by Adam Noar
Having well designed PowerPoint template is CRITICAL if you want to have slides that will WOW an audience.
Now, in this article, I’m going to share FIVE practical PowerPoint tips for designing a PowerPoint template that looks clean and professional.
1. Choose A Nice Color Theme
Choosing the RIGHT colors for your PowerPoint template is very important.
Color does many different things. It can evoke feelings and it creates emotion. Color can also attract attention, influence moods, indicate meaning, and even INCREASE RECALL.
Some studies show that effective use of color can increase learning and retention by 75%.
Here are some things to consider when picking the color theme for your Powerpoint template:
1) Make sure that the colors in your theme go well together. This may seem obvious, but I have seen many presentations with colors that did not complement each other. One of my favorite presentation tools for picking good colors for your template is Adobe Kuler.
2) Don’t overdo it with the number of colors. I tend to stick to no more than THREE colors when designing templates for clients.
3) Make sure that the colors you use fit in with your company’s logo (if you have one). As you can see in the slide below, the blue and green colors within the logo fit harmoniously with the rest of the slide’s design.
2. Use Nice Fonts
Similar to colors, fonts can communicate a mood, a point in time, or any number of other factors. So, instead of browsing your pre-existing font list and looking for “something cool,” instead think about the message you want to convey.
If you have no clue what fonts are good for presentations, here are on some of my favorite free fonts to get your started.
Here are some tips when picking fonts for your PowerPoint template:
1) In most cases, stick to one or two fonts throughout all text in your presentation for consistency.
2) Choose a font that matches the theme of your product or service.
3) Make sure that your fonts are legible against the slides background. Poor color contrast can quickly make your text irrelevant.
3. Hide Distracting Elements
Often times there can be items on a slide that you have to keep (due to policy or preferences from your work colleagues).
Some of these items can include:
- Page numbers
- Confidentiality statements
- Sample size numbers
- Questions (often seen in market research presentations)
- Explanation messages
- Website domains and other contact information
If you MUST include items like these in your PowerPoint template, you can make them less distracting by “fading” these items out. That way if people need to reference this information they can, and they won’t distract the audience from the more important elements on the slide.
4. Avoid Using A Stock PowerPoint Template (That Comes With PowerPoint). Instead Purchase a Professional One
Don’t bother with the templates that come with PowerPoint (as seen in the slide below).
They are poorly designed, commonly used (others will have the same deck as you), or are not versatile enough to create an interesting presentation.
It is MUCH better to make your own unique template with a simple background or texture and consistent use of fonts. Ideally, the design will speak to your subject matter.
If you are at a loss for designing your slides here are some PowerPoint templates for inspiration or purchase.
Avoid using boring templates that look like this:
When choosing a professional presentation template there are a few things to keep in mind:
Look for Consistency – A professional PowerPoint template should have the same design, font, and color scheme consistency throughout
The Number of Slides Offered Does Not Always Equal Value – pay attention to the number of UNIQUE slides
Make Sure the Template is Organized – The template should have neatly organized sections where you can find “About Us” slides, “Our Team” slides, “Services” slides, “Customer Analysis” slides, etc. all nestled up to each other, so you have a clear idea of what slides are at your disposal.
Pay Attention to the Details – Check for inconsitencies. These types of subtle errors may suggest that there could be other issues with the template, not to mention they give off a distinctly unprofessional vibe
Find a Presentation Template Style That Fits Your Brand – Think about your business and your brand and what you are trying to represent – then choose a theme accordingly.
How Does the Presentation Template Make You Feel? – Chances are, if you have a strong positive reaction towards a template then your audience will too, and that will only make your presentation more memorable.
5. Make Your PowerPoint Template Streamlined
Keep things a simple as possible.
Here are a few tips for keeping your template simple and minimal:
1) Try to eliminate all the extraneous clutter that can distract your audience from the real meat of each slide. Whenever possible, eliminate your logo, contact info, or whatever else your marketing department added to the templates that show up on each slide. If you want you can always designate a certain slide to have all of this information.
2) A simple single-colored background is best. Crazy designs or watermarks in the background don’t add value.
3) Keep your text to a minimum.
4) Let your template breathe by allowing for plenty of whitespace.
I hope you’ve found these PowerPoint tips practical and easily implementable. Ultimately, the goal here was to show you that you don’t necessarily have to be a professional designer to create a great looking and effective PowerPoint template.
Here is my question for you …
What are your favorite tips for creating nice looking templates?
Sound off in your comments below … And please remember to be specific as possible.
Also, do you have a friend that is currently creating a new presentation template and could benefit from learning about the tips in this post? If so, send them a link to this blog post right now. I’m sure, they will return the favor to you one day.
Finally, if you enjoyed these PowerPoint tips, please remember to like and share using the sharing icons at the bottom of this post.