News design is the creative process of designing content on a news page, according to stylistic and logical guidelines and objectives. Main editorial objectives include the arranging of news items by category, while aesthetic considerations involve balanced, clear presentation of advertising and appropriate readability. A wide variety of approaches is used in news design, from storytelling and reporting to advertising and interactive elements. The design process is ongoing and is affected by the type of media involved and the audience response to the same. In print, a well-written story and well-illustrated design can draw attention and encourage readership, while an attractive photograph or graphic can make a memorable statement on a website.
One of the most fundamental principles of web design relates to the reading gravity. This refers to the general principle that encourages the reader to move towards the next line in the sequence of words. This principle is closely related to the concept of cognitive psychology, the study of how people decide what to read and how they arrive at a decision. In the context of news design, the reading gravity is expressed as the percentage of a story’s space occupied by the highlighted text and the remaining visible area devoted to other elements such as links and descriptive words.
Another fundamental principle of web design relates to repetition. It is a common practice in many newspapers and magazines for the sub-section of each page to contain several stories, each related to a different subject. The purpose behind this practice is to increase the number of sources of information that are accessible to readers. However, some publications tend to make the same basic points in multiple paragraphs, thus reducing the value of the repetition strategy. In contrast, newspapers and magazines which use a more concise style of writing maximize the value of the repetition principle by devoting only a few sentences to each main topic.
A final common principle of news design and graphic design which underlies all four principles is coherence. Simply put, all four principles aim to provide the maximum number of meaningful elements while minimizing the appearance of disorganization. For example, it would be very difficult for an individual to read a lengthy newspaper page without becoming distracted by the many changes that take place within the text. The same thing can be achieved through effective graphic design and effective web design.
Newsletters designed by talented newspaper designers will contain many sections of varying widths and heights, all of which are designed to provide a high degree of usability for their users. Newsletters which lack clear separation between paragraphs and sections will also be problematic, as readers will become confused as to what the writer is trying to convey. As with many other things, it is best for news design and graphic designers to collaborate in order to achieve maximum coherence.
Edmunds & News Designers consistently outperform competitors in many of the areas discussed above. In fact, in this year’s rankings, Edmunds & News Designers have gained ground in both overall positioning and page ranking, proving their superiority. This year, they are expected to maintain their current position, though they are certainly on the rise. Only time will tell, however, and the increasing success of newspapers as well as magazines is only a testament to the talent and skill of the news design teams that are working hard behind the scenes.