The 10 Most Common Mistakes
Do You Know Where You’re Going Wrong?
All over the world, the same design mistakes are consistently being made.
Following the inception of PowerPoint back in the ’80s, bad habits were conceived and they have developed ever since. Following improvements in presentation software and the advent of websites that expose viewers to better quality slides, the situation is improving, but old habits die hard.
The following list explores some of the biggest design mistakes being made, provides insights into how to avoid them and suggests alternative solutions that will help you to produce higher quality presentations that yield better results:
Overloading slides with excess text and imagery makes it difficult to view what’s on screen and process the data. By minimizing the information displayed, your audience can quickly scan the slide, grasp key ideas effortlessly and switch their attention back to you.
Subjecting audiences to a series of boring and monotonous slides alienates them from the presentation. Adding visual interest and variety will keep your audience fully engaged throughout the presentation and maintain higher levels of interest.
Too much variety in a slide show results in an inconsistent look and feel. You risk confusing your audience and diluting your brand. The antidote to this is to ensure that your slides have a consistent design style and appear as family of slides that support each other.
Poor alignment looks bad. Correct alignment makes your slides look slick, well organized and professional. To ensure objects are correctly aligned you can activate guidelines, add alignment features to your toolbar and/or create a basic grid for organizing the content.
Visual conflict occurs when slide elements compete for attention or when your eyes are forced to move in a jarring motion around the screen. This can be avoided by neatly organizing the content and ensuring through feedback that each slide flows smoothly.
Avoid cluttering up your slides with surplus items. Too much visual clutter makes it harder to enjoy viewing your slides, takes up precious space and wastes your time by having to edit, align and format unnecessary features.
Avoid using low resolution imagery and gratuitous clip art. Low quality images detract from the overall quality of your slideshow and suggests an unprofessional image, while high quality imagery and illustrations raise the standard.
Templates are supposed to ensure structure and consistency. Figuring out the right template and design style that works best for your presentations can save you precious time, improve the viewing experience and help you to organize your messages in a logical order.
Ensure that text is comfortably legible for your audience and not too large that it overpowers the slide. Always design with your audience in mind, and never forget that your audience’s viewing experience will be different to what you see on your screen.
Overloading individual slides with too many colors can ruin a presentation. Minimize color and adhere to a consistent color scheme for best results. Also consider the impact that a projector, screen display and external lighting may have, and adapt your slides accordingly.
So there you have it. Once again in summary, these are the mistakes to avoid:
1: INFORMATION OVERLOAD
2: TOO REPETITIVE
5: VISUAL CONFLICT
6: EXCESS CLUTTER
7: POOR IMAGERY
8: BAD TEMPLATES
9: INCORRECT SIZE
10: COLOR CRIMES