If you’re a small business owner, then no doubt you’ll have a marketing plan in place. And marketing involves visuals of some sort.
But with so many metaphorical juggling balls to keep up in the air, it can be daunting to come up with creative solutions for this, especially if you don’t have the time to learn Photoshop or the budget to hire a graphic designer.
Does this sound familiar? Then Canva Pro is the perfect solution for you.
But is Canva Pro worth it? I hear you ask.
In a word, yes! It takes all the brain ache out of creating stunning professional looking visuals for your business in a simple drag-and-drop style app. What’s more, even if you have absolute zero eye for design, Canva Pro’s templates and presets will have you looking like a pro-graphic designer in a matter of minutes.
So if you’re looking to supercharge your marketing plan with a great time-saving app, then read through this Canva Pro review to find out how it can really benefit your business.
This post may contain affiliate links. To find out what this means and more information visit my disclosure page.
If you’re looking to supercharge your graphics skills, a great place to start is with Canva Pro. Not only do they have a ton of free tutorials to get you going but there are loads of fabulous templates to use. You’ll get a decent choice through the free version, but if you sign up to Canva Pro, you get so much more.
It’s one of the best value business tools I’ve invested in and despite being a Photoshop girl deep down. Don’t get me wrong, I still LOVE Photoshop, however, Canva Pro comes with so many presets, templates, fonts and stock photos all in one place it’s just a whole lot more convenient.
If you’re just getting started in creating graphics for your business, then the free version of Canva is a great place to start and I 100% recommend it. I used this version when I first started blogging and in all honesty, it was perfectly adequate for a lot of the visuals I was creating at the time.
However, there are a lot of powerful tools and features of Canva Pro which supercharged my productivity ten-fold.
Still not sure? Just take a look at all these benefits of Canva Pro
One of the best things that Canva Pro features is access to their immense library of over 60 million premium stock images, photos, videos and graphics. As a heads up, if you were to sign up to the likes of Getty Images or Shutter Stock, you’d be spending a great deal more.
There are two ways of paying for Canva Pro, the one-off annual payment works out cheaper, but if you don’t’ want the commitment for a whole year, then monthly may be better for you.
The price depends on where you are based.
Whether you choose the monthly or yearly subscription, for the price of two take out coffees I get access to so many business building tools.
So the guys at Canva are so convinced that you’ll love it, that they offer a very generous Canva Pro Free 30 day trial just so you fully put the app through its paces.
It’s a real pet-peeve when a company only offers a 7-day trial, I find that I never really get to explore and try out all the features. It’s almost as if Canva Pro put their money where their mouth is.
You can sign up to Canva Pro here. You will be asked to enter your card details, however, as long as you cancel within 30 days you won’t be charged. Cancelling is easy too (so none of this hard sell to get you to stay), it’s literally a button to cancel it. All that happens then is that your account goes back to the free version of Canva.
Before I go into the nitty-gritty of why I love Canva Pro, here’s a quick summary of Canva Pro benefits. Don’t’ forget, you get access to all of these features in the 30-day free Canva Pro trial.
As a Canva Pro user, you’ll have unlimited access to over 60 million beautiful stock images, photo, videos and graphics. If you’ve ever looked at subscribing to a stock image site before, you’ll know full well that they can be expensive plus you often get limited to a certain number of downloads per month. Canva Pro has it’s own extensive database of images, in addition to Pexels and Pixabay image database .
One of the best Canva Pro benefits is the additional templates, fonts and editing tools which you don’t get with the free version. So even if you’re aren’t confident at your design ability, you’ll be guaranteed professional-looking results with these.
I’ve found this feature of Canva Pro so beneficial. Having access to all of these images has really bumped up the quality of my graphic work. I used to use images from the free image sites, basically because I couldn’t afford to pay $1 or $2 EVERY time I wanted to use a new image. For this reason alone Canva Pro is worth every penny.
No doubt you’ll be wanting to promote your business across multiple platforms. Now, what’s mildly annoying is that what works for one social media platform, doesn’t always work on another. To save you precious time one of the perks of being a Canva Pro user is the one-click Magic Resize tool.
This means you only have to come up with one design, perhaps you’ve designed a poster. Then click the Canva’s Magic Resize button and your design is automatically adjusted for use across things like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and more!
I use various social media platforms, so the Magic Resize tool has saved me a ton of time. I can remember back to when I created the same design three times but in different dimensions so it was optimised for each of them, what a waste of time that was compared to how quick and easy this is.
If you’re promoting your business across multiple platforms, I highly recommend having a go on this tool to see how easy it makes resizing your images.
Have you ever come up with a design you absolutely adore but can’t remember for the life of you how you created it? Or that you don’t want to create the design from scratch again. No worries!
With Canva Pro you can create custom templates by saving your design to be repurposed again and again. Simply publish your design as a template and the design will automatically be added to your brand page.
