You want to showcase the brilliant work your organisation is doing, and it needs to set the right visual tone, and be perfect for the intended audience.

But the question is, what makes a good Annual Report? We’re seeing a lot more requests for Annual Report design, so here’s 5 incredible ways you can bring your report to life – with examples directly from the Red Onion portfolio*. Using our vast magazine and digital experience, we can create outstanding report design. Read on…

*Please note: Unfortunately due to various contractual obligations and limitations, sadly we’re unable to share online our range of most recent digital report designs.


1. Share photography of real life case studies

More often than not, many reports are at their heart, about people. Who are the people, how will you photograph them? In this example the whole report has students in it.

View our University of Essex work


Fire and Rescue report contents

2. Use colour ideas to best effect

More often than not, it’s likely you’ll be using existing colours from the brand guidelines. Using colour sparingly can provide extra impact where it’s needed. In this example for EMS we used colour to differentiate sections of the report.

View Fire and Rescue report


3. Remember good quality typography and navigation

Use corporate type in an inventive way, or introduce new special fonts. Make sure you use clear navigation, and remember that in a PDF you can zoom in to read, whereas in print you need to double check font size. Aside from pictures, good use of typography is critical in making an outstanding report design.

View it in the Divine Chocolate brochure


4. Use the best size and format

In print, try varying the size from simply A4. Could it be small so it looks easy to digest, perhaps it could be landscape for example, to suit your content. Ever more popular is providing a report as a downloadable PDF. How and where will it be read, how will people find out about it, what will help them want to read it? In this example the mini booklet even has a special carry case.

View our University of Essex work


5. Provide clarity with infographics and Data Vizualisation

Bespoke icons and data visualisation style provides a way of offering detailed information at a glance in an entertaining and informative way. In terms of design and communication, you can never underestimate the importance of well-executed infographics to make an annual report clear to understand. Business people are often short of time, and data visualisation can give you the edge.

View it in the Divine Chocolate brochure


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