Canva Pro Review: A Design Tool with Unlimited Stock Images

Canva Pro is the professional, premium version of Canva, a graphic design platform that combines simplicity, high-quality resources and powerful functionality to solve all your creative needs at once. 

Canva Pro includes access to an image editor, unlimited downloads of your pick of millions of stock photos, illustrations, templates and more, and special features for businesses and teams to collaborate and create visuals effortlessly. All for a very affordable, flat monthly fee. 

The multiple applications of the Canva Pro function added to the integral approach to content creation and its low cost, make it one of the best choices for small businesses. 

And now you can test the service for free for one month, thanks to the Canva Free Trial! 

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Canva e1588944252271 > Canva Pro Review: A Design Tool with Unlimited Stock ImagesCanva was born as a user-friendly, web-based image editor for the non-designer. It’s a simple yet efficient concept that aims at allowing the non-specialist user to create professional-like designs easily, without having to spend money or learn complicated editing software. Canva Pro is the premium, subscription-based service of this platform, oriented to those who use Canva for work and need a more powerful solution for visual content creation: businesses, teams, non-profits, educational entities, etc. Of course, it’s available for individuals as well. 

But what is Canva today? What exactly is included in Canva Pro? Is it worth paying for Canva? In this Canva Pro review, we’ll answer all these questions in-depth, going over the specifics of the offer, features, pricing and pros and cons of using Canva for work, to help you decide whether it’s worth your time and dime. 

Another great way to discover it is by seizing the cool Canva Pro Free Trial, that lets you experience Canva Pro free for 30 days! 

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Canva Pro Review in a Nutshell

If you don’t have time to read, here is a quick overview of what Canva Pro is about: 

  • Canva is a graphic design solution for non-designers 
  • Was founded in 2012 in Australia, where it’s still headquartered today
  • It offers a user-friendly, online graphic design tool 
  • 60 million stock images 
  • Thousands of templates, graphics and more 
  • Brand kit, team access, publishing assistant and various other visual marketing features 
  • Subscription with unlimited downloads for only $9.95 a month 
  • Canva Pro Free Trial with full access for 30 days for free
  • Canva Enterprise for big brands and teams
  • Free lifetime access for Nonprofits and Education users

Keep in mind this is just to scratch the surface, and you can find a lot more info about these points in the full Canva review below. 

And one last thing! Unlike many other Canva reviews you may read out there, we are centring on Canva Pro, the premium version of this platform, as we consider it the most valuable for business owners and busy creatives. This doesn’t mean the free plan isn’t very useful for many individuals, but it lacks the depth and round-solution factor of Canva Pro. 

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Canva’s History: A Rocket-Fueled Success in Graphic Design

Canva is an Australian company, launched in 2012 by CEO Melanie Perkins, COO Cliff Obrecht and CPO Cameron Adams. The website offered the now-flagship graphic design creating tool, free to all, with a simple drag-and-drop concept, various templates and preset sizes, and a set of stock media elements ready to use: stock images, illustrations, icons, shapes and more. Some of them were free, and some were paid albeit very cheap at just $1 the piece. 

Later on, they added the offer for those who use Canva for business. Now known as Canva Pro, the service was originally called “Canva for Work” and added bonus features and media resources thought for companies and creative teams to produce marketing visuals with the same ease of use. Think of things like creating a social media post, a blog graphic, a visual for an Instagram story, among others. 

Melanie Perkins CEO > Canva Pro Review: A Design Tool with Unlimited Stock Images

Canva CEO Melanie Perkins

Thanks to its innovative approach to graphic design –Canva was one of the first image editors to have their very own stock media library exploiting the concept of “sale at the point of use”–, the user-friendliness of the editing app and the modern, perky style of their leading team and communications, Canva became very popular, very quickly. And they have grown consistently strong ever since. 

To date, the company is worth over $3 Billion. More importantly, they have well over 15 million users, and more than 2 Billion designs have been created on their platform so far. 

Impressive to say the least, but also a clear indicator of just how useful the service is. 

