The graphic design platform Canva announced it is launching Canva Video, a new video editing solution, next year. The video editing tool reportedly mimics the same ease-of-use as Canva’s photo editing solutions, Business Insider Australia first reported.

“Our mission is to empower everyone to design anything without any complex software or having to go to a different sources for different elements,” said Chief Product Officer Cameron Adams in a statement, “We’re bringing the same experience to our video editing tool.”

Why we should care

If Canva Video is anything like the company’s photo-editing software, marketers will gain a relatively inexpensive and easy-to-use solution for creating professional video marketing assets.

With the launch of its Enterprise plan earlier this year, Canva is building out its platform to be an all-inclusive graphic design solution for smaller marketing teams wanting to keep their creative in-house. (The platform currently has three-tiers: a free platform, Canva Pro for $9.95 a month and the Enterprise level platform that comes with a digital assets management solution.) Marketing Land has asked Canva to confirm if Canva Video will be included in all three plans but has not received a response.

The Canva video platform will come with a content library that includes, “Thousands of free stock videos, hundreds of free music tracks and thousands of free animated stickers,” reports Business Insider.

More on the news

  • Canva is also offering integrations with Dropbox, Google Drive, Instagram and PhotoMosh to pull images directly from those platforms, according to Business Insider’s coverage.
  • In May, Canva acquired the stock content websites Pexel and Pixabays, making each of the platforms’ stock photo libraries available to Canva’s more than 15 million users.
  • Shortly after acquiring Pexel and Pixabays, Canva’s database was hacked, resulting in the company having to urge users to change their passwords.

About The Author

Amy Gesenhues is a senior editor for Third Door Media, covering the latest news and updates for Marketing Land, Search Engine Land and MarTech Today. From 2009 to 2012, she was an award-winning syndicated columnist for a number of daily newspapers from New York to Texas. With more than ten years of marketing management experience, she has contributed to a variety of traditional and online publications, including MarketingProfs, SoftwareCEO, and Sales and Marketing Management Magazine. Read more of Amy’s articles.


Earlier this year, I launched a side project of mine called Lancerlist which is a platform that allows companies to find freelancers in their city.

This launch marks an important milestone in my journey as a creative. It’s the first time I’ve taken an idea to launch over a weekend, 16 hours of working time to be exact.

In comparison, my first side project, a marketplace for influencers to sell Instagram shoutouts, took about 6 months to build and kinda flopped. Since then I’ve realised the value in getting an idea out there quickly to see if it’s worth pursuing deeper.

Below I’ve broken down those 16 hours into different stages and explained a little of what I did in that time.

A while ago I was listening to a podcast about building vertical networking platforms, this particular industry was oil and gas, but what interested me was this network facilitated the majority of connections between rig owners and contractors.

In the creative freelancing industry, we have networks such as and Elance that connect and facilitate transactions between companies and freelancers.

There are a few issues with these platforms such as the up to 20% commission these platforms take on each transaction or the global competition that drives down prices and causes a race to the bottom effect.

In the future I see both freelancers and companies wanting to take control more of the process. With the increase in global competition, the benefits of working locally will become more important; communication, reputation and quality control are all factors.

Idea and Scope (1 hour)

With this background information in mind, the main problem currently is discovery for companies and exposure for freelancers.

At the moment, discovery options include the freelancing platforms already mentioned or general networking networks such as LinkedIn. The problem with both is the results are too general. The freelancing platforms, while targeted, provide a global set of results. LinkedIn on the other hand can be filtered down, yet the results are not targeted towards freelancers actively looking for work.

Established freelancers have their network, reputation and existing clients to keep the cash flowing, entry-level freelancers have a harder time establishing these in the early days and current options require creating a personal brand (Twitter) or cold outreach (Email).

My solution to this is a simple platform that allows freelancers to sign up, display their contact information and selected pieces of work, and set their location. Companies can then search through locations, ideally their own, to find and contact freelancers based on the merits of their work.

Once this idea was bouncing around in my head I brainstormed a huge list of potential features and interactions that I thought would benefit the platform.

I then sorted these features by size (design and development time) and potential impact. I plotted them on a graph and created a roadmap with the high impact, low size items prioritised for the minimum viable product.

UX Design (1 hour)

For large projects, I would usually do in-depth user research, create personas and make journey maps. For a small project like this where the aim was launching an MVP quickly, these didn’t really matter because as an occasional freelancer I knew the target user.

