28 ways you can demonstrate your ROI in design

Articulating the effectiveness and impact of your design, creative campaign, or project on the business is imperative if you want your Inside Out® Award entry to be noticed

We have enlisted the guidance of Charlotte Ellis Maldari, founder of Kaffeen New Business Coaching for agencies, who recommends a number of ways to calculate and demonstrate the ROI of design.


  1. What were targets for the design project? Have these been achieved, and if so, how quickly?
  2. Increase in sales (value / volume by percentage but preferably with amounts).
  3. Increased market share (against competitors’ products / services, or penetration of key consumer groups or geographical areas).
  4. Increased market distribution / new international markets broken into
  5. Increased profitability
  6. Increased conversion rates
  7. Increased share price
  8. Increased awareness / profile
  9. Business Growth (other ways in which the business has grown).
  10. New revenue streams created (new product development or extension into new categories, driven by success of design solution).
  11. Attraction of higher-value customers / partnerships / sponsorships.
  12. Production Efficiencies / cost benefits (reductions in labour time; reductions in materials and production costs, increases in productivity, improvements in processes / systems; streamlined supply chain management).
  13. Improvements in customer experience (e.g. reduction in customer queries / complaints, increased interaction, increased customer satisfaction levels as determined by surveys/questionnaires / positive feedback / market reaction, etc).
  14. Increased engagement of external stakeholders (peer approval, adopted as best practice, increased usage or response rates).
  15. Increased engagement with internal audience (reflected in changes to frontline attitudes and behaviour (e.g. improved customer service, increased productivity, reduction in customer complaints, reductions in staff absenteeism / sickness), tracking studies demonstrating shifts in attitude; peer approval, adopted as best practice; increased usage or response rates).
  16. Calculate how quickly the redesign achieved ROI
  17. Improved footfall (increased capture rates / dwell times / spend, improved visitor attention / retention / return, uplift in occupancy rates).
  18. Rollout of design solution.
  19. Sales team testimonials
  20. Specific changes to working practices or company attitude / strategy.
  21. Media impact / reach (press and social media coverage driven by design, measured by impressions, media stories, value of organic coverage equivalent to advertising value).
  22. Digital growth / engagement (across social media (active engagement), mobile and online (uplift in traffic / sessions, conversion rates, open rates, sign ups, downloads, session times, bounce rate, online revenue, etc) versus objectives / industry benchmarks; increased usage or response rates).
  23. Funding / investment in a business / initiative or brand (against original target), sale of business (against expected value).
  24. Improved recruitment and retention of target audience / staff / sponsors / partners (higher calibre of recruits /partnerships).
  25. Job creation / retention (expansion of business or premises because of increased demand)
  26. Sustainability improvements (reductions in carbon footprint; elimination of waste; impact on transportation; impact on energy consumption; consideration of circular economy, etc).
  27. Social impact (increased education and awareness leading to positive behavioural change).
  28. How is the brand performing against the market now? Any increases in market share and/or value as compared against competitors’ products/services, penetration of key consumer groups or geographical areas?

Hope you find these hints and tips helpful and good luck with your entry!

Full list of Inside Out® Awards categories can be found here.

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