So if you’re considering producing digital products as part of your marketing strategy, this is a great additional feature. Not only does creating custom templates speed up the process of replicating variations of a design you love, but it allows you to share these designs with others.
Say for example if you produced a customisable checklist to share with your readers, you could design the page, save it as a template and then share with others so they could edit it and download it to fit their own needs.
Depending on your logo and branding, you might have used a specific font. The free version of Canva does offer a decent range of fonts, but if you’ve chosen something a little more unique then you probably won’t find it inthe library.
No worries. The paid version of Canva allows you to upload your brand’s font to use within your brand kit in on any of your designs. You can also be able to upload your brand’s logo to the brand kit for quick and easy access.
I found the option of being able to upload my brands logo a handy addition, although you can do a bit of a ‘walk-around’ in the free version of Canva by just uploading it to your personal image library. Essentially it just makes it easier to find because all of your branding is in once place.
One of the most versatile Canva Pro features is that you can download your designs without a background. This is great if you’re wanting to do overlays of images without a white box showing around an object.
Simply go to the design button and click the PNG option with the “transparent background”. You’ll be able to lay these designs over the top of your brand’s Facebook and Instagrams stories effortlessly.
I wasn’t a stranger to transparent backgrounds, so in the grand scheme of things, this is nothing new as I’ve used Photoshop to do this for years. One thing that is great about this feature on Canva Pro, is that it makes the option of a transparent background super accessible for anyone who isn’t Photoshop savvy.
In the free version of Canva you the maximum you can set the quality is to 80% (double-check this). Canva Pro gives you full control of the quality of the image you download as well as a wider range of formats to download too.
Again this was another limitation I felt with the free version of Canva. For most of the graphics I Was producing, the 80% quality was fine. However, on occasions, I did want the best quality possible. For example, if I was creating an oversized poster, I wanted this in the best quality possible.
Have you seen those eye-catching animated adverts on social media? Canva Animator comes with your Canva Pro subscription which allows you to quickly add animated features to your designs.
Worried about your animation skills? Like with the rest of Canva, this feature is in easy drag-and-drop elements that you can edit with a few simple clicks. Set shapes to bounce, fade and slide about the screen or to have 3D effects.
Your designs can be then be downloaded either as a GIF or a movie format.
This is one of those features I never thought I’d be interested in….until I tried it out. So I may have ‘wasted’ loads of time playing about with this feature of Canva Pro. Also, I found creating animated videos and stories on my laptop much easier than the interface on Instagram.
Take note, allow plenty of time to play about with this feature, it’s great fun!
One thing to remember with branding is consistency and continuity. Canva Pro allows you to set your brand’s colours, fonts, templates and logos as an easily accessible panel.
The branding kit on Canva Pro is pretty much the same as the free one – but on steroids. Although there were walkarounds in the free version (like uploading your logo to your personal image library) to get a cohesive brand, what the Canva Pro version does is speeds up the whole process because everything is in one place.
With the very generous 100GB of cloud storage with Canva Pro, you’ll never have to worry about where to store all your designs.
What’s more, because it’s in the cloud you’ll have access to your designs wherever you are in the world (as long as you have internet access) as well as across any device. This is great for last-minute changes while you’re ‘away from the office’.
The free version of Canva does offer you a small amount of storage of 1GB compared to Canva Pros 100GB of cloud storage. Although I am in the habit of downloading and backing up of everything on an external hard-drive, it’s really useful having the cloud storage for instant access anywhere.
Never lose track of design again. Keep all your stunning creations organised under specific folders for quick access. The free version of Canva gives you just one folder, but as a Canva Pro user, you get unlimited folders to save you time and keep you sane.
So, I get a bit OCD when it comes to organising stuff. I have folders in folders in folders. I did find it quite annoying how the free version of Canva only gave you one measly little folder. It didn’t really allow you to organise anything in a useable way, so I just left everything on the home screen which then meant everything was jumbled up.
Having unlimited folders on the Canva Pro plan is a must if you’re planning on creating lots of graphics, especially if you intend to go back and tweak and repurpose them for other things.
Yes, 100% yes! Even as an experienced designer I’m addicted to Canva Pro. True, Canva (the free or pro version) doesn’t always have the flexibility and dexterity you have with something like Photoshop however, I just see them as two totally different tools for different jobs.
For example, the Magic Resize insanely speeds up the process of creating graphics for use across a range of social media platforms. It’s far quicker doing this in Canva Pro than it is in Photoshop.
Likewise, for me, where the real value of Canva Pro comes is that for a mere £8.99 ($9.99) a month, I have access to millions of images, photos and templates. If I were to buy stock images, that would be the equivalent of about 8 images a month – I usually use more than that in a single blog post.
So I highly suggest you sign up for the Canva Pro Free 30 day trial to make up your own mind. Like I said before, it’s really easy to cancel the membership if you decide that it’s not for you, it’s a no brainer to try it out.
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