather than confusion. To achieve this, here are five essential guidelines to incorporate into your design process.
Arrange different elements in a gridded structure as it is a clean and easy to understand layout. Consider using colour blocking or varied backgrounds to differentiate different types of information. Remember, just because the information is laid out in a grid, doesn’t mean all the lines need to be straight and rigid. Get creative with how you separate the different types of information.
Display your information in the order of importance, the most important information being presented at the top of the display in a large clear font and the least being much smaller and towards the bottom. Generally the order of importance goes: titles and details followed by links and external resources. You can vary this look with the use of subheading and taglines, just be sure the viewer’s eye isn’t darting around the page to find the information they need.
3. Colour Contrast
It is important to make sure that your text is readable and a good way to ensure that is by using a colour checker. There needs to be at least a 70% difference between the colours, especially if it is text on a coloured background. Also, try to avoid using true black and white. These values tend to be hard on the eyes so opt for an off white or black in your designs. Creating a tested palette beforehand can come in handy so your piece looks both cohesive and comprehensive.
4. Type Alignment
The easiest alignment for people to read is a left aligned text. It creates a simple way for your eye to find the next line of text. This is mainly relevant to large bodies of text. You may be tempted to use a justified type alignment as it looks much neater on a page but be weary as it can create distracting gaps in your text body.
5. Text Formatting
Serif fonts are designed to blend words together. This makes them easier on the eyes if you are reading for long periods of time but are counterproductive for concise and simple information. Instead, use sans serif fonts for any digital designs as it makes the information easier to understand. Also, avoid using all caps fonts for bodies of text as it tends to be distracting and causes more eye strain.
These guidelines apply to the visual design of your piece. There are many more accessibility tips that apply to the functionality of your work outlined in this article. It is important to consider both the visual and functional accessibility of a piece to ensure that the information is available to everyone equally.
Want More Digital Design Guidance?
Here at Topsite we have expert designers who would be happy to help you! Whether you need design tips for your website layout, social media marketing, or printed promotional materials we are here to turn your vision into a reality. Contact us today and lets get started on your road to accessibility.
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