Let’s talk about Canva hacks!
If you’re not yet familiar with the graphic design tool known as Canva, I’m about to turn your whole world upside down – in a good way!
Canva is a user-friendly design program that allows you to create all kinds of digital images, graphics, tools, and resources with little-to-no design knowledge needed.
It’s a DREAM for bloggers and content marketers in all phases of their careers.
After all, eye-catching branded images will help you catch attention, draw readers back to your blog, build trust with your audience, and add value to their online experience.
In this article, we’re going to cover some Canva basics for beginners and also dig into some little-known Canva hacks that every blogger needs to know about.
Let’s dig in.
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You can sign up for a free Canva account right here.
There is a free plan and a pro plan, and yes, you are going to get hooked and want to upgrade to premium features eventually!
But for now, start with the free trial and get your feet wet, you can always upgrade later. Make sure you hit the button to start with the PRO trial, so that you get access to the premium features.
Once you’ve signed up, browse around and get familiar with the platform.
As soon as you land on the homepage, you’ll see a search bar, where you can type in any type of graphic template idea you can think of (Facebook post templates, Instagram templates, blog post graphics, etc).
You’ll also see icons under the search button that direct you to different tools you can use, including product tools, video templates, printable products, and more.
It’ll probably look something like this:
All of the graphics and digital products that you create will be stored under the tab labeled ‘Your Products’ on the left side of the homepage menu.
There are a LOT of features and options, but don’t let them overwhelm you. One step at a time!
You can also use the Canva app on your phone.
And in this tutorial, we’re going to cover the best Canva hacks that will make your life sooo much easier!
GETTING STARTED WITH DESIGN
Before we dig into the Canva hacks, let’s do one quick design to get familiar with the platform.
Go to the Canva homepage, type ‘Facebook post’ into the search bar, and click on the ‘Templates’ tag.
One of the beautiful things about Canva is the massive amount of pre-made templates you have to choose from.
Click Enter, and a long list of templates for Facebook posts will load on the page.
Choose any template that you want from the list of options.
You also have the option to create your own Facebook post from a blank canvas, but for the sake of this tutorial, let’s just find a simple template and run with it!
Click on the template you want to use and the editor page for that template will open up.
This is where the magic happens!
Change colors, elements, fonts, whatever you want.
Or simply replace the existing placeholder text with the text that you want to use for your Facebook post.
Once the template looks how you want it to look, simply download it to your computer using the dropdown menu under the ‘Share’ button.
Congratulations! You’ve created your first digital design with Canva (with a little help from their pre-built templates, of course).
Get comfortable with the platform and its features – there is soooo much you can do!
But for now, let’s talk about some little-known Canva Hacks that will make you design life sooooo much easier.
Keep in mind, some of these features are only available on the pro plan, but learn and use them all you can while you’re on your free trial! Then if you choose to upgrade after the trial, you’ll still have access to them.
Let’s say you want to make an image that contains a few elements layered on top of each other – like a circle in the back, a small icon layered on top, and some twinkly stars on top of that.
You can place them where you want them, and then ‘group them’ together so that they become ONE element.
Then you can move this element around on your background, duplicate it, increase or decrease the size… all without messing up the look and positions of the different elements that you have combined.
Canva Hack # 1: to group elements together, click on the top left corner right above the elements you want to combine, drag your mouse over all of those elements to highlight them, and then hit the ‘Group’ button on the tool tab.
Note: the ‘Group’ button will only appear after you have highlighted the selection of elements that you want to group together.
Duplicating elements is going to be another huge time-saver to have in your tool box.
Let’s say you want to create a page that has a few different columns of lists with checkboxes. You can create ONE of the checkbox lists and then duplicate it to quickly fill the entire page.
Just select the elements you want to duplicate and hit the ‘Duplicate’ icon on the tool tab.
This will automatically create a duplicate of anything you have selected.
Canva hack # 2: Duplicate images to quickly create detailed checklists, organized documents, or identical elements that need to fill the page.
One of my favorite Canva hacks: record your screen or YOURSELF as you create new things or present a design or training within Canva!
This tool is especially helpful for educators, coaches, and graphic designers that want to walk other people through their processes. But you can also use this tool if you want to record a speech, training, or presentation.
