Piktochart vs. Canva: Which One is Right For You?

According to Social Media Examiner, 80% of marketers use images in their social media posts, 63% use video content, and 35% use live video. 

This is hardly surprising. 

According to a 2000 article by 3M, visual aids improve learning by as much as 400%. Plus, the human brain processes visual content 60,000 times faster than text. 

Brands and marketers have thus taken a particular liking to infographics.

Research by the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) shows that 65% of B2B marketers use infographics for content marketing. 

Likewise, the majority of B2C marketers (54%) used infographics in the last 12 months. 

(Be sure to check out our article on visual content, which covers these and other important statistics about visuals.) 

Where to get your visuals?

There are many tools specifically designed to help brands and marketers create everything from infographics to posters, presentations, and flyers—all without having to use Photoshop or a similar program.

For example, Piktochart is a cloud- and browser-based platform that lets you design high-quality creative visuals from scratch or by using our collection of templates for infographics, posters, and flyers. 

You can even use it to jazz up your reports by adding visualized lists, charts, and maps. 

Whether you’re a business owner, marketer, educator, or budding designer, our suite of design tools will help you visualize and present data and information. 

But Piktochart is not the only platform of its kind. 

Canva is another popular browser-based design tool with similar features and design customization tools. 

Now, you might be wondering how the two tools stack up next to each other. 

So we’ve put together this side-by-side comparison of Piktochart and Canva, breaking down each platform’s strengths and unique features so you can pick the solution that works best for your needs.

Overview of Piktochart

Piktochart header

Started in Penang, Malaysia in 2011, Piktochart was envisioned as an online infographic design tool by Ai Ching Goh and Andrea Zaggia. 

The startup would go on to generate hype at Chinaccelerator and Tech in Asia, acquiring over 1.9 million users (whom Piktochart calls Visual Heroes) and 20,000 Pro users just four years later.

From infographics, Piktochart has expanded to include other visual content formats like reports, banners, and presentations. 

While the platform’s user interface (UI) has evolved over the years, the basic drag-and-drop UI and toolkit have remained the same. 

This makes it approachable for communication specialists, HR officers, and other professionals who need to communicate data in a clear way.

Here’s a quick video tutorial for Piktochart: 

Overview of Canva

canva overview

Founded in Sydney, Australia in 2012, Canva is a multimedia design platform that allows users to create visual content such as social media graphics, presentations, posters, and posters. 

The idea behind Canva was to provide a graphic design service for people who aren’t graphic designers and don’t have the resources to hire one. 

Unsurprisingly, this made the platform a hit with students, newbie designers, and small business owners. 

Much of this has to do with Canva’s simplicity and wide range of templates for practically any type of visual material. There are even templates for letterheads and resumes.

Like Piktochart, Canva has a drag-and-drop UI and is free to use. 

However, it also offers paid subscriptions for added functionality, ideal for power users or businesses. 

Here’s a quick video tutorial for Canva: 

Piktochart vs. Canva

Now for the actual comparison. 

We’ve put these two intuitive graphic design tools side by side to highlight their strengths and overall quality based on the following attributes:

1. Template design

Both Piktochart and Canva have a massive selection of templates for content categories like infographics, flyers, presentations, posters, reports, and general social media banners. 

piktochart report templates

Piktochart’s Report Templates

canva infographic templates

Canva’s Infographic Templates

Both platforms’ curated templates are fresh and professional-looking out of the box.

If you’re a beginner, plugging in your text is as easy as using a text box in a program like Microsoft Word or Paint. 

Advanced users, on the other hand, can quickly customize templates by switching the colors of visual elements and replacing or adding fonts, vector graphics, and photos. 

Another feature shared by Piktochart and Canva, is the ability to search templates by keyword. 

This lets you drill down to specific types of templates, whether it’s a “process infographic” or “marketing report.” This may seem like a small detail, but it’s a useful and uncommon feature. 

piktochart template search

Piktochart template search

canva template search

Canva template search

So how do the two platforms differ? 

For one, Piktochart’s has a more focused, narrower set of templates that are designed to communicate data heavy information.Formats include:

In contrast, Canva not only has templates for these categories, but it also has designs for projects like greeting cards, photo books, book covers, letterheads, business cards, and postcards. 

Key Takeaways: Piktochart and Canva are pretty even when it comes to template quality. 

While Canva has templates for more categories, Piktochart focuses on what it does best: professional-looking graphics for business and longer form visuals.  

2. Pricing

Both Piktochart and Canva offer free and paid plans. 

Free plans are relatively the same, offering access to hundreds of templates and thousands of design elements like icons, vector graphics, and fonts. 

For paid options, each platform takes a different approach to offering value for money.

piktochart pricing

Piktochart pricing

With Piktochart, annual pricing for Pro accounts is at US$290, amounting to US$24/month. 

