Best Graphic Design Tools

67% of small businesses expect that graphic design will become increasingly important to their success throughout the next five years.

And 65% of senior marketing executives believe that visuals are a necessary ingredient to brand story.

There are several graphic design software applications, ranging from free to expensive, that can help you achieve your goals. Keep reading if you are interested in learning how to create effective graphic design and generate higher ROI.

1: Canva (free)

For a mid-quality, free tool, choose Canva. It includes a multitude of templates and free stock photos to offer inspiration for a stumped marketer. Its UI and capabilities mimic Adobe’s, with less precision but lower cost.


2: Adobe Photoshop (pricey)

Adobe Photoshop is the gold standard of graphic design. An industry standard software application, Photoshop is incredibly versatile and effective. Most full-time graphic design jobs require a knowledge of Adobe as a prerequisite for employment, and for good reason.



The tools within Adobe Photoshop allow not just for retouching, but also for designing top-notch images for social media, direct mail, signs, and much more. Adobe allows a user to apply filters, create shapes, and merge multiple photographs into a seamless image.

However, Adobe software has two drawbacks. First, it comes at a high price. Second, it is not user-friendly at first. Unlike free software programs, Adobe requires time to learn. It is designed for professionals and trained users.

With the multitude of free training programs online, an Adobe user can quickly learn how to maximize the software’s effectiveness. If your company or organization needs the highest quality designs, Adobe software is probably for you.

3: Pablo by Buffer (free)

Pablo is a basic graphic design program integrated with Buffer’s social media scheduling platform. While Pablo has limited functionality, you can create filtered images with text and a logo. Its capabilities are limited so that the resulting images do not look as professional as its more full-service software packages.


Not every design software program will be right for you or your company. But thanks to the proliferation of options, there is something out there for everyone.

2. Hubspot

By Esther Grace Ehrenman, Digital Editor and Strategist

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