Create the perfect social media post with these apps. Featuring Canva, Unfold, and more, this list includes the best apps to make Instagram highlight covers, social media posts in general, and even features an app to make your own wallpaper.
Social media platforms provide handy tools for you to create unique posts. The best way to stand out on social media is by a photo or an image. You can make your photos and images more engaging with apps like Stencil and Typorama.
What makes a great social media graphic design app?
How we evaluate and test apps
All of our best apps roundups are written by humans who’ve spent much of their careers using, testing, and writing about software. We spend dozens of hours researching and testing apps, using each app as it’s intended to be used and evaluating it against the criteria we set for the category. We’re never paid for placement in our articles from any app or for links to any site—we value the trust readers put in us to offer authentic evaluations of the categories and apps we review. For more details on our process, read the full rundown of how we select apps to feature on the Zapier blog.
Social media posts have a very short lifecycle, so you don’t want to spend hours creating them. That’s why graphic design apps are crucial: instead of starting from scratch each time, you’ll have a range of great templates and design resources (like stock images, icons, shapes, and text styles) ready to go. Then, all you have to do is mix and match things with your own brand elements to have something unique and powerful.
And you don’t need to pay huge prices to get incredible results. What makes graphic design apps free isn’t a lack of quality. I’ve considered more than 30 free graphic design apps and found five incredible, free resources. Granted, some of these are more limited free plans of premium products, but they’re are all up to the job of creating awesome images for your social media marketing channels.
To evaluate each social media post maker, I spent a significant amount of time browsing hundreds of themes to get a feel for the quality of each one. I also created at least two test posts using the templates (with most of the favorites, even more). I generally focused on the overall ease of use and professional offerings of each app, but I also had some key criteria that each app needed to meet to be included on this list:
- Is this app easy enough for anyone to use? Tools like Photoshop and Illustrator are incredible in the right hands, and unusable in the wrong ones. Social media management is rarely done by people with a design background, so any app has to cater to regular people. This isn’t to say there won’t be some learning curve, just that it doesn’t require a textbook to climb.
- Is this app suited well for social media marketing? Again, Photoshop and Illustrator can do incredible things, but they are complete overkill for most people trying to create images for their social media marketing channels. I wanted apps that streamlined the process of creating strong graphics, not offering every tool under the sun.
- Is the app experience good? A free graphic design app has the potential to be, frankly, awful to use. But even if you’re not (yet) paying for a service, you shouldn’t be hamstrung by a slow, janky, and just unpleasant experience. Especially when there are great apps out there you could be using.
- Are the design assets varied and professional? It’s easy to find social media templates online, but many of them are awful. You can’t slap some cheesy clipart on a graphic that represents your brand, or keep recycling the same social media post design over and over. We only included apps that had assets that would allow you to represent yourself or your company in a professional light. (To be honest, this criterion cut the most apps.)
- Can you use the app in multiple ways? If you create one post for Twitter, it should be easy to repurpose it for Instagram, or even for a flyer. Similarly, you should be able to quickly edit and update last year’s Christmas sale post with this year’s info. Apps that made this list had to be multi-purpose, rather than force you into one way of working.
Create short promo videos and tutorials on your phone in a couple of minutes.
There are many templates to choose from and the app allows you to filter templates by purpose, such as building brand awareness, increasing sales, engaging users, or attracting new customers.
You can also sort templates by your industry such as service, business, beauty or fashion. The options available will help you mix things up and allow you to create dynamic content.
Chant is currently available on the App Store and offers monthly and annual subscription options.
This app allows you to create animated Stories and offers a lot of customization options with frames, templates, layers, font and color options. You can create professional and on-brand content with this powerful mobile app.
Impresso lets you create square, landscape, portrait dimensions and allows you to customize content for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn.
Impresso is available on the App Store and offers monthly or annual subscription options.
Halide is a unique camera app that focuses heavily on enhancing the experience of taking photos on mobile.
One of the first content creation tools we’re going to look into is Canva. Canva is a well-known app for graphic design, and it offers a multitude of templates for social media, and not only.
You can create digital content for Facebook and Instagram, or get creative with Twitter posts or even newsletters or email headers. You can create videos as well, and the best part about Canva is that it’s a user-friendly platform that boots your content creation game in no time.
You can also use your graphics, as well as different built-in templates offered by Canva.
Bringing your own Canva designs to your post has never been easier, as you can design with Canva right inside SocialBee. Start a 14-day free trial now and save at least 8 hours per week by taking advantage of the Canva & SocialBee integration.
Whether you are doing graphic design on an iPhone, MacBook, or iPad, Vectornator is the all-in-one design app for you.
Why? Vectornator has an easy-to-use drag and drop interface, which means that anyone (with any level of design skill) can create eye-catching and impressive designs. Vectornator is specifically geared towards illustration, print, and lettering. However, it has a sneaky additional function that you can use to edit PDFs easily.
Vectornator makes all your design dreams come true with its unlimited undo history, node tools, pen support, custom brushes, auto trace, and time-lapse capabilities. You can easily design your content to look exactly how you imagined.
If you still aren’t convinced, why not try it out for yourself? All versions of Vectornator are FREE.
Xara is an app used to create professional-looking marketing materials. Small businesses can use this app to create branded content, and also make use of the numerous ready-made templates, suitable for any business need. These templates can be used for social media, marketing, or business purposes.
You can also add filters, and improve your visual content by creating a color palette from the image you’ve just used. And the best part about Xara? You don’t need to worry about the file type, as the app is compatible with different formats, as well.
This app is like having Photoshop at your fingertips.
Over offers many convenient tools for content marketers.
You have access to many templates, decorative elements, editing and blending tools, as well as fonts. If you have a Mac computer, you can also Airdrop your fonts into the app — which is a major plus.
There’s a slight learning curve, but Over has tutorials and easy-to-use templates that make it easy for you to customize and create stunning designs.
Need to create a video while covering a live event? InShot has you covered.
You won’t need any other video editing app after you use InShot because developers make it easy for you to edit a video quickly and easily.
You can stitch videos and photos together and edit a video on your mobile or tablet device.
InShot also allows you to add in music, stickers, and your own fonts to produce a video that aligns with the look and feel of your brand.
Adobe Creative Cloud Express
Do you want to create professional-looking content, but you’re not sure where to start, or you just simply don’t have enough experience?
Adobe Creative Cloud Express is a system that integrates different design templates and assets for social media content, logos, and more.
Depending on your needs, you can create beautiful graphics with the help of Adobe Spark Page, or go the extra mile and make your web pages look stunning with the help of Adobe Spark Post. Adobe Spark Video is a great tool to help your business step up its social media game, as you can create videos by using several templates or creating a video from scratch.
Another bonus is that this app offers multiple articles meant to help you throughout the video creation process.
Create and schedule your social media posts with ease. Choose from an array of engaging templates, edit them and schedule them to be posted directly to your Instagram account