Canva Review 2021 – The Best Cloud Design Platform?

Canva is a potent freemium software design tool that finds great use for beginners, professionals, and organizations to create eye-catching a high-quality graphic designs. In this Canva review, you will see what the tool offers and its pros and cons.

This design solution is packed with a multitude of robust functionalities that range from a simple drag and drop feature to more than a million fonts, images, and high-quality graphics that you can use.

Canva is a dependable and user-friendly tool that helps you transform a simple idea into a jaw-dropping design that you can either display online or print. So, this one is the perfect professional tool to design images for anything and everything. Canva Pro offers more advanced and unlimted features, which we will explore in this review.

Canva Pro Review Summary

Canva is very easy to use thanks to its very intuitive drag-and-drop interface. Also, you don’t have to worry about starting from scratch either, although you can do that if you want. There are a ton of templates you can choose from to work with multiple categories. These include infographics, posters, and even business cards.

Ease of Use
5/5
Templates
5/5
Design Features
4.5/5
Customer Support
2.5/5
Pricing
4/5

Pros of Canva

Cons of Canva

Now, let’s look deeper to find what Canva has to offer and whether it is the right solution for you or not.

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    What is Canva

    Canva is yet another freemium online graphics tool that’s extremely simple to use and offers a mountain load of templates that can help you out. It’s supposed to be a quick and easy way to create visuals and help those unskilled in the magic of graphic design.

    The general flow of Canva is much the same as anything in its category online nowadays. You sign up (either with Google+ or an email address) and then just follow the breadcrumbs. Canva will prompt you to choose what type of graphic you’re trying to create, then be suggesting various template visuals for you.

    Canva registration is quick and easy
    Registration is quick and easy (free signup).

    Canva is very easy to use, even easier than Microsoft Paint.

    Once you’ve chosen the layout and template you’d like, then comes the customization. Everything is drag and drop, and text can be edited much like text boxes in any other graphic design software. 

    I’ll admit, it is very easy to use.

    Canva Pro vs Canva Free

    The free plan of Canva is a good option for you if you often use it to create quick designs and don’t mind the limitation that comes with it. Whereas, the pro plan is best for you if you need access to millions of premium content and time-saving features with better collaboration functionality.

    I am going to explain each feature and what both plans have to offer in detail but before that, take a look at this side-by-side comparison between Canva Free vs Pro plan.

    Let’s get into the details.

    Canva Free Plan Includes:

    So, these are the main features and content you get with the free plan.

    Now, let’s talk about what’s included in Canva Pro.

    Canva Pro Plan Includes:

    Canva Pro plan includes everything free plan has, plus:

    So all of these are included in the Canva Pro plan.

    Every feature of the Canva Pro plan is useful but the first five features and getting access to 420,000+ premium templates, 3000+ fonts, and a library of 75+ million premium photos, videos, audios, and graphics are probably the big draws of the pro plan.

    Being able to create content that matches to your brand, removing background from images in one click, instantly resizing designs into any content format or custom sizes, transparent images in seconds, and scheduling your designs in Canva are the huge benefits of Canva Pro.

    Is Canva Easy to Use?

    Graphic designing tools or software often struggle to combine power with ease of use, but Canva has excelled in this crucial area.

    It is very easy to use, in fact, it becomes so popular especially because of its ease of use and ready-made templates for any content type.

    Anyone can use it, a non-designer as well as professionals. It is as easy as that – you don’t need graphic designing skills and can create stunning designs in minutes.

    Choosing from 420,000+ predesigned templates, millions of photos, videos, audios, elements, graphics, thousands of premium fonts, hundreds of integrations, and tons of time-saving features make Canva a quick and affordable tool for creating professional-looking designs.

    Besides all that, the drag and drop editor of Canva makes it even easier for anyone to create stunning designs in minutes with a live preview.

    Try it yourself for free and discover how easy Canva is to use by having a go on Canva’s 30-day free trial – it won’t cost you a single cent!

    Canvas Top Features

    1. Photo effects to improve photos

    Canva has several effects to enhance photos. You can add effects to photos that Canva provides and photos you upload.

    Canva review - photo adjust

    You can see them at the top of the editor when you select a photo.

    These will let you flip photos, crop them, add filters and adjust brightness, contrast, saturation, tint, blur, etc.

