Most folks who know me for my Canva education know that I’m a big proponent for upgrading to the Canva Pro plan if you’re a business owner.

But whether you’re brand new to Canva or you’ve been using the free plan for ages, you may be wondering if there really is enough or *any* value for you on the Pro plan to justify spending the monthly or annual fee to upgrade to Pro.

Even a lot of people who are already paying for Canva Pro aren’t entirely sure what value they’re getting access to that they don’t have access to on a free plan.

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For example, one business owner I connected with said:

“I’m a Canva Pro member and have been for a while but when I was on Canva Free, I was hesitant about going pro and spending the money. I thought it was just to get the images and stuff with the “crown” on it. So, I started paying just to get the better images, photos, etc. But, I learned Pro is so much more.”

Another said:

“When I upgraded, it was definitely because of the things that I could do with Pro that I couldn’t do with the free version, and it took me a while to figure out most of them.”

The reality is that you can do a *lot* on Canva’s free plan, and for some users, that may be all that they need.

Whereas other users will come to consider Canva Pro one of those subscriptions they simply can’t go without.

So how do you know which camp *you* fall into?

In this video I’ll tell you about 7 key differences between the free and Pro plans, and understanding these features may help you to better understand which plan is the right fit for you.

However, you can also get a quick and easy answer to the question of “Do I need Canva Pro?” by taking a super quick quiz that is called, perhaps not surprisingly, “Do I Need Canva Pro?” And you’ll find a link to that quiz below this video.

But let’s move on to a quick overview of 7 benefits of Pro that you’ll want to know.

Stock Library

One of the first differences you may notice about the Pro plan is just how many more options you have when it comes to Canva’s stock library.

In fact, you’ll now have access to the entirety of Canva’s *premium* stock library, which includes not only stock photos but also an incredibly wide variety of icons & illustrations, video and audio.

There’s still a lot of options available to you in the free plan, but I know that most of the graphics I have used in my various website images, social media, presentations, and other designs have all been part of that premium library.

Template Library

In addition to having access to Canva’s premium stock library, Canva Pro will also give you access to the entirety of Canva’s template library.

While you do have a variety of templates available to you on the free plan, you’ll have *significantly* more on Pro, giving you far more choice and the flexibility to choose the template that best fits your design needs.

Brand Kit

The ability to setup and use the Canva brand kit feature is probably one of, if not *the* biggest reason, why I encourage anyone using Canva to support a business to upgrade from the free Canva plan to Canva Pro.

Having a visual brand kit is essential for any business and it’s going to help to ensure the consistency of your marketing, which in turn will foster recognition and a sense of trust among your customers.

AI + Magic Studio

Magic Studio is Canva’s collection of AI powered tools designed to help you edit your images and designs in a variety of ways.

There are some folks out there saying that if you want to use any of the Magic Studio features, that you need to be on a Pro account, and that’s not actually entirely true.

Now, that *is* true for some of the Magic Studio features, but others are available on both free and Pro, and others still are available with limited usage on a free plan.

Magic Edit is available on both free and Pro Plans.

And then Magic Media (including both Text to Image and Text to Video), Magic Design, and Magic Write and Translate can all be accessed on a free plan, but with significant limits in terms of how many uses you’ll have either on a monthly basis or in total.

And then yes, there are also features that are only available when you have a Pro or Teams plan, and those include: Magic Eraser, Magic Grab, Magic Expand, Magic Animate, Magic Morph and while it’s not got Magic in its name, the OG of Canva’s AI features, Background Remover, is also only available on a paid subscription.

Of those features I mentioned, the ones I use the most are Background Remover, which I actually do use quite a lot, and occasionally Magic Eraser and Magic Grab.

And then there is one more Magic feature but I like to highlight this one on its own because this *is* extremely important when determining if you would get value from Canva Pro.

And that is Resize & Magic Switch.


While Magic Switch enables you to transform Canva designs into other document types or to translate them into other languages, for me the most important aspect of this feature is that you can quickly resize a design into new dimensions.

You would use this if you wanted to quickly repurpose a design into multiple different sizes for different social platforms. For example, if you wanted to take an Instagram post design and resize it for an Instagram Story or a Pinterest Pin or another social channel’s specific size requirements.

Transparent Background

If you want to create professional-looking design assets, you need to be able to download designs with transparent backgrounds. Canva Pro lets you do this, but the free version does not.

You’ll need that transparent background option anytime you want to download an image without a white or other colour square behind it.

So for example, if you’re creating an icon or illustration that you want to blend seamlessly on your website.

Or if you are using Canva to create a logo, this will be important as well.

Storage & Organization

And finally, the media storage differences between the plans is worth noting.

On a free plan, you will only have 5 GB of storage space for your media while Pro accounts allow for up to 1 TB of storage.

If you need to upload a large amount of media, the extra storage Canva Pro offers means you’ll never have to worry about running out of space.

Final Thoughts

Now those aren’t all of the differences between the plans, but as a power user of Canva who uses Canva to support a business, including the creation of all my graphics and marketing materials, these *are* the differences that make Pro a no brainer for me personally.

But I’m not a fan of one-size-fits-all solutions and what works for me may not be right for you.

So if you want a better sense of whether you need Canva Pro to achieve your goals for designing in Canva, you can take the free quiz, Do I Need Canva Pro?

You’ll also have an opportunity at the end of that quiz to sign up for a totally free mini course called You’ve Got Canva Pro… Now What? which will walk you through in more detail all of the differences I’ve talked about in this quick video.

Plus you’ll find a variety of other tutorials and resources to help you maximize your Canva Pro subscription or trial.

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