In the digital world, visual design is vital in engaging users and providing a memorable experience. Such a course or content will sell itself to the user based on its usefulness and value.

With the readily available visual design tools today, almost anyone can create not just great content, but also the visuals required to support it. With that in mind, let us look at five things one can do to ensure the optimum use of visuals to craft an engaging experience.


Develop visuals alongside content

A common mistake is to begin visual design after the content is in place. While this is workable, the best approach is to develop both side by side, which helps bring in more ideas on how to innovatively deliver the content itself. Instead of the content and the visuals being two separate entities, one can see how they can be merged in functionality to provide a better, more compelling experience.


Distraction is bad

When designing the visuals, it is easy to get carried away and create beautiful layouts and illustrations that serve no purpose other than to frame your content gaudily. It is wise to remember that the visuals exist to support the content and enhance its function, and not to just make things “look good.”


Follow the principles

Make sure each screen is designed with basic design principles in mind, such as balance, proportion, dominance, rhythm and unity. They not only make sure the design is palatable, but can also be used as tools to convey information in a more engaging manner.


Consistency is good

Make sure that the design and layout follow a “language” across the course. For example, make sure headings are of the same size, color and location, buttons and other interactive objects look and feel the same, so that the user can digest a layout quickly and move on to consuming the content.

Care should also be taken that visuals supporting the content in the form of images, illustrations or animations should also be uniform in style. As an example, if you are using bright illustrations in one screen, do not go for one with pastel shades in the next. This breaks immersion and will be detrimental to the overall experience.


Visuals cannot save bad content

This one is self-explanatory. Bad content or lack of content cannot be masked with visuals. So make sure the content is strong and engaging to start off with.

These guidelines serve as a starting point and will hopefully open the door to greater engagement and interactivity.