There’s that design project you worked on with two or more people and achieved a specific objective, right? Now, this is the idea behind design collaboration tools. Simply put, design collaboration tools help creative teams work together with the aim of achieving common project goals.
Why Do You Need Design Collaboration Software?
If you’re a designer or creative project manager, you must have come across many collaboration tools in your daily operations. If you haven’t, well, it’s high time that you consider incorporating them in your operations. However, why have them in the first place? Simple, they provide transparency and allow for smooth collaboration among your team. Remember, you can hardly succeed in any project when working on your own – teamwork is essential to producing the highest possible quality of work that attracts satisfaction from your clients. So this is where design collaboration tools come in handy. Collecting feedback from clients is also essential in your design process. Besides, the tools enable you to embrace professionalism in your business.
Best Design Collaboration Tools
Perhaps you’ll agree with me that not just any design collaboration tool best addresses your needs but the best. Different tools are designed to perform various tasks. We have categorized the tools based on their major purpose. This will help you narrow down on the best tool that suits you. Please read on.
These are the design collaboration tools we’ve included in this article:
Table of Contents
Design Project Management Tools
Filestage is a creative project management tool that allows marketing teams or creative agencies to easily work together on complex projects while involving all relevant internal and external stakeholders at the right stage of the process. The tool enables you to set up your own content review workflows to gather feedback input from clients, service providers or coworkers in one central location. Team members and reviewers can comment and request changes directly on videos, designs, PDFs and audio files. Additionally, it becomes easier to meet deadlines since Filestage removes any project bottlenecks, due to missing information that is locked-down in different inboxes. Moreover, the software automatically documents your project’s progress and improves the overall work transparency.
Pricing starts at 99 € a month for Starter (15 active projects). It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.9/5.
ProofHub is an all-in-one project management and collaboration tool with a simple and intuitive interface. It helps design teams work together effectively by providing a central platform for communication, file sharing, task management, progress status, feedback, etc.
What makes ProofHub the main attraction for designers is its inbuilt proofing tool. While providing feedback through email can lead to confusion and waste a lot of time, designers can provide feedback on designs in a precise way by its annotation and markup tools such that designers get clarity on what needs to be changed where.
Apart from the real-time feedback and approval process, ProofHub makes the life of a design team easy as they can carry all their important discussions and brainstorming using ProofHub discussions.
ProofHub offers a free trial. The ultimate control plan begins at $89/month (limited time offer). ProofHub does not incur any per-user charges. ProofHub has 4.3 stars out of 5 on G2 Crowd (22 reviews).
(Image Source: Asana)
This is a cloud platform that allows your team members to log in regardless of their location provided they’ve access to internet. Asana‘s dashboard has three panels where you can get access to all the data you require for the assigned project(s). You’ll be able to get an overview of all the continuing projects in your business.
And the pricing? Well, you’ll pay $11.99 a month per user for Premium plan or $9.99 when billed annually, $23.99 a month per user Business plan or $19.99 when billed annually. For Enterprise, contact Asana. Asana has an impressive G2 Crowd rating of 4.3/5 after 3211 reviews.
(Image Source: Basecamp)
Basecamp is a collaboration software that you can use for internal and external collaboration on different phases of your design projects. This tool also integrates with several other tools, giving you seemingly endless business management possibilities to do with the tool.
Basecamp is $99 per month, all-inclusive (unlimited users and projects). This tool has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.0/5 after 1658 reviews.
(Image Source: Trello)
The style, performance, and simplicity of this tool have made it one of the best project management tools in the market. Trello enables you and your remote team to improve on productivity through visualization of what needs to be done. And you’ll get to enjoy the tool’s several unique methods of using it to monitor product issues, requests, and updates.
Billing is done annually and you’ll pay $9.99 a month per user for a Business Class package and $20.83 or less (contact Trello) a month per user for Enterprise package. Trello has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.3/5 after 3120 reviews.
(Image Source: Binfire)
This tool offers a “virtual office” feature where, as a designer, you can effectively collaborate with every other party involved in the design process. Binfire also comes with project management platforms – Waterfall, Agile, and a hybrid of the two and this enables you to work on diverse project types. This software embraces effective communication between the team members concerning issues around the project.
Pricing varies depending on the number of users and the plan chosen. Visit Binfire for more information. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.5/5 after 2 reviews.