I, therefore, decided the UX stage would be used to define the information architecture and create a low fidelity mockup the key flows of the product.

Information architecture is simply laying out what information/data is needed for the product to function and then organising it to show the relationship between the information.

Honestly, you could create the information architecture with crayon on a wall, I wouldn’t recommend it though if you want your security deposit back. What I mean to say is you don’t need anything special, I personally use a tool called, it’s a free, cloud-based, flowchart maker and helps me visualise ideas from my brain in a more permanent way.

Low fidelity mockups are a simple visual representation of the product, think sketching out screen designs on paper. In this stage I would take the information architecture and create basic layouts from it, thinking about how the user would navigate from screen to screen.

One of my favourite tools, apart from pencil and paper, for creating simple mockups, is Balsamiq. Balsamiq, with its sketch-like style, allows me to create simple layouts without having to worry about the finer details that come with UI design. I can then add links between the screens to create a clickable prototype, it’s basic but gets the job done.

UI Design (2 hours)

I now had a rough design of what I wanted to build, it was time to turn that into what the final product would look like. These designs are what I would base the frontend development on.

My weapon of choice is Figma, it allows me to switch between Mac and Windows with all the files stored in the cloud, meaning I can easily pick up designs where I left them, without worrying about if I have the latest version.

The first thing I sorted was branding, for the colour scheme I was loosely inspired by newspapers such as the Financial Times with their off white background and largely monochromatic colour palette.

The most simple logo I came up with was ‘Lancerlist’ in a serif that I liked with no icon, this could come later and wasn’t necessary for the MVP.

On to the actual UI, with large scale projects, I would usually create a design system, make all the components interchangeable and create an interactive prototype.

This wasn’t necessary for a project of this size, over the two hours I spent on the user interface I trial and errored many component designs, using Dribbble for inspiration when needed, and stopped when it was ‘good enough’, not when it was perfect. Very wabi-sabi.

I end up designing five full screens from the UX which covered 95% of the interface, I was happy to proceed to development.

Backend (2 hours)

To kick off development, I always tend to build the backend of the project first. This allows me to build the functionality of the product first and is usually the stage when I catch most of my mistakes from the design stage.

The first thing I did was set up two databases, a staging database and a production database. This allows me to test the product locally without the threat of accidentally deleting actual user data.

The whole of the backend of the product is built in Laravel, which is a Model-View-Controller (MVC) PHP framework. I’ve been using Laravel for years and love it, this meant I was saving time by applying my past knowledge.

Generally, the backend structure was the same as the default Laravel setup. I utilised Laravel Auth to create the authentication system, this literally took 30 seconds to set up and works like a treat, especially for the MVP.

Frontend (8 hours)

The most significant time expense in this project was the frontend development, turning the UI design into a functional, interactive and responsive interface.

For most of my side projects, I use VueJs as my main frontend framework and structure the frontend to work with Vue components. This does, however, add complexity and development time to the project and I’m trying to complete over a weekend, so I decided to keep the frontend simple.

For the HTML I decided to use Laravel’s Blade templating system, for those familiar with Twig it’s very similar but with the added benefit of being able to access Laravel functions. The HTML structure was simple, one layout that individual pages extend and pass properties, such as the page title, back to.

For styling, I again enlisted the help of another Laravel feature, Mix. Mix acts as a compiler for SCSS and JavaScript and is built into the Framework meaning there was no complex WebPack setup. All the styling was done in SCSS, structured with components, variables and mixins that keep the project organised, allowing for rapid development.

For interactivity, I used pure ES6 JavaScript functions that detect interactive components on page load and assign all their functionality on the spot. Generally, the interactivity at the MVP stage was minimal, as designed, so didn’t take very long to add.

Once done, I hooked it up to the backend to pull through live data and tested it thoroughly, checking for any flaws in my logic or bugs in my code and fixed them accordingly.

Deployment (1 hour)

The project was now ready for launch, but at this stage, it only lived on my local computer, it was time to move it online.

The first thing I did was create a git repository and push my code up there. This allows me to control different versions of my code so I can work on and release multiple features at a time.

I then set up a basic DigitalOcean droplet (server) with the help of Laravel Forge, a tool that provides a user interface for managing Ubuntu-based servers.

I then bought the domain, set up the appropriate DNS records that point to my server and created a new project for the domain in Forge. From Forge I then setup deployment which takes the code stored in the git repository and copies it across to my server.

I proceeded to set up a new database in Forge and copy across the database from my local computer.