This gives you unlimited visuals, 1GB of storage for uploaded images, the ability to upload custom fonts, and Folders for easier organization. 

Piktochart also has team packages. 

Pro Team accounts for six users start at US$1,026 annually, amounting to US$85.50/month. 

This comes with template customization, additional upload storage, annotated comments, and controls for roles and permissions. 

Finally, Piktochart offers special discounted pricing for nonprofits and educators/educational institutions. For them a PRO account costs $39,99 a year or $199.95 for a PRO teams account with 5 seats.

canva pricing

Canva pricing

On the other hand, Canva’s paid subscriptions start at US$9.95/user/month when billed annually or US$12.95/user when billed monthly. 

Think of this as a ‘starter kit’ for professionals and freelancers who need Canva’s premium features. 

Key Takeaways: Depending on your needs, Canva’s US$9.95/month Pro plan might be the best option. 

But if you’re a business owner in need of ‘power’ features like brand kits and 24/7 customer service, you’ll have to get a Piktochart Pro plan or Canva Enterprise plan. However, Piktochart’s pro teams plan is more affordable.

3. Usability

Tutorials

Both Piktochart and Canva offer a solid set of free tutorials, great for users with little to no visual design experience. 

Piktochart tutorials

Piktochart tutorials

Piktochart’s basic tutorial greets first-time users working on a blank template, walking them through the steps required to add icons, text, objects, and backgrounds to their visuals. 

There’s also an FAQ section on the bottom-right corner of the screen for quick instructions, a dedicated “Getting Started” section that goes deeper into the basics of using Piktochart, and a Video Tutorials page with more dynamic tutorials. 

In Canva’s case, users will find a similar quick Help section at the bottom-right corner of their screens when working on a project. 

Canva also lives up to its reputation as a friendly alternative to intimidating design software by offering short courses in its Design School.

canva tutorials

Canva Tutorials

Meanwhile, Piktochart has an Inspire Me section featuring a curated gallery of other Visual Heroes’ work. 

piktochart gallery

Toolkits

For toolkits, both Piktochart and Canva have very similar section manipulation functions. 

This includes duplicating or cloning, drag-and-dropping design components, changing text alignment, grouping and ungrouping design elements, and moving elements back and forward. 

When it comes to design elements, Piktochart has a deeper selection of icons, shapes, lines, and frames than Canva. In turn, these elements are categorized by types such as animals, arrows, banners, decorative elements, and education. Users can also search for visual elements by keyword. 

piktochart visual elements

Piktochart visual elements

Canva also has a similar setup for its elements, with free users having limited access to its library. 

piktochart graphic elements

Canva visual elements

Infographics

Both Piktochart and Canva have dozens of infographic templates and support keyword searches for specific template types (e.g., business, historical, and comparison). 

What sets Piktochart apart is its “Download as Blocks” feature, which lets you download your visual into separate parts based on block dimensions. 

This is useful for repurposing content, say, turning infographics into presentation slides or social media posts. 

download as blocks


Download as Blocks on Piktochart

Chart and maps

Piktochart and Canva have similar functions for visualizing data and adding data points to charts. 

However, Piktochart has a far more comprehensive selection of data visualization tools, offering 16 types of charts to choose from. 

Canva, on the other hand, only has six chart types. 

Another edge Piktochart has over Canva is its ability to import data from spreadsheets on Google Sheets and Excel. 

Piktochart chart builder

Piktochart chart builder

canva chart builder

Canva chart builder

And unlike Canva, Piktochart has a map builder that lets you visualize population and area data. 

piktochart map maker

Lists, timelines, and comparisons

piktochart design components

Piktochart Design Components

“Design Components” is another Piktochart feature that shows off the platform’s strength as a data visualization tool. 

With it, users can quickly insert Lists, Timelines, and Comparisons (which also come in different design templates) into their visuals. 

Platforms like Canva and Visme may have a ton of features, but they don’t have the specific ability to let users easily plug data into visualized lists, timelines, and comparisons. 

New users could then spend more time on their information and content, and less time on visual appeal. 

Key Takeaways: Both platforms offer tools that let you transform data into visual stories. 

However, Piktochart lends itself more to data visualization, offering better functionality for charts, maps, lists, timelines, and comparisons. Canva is really more of a general graphic design tool for everyone.

Over to you

Piktochart and Canva share many similar features, but also have distinct functions geared toward certain users. 

For example, Canva brands itself as a design tool for non-designers; its Design School and breadth of design templates illustrate this point. Meanwhile, Piktochart emphasizes how easy it is to adapt content to a list, timeline, and comparison template. 

We hope this side-by-side comparison helps you decide which tool best suits your needs. 

But don’t take our word for it—sign up for a Piktochart account and explore our platform yourself.