(Image Source: Cageapp)
Cage is a project management software that can be used by your design and production team. It streamlines, in one place, the project management, communication, collaborative media reviews, and approval routing for creative teams. What this means is that you’ll spend less time on calls, emails, and meetings and enjoy successfully completed projects and, perhaps, concentrate on planning for other projects.
You’ll pay $8 a month per user for the Standard plan (unlimited projects), and $14 a month per user for the Professional package (unlimited projects). It has a G2 Crowd rating of 3.5/5 after one review.
(Image Source: Workfront)
This is a project management tool that you can use to transform your enterprise towards achieving more success quickly. Workfront allows you to centralize your projects, govern compliance workflows and to use automated processes for reviews and approvals. It helps you manage the project status, and improve client satisfaction.
You can choose one among the four plans – Team (1 team), Pro (1 department), Business (up to 10 departments), and Enterprise (entire enterprise). For price information of each plan, contact Workfront. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 3.8/5 after 15 reviews.
Wrike is a work management solution that prides itself on its scalability across teams. The tool offers project managers the ability to gain visibility into the status of their projects using a range of real-time reports and status reviews. The ability to centralize communications and simplify planning makes this a good option as a design project management tool.
Wrike offers a range of price plans starting at $9.80 per user per month for the professional package. The tool has a G2 Crowd rating of 4/5 after 968 reviews.
Workzone is a piece of of project management software that places an emphasis on usability and functionality. It is a top-rated tool that aims to hit the sweet spot: it bills itself as more robust than entry-level tools but less complicated than high-end solutions like Microsoft Project. The platform’s collaboration tools help project managers to effectively coordinate their design projects.
Workzone offers three tiers including Team, Enterprise, and Professional with prices varying according to the customer. The tool has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.5/5 after 37 reviews.
Design Review & Approval Tools
If you’re used to collaborating with different internal and external people to get your content approved, you’ll love this tool. Filestage helps you simplify and optimize your current review and approval processes. The software enables your reviewers to comment directly on your designs and to create change requests if needed. That way, you’re able to consolidate feedback from multiple sources while minimizing the occurrence of misunderstandings and speeding up your revision cycles. Additionally, you’re able to modify your review and approval workflows to involve (or exclude) team members, stakeholders, service providers, external partners or clients whenever it’s needed.
(Image Source: GoVisually)
If you’re a team or having teams under you, GoVisually can be a good review & approval tool for you. With this tool, you can upload designs and send the team’s projects to members, clients, stakeholders, and designers. The tool is simple to use and one can easily upload images and get immediate feedback.
What about the pricing of this tool? You can get it at $15 a month for Solo, $62 for Agency, and $120 for Agency Plus +.
(Image Source: Conceptboard)
Conceptboard is a web-based collaborative cloud-synced whiteboard that has an integrated chat system that enhances live discussion. You’ll get to enjoy such features as mark-ups, text, sticky notes, and shapes from the Whiteboard Toolkit. The tool also has real-time collaboration features and live annotations. You can create interactive presentations and use video conferencing to communicate with the members.
The pricing of this tool is $28 a month for Business package (3 members and $9.5 for every extra member), one-time fee for premises package $19950 for 100 members. Enterprise packages vary with $590 a month for 10 members +$24 for every extra member, $1190 for 50 members +$16 for every extra member, and $1700 for 100 members +$9.50 for every additional member. It has a 5/5 G2 Crowd rating after one review.
(Image Source: Concept Inbox)
Concept Inbox enables you to send and receive notes, updates, revisions, and comments on your assets and projects. And you’ll need not to be knowledgeable with coding to create interactive prototypes to be reviewed by clients or team members. The tool also enhances live collaboration where you can communicate, brainstorm and get instant feedback. This tool is viable for connection with several other tools like Trello and Slack.
You’ll pay $14 a month for Starter plan (3 projects), $25 for Unlimited (unlimited projects), $49 for small team (4 members), $99 for big team (10 members). Contact Concept Inbox for enterprise package.
(Image Source: Visual Inspector)
Visual Inspector is an easy-to-use project management collaboration tool. The annotation and sharing feature allows you to add comments and send invitations to stakeholders for reviews. It also has a real-time visualization and communication feature that enhances the quick resolution of your projects. You can also access your work anytime anywhere using any device
You’ll pay $9 a month per user for a Pro plan, $59 a month per 5 users for Team plan, and $79 a month per 5 users for Enterprise plan.
