5 Surefire Tips for Creating Visually Effective Scientific Posters

At Omni Tech Medical, our scientific and graphic design teams are trained to combine the right elements of color, typography, layout, and imagery to create scientific posters that grab the attention of viewers and communicate research findings in an easily digestible format.


We’ve come up with a list of our five favorite tips to help you get started on creating an effective scientific poster that is visually attractive, informative, and easy to understand.

1. First, choose an intriguing title.
The title is the most important piece of text on the poster, so you should choose one that intrigues your audience while encouraging them to look further into the research. Your title should be concise, contain as many keywords as possible, and clearly communicate the poster’s main points. Try not to give everything away in the title; give the reader a reason to come closer and read more.

2. Use clear, high-quality visuals.
Visuals should be professional, eye-catching, and clear. Include diagrams, graphs, and images to help communicate your message. Graphs should show the relationships between data as clearly as possible with clear axes labels, titles, and plot lines. Images should be large enough to be clearly visible from 5 feet away. Remember that oftentimes it’s easier and clearer to explain difficult concepts with well-annotated illustrations instead of text.

3. Speaking of text, keep it to a minimum.
When it comes to text, less is more! Your poster should be concise and to the point. Long blocks of text can be overwhelming and difficult to read, leading to confusion and misunderstanding. This can be prevented by limiting your word count to 1,000 words, including figure legends. Ensuring that there is a good balance between text and graphics/images is also a great way to keep the audience engaged.

4. Make sure the poster is visually appealing.
Choose a legible font and make sure the poster has plenty of whitespaces. Equal spacing between sections reduces clutter and improves the readability of your content. Use a clean, light color palette that is pleasing to the eye and ensure the colors contrast enough to make the poster stand out. If you decide to use a textured or picture background, create an overlayer background box for text. You can highlight key information by bolding or increasing the font size. Don’t forget to make sure that the text is large enough to read from a distance. A sans-serif font between sizes 36-44 is ideal for titles and headings, while a serif font larger than size 22 is great for body text. Be careful not to use too many fonts or font sizes– this can look messy!

5. Organize your content into a logical flow.
Organize your content into a grid and split the layout into columns. Grid organization will help the audience quickly locate information on your poster. The information should generally flow from left to right, top to bottom. Do you have one specific key area of research that you want your audience to focus on? Draw attention to that section by giving it a different colored section header or background. Don’t forget to consider where you want the most important information to be located on the poster. Instead of burying your conclusions or key figures at the bottom of the page, put them at the top where they will stand out.


With these five tips, you can create a visually effective scientific poster in no time that will draw your audience in and showcase your work in the best possible way.