If you are reading this article, you probably have no idea who I am (and it’s not important either). However, those who know me and have ever spoken to me about Marketing know that I am crazy about Canva, and I have always recommended the free version to everyone.
For this reason, I was really excited to try their paid plan and find out by myself if it’s worth it. So today, I am going to give you a little Canva Pro Review from my own perspective, and hopefully, provide some value for you, my lovely readers.
Canva Pro Review: Is it Worth it?
Of course, if you are here for the short answer, I will give it right away. However, I highly recommend that you keep reading because it is also important to know for whom it’s worth it. After all, some people or businesses will find more value in it than others.
The short answer is yes, Canva Pro is absolutely worth the money. The price of €11 per month (€8.99 per month if billed yearly) gives you access to awesome features such as +60 million photos, videos, animations and elements, pro templates, one-click resizing, brand kit tools, and so much more.
For the long answer – you’ve got to keep on reading! I will do my Canva Pro review in the same way I did my LinkedIn Learning review – revising every single feature, one by one. And, to make it more fun, I will be giving my personal rating for every feature!
However, if you are satisfied with the short answer and want to give Canva Pro a shot (you have a 30 day free trial before upgrading), I would be really happy if you use my affiliate link.
It doesn’t affect you in any shape or form, and I will get a small commission if you end up purchasing after the free trial. And the good news is, you have 30 days to decide whether the tool is worth it for you, so there is no commitment.
Disclaimer: I only recommend products that I truly believe in, and love and use myself (I am paying for the subscription with my own money). The whole article is a 100% honest reflection on my opinion of Canva, and I would say exactly the same even if I weren’t an affiliate.
To give you a little introduction before revising the features, the positive answer I am giving for this Canva Pro review comes from three different perspectives.
Digital Marketing freelancer
As a Marketing freelancer, I often work with companies that don’t have a graphic designer or an agency. The main services for which companies hire me usually revolve around campaign management, so technically I don’t have to create banners and other visual Marketing materials.
But practically, this is something that many small companies are looking for when hiring a Marketing freelancer – the full pack. So, Canva has allowed me to create Marketing materials quickly and easily, providing so much more value for these companies.
The point is, if I had to do all the paid campaign & social media banners with Photoshop, with all the A/B testing that we typically do, I would take forever to come up with design ideas…and to execute them. So, I wouldn’t be able to offer this added value.
I can now easily create visual materials for companies, which not only helps me deliver better and more complete services, but also helps them cut on costs as they don’t have to hire anyone else for this part.
Disclaimer: I am by no means claiming that Canva is better than a graphic designer. On the contrary, I highly value and respect graphic designers and nothing can substitute having one.
However, I do believe that Canva is a great tool for companies that can’t fit a designer into their budget, or just for non-designers that want to get some simple work done. Obviously, Canva does not have all the features that Photoshop offers, for example, so it is probably not suitable for more advanced ideas.
Employee in a small company
As someone who has worked for multiple small companies and startups, one thing that usually happens is that resources are very limited – both in terms of budget and human resources.
So, this involves a lot of multitasking across different areas because we are only just a couple of people in the Marketing department.
In contexts like these, Canva has been a life saver for making any sorts of materials quickly and efficiently on a budget. Banners, presentations, flyers, ebook covers – we’ve done it all, and we were pretty happy with the results, too.
And last but not least, we have the perspective on Canva from a customer’s point of view. And by customer I mean just a regular human being who is using the tool for personal things, such as birthday invitations or an animation for my father’s birthday.
Of course, if you are only planning to use Canva every once in a while for particular occasions, you will most probably not need Canva Pro. The free version is pretty good too, and it is more than enough to give you a taste of the platform’s potential.
The point is, as with absolutely any other product or service on Earth, something is only worth it as much as you use it. So, if you are not planning to use Canva Pro every month, and especially the Pro features, you definitely don’t need it.
Canva Pro Review: Feature Evaluation
And now, as I promised, I will be evaluating each feature separately! As a guidance, I will use all the features that they have listed on their Pricing page for this specific premium plan.
Premium stock images, photos, videos and graphics;
The first feature on our Canva Pro review includes access to 60+ million premium stock images, photos, videos, graphics, and fun little animations.
Starting with the animations, I was absolutely delighted to discover that I can include them as much as I want (and can) in my Marketing materials. They are to die for!
Honestly, I discovered them after a month of paying for Canva – and I was angry at myself for not finding out about them earlier. They allow you to create awesome visuals that manage to draw the attention.
Here is a quick slide that I created in Canva to show some of them:
Aren’t they just adorable? And the variety is incredible as well.
I also love the gradients, which make for great background elements in banner ads for LinkedIn, Google and Facebook:
In my opinion, where Canva falls a bit short is on the variety of stock images. Sometimes, I feel like I don’t have too many options choose from, and many images are not very original or creative, but way too “stocky” or “cheesy” – if you know what I mean.
Of course, I have mainly searched for images in the industries of digital payments and progressive web apps. So, there could be a wider variety of options for other industries, themes, or topics such food or sports.