    Canva review - photo effect

    There’s also an effects tab that lets you add effects such as Duotone, Background Remover, Liquify, and more.

    Most effects are accessible with the free plan, though some features, including Background Remover, require a subscription plan.

    2. Access to photos, videos, and templates

    You can access 75+ million photos and videos and 420,000+ templates with the Canva Pro plan; a fraction of these are available with the free plan.

    Canva Discover Templates

    To use the templates, click the Templates tab when you’re on the editor. Canva will automatically find templates based on the design type you selected.

    Canva auto colour filled

    You can scroll through or search the templates by color or language.

    To find photos, click the Photos tab and choose photos in a similar way to the filters. You can also upload photos using the Upload tab.

    Canva Photo upload

    Another place to find photos is the More tab.

    Canva more feature

    You can access photos and videos directly from Pexels, Pixabay, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Instagram, Dropbox, Google Drive, and more sites.

    There’s also a Video tab where you can find videos.

    3. Access to icons, shapes, and stickers

    Canva has an Elements tab to find icons, shapes, stickers, charts, grids, gradients, and more.

    Canva Elements -Access to icons, shapes, and stickers

    You can add them to your images and adjust color, transparency, and size.

    4. Font library

    Canva has a font library under Text where you can find dozens of fonts, ranging from simple to sophisticated fonts, with individual fonts and font pairs.

    Canva font library

    If you search a font, Canva will find the individual font and fonts that pair with it. You can choose a pair and add your text.

    If you have a Pro account, you can upload fonts, provided you have a license to use that font; you cannot upload any font you want.

    5. Drag-and-drop editor

    The drag-and-drop editor makes it easy to work with the photos, videos, templates, elements, and fonts. Choose what you want to create, and Canva will display all the relevant items. You can add them by the drag-and-drop method and make changes. You should be able to create your visuals in minutes. If you have used the templates before, you can probably make them in seconds.

    Canva review - Drag-and-drop editor

    6. Creates more than images

    Most people think of Canva as only for creating images. But you can create invitations, planners, business cards, blog banners, newsletters, menus, certificates, workbooks, websites, flyers, and more. There are many resources for online education, too.

    Canva review- Creates more than images

    You can use the drag-and-drop editor again. Choose the creation type and Canva will suggest templates. You can either go with the available templates or start from scratch.

    7. Animate images

    Canva lets you apply animation effects. Just click Animate. This shows all the effects you can use. Free ones include Block, Breathe, Fade, Pan, and Rise; paid animations are also available.

    Canva review- Animate images

    I recommend that you play around with these effects. They will help you create beautiful images, especially for social media.

    8. Publish to social media or schedule

    Like most online photo editors, Canva lets you share your images directly to some top social networks. A convenient feature they added recently is scheduling your posts to social media, including Facebook pages, Facebook groups, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn profiles, LinkedIn pages, Slack, and Tumblr.

    Canva review - Publish to social media or schedule

    9. Content planner

    Another new feature is the content planner. Here you can view all the images you have scheduled. If you find gaps in the calendar, click the ‘+’ sign to add a design you created earlier, or create one immediately.

    Canva Content planner

    10. Brand Kit

    The Band Kit is a storage area for your brand assets, including fonts, brand colors, and logos.

    Canva Brand Kit

    The main benefit is that you can easily access the assets while designing. It saves time and helps you maintain a consistent look across all your designs.

    The Brand Kit is only available in Pro and Enterprise accounts. You can create one Brand Kit with a Pro account. To create more, you must upgrade to Enterprise. It’s better suited for agencies that design for multiple clients or corporations that house several brands.

    Device Accessibility Options

    You can use Canva on desktop and mobile, but you do need an internet connection for both. Here’s how to get started:

    Online Editor

    Canva is a web-based platform with the online editor as its main hub. On the Canva landing page, you can see popular templates and design types, edit your previous projects or start a new design from scratch. If you need a specific format, look it up using the search bar – they have everything from resumĂ©s to Etsy shop banners. 

    Canva for Windows and Mac

    The Canva desktop version is available for Windows and Mac computers and looks much like the online editor. To get the Canva download, go to their website and get the installation wizard. Like the web tool, the desktop version is free, but it has locked premium-only features. 