The DNS records propagated about 30 minutes later and we were in business. The project was now up and working from the live domain.

Job done.

Launch (1 hour)

Launch time! In the past, I’ve held back on launching projects, either due to trying to make the project perfect or anxiety about putting my work out there, not this time.

I decided that the launch operation would be fought on two fronts, Twitter and ProductHunt, so I concentrated my preparation around these.

For Twitter, I set up the account, branded it with a profile picture, primary colour (when they were a thing) and call to action in the bio for those curious. I created social media cards for the website and made a pinned tweet with the call to action and link.

For ProductHunt I prepared for launch by creating thumbnails, taking screenshots and pre-writing the first comment which targeted user engagement. I then scheduled the launch through the ProductHunt dashboard for the next day.

I built a very basic, password-protected dashboard (as a new Laravel project) that measured page views and sign-ups, and deployed it to a subdomain so I could measure the launch when I was on the move.

The next day it launched.

You can find the 280 character summary of the launch aftermath over here. At some point, I’ll write another article going into the stats of the launch.

But to give you a flavour of what happened, I launched it at midnight while on a redeye coach to Cornwall for a spot of surfing, 18 hours later I was sat in a Wetherspoons doing customer support!

Check out the project live at

You can find me and follow my progress on Twitter at @madebycrevans.

Originally published at

website launch-checklist:-11-things-to-check-before-launching-your website

Today web site launching is a MUST for a business. With a bunch of tools and platforms, starting a website within 10-20 days is not rocket science anymore. Now you can build a modern-looking site even having no special knowledge in web design or coding. But to get a proper result, there are still some essential things you have to keep in mind.

Our partners from Weblium, who have experience in building a thousand new websites yearly, have collected tips and implemented them in a website checklist. Weblium is a next-generation website builder that uses new technology backed up by professional webmasters for creating effective websites for different businesses and purposes. This article is focused on the marketing aspects, but you’ll find the key tech requirements as well. It will be helpful for owners of small and medium businesses, who want to understand the basics. So here’s what you need to do.

#1. Backup website security

User’s security is an essential point on a website building checklist: when you create a website, you need to take care of an SSL-certificate. It is a strict requirement nowadays: to keep any website users data private and secured.

To meet these requirements, you can purchase an SSL certificate. The security socket layer establishes a safe connection between users’ browsers and servers. If you have got one, there will be a lock displayed in the address row prior to the URL, and the URL will start with https, not HTTP.

You can generate a free certificate on Let’s Encrypt or buy it at one of the Certificate Authorities websites, like NameCheap or GeoTrust.

A completely secure website is the one where an SSL that is properly set up and working correctly. When users click on a lock, they see the following explanation.

website launch design checklist

A website without SSL certificate looks differently, warning users that the resource they are visiting is not credible.

website launch design checklist

There is one more case: you’ve got an SSL, but it is installed incorrectly. For example, a part of the content is displayed in the code.

website design checklist

#2. Take care of the content quality

There are some simple rules that seem almost obvious: the content should be relevant, unique, and mistake-free. If you expect to paste anything just for search engine optimization purposes, you risk to end up with a high bounce rate due to the low quality “stuffing”. If you want to monetize a website, prepare something worth reading, watching, and spending time on.

After visual check (whether all elements are on proper places and nothing shifted), check the texts for mistakes in Grammarly and make sure they are plagiarism-free via Content Watch. You can also check the readability score. Don’t forget to add a clear call to action on every page that encourages to interact or order your services.

#3. Work on the responsive design

Website adaptiveness is a must in the world nowadays. People have several mobile devices to use in different conditions and environments, and mobile traffic share of keeps growing, currently generating 48.7% of global web traffic. Your website should look good on both laptops and smartphones; otherwise, there is a huge risk to lose your visitors, especially when you pay money to acquire them.

website launch design checklist

So before running a website, check it thoroughly on all possible tablets, mobile devices, and even huge screens, like a plasma TV. Traditionally, developers work on desktop, tablet, and mobile versions separately, with creating a new design and for each version, and then coding. After that, you need to test the site thoroughly on all devices and browsers.

However, there is a simpler solution: to use an AI website builder like Weblium. Thanks to it, you can skip this time-consuming phase and use a template that is already adapted for different devices.

