5+ best magazine design software to download for free

Radu Tyrsina
by Radu Tyrsina
CEO & Founder
Radu Tyrsina has been a Windows fan ever since he got his first PC, a Pentium III (a monster at that time). For most of the kids of his age, the Internet was an... Read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • If you work in the publishing industry, you need good magazine design software to succeed.
  • The key lies in its features, the formats it supports, and its compatibility with third-party tools.
  • We've compiled a list of the best software tools that you can use from all manner of developers.
  • We've included both premium entries, as well as free tools or tools that offer free trials.
Magazine design software to download

High-quality magazine layout software is able to help you create the most impressive digital magazines with an amazingly designed layout.

By doing this, you will also be able to flaunt your thoughts in the most logical way so that your readers can get all the necessary information faster and accurately.

We picked out six of the best tools for creating high-quality magazines with the most impressive layout, so make sure that you check out the sets of features before you make your final decision.

What’s the best program for magazine design?

Adobe InDesign (recommended)

Adobe In Design magazine design software

Adobe InDesign is your all-in-one magazine design software that helps you to create and publish other print and digital media materials, such as books, interactive eBooks, interactive PDFs, flyers, and posters.

InDesign offers plenty of presets layout and typesetting options to create eye-gluing pages.

Adobe’s InDesign lets you insert audio, video, animations, and slideshows on the pages of your magazine to deliver a truly immersive experience.

Team collaboration is crucial both in print and online publishing.

Thanks to InDesign’s built-in collaboration tools, editors can quickly share feedback with junior writers, and all the editing history is kept safe for further analysis.

If you work on multiple projects, you can easily share fonts, graphics, and content across your projects for increased productivity and efficiency.

Other key features include:

  • SVG import support for creating interactive graphics and animations
  • Support for column rules and variable fonts
  • Free video tutorials to polish your InDesign skills
  • 7-day free trial
Adobe InDesign

Adobe InDesign

If you need a software solution to create digital magazines, look no further! Adobe InDesign is your best choice!

Free trialVisit website

Blurb (suggested)

Blurb allows you to turn your ideas into professionally-looking magazines. The software offers users the ability to create photo books, trade books, e-books, and also magazines.

The magazine content format provides a great solution to serial content.

Take a look at the best features and functionalities that Blurb has to offer to its users:

  • The software is packed with tools that are appropriate for every skill level
  • Blurb offers a suite of creative functionalities that are suited for both beginners and more advanced users
  • You will get a smooth print set up with the plugin for Adobe InDesign and the Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
  • You will be able to print one copy at a time and more, according to your needs
  • With Blurb, you will be able to put all of your fabulous ideas in print with a newsstand-quality magazine that will be just great for serial content and high-volume printing projects
  • You will get the chance to choose from two print methods in order to find the best fit for your magazine
  • Blurb’s free desktop tool called BookWright allows you to make magazines and use the PDF Uploader to set up your books
  • You will be able to share a sneak peek of the final product with an embeddable preview on your website
  • You will also get the opportunity to sell your magazines through the Blurb Bookstore easily
  • Blurb offers you more options to choose from, Premium Magazines with high-end heavy covers, Economy Magazines with lighter weight and lower print fidelity, and more

On the official website of Blurb, you will get the chance to look at some examples of magazines, and you can also learn more about the software’s features and functionalities, along with the tool’s pricing plans.

So, don’t waste any more time and head there to check out more details about Blurb.

Get Blurb


Canva banner

Canva is your best-suited solution when it comes to digital magazine design software. This free online tool is multi-functional and has a wide range of designs and templates that will satisfy any requirement.

Whether you need a creative presentation or a magazine cover, Canva covers it all. You can create a variety of graphic products, including videos, social media posts, resumes, certificates, and all kinds of visuals.

Imagination and freedom of expression are the words that perfectly describe this software.

There are thousands of designs and graphic elements ideal for you to express the most creative ideas, or to expose your qualitative projects at work.

The software includes the following features:

  • Text animations to give an extra visual impact for your pages
  • Teamwork at its best, with the option of inviting your team to see or collaborate from any device
  • You can edit the images however you want, adding text or even stellar effects specific to the magazines shots
  • Content editing features like comics-related elements, caption texts, backgrounds, stickers and icons, and many more
  •  Choose from a multitude of grid layouts and pictures combinations to impress the audience
  • You will find embedded applications and media like Giphy or Emoji to diversify your final creation. 

Check out the functionalities offered by this online tool in order to give a boost to your creations. Also, you can download Canva on your desktop for free and use it as your editing software.  



Still browsing for the perfect tool designed for crafting? You found it, try the free version of Canva and see the results.

Try it nowVisit website


FlipHTML5 is one of the best options that are available these days online for creating the greatest magazines ever.