On the good side, the quality of the images is excellent. And for me, having Canva was definitely much better than having no source for images whatsoever, or using free sources that have even less options.
Canva Pro Review: comes with high-quality images
Compared to the free version, Canva Pro definitely has a much bigger variety of photos, videos, and other graphic elements. So, in this sense, it is definitely worth getting all these options for such a low monthly price.
And last but not least, we have Canva’s videos.
Which I absolutely adore as well. I love the fact that they are short (the longest are about 30 seconds), stunning, and really high quality. Short videos are especially perfect for Marketing materials such as social media posts, and you can resize them any way you want.
My final rating is 9 just because I feel that Canva falls a bit short on original stock photos – but otherwise, I think that their offering for this feature is outstanding.
My rating: 9/10
Next on the list of features for our Canva Pro review are premium templates – the platform offers more than +60,000 templates for almost any size you can think of.
At first, I thought that Canva only had templates for just some particular pre-determined sizes. But when I started using the custom dimensions feature, I was very happy to see that there were templates even for some very uncommon sizes.
Of course, you will still have less templates for uncommon sizes, and many more options for popular sizes.
But in general, even having a couple of templates is great for giving you the base for your Marketing material if you are not used to working with a certain, less common dimension. So far, I have stumbled across only a couple of sizes that didn’t have any templates.
Another thing I loved was the variety of designs that Canva Pro offered, organized neatly by occasions, events, and topics. It is also really easy to search for the perfect template by typing keywords into the search bar.
In conclusion, I can honestly say in this Canva Pro review that their premium templates are definitely worth it.
They are beautiful, modern, some of them sprinkled with fun animations or videos, and you have more than enough different designs to choose from. Unless, as we already mentioned, we are talking about some very particular custom dimensions.
As for the rating, I almost gave a 10. However, I took 0.5 points off just because Canva still needs to add some more templates for the unpopular sizes.
My rating: 9.5/10
One-click design resize
Next on the features that we will discuss today in our Canva Pro Review is the feature for one-click design resize.
Resizing with Canva is actually really easy. First, you need to select the template that you want to work with, and from there, click on the Resize button in the upper left corner.
Canva Pro review: One-click design resize feature
From there, simply select the template sizes that you want to replicate (or type down your custom dimensions), and Canva will open a new tab “transferring” your design to the new size so you can adjust it easily.
You can replicate to different sizes simultaneously. Keep in mind that you might have to give Canva permission to do that if you have a pop up that blocks the opening of new tabs.
Although I haven’t given that much use of this feature in particular, I think that it’s a great tool for creating different visuals with your brand identity quickly. And it looks especially helpful for platforms such as Google Ads which require multiple sizes for your ads.
With this feature, you can replicate easily without having to create all the designs manually from scratch for each size.
The only drawback I can think of is that each size is replicated on a new tab. This means that you don’t have all the sizes at a glance, and you will have to work on each one of them separately in a different tab. You will have to download them separately, too.
And this is the only reason why I give this feature 9 out of 10. Otherwise, amazing feature!
My rating: 9/10
Create custom templates
The next feature on our Canva Pro review is designed to make it easier for companies to keep their brand identity strong and visual across all their Marketing materials.
It allows Pro users to create custom templates and easily share them with their team. This way, when someone wants to create a new graphic, they can simply choose their own branded template from the gallery of templates proposed by Canva.
Which makes it significantly easier to keep a consistent brand identity without having to duplicate pages or creatives all the time. In comparison, the free version doesn’t offer this feature.
Saving your custom template is very easy. From your current design, all you need to do is go to the button Download in the upper right corner, and then click on arrow right next to it.
From the dropdown, go all the way down to the bottom, and select the option Template:
Canva Pro Review: Custom Templates
And that’s about it!
Next time, instead of having to create your design with its particular brand identity elements from scratch, you can simply select the template that you just saved.
As a result, my rating is 9.5 – I really don’t have anything negative to say about this feature, but because nothing is perfect in life, I am giving it 9.5.
My rating: 9.5/10
Upload your logos and fonts
One feature that I particularly find very useful is the ability to create a brand kit with your brand’s colours and fonts. And although it might not look like a huge feature at a first glance, I think it saves a lot of time because you have everything at your fingertips.
Let me explain. From my experience, I make a lot of new designs from scratch, and it is always very annoying to constantly copy/paste the colour codes from one place to another. Either from previous designs or from another place.
The way this feature works and is configured is very simple. From the Brand kit section, just copy and paste the colour codes of your brand palette:
Canva Pro Review: Brand colours
You can add multiple palettes as well. Once you’ve configured your brand colours, they will show up on any template that you use. This way, you get a quick and easy access to the most important element of your brand identity, without having to configure them every time.
From the brand kit, you can also upload your custom fonts, and even configure a heading, subheading, and body style. As these elements are also key for any brand identity, you will be able to have them all at a single glance with only a one-time set up.
In fact, I was particularly happy to have the option of uploading a custom font. One of the companies that I currently work for as a freelancer uses a very specific font that Canva didn’t have by default.