What is Canva Pro: The Premium Version of Canva

You can access the Canva free service by simply signing up on their website, and you’ll be set to use all the main features including the image editor and a selection of free images, free templates, free fonts and free graphic elements. While totally appropriate for small design projects here and there, this access is limited and not quite that useful for brands, creative teams and small businesses. 

Canva Pro is the premium, paid service by Canva that is specifically tailored for the aforementioned users. It adds fuel power to every feature, and even better it adds functions and a much larger library of professional design elements. 

Canva Pro is subscription-based, very affordable, and built with the same simplicity and user-friendliness we described above. For a flat monthly or annual fee, you get unlimited access, with unlimited downloads to all Canva Pro features and the entirety of its stock media library.

It’s like a full graphic design suite for those who don’t know all that much about graphic design, or those who don’t want to spend hours designing marketing materials. 

Canva Pro Homepage > Canva Pro Review: A Design Tool with Unlimited Stock ImagesHow Much Does Canva Pro Cost: A Low-Cost Subscription

The Canva pricing is super simple: one subscription plan, one flat fee, that’s it. The cost of this fee varies depending on whether you subscribe month-to-month, or are willing to hire it for a whole year in advance. Either way, it gives great value for money, as the membership grants unlimited access to all features, unlimited downloads from the stock library, and virtually unlimited storage for your designs.

Canva Pro Month-to-Month Canva Pro Yearly
$13.95 monthly $9.95 (billed annually)

Best of all is with the Canva Pro Free Trial you can get this cool premium service for free for a whole month! 

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Let’s have a detailed look at what you get with Canva Pro (previously Canva for Work). 

Canva Editor: Graphic Design Made Simple

What distinguishes Canva from other similar online editing tools is the simplicity of the concept and functionality. Canva is thought for the non-designer: beginners, startups, small businesses, solo entrepreneurs, and in general anyone who needs a few cool visuals but doesn’t really know much about media design. This doesn’t mean a graphic designer can’t use it, though! 

The learning curve to use Canva to create a graphic is very gentle, it will only take you a few minutes to get familiarised with everything, figure out where everything is, and get down to designing. This is high contrast with other image manipulation tools that require to follow tutorials and let’s not even mention software like Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator, which require a considerable level of expertise to use. 

But is Canva better than Photoshop? There really isn’t a comparative ground. In general lines, they’re both image editing applications, but Photoshop is way more complex and powerful, whereas Canva is easy and intended for more immediate needs. 

Canva lets you create professional-like visuals like those you’d create using pro tools but without the headache of trying to understand complex graphic design notions and figuring out your way around complex tools. 

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How Does Canva Editor Work

The editor app has a very clean layout, with a central canvas and a grid of options on the left and top of the screen. Most of the tools are drag-and-drop style, thus very easy to use. The options are arranged in an intuitive-like setting, so finding templates, sizes, media and graphic elements is really super simple. 

It is also mobile friendly, so you can work on your iPad or tablet, even on your smartphone with the Canva app, as well as on your laptop or desktop computer, without it affecting the quality of the final design. 

Canva Pro Advanced Editing: Custom Templates & Background Removal

When it comes to photo editing and graphic design, there are things you can do with Canva Pro that you can’t with a free Canva account. The main two premium features are:

  • Branded templates: Turn any of your designs into a reusable template
  • Background removal: Get rid of an image’s background effortlessly and export elements with transparent background

Canva Media Library: Professional, Royalty-Free and Ready 

With your Canva Pro plan, you are granted 

The media library is packed with professional media elements, all cleared commercial use under Canva’s license (Royalty Free for one-time use, more on this next): 

  • 60 million curated stock photos 
  • 3.5 million graphic elements (illustrations, shapes, icons, etc.)
  • 20,000 extra premium templates: social media graphics, flyers, business cards and everything in between, including customisation options
  • 21,000 stock videos 
  • 750 premium fonts

All these files are ready to use in your designs, with some clicks and dragging and dropping from the menu bar onto your canvas. Simple as that! 

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Canva Pro Teams: Add Members for Collaboration

With a Canva Pro account, you can work as an individual or as a team. You can add team members to your account and give them all access to the features and the designs, enabling full creative collaboration. 