    Canva for Android and iPhone

    Take graphic design on the go with Canva’s free mobile app. Impressively, the application repeats much of the desktop and online editor functionality. Still, it’s best for making social media posts, since multi-page documents take longer to edit on mobile. 

    Is Canva Pro Worth It?

    Canva Pro is worth it if you need access to premium 420,000+ templates, 75+ million premium stock photos, videos, audios, and graphic elements, 25K+ audio tracks, 3000+ fonts, 100 GB storage, unlimited folders to organize your designs with better collaboration tools and advanced time-saving features.

    Everything you’re seeing in this image is available only to Pro plan users and upgrading to Canva Pro totally depends on you.

    Just ask yourself. Do I need access to all of these premium content and most of the advanced features?

    If the answer is yes then Canva Pro is worth it for you and if the answer is no then Canva Pro isn’t worth it for you.

    It’s that simple.

    However, the above section just gives you a quick overview of what the Pro plan includes. Make sure to read everything carefully and take a look at an overview of each feature so that way you can make the absolute right decision whether upgrading to Canva Pro suit your needs or not.

    What I figure out is that majority of the Pro plan users are happy (including myself) with the Canva Pro plan because it is pretty robust and affordable.

    However, if you’re still skeptical, I’d recommend trying out Canva Pro free for 30 days to decide if the Pro plan is right for you or not.

    Third-Party Integrations

    Canva integrations with countless apps to help enhance your experience. A full list is available in the App marketplace.

    Canva Integrations

    Customer Support

    If you run into any issues using Canva, check out their detailed knowledge base, or contact the customer service team. To submit a ticket: 

    • Go to Need Help? and select your category.
    • Scroll through the possible problems to see if there’s a knowledge base article. 
    • If you don’t see it, click Report an Issue at the bottom of the page. 
    • Describe your problem and submit the form. 

    The client support has been very quick, efficient, and friendly whenever I’ve contacted them. They don’t mention a timeframe for responding, but it has never been more than 48 hours for me. 

    Finally, check out Canva’s Design School courses for detailed tutorials on creating beautiful visuals. They have classes on everything from personal branding to presentation mastery, and they’re all free. You’ll learn a lot of helpful Canva tips, as well as generally useful social media, design, and marketing tips along the way. 

    Pricing Plans

    Canva Pro is $12.99 if you choose to be charged monthly or $119.99 when paid annually.

    Besides, Canva offer you the Enterprise plan as well which costs $30 per month.

    Wondering which plan is right for you?

    For most users, the Pro plan will be the most suitable but if run a company or have a team of more than 10 users and they have to work together in Canva then the Enterprise plan is right for you.

    In short, the Pro plan is good for individual or small business owners while the Enterprise plan is for larger teams who need advanced features and collaboration controls.

    I understood, but should I choose the monthly plan or yearly?

    If you select the yearly plan of Canva Pro, you get a 23% discount as compared to the monthly plan.

    The monthly and yearly plan of Canva Pro offers the same features but the pricing is different.

    Canva vs the Competition

    Even though it’s the most popular easy design software, there are other sites like Canva to help you create beautiful imagery. Here’s how they stack up: 

    Canva Vs. PicMonkey

    PicMonkey is another popular photo editor and graphic design program with membership starting at $7.99/month. The platform has more robust photo editing functionality with effects, overlays, touch-up features (wrinkle removal, teeth whitening, hair, and eye color adjustment), etc. They also have templates for creating logos, business cards, posters, and other graphics, much like Canva. 

    The significant difference is PicMonkey doesn’t have a free option, and they have fewer templates than Canva. User-experience-wise, both platforms are easy to pick up and beginner-friendly. But, while PicMonkey is better for photo editing, Canva offers more comprehensive tools for creating graphics for social media, ads, business use, etc. 

    Canva Vs. FotoJet

    FotoJet is an obvious Canva competitor, and even its platform layout looks similar. FotoJet’s monthly membership fees are lower, starting at $3.33/month, and they have a sleek, intuitive UI, which works fast, and it’s easy to use. You can use FotoJet for free without signing up, which is a major time-saver. Overall, however, Canva has more comprehensive functions and has the best price to quality ratio.

    Canva Pro Review – Final Verdict

    Virtually all Canva reviews on Reddit, review sites, and the rest of the internet agree that: 

    • Canva is super easy to use and yields impressive designs. 
    • While it’s a handy tool, it’s not a professional photo editor, a graphic design program, or a replacement for hiring a designer.

