Creating a public understanding of the dynamics of a pandemic, such as COVID-19, is vital for introducing restrictive regulations. Gathering diverse data responsibly and sharing it with experts and citizens in a timely manner is challenging. This article reviews methodologies of COVID-19 dashboard design and discusses both technical and non-technical challenges associated. Advice and lessons learned from building a citizen-focused, automated county-precision dashboard for Germany are shared. Within four months, the web-based tool had 5 million unique visitors and 70 million sessions. Three developers set up the basic version in less than one week. Early on, data was screen scraped. An iterative process improved timeliness by adding more fine-grained data sources. A collaborative online table editor enabled near real-time corrections. Alerting was setup for errors, and statistics apply for sanity checking. Static site generation and a content delivery network help to serve large user loads in a timely manner. The flexible design allowed to iteratively integrate more complex statistics based on expert knowledge built on top of the collected data and secondary data sources such as ICU beds and citizen movement.