Canva v Adobe: How to Choose the Right Design Tool

Canva v Adobe


Should You invest your time and money into a design tool or will a free option like Canva cut it? Well in short it all depends on your business and goals.

Hey there, if you are new here,  I’m Kate Danielle and my goal is to help you look great online in less time so you can confidently share your message and services.

There really are so many design tools both free and paid. I was tempted to do some research and give a list of the vast options but because my goal is to save you time when creating designs I decided that would really be a disservice to you. If you are anything like me (and many entrepreneurs), shiny object syndrome with all the tools is a problem and Big Distraction.

So I am going to talk about the options I use and know and not waste your time.  

I’m also not going to tell you that you must go invest in Adobe (you might need to but you might not) so stick around.

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Favorite Design Tool Options: Canva, Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator

Canva has a great free option and a membership option. With both options you can design a wide variety of graphics such as blog and social media graphics. You can create opt-in and worksheets.

If you want to learn more about Canva I have a free course that goes over the basics and design tips and tricks.

Then we have the big 3 from Adobe – which you can subscribe to individually or get the creative Cloud. The Adobe Programs are extremely vast in what you can do with them. If you are new to Adobe Programs I would start with one and learn the basics. Here is a Breakdown of what I use each of these 3 programs for:

Photoshop – Blog Graphics, Social Media Graphics, Editing Images, Cutting things out of images, touching up photos

InDesign – Great for anything Printable, Opt-ins Workbooks, e-books, (great when working with multi page designs)

Illustrator – logos, blog graphics, designing graphic elements (I often create shapes that I then pull into InDesign), you can scan doodles and turn them into vectors

Later this week I will be live comparing each of the Adobe tools to Canva so you can get a better feel of how they match up.

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Your business goals because this is really what will determine what you should use

1. Do you really love designing your own graphics?

If You don’t I would make it a goal to eventually outsource this to a designer or VA. If that is not something you can do right now then I would use Canva and DIY it until you can.

If you do love designing your own graphics and you are mainly creating Blog and Social Media Graphics I would stick with Canva unless you have not quite happy with how your designs are turning then I would tune into the lives over the next few days to check out what you can do with the Adobe Programs and check out my free Canva Course.

2. Do you want to offer design as a Service, as a graphic designer or as a VA?

I would consider investing in an Adobe Program. It will depend on the type of services you offer whether  you need the Creative Cloud Suite or one program. To be blunt if you want to go the route of Graphic Designer you need to be using Professional design Platforms like Adobe.

3. Do you want to design digital products?

If you are creating a one off product such as a swipe file and you want to DIY it then Canva is a solid option.  If you want to create an entire line of products and that is the main part of your business then I would consider investing in Adobe.

The caveat to that is unless it is program specific templates then you need to create them in the program they will be used. For example I have designed google slide templates for a client to use. I also have the Canva Kit (which I am working on a New version of that will come out next month and it is very cool)… but I could not make the Canva kit be so AWESOME if not for my Adobe Programs because I cut out the photographed elements in Photoshop and in the new version I have hand drawn doodles and hand painted watercolors that were scanned in then edited. I have stock Photos that I edit in Lightroom, that will be in this kit. So while these are Canva templates I used 3 different Adobe programs to create different pieces.

Final Thought

Now all of this does not mean you can’t use Canva for some of the things I use Adobe for (in some cases it does mean that) and my suggestion is to always get started with the resources you have available right now until you can invest in something else down the road.

So tell me where you think you fall in the spectrum? Are You Canva all the Way or do you think you need something else? Do you already have an Adobe Program but feel Confuse? Let me know in the comments because I want to help you look great online in less time so you can confidently get back to sharing your message and services!

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