27 June 2017

Must-Have SaaS Tools For Web Designers

Software as a Service makes most digital work a whole lot easier. You can find web-based systems for editorial calendars, design projects, wireframing tools, and so much more.
Web design is also a huge field so it can include a lot of great tools. Most of these tools you’ll want for your desktop(eg. Photoshop, Sketch) but some tools work better as SaaS products.

Check out these tools below and see if any of them can fit into your web design workflow. I think all of these are valuable to web designers but depending on the types of projects you create and what sort of work you do, some of these tools will be more useful than others.



semrush data

I’ve always found SEMrush to be invaluable for client work. If you’re designing a website for any client you’ll want to scope out their competition and the content they’re ranking for in Google.


But this program can also help you find untapped keywords for your own site or blog. It’s a very powerful tool with a lot of great features that are sure to help with any web projects. If you’re a freelancer and you do lots of web work this is a must-have.


There are other tools like this one but many aren’t up to par with the quality of search queries and keyword volumes. Plus SEMrush can find related websites based on domain searches so you can study dozens of competitors with just a few clicks.


If you do build websites and you’re not big on SEO then I absolutely recommend studying that first. A well-designed website is useless if it’s not optimized to rank in Google.


SEMrush gives you everything you need to help clients get their work online and bring consistent traffic through the web. Probably my #1 tool for both personal and clients projects.



Online prototyping has never been easier thanks to InVision. This wildly popular prototyping tool has been making rounds for years in design circles.


It’s currently one of the largest brands for team-based prototyping and file sharing with a SaaS product. Collaboration is the key to InVision so if you work alone this may not be as useful.


However if you’re looking for a full prototyping tool without hacking your way through Photoshop then InVision might be right up your alley. It comes with powerful features that let you design wireframes and connect them into a larger prototype for any sized project(web or mobile).


Then you can share these results with clients to confirm any number of things:


  • Website architecture
  • Individual page design
  • Content flow
  • UI/UX design strategy

You can always browse UX inspiration to see what else is out there. But ultimately you’ll learn a lot more by working with a tool like InVision to help guide the final design process.




The vast majority of freelance web designers loathe bookkeeping. It’s a task that needs to be done but really doesn’t feel very fun to do.


Thankfully with a tool like FreshBooks you can make your job a lot easier. This has been around for well over a decade and their SaaS product is phenomenal. It’ll cut down on missing invoices and help you organize your expenses come tax time.


Everything you need to track your revenue is included with Freshbooks. You can send invoices, save dates for payments, cover expenses and project revenues. You can even setup a calendar of important payment dates and invoicing dates to make sure you never get a late invoice ever again.


Yes you could always go straight to a CPA and have them deal with your finances. But this can get costly real fast and it’s often better to save those visits for larger tasks.


Instead just use FreshBooks and do your own bookkeeping. It’s a lot easier than you’d think and this is one of the most trusted sites on the web for online accounting.


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