Just take a look at a few exciting features and functionalities that are included in this great tool:

  • This magazine publishing software is just perfect for transforming your static PDFs into interactive digital magazines in just a few seconds
  • You will be able to complete the transformation on the tool’s desktop software, and you can also use the online platform as well
  • If you have any trouble in editing your flipping digital magazines the team from FlipHTML5 will help you anytime
  • You can transform your PDFs into interactive digital magazines with page-flipping effects
  • You can enjoy various templates, background images, dynamic background scenes, and more
  • You will get the chance to use rich digital contents including adding links, images, videos, buttons, background music, annotation, and more
  • The software supports cross-platform, and your readers will be able to read the magazine on their favorite devices
  • You have various publishing options available including HTML, ZIP, EXE, Email to, To FTP Server, Save as Plug-in, Upload Online

You can check out more important features that are packed in FlipHTML5 by visiting the tool’s official webpage.

Get FlipHTML5


quarkpress magazine design

QuarkXPress is one of the leading graphic design and page layout software for creative minds.

Thousands of people around the world are already using this tool, and they value performance and quality in their daily creation and production of magazines and more digital products as well.

Take a look at the key features and functionalities that this tool has to offer:

  • QuarkXPress is an excellent alternative for Adobe InDesign and other design apps, offering users the best publishing software for their digital products
  • The software is packed with lots of handy features such as images, vectors, typography and text, adaptive layout conversion, text stroking and shading, various shape tools, gradients for frames, transparency blend modes and many, many more
  • QuarkXPress 2017 is a remarkable update that comes with lots of practical innovations which include text shading, column clipping, text outlines and layer mixing modes
  • The composition zone feature makes this the only desktop app with multi-user capabilities by allowing more users to edit different zones on the same page of the magazine
  • The software has a great user interface, supporting the drag and drop feature
  • The design grids can be assigned to pages and boxes in order to allow unlimited baseline grids
  • You will also be able to create Flash content including video, sound, animation, and interactivity

You will be able to learn more about this software and its fascinating features and tools by heading over to QuarkXPress’ official website and taking a look around.

Find there the full features list of this fantastic software for creating the most fabulous magazines and more digital products.

Get QuarkXPress


Madmagz is another handy option that you have available for creating online magazines.

Check out the most important features that are packed in this great software below:

  • The software offers users a vast palette of templates for magazines, school newspapers, catalogs, flyers and more
  • All the templates have been created by professionals, and you can also ask for a custom template as well
  • You will get the chance to invite contributors, and they will get to write their pages in the template that you have chosen
  • You will get the chance to edit their pages, and you will be the only person who is entitled to publish your magazine just the way you want to
  • You can also add the table of contents, videos, links, sound and more to make your readers enjoy their experience with your magazine even more
  • Your readers will get the option to share the magazine on Twitter and Facebook and also integrate into their blogs or websites
  • The web magazine will be perfectly readable on tablets, computers, and smartphones as well
  • You will be able to replace the logo with the one that you choose and customize the address of the final product to make it completely yours

All you have to do is head over to Madmagz’s official website, place your order online, and the team will take care of the rest.

You will be delivered high-quality newsstand and environmentally friendly printed versions of your magazine.

Get Madmagz


Joomag is one of the best tools for creating interactive content, for multi-channel distribution, performance, tracking, and more.

Using this software, you will definitely be able to create the magazine that you always wanted with the most impressive layout.

Just take a look at the best features and advantages that you will be able to enjoy while using this tool:

  • Using Joomag, you will be able to create high-quality content for your magazine and then deploy it online across multiple channels
  • Joomag’s team collab tools, real-time editing feature, content creation options, and inbuilt analytics will turn out extremely useful
  • With the help of this software, you will be able to go beyond ordinary publishing and innovate content on each one of the magazine’s pages
  • You can craft high-impact content with interactive online tools
  • Joomag allows you to upload a PDF file to its online platform and transform its static content into a rich interactive experience with the tool’s Crater Editor
  • You can choose between 300 amazing templates to help save time and also to maintain the magazine’s design consistency
  • The Crater Editor is created with innovative technology to offer publishers complete control over their digital content
  • You will get the chance to design your publications with a full arsenal of interactive features and functionalities to bring your vision to life in each one of your magazine’s pages

Digital publications that are created with the help of this program are automatically repurposed for various formats.

This way readers from all over the world will get the chance to enjoy your works on their favorite device.

Check out more features and editing tools that are included in this great software on Joomag’s official website.

Get Joomag

These are pout picks for the best six available tools for creating great magazines with amazing designs.

No matter which software you decide to use, we guarantee that you will be entirely satisfied with the results. Good luck and have fun!

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Adobe InDesign and QuarkXPress are the most popular magazine software among editors and online publishers. Check out our dedicated Design Software Hub for more articles.

  • To create your own online magazine for free you need a free magazine software, some basic or medium graphics editing skills, a suitably equipped PC, and a free platform where you can publish your creation.

  • Microsoft Word does have many ready-made magazine templates that you can use to design and edit your print or digital magazines.

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