All web designers want to come up with the best websites possible, and they can only do that when they have the best available tools. More often than not, the best and most popular web design tools are the ones you have to pay for like Adobe Photoshop, which could cost up to nearly $600 a year. Web designers may also have to shell out some money for other paid tools that support or enhance their work.
Often lost in the mountain of paid web design tools are free ones. Generally, these free tools do not carry the same amount of features compared to professional versions of or full subscriptions to paid tools. However, veteran and newbie web designers alike may still be able to get some use out of them. In fact, some of the free web design tools out there are downright amazing, and you’re not paying a single cent for them.
If you’re a web designer and you prefer to do all your work on paid tools and apps, well and good. But for web designers who don’t have much of a budget for typically expensive tools, they can make do with the myriad free web design tools available today. Here are some of those free web design tools, some of which you probably had no idea exists.
1. Logo Lab
It is possible for a website not to have any logo design involved, but such sites are probably rare. Most websites have logos, and those logos needs testing for balance, scalability, and other crucial factors. Try Logo Lab, where you can run any logo you create and get an honest assessment about it. It will tell you whether it needs improvement or not, among other things.
2. Google Web Designer
When it comes to free tools for whatever you do online, Google is definitely at the top. For web designers who aren’t too keen about coding to build HTML5 creative websites, you can give Google Web Designer a try.
A professional-grade HTML5 authoring tool, Google Web Designer offers an interface that is interactive and clear. Aside from making the creation of animations easier, Google Web Designer can also be used for quick prototyping.
3. Type Genius
If you want an excellent tool for finding amazing font combinations, try Type Genius. It can be hard to visualize how various fonts will look on your website, so Type Genius can make it easier for you. Whatever mix of fonts you have in mind, this tool will show you how they would look on other sites and therefore give you an idea of how they would look on yours.
When you already have a prototype design, and you want to analyze its performance, you can run it through Maze. If you don’t do coding, then you’ll like Maze, which will give you actionable insights from actual users.
For graphic design, Adobe Photoshop is undoubtedly up there when it comes to popularity among web designers. It’s probably safe to say that it’s the industry standard as far as top-notch web designers who want to create the most eye-popping graphics are concerned. And as mentioned earlier, Photoshop can cost you a few hundred dollars to legally use.
However, if you only need a tool for low to moderate-level photo editing, Photoshop isn’t really necessary. You can already edit and save images with a Cloud-based tool called Pixlr, whose interface happens to look similar to that of Photoshop. Of course, you can’t expect Photoshop-like results, but it’s good enough for your requirements.
It’s standard procedure for web designers to present to clients what their ideas are for their websites before doing any actual design work. However, they would still need to show something visual to make things easier for clients. This is where Draw.io comes in handy.
A free Cloud-based tool, Draw.io helps you created things such as sitemap flowcharts and wireframes that will help clients get a better idea of what you plan to do with their website. Some of its features that you will like are its easy drag-and-drop function and its ability to print anything that you create with it.
Web design involves more than just actual creative design work. Entire projects need to be organized and managed, and you will need a clear checklist of tasks. Checkli is a great tool for creating such checklists, which are easily shareable not only with members of your team, but your client as well. Checkli is free and very light. It’s also responsive so you can easily use your tablet or smartphone to work on those checklists for all kinds of projects.
8. Awesome Screenshot
Awesome Screenshot is a free tool that you can use to edit, annotate, and share captured images in the quickest and easiest way. This tool also allows you to make notes or even draw on your captured images. Sharing them with somebody else on your team is also easy.
If you’re a bit of a newbie in graphic design, you might find Canva to be right up your alley. While Canva is a freemium online graphics tool (which means you need to pay for its more advanced features), the free part of it can already help web design rookies create custom-sized or shaped images. It boasts of built-in templates, optimized sizes, and a search and drag function that’s so easy to use.
Whatever color-related web design concerns you might have, ColorZilla should be able to help you with them. This free tool can give you a hand whenever you analyze DOM element colors. If you’re working on a page and you need to get a specific pixel’s HEX code, ColorZilla will also come in handy.
Whether you have been designing websites for a long time or are still starting out, you might want to check out the free web design tools mentioned above. For all you know, they could prove invaluable to you.