(Image Source: Red Pen)
Red Pen is a suitable tool for you if you’re interested in smaller designs where instant views will be necessary. It shows you who’s live and the feedback at that moment. This tool allows you to upload one or more images to your project. It allows unlimited collaborators that you can use to better the management of your projects.
For 5 projects, you’ll pay $20 a month, $30 for 10 projects, $60 for 25 projects, and $90 for 40 projects.
LookAt aims to offer creatives a simple way to share and discuss their work in progress. It achieves this by helping team members to collaborate on their media files in real time while also managing the overall creative process with clarity. Integrations with other platforms makes this a useful design review and approval tool.
LookAt offers five pricing tiers with its cheapest option coming in at $12 per month with a limit of three projects.
Ziflow is a piece of online proofing software that is used by both agencies and brands to streamline the review and approval of their content. The tool offers a suite of collaboration features that help to speed up content approval – a notoriously time-consuming and complex process.
Ziflow also offers a range of pricing plans, beginning with a basic plan that costs $9.80 per user per month. The tool currently has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.9 after 5 votes.
Design Communication & Collaboration Tools
Bit is a new cloud-based collaboration tool that helps design teams create, manage and store their design documents and other media assets in one place. If you are working on any design projects for your business, clients or creating marketing assets, Bit is the go-to tool to do just that. You can easily embed your designs from Behance, Figma, Marvel, Sketchfab, Canva, Indesign or more such design tools, to any Bit document and start collaborating and receiving feedback. Create interactive story boards, brand assets, design projects, portfolios and much more.
Bit offers a free plan to get you started. You will pay $12/month for the Standard plan and $20/month for the Plus plan.
(Image Source: Mural)
This collaboration and planning tool comes with a big HTML5 drawing whiteboard where you can get inspiration and team feedback – you have to drag and drop documents, links, and rich media files. Mural has a visual aid system that allows people to give their honest feedback with no fear of retaliation. It also has fully-editable templates to choose from. This software is supported by iPad, iPhone, and Windows.
You’ll enjoy a free 30-day trial and thereafter bill $12 a month for up to 50 persons. The tool has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.6/5.
(Image Source: InVision)
InVision is a design collaboration software that has a variety of what your design team requires for a smooth communication and collaboration – gorgeous UI, mood board view, and a realistic web design view among other features. You can send shareable links of the designs to clients or team members for them to view and comment.
You’ll get to enjoy free trial for one project, $15 a month for Starter plan, $25 for Pro, and $99 for Team package. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.5/5.
(Image Source: Interact Intranet)
If your team needs to often communicate, collaborate or share suggestions and files, Interact will be a good tool to try. It has an intelligent store platform that can keep relevant records of different actions. Your members will only be able to view the important data for the project being worked on. The Interact Intranet platform enhances user collaboration and communication of new ideas with the aid of corporate social networks.
The tool comes with custom price offerings. Contact Interact for getting a quote for either Small Business, Professional, or Enterprise packages. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.8/5 after 2 reviews.
(Image Source: Slack)
If you’re a remote team, there’s a high probability that you’ve heard about Slack. You can use the tool to pass important status updates and to celebrate the achievements of one another in your team. You can also use this software to facilitate design critiques and get feedback from others instantly
You’ll pay $8 a month for a Standard package or $6.67 if billed annually and $15 a month for Plus package or $12.5 if billed annually. Slack has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.4/5 after 13742 reviews.
(Image Source: Fleep)
Fleep is a text-based collaboration tool that enhances efficient project communication between team members. Its email integration allows members to converse with one another regardless of the organization they’re in. And if you need to access screen-sharing and audio-video calling, Fleep can be integrated with appear.in.
You’ll pay €5 a month per user billed annually for a business package and for Enterprise, contact Fleep. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.3/5.
(Image Source: Flock)
Flock is a collaboration & communication tool that helps bring your team together, communicate ideas, discuss the assigned project, and complete the project in real time. Other than chats, you can also access video calls when communicating with remote teams. You can also invite guests to the platform without them accessing the sensitive information of the organization. This tool also allows you to bookmark significant messages for later and can integrate it with several other collaboration tools for efficient operations.
You’ll pay $4.5 a month per user for Pro plan billed annually and for Enterprise package, contact Flock. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.4/5 after 41 reviews.