To record yourself or your screen (or both at the same time), open up the design or presentation you’re working on, hit the ‘Upload’ tab on the left side of the screen, and then hit ‘Record’.
Record some content, download to your computer, and then repurpose for social media, your blog, or other products/services you provide.
Canva hack # 3: record yourself or your screen anytime through your Canva account!
If you want to have your own branded elements for your blog and social media, you can create a brand board within Canva and use only those color combos and fonts for your creations.
Just go to ‘Styles’ on the left tab and browse through existing brand palettes or create your own!
Canva hack # 4: Create your own brand board or color palette to keep all of your graphics on brand!
No need for expensive software or design skills in order to completely remove a background image from your Canva design.
Canva now has the option to remove the entire background from your images, and it does an amazing job at removing what you want and keeping what you need!
Canva hack # 5: remove the background from any image quickly and easily with the Canva background remover.
USE THE BUILT-IN ELEMENTS AND IMAGES
Instead of purchasing stock photos and vector files for all of your social media and blogging needs, you can find virtually anything you need inside the Canva library.
They have still elements, animated elements, videos, pre-made font pairings, stock photos, and more.
Canva hack # 6: Skip the need for other subscription services! Get everything you need within your Canva library!
BONUS TIP! FILTER ELEMENTS TO MATCH YOUR BRAND
If you want to simplify the search process, grab the hex code for one of your brand colors, and drop it into the filter section during your search.
Let’s say one of your brand colors is a light brown and you want to browse through graphic elements that match that exact brand color.
Simply grab the hex code for the color you want to find, and then click on the ‘filter’ option under the photo tab.
Hit the plain white color box with the plus sign in it and insert the hex code for that light brown branded image you’re looking for.
The search results will pull up ONLY images that contain that exact color.
You can also search for specific keywords to speed up the exact matches you’re looking for!
ADD TEXT BY TYPING “T”
Quick and easy Canva hack: if you want to add text to your design at any time, just drop your cursor on the template and hit the letter T on your keyword.
Doesn’t matter if it’s a capital T or lowercase t. No need to hit CTRL.
Nope, just hit the letter T, wait for the text box to appear, and start typing!
Wanna use the same (or very similar) graphics across your social channels?
Easy peasy with the instant Resize option in Canva.
You can create a design one time, and then instantly copy and resize it into any other size or template you can think of. Choose an existing template dimension or customize your own size.
Example: create an Instagram image and then resize it into a Facebook post, a Youtube thumbnail, a presentation, an Instagram story, etc. With ONE click!
Canva hack # 8: Save time and hassle by instantly resizing one design to fit any dimensions you want or need.
Note: as much as I love this quick and easy hack, a little ‘tweaking’ will sometimes be required if the dimensions are extremely different from your original design. But it’s still way faster and easier than starting from scratch!
The position tab will be your lifesaver in many ways!
Quickly adjust text and elements with these easy tool. You can pull elements forward, push them backward, center or align any element with one click.
Just click on the elements you want to re-position, and then hit the position button on the tool tab.
Canva hack # 9: Position text and elements exactly where you want them with just one click.
You can also ‘bend’ your text around other elements to add a really cool effect.
Just type the text you want to include on the image, then hit Effects on the tool bar, and select the ‘Curve’ option under effects.
Canva hack # 10: Make your images stand out by using curved text!
LINK TO EXTERNAL SOURCES
Wanna link to your Facebook group, a paid service, or an e-book you’re promoting?
Canva has a link option that allows you to link to any external URL.
Quickly and easily direct people to any link that you want by highlighting the text you want to link to and then hitting the little chainlink icon on the page.
Canva hack # 11: Link to any external source with one click.
Get started with Canva for free right here.
PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER
There are plenty more Canva features and hacks that will make your job easier, but start with these!
These hacks will allow you to quickly and easily create beautiful eye-catching graphics that draw more attention to your message, content, products, and brand.
If you want an engaged audience, more attention on social media, and more traffic on your blog, learn to master some design basics in Canva.
You’ll be able to get more eyes on your stuff and ultimately get one step closer to your content goals!
What Canva hacks are you going to try first?!