There are times when giving a PowerPoint presentation alone just isn’t enough to inform or inspire an audience. Presenters who want to supplement their PP presentations often do so by printing presentation hand-outs. When done right, handouts can add value to a presentation and provide audience members with crucial information. Some presenters use handouts to build an audience’s knowledge and provide them with a physical take-away to remember the presentation.

Unfortunately, all too many individuals end up simply printing presentations exactly as they’re shown on the screen. That means leaving audience members to stare at printed slides that neither fit well on the page nor add anything beyond what the presenter is saying, and that’s a rookie move. If your presentation could benefit from added information via a handout, consider these best practices for printing supplemental materials that truly pop.


handouts, 3 Tips to Design Effective Presentation Handouts

Printing Presentations to Inform and Inspire

Creating compelling handouts will enhance your PP presentation and provide attendees with valuable information they can look to long after your presentation itself is over. Strong design is crucial when it comes to creating these handouts. Thankfully, designing and printing PowerPoint supplement materials doesn’t have to be difficult. Keep three simple things in mind as you create presentation hand-outs, and you’ll be sure to have a finished product that your audience will love.

Know How to Add Value

The handouts that you provide for your presentation should do more than just repeat the information that you provide on screen. They should build on that information and offer something new whenever possible. A handout is a perfect way to

  • provide detailed information about presentation topics,
  • highlight presentation points that you don’t have time to cover in detail and
  • offer information about resources that presentation attendees may find helpful.

When you’re designing handouts, make sure that they’re adding something new to the conversation. Each handout should provide valuable information that can’t be found on screen during your presentation. It’s fine to recap important points in print, but be sure that you’re doing so in a way that’s new and refreshing. Resist the urge to copy and paste content from your PP slides onto your print handouts whenever possible.

handouts, 3 Tips to Design Effective Presentation Handouts

handouts, 3 Tips to Design Effective Presentation Handouts

Create Correspondence Between Handouts and PP Slides

It’s crucial that your handouts provide information that can’t be found in your on-screen presentation, but it’s still important that print and on-screen information correspond too. Order your handouts so that they follow your presentation. Create clear headings that help audience members relate handouts to your presentation.

If your presentation is very complex, you may event want to include a note on each handout page about the slide to which it corresponds. Of course, you can also include handouts that go in-depth on your topic but don’t relate directly to defined slides. If you’re including supplemental pages, it’s generally best to put them at the end of your handouts so that audience members aren’t distracted by them while you’re speaking.


Master a Unique Look

Remember that printing presentations isn’t about navigating to PowerPoint and hitting the “Print” button to put your slides on paper. Instead, creating printable PowerPoint is about designing materials that complement your on-screen presentation and the information you give verbally. Your print materials should have a unique look while being clearly related your on-screen slides.

How can you achieve that? It’s a simple matter of knowing how to design for the media with which you’re working. PowerPoint slides feature a set size and orientation, but print handouts follow a different scale. Design handouts to that scale. Magazine-size A4 printouts are the ideal choice if you plan on printing PowerPoint presentations, but 8.5-by-11 inch letter paper is acceptable too.


Click the icon below to download FREE A4 PowerPoint slides with in-built guides as part of our Guide Template set.



Compelling information and strong design will make your presentation hand-outs stand out from the crowd. At Synapsis Creative, we specialise is PowerPoint design. We can help with your on-screen presentation needs, and we can create compelling handouts too. We can make magazine-style layouts, built in PowerPoint,that you can edit along with the on-screen presentation. Whatever your PowerPoint presentation needs, we’re here to help.





Keep up to date with latest content, resources, and design ideas made in PowerPoint.

We’re always updating our website with all kinds of blogs, assets, and templates to help you create something beautiful – so sign up now.

By Signing up you agree to our terms and conditions

Keep informed and get inspired

Want to learn more about how to stretch the creative limits of PowerPoint?

Subscribe today and receive the latest in blog content, design templates, and much more – all made in PowerPoint.

By Signing up you agree to our terms and conditions