(Image Source: Zeplin)
You can try Zeplin if you’re a web tool designer or developer interested in making comments and messages on the latest web design and elements in real-time. This software also provides relevant code snippets necessary to make implementation of the elements on your website or app. The tool allows for a Slack integration where you can inform your team members of any design changes.
You can go for the Starter plan for $17 a month (3 projects), Growing Business for $26 a month (12 projects), or Organization plan for $122.4 a month (unlimited projects up to 16 users and $7.65 for every additional user). It has a G2Crowd rating of 4.4/5 after 16 reviews.
Chanty is a team chat application that is powered by AI. It gives teams the power to share all of their knowledge in one place while communicating over text, voice, or video. The platform also has some more tricks up its sleeve, like file sharing and smart notifications. Those features can help design teams to work together in complete harmony and achieve their objectives.
Chanty offers a free version and a business tier priced at $3 per user per month. The platform currently has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.8 after 51 reviews.
Microsoft Teams is a unified communication and collaboration platform. It gives design professionals a place to chat, collaborate, share files, and more. The tool is part of the Office suite – this means that for some organizations that work within the Microsoft ecosystem, this is the natural choice to seize design success.
Microsoft Teams offers a free version and it also comes as part of the Office 365 subscription. The tool currently has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.1 after 5,090 reviews.
Collaborative Graphic Design Tools
(Image Source: Figma)
If you’re looking for a mobile and web tool for creating UI, you can try Figma. You’re able to create prototypes, mobile and web designs, and wireframes and can review and revise them. It has a detailed graphic design tool where you can access pen tool, shape, and font tools to write, draft, draw, and create crisp scaleable vector artwork at your station.
You’ll pay $12 a month per user for a Professional Team (unlimited projects). For enterprise, contact Figma. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.4/5.
(Image Source: Visme)
This is a browser-based tool that groups all activities of your team and allow your members to create quite a number of captivating visual projects within a short period of time. Such projects include web content, infographics, or presentations. With Visme, you’ll be able to keep your projects organized and can efficiently collaborate with your members.
Prices are billed annually. The basic plan is absolutely free (maximum 5 projects, limited templates, 100MB storage), $13 a month Standard (15 projects, several templates, 250MB storage), $22 a month Complete plan (unlimited projects, 10GB storage). The tool has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.7/5 after 19 reviews.
(Image Source: Adobe XD)
Adobe XD is a timesaving design tool that enables you to create several artboards as quickly as possible. And you can easily replicate files and elements using Repeat Grid tool. It also allows you to create overlays to stack content without duplicating artboards. Plus, you can import files from Sketch, Illustrator, or Photoshop and access them inside the app. The files will be converted automatically to XD documents. You’ll then preview your work and make necessary changes.
For the Starter plan (individual), you’ll pay $9.99 a month for single app and $52.99 a month for creative cloud all apps. For a business plan, Starter plan is free (1 project and 2GB Cloud storage), pay $22.99 a month per user for a Single app (unlimited prototypes and 100 GB Cloud storage) and $72.99 a month per user for Creative Cloud all apps. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.1/5 after 66 reviews.
(Image Source: Sketch)
Sketch is a tool that allows you and your team to view, download, and make comments on shared documents. You’ll be able to share your documents with team members and gather feedback. You can add several devices to your current license and go to your license manager to manage them.
You can have this tool at $99 per device get amazing discounts for other devices depending on the number of seats added. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.6/5 after 772 reviews.
(Image Source: Piktochart)
Piktochart is one of the best design tools for teams. It gives you the ability to create and work on visuals together regardless of the location of the members. You can create your own design ideas or adapt those of your colleagues. This tool enhances simple and fast ways of creating and sharing project ideas and collaboration among members.
You can choose to pay monthly or annually. For a Lite package, you’ll pay $12.5 a month or $150 a year, $24.17 a month or 290 a year for Pro, and for Pro Team you’ll pay $82.5 a month or $990 a year. For each plan, you’ll save up to 25% if you bill annually. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.5/5 after 94 reviews.
Canva is an online design platform that gives beginner and expert designers alike the ability to collaborate on their graphic design projects. It is an intuitive platform that makes it easy to use templates to create stunning designs. The collaboration features also mean that it’s a great option for prototyping and sharing ideas with the team. The tool places a strong emphasis on simplicity and this makes it a user-friendly platform.
Canva offers a free version and its Canva Pro tier comes in at $9.95 per user per month. The tool currently has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.8 after 2,372 reviews.
