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Annual reports people want to read
– embrace digital.
Annual reports that people want to read should be the norm. As businesses focus more on digitalization and sustainable practices, annual reports should follow.
Digital annual reports offer a range of benefits, from increased interactivity to improved accessibility. The main advantage is that people will read them. And we’re not talking about PDF annual reports viewed in a magazine format – but a visually engaging website with video and animation. Also, 80% of web traffic is mobile, so annual reports should be mobile-first and scale beautifully to larger screens.
Think of how happy you were the last time you read an excellent executive summary at the front of a lengthy report, and you have the right idea about how a digital annual report should feel: to the point and easily accessible. Cut out all the fluff and focus on clarity. Put the important things front and center. Put the details in a downloadable PDF for those that want the details.
“Nobody reads our annual reports, except our board.”
- CREATIVE PROFESSIONAL IN THE SERVICE SECTOR
Using multimedia elements to enhance the overall user experience is vital to digital annual reports. Images, infographics, charts, and other visual elements can convey complex information in a more digestible format, making readers more likely to understand the information presented.
Accessibility is an essential consideration for businesses. The internet has made life vastly better for visually impaired people by allowing them to change the size and format of text, which previously was impossible. But traditional printed annual reports are inaccessible to visually impaired people. And the same goes for PDFs and digital annual reports laid out in a “print-like” format. Not only can digital annual reports be designed to be more visually accessible, but the content can be optimized for use with assistive technologies such as screen readers.
Companies switching to digital annual reports reduce the need for printing reports, limiting their carbon footprint. However, many businesses require a printed version. For them, we recommend going for a smaller print run for shareholders, the board, the C-suite, and a handful for each company department.
Contact USE Agency partner Ari Haack Marteinsson to learn more about our digital-first approach to annual reports.
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