Canva Pro or No: is it worth the upgrade?

Are you currently using the free version of Canva and are you asking yourself if it’s worth the investment to upgrade to a Canva Pro subscription? 

Then this post is for you!

In this post you will learn:

  • What Canva is;
  • The differences between Canva Free and Pro;
  • How Canva is helping me as a content creator and blogger with the creation of my designs;
  • Ways to make money with Canva Pro;
  • The pros and cons of Canva Pro;
  • The price for a Canva Pro subscription;
  • How you can try Canva Pro for free;
  • If you’re eligible to use Canva Pro for free;
  • My final verdict.

What is Canva?

Canva is a free design tool created with the goal to make creating beautiful designs accessible and simple for everyone in the world. And boy, how they’ve succeeded in doing that because pretty much every content creator I know is using Canva to design their content. Whereas working with programs like Photoshop is incredibly time-consuming and requires some talent, literally anyone can conjure up a beautiful design in no time at all with Canva. 

With that, I do not mean to imply that Canva is better than programs like Photoshop, by the way. On the contrary! A real graphic designer will not use Canva, but for content creators, bloggers, and small business owners who want to be able to create a stunning design in a matter of minutes, Canva is the ideal tool to work with. 

What can you create with Canva? 

With Canva, you can create about all the graphics you can think of, such as;

  • All kinds of graphics you need for your social media, such as Instagram posts and Pinterest pins;
  • Invitations;
  • Business cards;
  • Presentations;
  • Posters;
  • Documents;
  • Visuals for your websites;
  • Logos;
  • Editing of videos;
  • Flyers;
  • Resumes;
  • Planners;
  • Invoices;
  • Templates;
  • And the list goes on.

Basically any visual design you need for your website, social media, blog or business you can create with this amazing tool.

What are the differences between Canva Free and Pro?

The free version of Canva already allows you to do an awful lot. You can use hundreds of thousands of free photos and graphics, more than 250,000 free templates, and more than 100 different design types. That seems like a lot, but as soon as you start creating new content in Canva on a daily basis, you will soon feel its limitations. 

For example, as a Pro member you have access to as many as 100 million high-quality stock images, videos and graphics, plus with a Pro subscription you can:

  • Save your brand colors, logos, and fonts in a brand kit so you can easily reuse them for every design;
  • Remove the background of images with the background remover;
  • Resize designs (this is a must as a content creator);
  • Creating custom templates;
  • Upload logos and fonts;
  • Download designs with transparent backgrounds;
  • Adjust the download quality; 
  • Publish your designs directly to up to 7 social media channels;
  • Cloud storage of up to 100GB. 

How Canva is helping me as a content creator with the creation of my designs

When I started blogging 3 years ago and discovered Canva, I switched to Canva Pro rather quickly. At the time, you paid extra for Pro elements only (I don’t think it works like that anymore) and I paid for those elements with such frequency that it was cheaper to switch to Canva Pro.

For She Can Blog I create designs with Canva on a daily basis and although the free version has a lot to offer, you will soon stumble upon something you would like to see in your design that isn’t possible with Canva Free only. In my opinion, the most beautiful elements, templates, and designs are only available in Canva Pro.

Are you a small blogger or entrepreneur who only needs to create a design every once in a while? If so, stick with the free version. But if you make several designs in Canva on a weekly basis, then I think Canva Pro is a better fit for you. In that case, you don’t have to worry about the money because I personally think it is very affordable compared to what you get in return.

Designs I create in Canva:

  • Pinterest pins, for myself and my Pinterest clients;
  • Instagram Stories;
  • Instagram feed posts;
  • Designs for my website, such as banners for the sidebar, and company logo;
  • My course “Create your own Gifs” (coming soon!);
  • Gifs for Instagram;
  • Templates and charts for my daughter, for example, to learn how to count while playing;
  • Highlight icons for Instagram;
  • Banners for my Pinterest and Facebook pages;
  • Checklists/freebies that I connect to my blog posts;  
  • Planners to sell on Etsy; 
  • Pinterest templates.

Without Canva there would be no She Can Blog! 😉

Canva Pro: the pros and cons

Canva makes it super easy for you to create beautiful designs. And you don’t have to be a genius in graphic design, because Canva is so well constructed that anyone can learn to use it.

The biggest downside of Canva for me is its mobile app. I actually make little or no use of it, because it is extremely difficult to get the elements in the right place from your mobile phone. For me, using the app always ends in frustration and therefore I only use it to download the designs to my phone. 

It’s not really a problem, though. Sometimes it would have been practical to be able to make my designs while driving (as a passenger, of course), but in the end, a bigger screen is always the most practical when creating your designs anyway. 

How much does Canva Pro cost?

Canva Pro is $ 119.99 a year or $ 112.99 monthly. If you’re still not sure if Canva Pro is the right product for you after the 30-day trial period, you can always opt for a monthly subscription so you’re only tied for a maximum of one month.

In case you are already sure that you will be using Canva vigorously for an entire year, you can save a few bucks by opting for the annual subscription right away. 

Try Canva Pro for free for 30 days

Want to test drive Canva Pro first to experience the differences? You can try Canva Pro for 30 days before you proceed to purchase. If you’re still having doubts I’d definitely use this option to your advantage.

Who can use Canva Pro for free?

If you are a teacher or student at a verified school you can use Canva Pro for free. You can read the terms and conditions for Canva for students and teachers here.  

Ways to make money with Canva

Canva is not just a tool to create your own designs, you can also earn a good income with Canva. For example by making your own templates or by becoming an affiliate of Canva. 

If you want to learn about the possibilities to earn money with Canva, please sign up for my newsletter! There’s a new post coming with 4 ways to build an income stream with Canva, and if you sign up for my e-mail list, you’ll be the first one to hear about it.

The verdict

Is Canva Pro worth investing in as a blogger or small business owner? To this question, my answer is a very big, bold 100% YES! 

Do you need to create new designs for your blog or small business, but lack the skills of a graphic designer who can use a program like Photoshop? Then Canva is the design tool for you! 

For less than € 12 per month, you can create the most beautiful designs in a matter of a few minutes and ensure that you come across as a professional blogger and/or entrepreneur. For me, the Canva subscription is a recurring cost that runs automatically. It’s a tool I really can’t live without.


Is Canva better than Photoshop?

Absolutely not! Canva is ideal for anyone who is not a graphic designer, but needs beautiful, professional designs for her blog and/or business on a regular basis. Photoshop (and other similar software) are out there for true professionals. For us bloggers and small business owners, it’s great that a design tool like Canva exists, because it makes it possible to create professional designs on a small budget. 

Can you use Canva offline?

Sadly, no. 

Does Canva have a mobile app as well?

Yes, there is a mobile app, but I personally don’t really like it. Perhaps with a tablet, it’s easier to work with, but I’ve never tried it myself. 


  • Angie is a blogger and creative entrepreneur from the Netherlands who is currently residing as a digital nomad in Serbia together with her husband and 2-year old daughter Ana Milena. She is the creator of She Can Blog and works as a Pinterest manager for several Dutch companies.

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