It is to note that most stock agencies offer this (multi-seat access) for an additional price, but Canva does it for the same value of the individual subscription. 

Canva Pro Brand Kit: Your Brand Identity One Click Away

One of the main attractions of Canva Pro for businesses is the Brand Kit, a feature that lets you set up your visual identity once, and apply it to every new design you create with just one click. 

You can enter your logo, brand colors, defined fonts and more elements that identify your brand and have them all arranged beautifully in all your graphics. 

It’s super useful to save time and effort when you want branded visual content but simple and quickly-done, all the more if you work with a team where different people are creating visuals for the same brand all the time. 

Cross Platform Screenshot > Canva Pro Review: A Design Tool with Unlimited Stock ImagesCanva Pro Publish: Manage Publications Easily

Another very useful feature is the Publishing assistant. This tool includes the Magic Resize functionality that instantly resizes your design according to where you’ll be posting it. There are preset sizes for every relevant social media platform as well as a custom dimension you can set up. And then just click to adjust the design’s size and send it right away to the channels you define (you can connect Canva Pro to your social media channels and more). 

Canva Pro Folders & Storage: Unlimited Space for your Designs

The Canva free version comes with up to 2 folders and 1GB storage space for you to save up your graphics in the platform and further work or collaborate on them. 

Canva Pro, however, has 100 GB and unlimited folders available for you, which means storing and accessing your visuals won’t be a problem at any time. 

Canva Pro License: Royalty Free for Commercial Use

Most people use Canva Pro to design visuals for social media –think Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc.–, for websites, for online ads, and even for print mediums. You know you can use a stock image, a custom font and more licensed elements to fulfil your graphic, but, are they cleared to use everywhere? 

Yes, they are. Canva’s stock media elements are all royalty-free, meaning you only pay for them once (with Canva Pro, your monthly fee covers unlimited licenses) and get to use them forever, including for commercial purposes like marketing and advertising. 

There is one key difference to know about, though, and that is that Canva has two licensing options available, according to the number of times the element(s) can be used: 

One-Use License: It’s Royalty Free but limited to one project. This means if you use a premium image in a social media graphic, that’s your one use. If you wish to use the same image again in another visual, you need to download (and license) the image again. 

Multi-Use License: Also Royalty Free and this time more traditional, meaning this one license covers multiple uses of the same image across various mediums and purposes. 

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More Benefits from Canva for Professionals

Canva Pro is not the only offer Canva.com has for professionals, businesses and large teams. There are in fact several options according to specific needs that you ought to know about: 

Canva Enterprise

Big companies with large creative teams have their very own custom solution. The Canva for Enterprise plan comes with advanced collaboration and branding tools like multiple brand kits, member access control, set-up workflow processes, template locking and around-the-clock enterprise customer support. Prices for Enterprise service start at $30 per month, billed annually. 

Canva for Nonprofits: It’s Free

If you lead or work for a nonprofit, you’ll be thrilled to know that Canva offers lifetime free access to Canva Pro for registered nonprofit organizations. To access this benefit you need to apply in Canva for Nonprofits and await for your application to be approved. Keep in mind it’s for registered nonprofits and they do a background check. 

Canva for Education: Premium Free

Good news if you’re a teacher or use Canva for educational purposes. The company also gives free lifetime Canva Pro subscriptions for teachers and their class. To get it, you must apply to Canva for Education providing proof of your certifications and employment at an educational institution and wait for the approval. 

Design Better, Easier and Cheaper with Canva Pro

And there you have it. Canva Pro is such a valuable asset for any business or creative because of just how well it covers every step of the creative process through a friendly user interface, with clear and robust materials and a competent design tool, and a very straightforward and fairly low-cost price. 

If you are now wishing to give it a go, remember you can do so for free with the Canva Pro Free Trial that lets you test the service for 30 days at no cost at all! 

Test Canva Pro for free for 30 days. Cancel at any time within the 30-day free trial. Just enter your credit card to start. All details in Canva Pro ...
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