There is no doubt that there is lots of advice available online to teach you how to make a digital magazine or create a digital magazine app. But with all of this advice and the numerous magazine makers out there, how do you know what to follow and most importantly, what will work well for the publication you are hoping to create? When designing a magazine, there are several stages that you need to progress through in order to create a magazine that your readers want to subscribe to.
How to make a digital magazine: 3 considerations
The first and perhaps most important page of each publication is the front cover. This will communicate to the audience what your publication is all about, some of the functions it will include and the style and tone that you are hoping to convey. There are currently four types of cover pages. The first is the main cover page that we have just discussed. The second one known as the flat plan is often reserved for advertising and is found on the reverse of the front cover. This is the second most expensive page to advertise. The third cover page is again reserved for advertising and the fourth cover page is at the back of the magazines, again reserved for advertising. If needed, you will find a lot of different digital magazine templates on the internet.
Before you start on the design you should learn how to make a digital magazine properly which will involve learning about the structure and layout.
The front part of the magazine will consist of several pages including;
Table of Contents – When considering how to make a magazine and depending on its audience and format, the table of contents can cover a single page or be spread out over a double page which is interspersed with advertisements or other visual content. The table of contents can be designed with or without images but above all it should be clear for the reader to distinguish between the headline, short article description and folio. This is just one of the reasons why good typography on the content’s page is essential.
Impressum – Sometimes included in a small section at the end of the content’s page, this section outlines the contributors/editors/producers of the magazine.
Letter from the Editor – This usually proceeds the table of contents and is a welcome letter from the Editor who outlines the content in the issue. The length of this letter will depend on the publication and the length of the magazine.
General Pages – These can include a range of different things from news, information about travel, culture, recipes, events, product reviews or industry updates. Letters and opinions may also form this section but they can appear at the back or front of the publication.
This is the largest section of the magazine which contains the ‘stories’ or main articles of the magazine. Articles can vary in length from one to those which span five or more. When arranging your features for the magazine it is always recommended to spread them out evenly, mixing in shorter articles with the longer ones. When thinking about the features sections you need to decide how it will be structured; the number of images that you would like to include, the total amount of pages you would like this section to cover and whether you are going to incorporate any other information alongside the article such as additional links, notes from the contributor or portraits of the author.
How to create your own magazine for free? The structure of a digital magazine is very important. You need to make sure that each of the sections flow neatly from one to the other as they do with regular print magazines. Therefore, choosing an appropriate software is very important. Before you start to create a magazine it is always recommended to collect a number of magazines from your industry that have been published online and study them carefully. Look in particular at the fonts, colours and typography that they use, how the magazines are structured and the length, tone and style of content such as features, letters and advice pages. Try to include content that will set your magazine apart from the rest (choosing a software that offers exciting functions); you don’t want your magazine to be just another version of what is already available. You want to offer readers something fresh and new that they look forward to receiving. When you are starting out with how to make a digital magazine properly there is certainly a lot to learn. Try out some of the free online magazine makers that offer easy to use software before you commit to buying. Or use a simple free desktop publishing app or program that are offered as download to trial different layouts, styles and combinations until you find the right software/program for your publication.