Lunacy is a Windows-native app that works offline and, importantly for Windows users, it supports Sketch files. The tool makes it simple for teams to collaborate on their graphic designs. A host of features make this a rich graphic design tool, such as the ability to access advanced typography tools and export assets in both PNG and SVG file formats. The freemium nature of the tool makes it a popular choice for Windows users.
Lunacy is a freemium platform that is very transparent with its pricing. The tool has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.1 after 15 reviews.
Collaborative Prototyping & Mockups Tools
(Image Source: UXPin)
UXPin is a cloud-based collaborative interface prototyping tool that allows you to design and collaborate prototypes anywhere. Prototyping with built-in animations, interactions, and custom interactions is possible with this tool. UXPin also allows for multi-device access.
You’ll enjoy a free trial then pay $29 a month per user (3 users) and for enterprise plan, contact UXPin. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 3.5/5 after 48 reviews.
(Image Source: Mockplus)
This is a web prototyping tool that you won’t regret having as a designer. It’s best fit for idea-testing and wireframing with fast learning, design, and interaction. Mockplus has over 3000 icons and 200+ web components to help you create your layout. This way, you can design elements using your preferred style from wireframing to fully-functional prototype previewing. And what’s more interesting is the availability of thousands of free resources you can apply to prototype your web project.
You’ll choose between billing annually or a perpetual license. The trial version is absolutely free and you’ll pay $199 a year or $699 perpetual license for the Individual package. For a team of 5 users, you’ll pay $999 a year or $1999 perpetual license and for an Enterprise of 30 users, you’ll pay $4999 a year or $9999 perpetual license. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 3.5/5 after 2 reviews.
(Image Source: Moqups)
If you’re looking for a tool where your team can collaborate on prototypes, wireframes, and mockups, then Moqups is the right tool. It’s a universally-friendly platform for you as a designer with a great integration to some other collaboration tools like Dropbox and Slack.
Its free trial only allows one project and a storage capacity of 5MB. You’ll have the option of billing monthly, where you pay $19 a month for the Personal package and $29 for Creative Team or annually where you pay $13 a month for Personal and $19 for Creative Team. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.1/5 after 63 reviews.
(Image Source: Marvel)
When it comes to web design prototyping, Marvel is among the best tools you can use. With prototyping, you can give an interactive look to your design without coding. And your team members or clients can have access throughout the stages and can collaborate and give feedback easily.
This tool is cost-effective – it’s free for 2 projects, $16 a month for a pro package, $48 for a team of up to 3 members, and $96 for a company (6 users). It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.5/5 after 122 reviews.
(Image Source: Balsamiq)
Balsamiq tool allows you to create prototypes, mockups, and wireframes and monitor all versions and commentary in one central place. It supports real-time collaboration between members. This tool comes with different versions – desktop app, web app, and Google Drive add-on.
Pricing is per Space and comes with three plans. For Balsamiq Cloud, for instance, you’ll pay $9 a month or $90 per year (2 projects) for Solo, $49 a month or $490 per year for Team Plan (20 projects), and $199 a month or $1990 per year for bigger teams with more than 20 projects. In each plan, you’ll enjoy a 30-day free trial. It has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.2/5 after 295 reviews.
Pencil Project is an open-source GUI prototyping tool that works across platforms. As a free and open-source option, some businesses will naturally gravitate toward this as their prototyping and mockup tool of choice. The tool receives regular updates and it aims to make it simple for people to install and start creating mockups on their desktop platform of choice.
Pencil Project is a free and open-source initiative. It currently has a G2 Crowd rating of 4.1 based on 19 reviews.
ProtoPie is a prototyping and mockup tool that gives designers the power to create interactive prototypes for intuitive digital products. The tool places a huge emphasis on usability and clarity and this alone makes it a popular choice among UI and UX professionals. The tool also makes it simple to share those prototypes with the team and test them on a range of devices anywhere.
ProtoPie offers a range of pricing tiers, starting at $11 per user per month.
With the many design collaboration tools available in the market, there’s a high chance you’ll get confused with the best alternative for you. But lucky for you, we’ve saved you the hassle. You can easily identify a tool that best fits your needs from the different categories above. Improve your business and channel it forwards today by integrating the relevant of these best collaboration software into your workflow. Good luck!
Are you looking for more collaboration software? Have a look at our comprehensive list of collaboration tools.
Max is a SaaS enthusiast and loves actionable content that provides direct value.