Whether you own a business and want to print new business cards or flyers, or you are designing a high-end magazine or newspaper, page layout software has all the tools you need to make professional-looking products. These unique pieces of software offer all kinds of features to help modify your text and graphics and combine them on one page. You will find these programs useful if you are publishing a book, laying out a webpage or designing a magazine.
Software such as InDesign, PagePlus X7 and QuarkXPress 9 are great for print publishing as well as digital publishing for PDF files and eBook formats. These applications even go one step further and are great for laying out a website, smartphone app or creating a QR code. With clean layouts and plenty of editing tools, these programs let you add your own fun flourishes to printed materials and to access blending modes so you can add texture and effects. For more information and hints on how these products work, check out our articles on page layout software.
You don't want to limit yourself or your creativity by selecting the wrong piece of software. There are several things to consider besides the price, and we explore the features that will help your charity, business or personal venture stand out.
Layout & Organization
Page layout software can be complicated, so finding a user-friendly workspace makes your workflow quicker and more accessible. Having the ability to group objects, work with layers and arrange your objects can give you the greatest satisfaction from your software. Find software that has project templates that let you jump right in, and that let you turn the snap-to-grid alignment on or off. We also noticed the best software lets you quickly reconfigure paragraphs to span more than one column, such as a headline, without creating separate text frames.
Graphic & Design Tools
No page layout application is complete without the option to create and manage your own graphics. While many programs let you add photos and have artistic filters and several drawing tools, the best applications go further by letting you design smartphone apps and even add your own QR codes to your print jobs. You should also look for software that has options to blend colors, add effects to photos and create easy grids and guides.
Every print design program lets you drop text into your projects, but the best ones let you create sophisticated typography. This means you can create drop caps as well as create text on a certain path you outline. If you want to take standard text to the next level, look for programs that allow you to apply visual effects and convert letters to editable shapes.
Help & Support
Whether or not you run into problems installing or using the software, it's nice to have a manufacturer that gives you support options. Look for companies that offer an online manual or self-help tutorials on their websites. FAQs and forums offer great ways to find answers to questions from other customers who have used the software.
Layout software serves a variety of your digital publishing needs. Whether you want to use this software to create a magazine layout, self-publish your first novel or see what your website may look like, make sure that you find the right software that both fits what you will use it for and your budget.
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