There’s no question that quality content is the key to success for your website.  But if you’re content isn’t presented in a visually appealing manner, you’re going to lose your audience.  To stay ahead in the visual marketing world, you need a visual content creation strategy. 

Images and videos can boost your conversion rates by over 300%.  Unfortunately, we’re not all design experts.  If this is you, we’ve put together a list of the best design tools for digital content.  These tools will give you everything you need to master visual content creation and make the most of your website.

Best Design Tools for Digital Content

1. Canva

Canva is one of the most popular graphic design software with over 30,000 users.  It is a complete design tool built for anyone who’s not a professional designer.  While it’s often promoted as an image design tool, it’s much more. 

Canva allows you to design everything from PDFs to printable to invoices, flyers, infographics, and websites. In addition, you have the option to start your designs from scratch or use one of their pre-designed templates.  With both a web version and a mobile app, you can use Canva from anywhere.

Canva is a design tool best suited for online business owners, entrepreneurs, or marketers who quickly incorporate design elements without a steep learning curve.  It includes user-friendly drag and drops tools, and the advanced paid version of the software costs only $12.95 per month. 

There is a free plan available if you want to try it before you buy.  The free version of Canva allows you to create between 10 and 15 designs per month and access over 100 design types, 8,000 templates, and thousands of free graphics and photos.  The paid version will increase your template access to over 420,000 options.

Canva’s top features:

Photo Effects

Photo enhancement and editing features allow you to crop, flip, add filters, and adjust any photos you upload.  There are several effects available as well.

Photo, Video, and Template Access

This feature will allow you to add graphics and videos to your content easily.

Icons, Shapes, and Stickers

Add them to existing images and adjust size and transparency.

Font Library

Access to hundreds of specialized fonts.

Drag and Drop Editing

The drag and drop editing feature on Canva allows you to move things around and make changes easily. For example, if you use a pre-designed template, you can create custom designs in seconds.

Image Animation

Animation effects can be added to both text and images.

Schedule Publishing or Publish Directly to Social Media

Once you’ve created your design, you can directly schedule your social media posts within Canva, rather than having to save your posts and publish them manually later or within another scheduling program.

2. Envato

Envato Elements is another digital design tool to help you create visually appealing digital content.  The online library boasts over a million digital elements, including videos, audio clips, images, and design templates.  Access will require a subscription for $16.50 per month.  With your subscription, you have access to the entire design library.

Pros of Envato Elements

  • Single-user commercial license – Envato allows you to make an annual purchase with full access for the entire year.
  • Huge range of digital assets to use in your design.
  • Unlimited downloads with your subscription.
  • Competitive pricing

Cons of Envato Elements

  • While it’s priced competitively for a design tool, the cost can add up if you don’t have a ton of designing to do.
  • When you re-use a digital item, you have to re-license it for each use.
  • All videos in Envato are downloaded in .mov format so that they will require re-formatting for most uses.  This takes time to convert all your files.

Envato Elements gives members free access to a learning platform called Tuts+.  This platform includes courses, e-books, and tutorials on web design.  If you are new to web design and find yourself struggling, this may be a bonus for this tool.

Best Design Tools for Digital Content

3. Adobe Spark

Adobe Spark has recently replaced Adobe Slate and Adobe Voice as Adobe’s creative social app.  It is a web-based app that consists of Post, Page, and Video tools, each of which has a separate companion mobile app. In addition, Adobe Spark can be used to create social media memes, websites, and narrated tutorials. So, if you are an entrepreneur, blogger, marketer, or student who wants to make content with style, this tool is built for you.

Adobe offers its Spark tool for free with either an Adobe, Facebook, or Google account.  The mobile versions are available on iTunes, but there is no Android version of the mobile apps.

When you log in to the Spark web interface, you have three options to choose from.  The post will help you create memes for social media; Page is used for portfolios, catalogs, content pages, and videos for online presentations or tutorials.

Spark Post

When using Spark Post, you start out with a phrase or an inspirational quote for posting on social media. Then, layout choices are organized according to the social network you wish to post on.

You can add images, fonts, and eye-catching designs, either from their library of stock images or by uploading your own.  Once the background is set, you can add filters and scale your image.

Once you’ve designed the perfect post, all you have to do is save and share.

Spark Video

Similar to Spark Post, you will start in Video with a tagline or title text.  There are eight options for the type of video you want to create, along with storyboard options for structuring your video.  You can add background music or upload your own.

Spark Page

If you’re designing a website or blog, Spark Page is the tool you want to use.  As with the other tools, you need to start with a title, but after that, you can build your page with as many elements as you want, including photos, links, or slideshows.

Spark Page integrates one unique feature called the focus point.  This feature allows you to determine what parts of your page are visible on the mobile version to adjust your design accordingly.

Adobe Spark Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Creates visually appealing web and social media content

Adobe Spark Cons

  • Limited video creation options
  • Not all social sharing options are available

4. Visme

The last digital content design tool on our list is Visme.  This tool offers templates for slide shows, social media posting, online advertising, and storyboards, but with one downside.  Visme will cost you $180.00 per year for a subscription.

Visme Pros

  • Lots of templates for marketing and ad design
  • Versatile
  • User-friendly

Visme Cons

  • Expensive compared to other design tools
  • Doesn’t support collaboration between multiple users

Visme is truly a one-stop-shop for all your visual design needs.  It’s useful for online business owners and entrepreneurs who really want to create unique branded content.  It connects with business apps like MailChimp and SurveyMonkey to help you gather all your data in one place.

Visme allows you to save your brand or your company’s color palette, images, and videos for easy access in future designs.  Templates are easy to use for non-designers, and it is available as a web app and a macOS app.

Final Verdict

Canva is the most straightforward and least complex design tool for new digital content creation users.  It’s not as integrated and complex as the other tools, but you may not need complexity to create visually appealing content.  For beginners with little experience in web design, Canva is a top choice.

Adobe Spark is obviously the best choice if you are looking for free software. There are limited video options, however, and no Android app availability. If you need extensive video editing capability or Android access, this will be a limiting factor.

Envato and Visme are both excellent tools to help you create a memorable brand for large templates and library access.  Because they are both equally good design tools, Envato wins this round simply due to cost.  Visme is a fantastic tool, but it isn’t priced competitively in the design software market.

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