    Essentially, Canva is great for non-professionals to create beautiful visuals without any design experience or Photoshop/Illustrator proficiency. Since the program is cheaper than hiring a professional or even subscribing to Adobe’s Creative Cloud, it’s a popular choice among small businesses, educational institutions, and NGOs. 

    Canva makes pretty designs accessible to people with smaller budgets and the time to DIY their graphics. It’s not a tool for graphic design agencies, freelancers, or professionals who want to edit their photos. That disclaimer aside, everybody does love Canva since it’s cost-effective, easy-to-use, and does the job impressively well. 

    Our verdict agrees. Canva is an affordable and user-friendly platform that helps you create sleek, visually pleasing designs for personal and business use. It’s no wonder they’re so popular. Everything is drag-and-drop; you don’t need prior experience or even an eye for design. Canva’s templates are modern, well-balanced, and thousands of them even with the free account. All you need to do is sign up and start designing. 

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    Canva is a web-based graphic design tool that helps you create visuals for personal and private use. You can use it to design logos, social media posts, brochures, presentation slides, and much more. Canva is one of the most user-friendly digital design tools, and it’s perfect for people with no prior experience who still want polished and beautiful designs.

    To get started with Canva, sign up for a profile with your email, Facebook, or Google credentials. Creating a profile allows you to save your uploads and designs and work on them at any time. 

    Free members get over 8,000 different templates in 100+ design types, and they can use Canva’s free stock images, fonts, and stickers. Pro and Enterprise users get additional templates, design elements, and collaboration functionality. Everything on Canva is drag-and-drop, so it’s very beginner-friendly. 

    Yes, Canva has a forever free plan. With free membership, you can use thousands of templates, stock photos, fonts, and graphics. You can also upload your own photos and images (e.g., from Unsplash or Pexels) to customize the designs. However, your resize and collaboration functions are limited, and you can’t use any premium design elements (images, icons, fonts, etc.) 

    Canva Pro just offers a lot more options, templates and design tools. 

    Canva’s Pro plan costs $12.99 if you pay monthly, or $119.90 when you pay annually. Which works out to be around $9.90 per month or a 23% discount. Canva Enterprise is better for companies and teams. To get a quote, you need to contact support.

    Canva Enterprise is ideal for organisations, businesses, franchises, and agencies who need all the productivity and smart design features of Canva Pro with advanced controls to collaborate and publish on-brand designs at scale. 

    Yes, it is. If you’ll be using Canva for work, the pricing is way more affordable than a Creative Cloud subscription (let alone hiring a designer.) While Canva’s templates are very popular, as long as you customize them, you can get unique, professional-looking designs on the cheap.  You can check out more details in our Canva review above.

    Yes, you can cancel your Canva Pro subscription at any time you want. However, you can also pause or unpause your subscription as well.

    Yes, almost all the media on Canva can be used free for commercial and noncommercial use.

    If at any point you think that Canva Pro isn’t for you then you can easily cancel your free trial at any time and you won’t be charged for anything when your trial expires. But please make sure that you cancel your free trial before the trial expires.

    Absolutley. You can invite as many people as you like to join you in your Canva Pro trial. 

    All your designs remain private by default. Until such time as you share them, or save them as a template for the team no one else will see your designs.

    Canva offers free subscriptions for nonprofits. You can apply here. 

    Students and teachers can get special eduucationaly pricing provided they reach the eligibility criteria. You can find the eligibility criteria here. 

    In short, both programs are useful in their own ways. Canva is better than Photoshop for non-designers or someone who wants to create awesome designs quickly. However, Photoshop is a professional-level program, that can be used for almost any kind of design you want to create.

    Photoshop is definitely more powerful and advance, but comes with a steep learning curve. 

    No, Canva does not place a watermark on your finalized images. You will only see a watermark on copyrighted stock elements in the Canva library unless you purchase the media or a Canva Pro or Enterprise subscription.

    If you see a watermark on a previous design, it is because you had a Pro subscription and used a Pro-only template or element.

    Yes, Canva offers an easy to use video tool for visual content creators who aren’t video experts.

    Yes, unless it has any stock elements in it.

    Yes, if it doesn’t include unaltered Canva media. You can read more about licensing, trademarks, and commercial usage of Canva content here.

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