Voter guide pages: How-to details

Tell voters what they need to know about how to vote

Lessons from the research

Voters liked the visual explanations with minimal text. It made them feel that it would not be too difficult to vote and that they would be ready.

These detail pages should each cover one topic per page. Don’t hide extra information at the bottom of the page because there is room. Over and over again in usability testing, voters missed these extra details.

The other rule is that each page should cover an entire topic. If it doesn’t fit, break it into two topics, on two pages.

Although election administrators may think of accessible voting and language access as one thing, voters don’t. Information about language access has to be in all supported languages.

This section of the voter guide can also be a good “anytime” booklet for new voters or voters who have just registered in your jurisdiction, providing official and accurate information for voters who may not know what to expect.

The one thing that this section should not include is information about how to register. Voter guides are typically sent to registered voters, but many newer voters in our research interpreted the presence of a page about registration to mean that they had to register for each election.

About the template

The templates include sample pages for some of the most common information:

  • How to vote by mail
  • How to vote at the polls
  • How to vote with a paper ballot
  • How to vote with the voting system
  • How to vote in a primary
  • Accessible voting
  • Language assistance

Other pages might include:

  • Information about early voting
  • Locations of drop-boxes for vote-by-mail ballots
  • Information about voting in a primary

In the collection of voter guides from the California Primary, there are good examples for inspirations, with good coverage of the pages in this section in:


→ Browse the California 2016 Primary Voter Guides Collection.
→ Go to the civic icons and images library on


Word tips

Be consistent in the text styles so that the pages have a similar look and structure.

Don’t forget to add alternative text to any image for accessibility, and put images inline with text so that they will appear with the text to a screen reader.

Use columns or other formatting instead of tables, unless the information really belongs in a table. Include a header row in any table.

Tips for accessibility
Tips for working in Word


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