Additionally, you can upload your logos as well, and access them easily from any template. This way, our brand identity is quite complete with Canva.
As for my rating, I think that we have almost all the basics covered. However, it would also be great to be able to upload brand photos, icons, or illustrations.
This way, companies could upload the ones that they use almost always, without having to look for them in Uploaded images – which can sometimes mean an endless scroll.
My rating: 9/10
Download designs with a transparent background
Our Canva Pro review continues with one feature that is essential for graphic design: transparent background. However, this time I am not 100% satisfied with the performance of this feature (unless I have been using it wrong…in which case excuse my ignorance).
Of course, I completely understand that Canva doesn’t have the complexity, detail, and precision of Adobre Photoshop. However, what I don’t like about this feature in Canva is that it only applies transparency to the main “canvas” – or in other words, the background of the template.
So, if I upload an image that already comes with its own white, black, red (or any other) background, the only thing that will become transparent will be the background of the slide.
Let’s see an example – I uploaded the logo of Airbus with its own white background, onto a pink slide:
Canva Pro Review: transparent background
However, the end result was an image with a transparent background. Instead, what I wanted to make transparent – the white part of the logo – is still white and not transparent:
In other words, what I don’t like about this feature is that you can’t select what part of the template you want to make transparent. And in many cases, I simply want to get rid of the background of an image that was not made with Canva.
Otherwise, this feature is very simple to use, too. When you are ready to download your template, just select the option “Transparent background” (it is for png only), and you don’t have to do anything else! Canva does it for you, which is pretty cool.
However, because of what I explained above, my rating is a bit lower this time:
My rating: 8/10
Customize download quality
This feature from our Canva Pro review is very, very easy to use – and I think it’s doing a pretty good job, too. All you need to do is adjust the percentage of quality that you desire before hitting Download:
The only thing that I am missing is seeing how heavy the file will be after downloading in terms of MBs and KBs. As a blogger, I often use Canva for my images – but I always try to make them as light as possible for SEO reasons.
However, I also want quality images as well. So, without seeing the final weight of the template, it is a bit difficult to balance out the quality and the size. But otherwise, it is another great feature in the platform’s portfolio.
My rating: 9/10
Export designs as animated GIFs or MP4 videos
Recently, I have been enjoying this feature a lot as well. Of course, it is tightly related to the fact that you can actually create videos and animations – which you can’t do with Canva.
The only problem is that GIFs and MP4 videos end up rather big, and you can’t adjust the quality for these formats. For example, the two small videos that I created above to show you the videos and animations were 1 MB each one.
And I find this too “heavy” for my website.
My rating: 9/10
Create and publish social media content directly from the Canva Editor to 7 platforms
Personally, I haven’t given much use of this feature, but I think it’s great to have this option. After all, most of the graphics we will create on Canva will most probably end up on social media.
All you need to do is click on the arrow next to the Download button, and select the social media account on which you want to publish your content. For example, your Facebook page:
Canva Pro Review: posting on social media
Next, Canva will ask you to connect your Canva account to the chosen social media account. And then, you can directly publish your content on the platform of your choice.
Keep in mind that you might not be able to connect your social account if you are already using it with another Canva account.
As for rating, because I haven’t used it much, I will not be giving a score to this feature. I just feel it won’t be fair. However, if you have tried it and want to give me your opinion on it, please feel free to write it down in the comments below!
Besides from all the creative and optimizational features that we saw on our Canva Pro review, there are a couple of features that are more technical, but still highly appreciated:
- 100 GB of storage space – compared to only 1 GB of space for free users. So, if you are planning to put Canva in a good use, you might need more than 1 GB of space at some point.
- Unlimited folders – compared to only 2 folders for non-paid users. This is especially helpful for agencies that work with a lot of different clients, and need to have everything organized.
- 24/7 support – with Canva Pro, you also get 24/7 support in case anything bad happens. Although I’ve found that Canva works quite seamlessly for most people.
If you’ve managed to get this far, thank you for taking the time to read my Canva Pro review! I am very honoured to have you around. I already gave you my short answer in the beginning of the article, and I stick with it till the end.
In my opinion, I think that Canva Pro is worth every feature for the affordable price it has. Of course, as with everything, it will depend on how much use you are giving to it:
- If you are occasionally making a design or two, but not using Canva more than 3-4 times a month, you probably don’t need the Pro version.
- If you are using Canva a lot, but only make simple designs and don’t care about animations, videos, transparent backgrounds and other more advanced features, you probably don’t need it either. Especially if you already have another subscription to an image bank.
- In all other cases, I think that Canva Pro is definitely worth every single cent. Again, it is not Photoshop, but it definitely has a lot of the most common features that you could need for your visuals.
The good news is, it has a 30-day free trial, so you don’t have to decide anything yet. Just give Canva Pro a try (afffiliate link), and test it out for yourself to see if it’s worth it for your goals and needs!
Also, if you have any questions, do not hesitate to let me know in the comments below. Thanks for reading my Canva Pro review, and hopefully I will see you in my next article!