[Purposes] This paper aims to deeply understand the readers' psychological needs and optimize layout and overall design to improve the reading interest and efficiency for readers. [Methods] By analyzing the typical layout samples of academic journals, we found the common features and individual differences of research samples and adopted the comparative analysis to reveal the characteristics and rules of excellent layout designs. [Findings] Three important innovative principles that satisfy the needs of readers include element integrity, holistic harmony, and people-orientation. Readers prefer the layout style that is clear and readable, beautiful and generous, and convenient to quote. [Conclusions] In the innovation practice of academic journals, we can overall design to present the layout elements scientifically. Layout design should be beautify to apply rather than for beauty.