#4. Keep out spam

Spam is always annoying, whether you are a website user or owner. The installation of CAPTCHA plugin will help you to protect web forms from bots and fake signups. Nevertheless, you will still need to run traffic and content analysis to detect suspicious activity, block words commonly contained in spam, etc. Besides, it will be good to have geo-replicated servers to withstand a DDoS attack and provide enough network capacity to endure a minimum 200% temporary traffic increase, just in case.

Spam filters are usually provided by website builders – you’ll certainly get all necessary settings if you decide to launch a website with Weblium. Otherwise, find a good anti-spam plugin.

#5. Pay attention to the website loading time

Use Google’s PageSpeed tools to test the loading speed. There is no sense in launching a web platform if it takes more than two seconds to load. The statistics show that pages loading over five seconds have a 38% bounce rate. If this exactly what happens with your website currently, spend some extra time on development and optimize the website. Don’t forget to check the speed for both desktop and mobile versions with the help of GTmetrix.

#6. Add meta tags on the website

Meta tags “title” and “description” increase PageRank and make your website look attractive among the search results or when someone shares it on social media.

  • Meta title is a page name (up to 70 symbols) in Page name | Site name format, which should be unique, relevant to the page content, and contain keywords. Use the website name instead of “Home” on the homepage.
  • Meta descriptions are short page overviews (140-170 symbols) that provide an insight into website or page content. The description should contain keywords and a call to action.

website launch design checklist

  • H1 is a title tag that can be used once for each page. It should be unique and contain keywords relevant for the page content.

website launch design checklist

  • H2 is also a title tag, but it is used for structuring the content. It helps to emphasize the most important parts and can be used several times.

website launch design checklist

  • Alt tag is an image name visible for Google. It helps crawlers to understand what kind of media you’ve got on website pages, to index them and show among Google images.

website launch design checklist

Double-check all meta tags before adding them on website pages. If Google indexes titles with mistakes or typos, it’ll take some time to apply changes and get everything re-indexed. Meanwhile, users will see incorrect texts.

#7. Check the contacts and feedback forms

Some points on the web site checklist are obvious: email and address should be free of typos, a phone number should go as 1 ХХХХ ХХХ ХХ ХХ. Also, make sure to add a ‘mailto’ and ‘callto’ tag to let users open emails and phones in one click on their devices.

A feedback form should contain only necessary fields – the fewer the better. It would be good to add some tips inside or under the rows, where you specify how to fill in the required information (what to type and what format to use). Don’t forget about the thank you message that tells users what will happen after they submit a form. Finally, run a couple of tests to check whether the form works correctly.

Social media buttons are a good idea that will be appreciated by both users and Google Webmaster. This is the fastest way to promote official communities on social networks, making your business more accessible and recognizable. It is also an additional trust factor. If a company has pages in social networks and posts regular updates, it invests in digital development and seems more professional and reliable.

website launch design checklist

#9. Create a 404 page

The next thing on your new website checklist is an attractive 404 page that opens when a user enters the wrong address. While creating your 404-page add a link to the homepage so users will be able to start the journey over again and find what they need. It is useful in relation to both SEO and user experience.

website launch design checklist

#10. Check the site for broken links

A broken link is an internal website link that leads to a non-existent page. After users click on such links, they get a 404 error. It happens when you have changed a page URL after placing it here or have deleted a page forgetting to delete the connection. There are many services you can use for this, including free resources. Here’s the one you can try out.

#11. Final check on website pages

Ensure that your website has all necessary pages indexed, and all those that shouldn’t be seen by search engines are closed and unavailable. Check whether:

  • you have uploaded a favicon – website logo or corresponding letters;
  • robots.txt file and XML sitemaps are present;
  • URL addresses are working;
  • main pages don’t show 404 or 505 error;
  • main pages aren’t working on 301 redirects;
  • margins and padding are indicated correctly.

Sounds overwhelming for the beginning, doesn’t it? The modern website builders, however, make the final check much easier. With Weblium, you know for sure which pages are displayed and which aren’t thanks to user-friendly CMS interface. Moreover, sitemap and robots.txt are generated automatically. Needless to remind that all the templates have been created for specific website types in accordance with the basic SEO requirements. You can edit both if needed. If you have a WordPress website, for example, install special plugins for these purposes.

Bottom Line

So how to launch a website without forgetting about important things? Start with making a detailed prelaunch checklist that covers all the essentials. Include the steps mentioned above and feel free to add some more important things that come to your mind as you are preparing for the launch.

To make this process more carefree, consider using a website builder to create your site. Services like Weblium provide a complete toolkit for launching an effective web platform. In addition to attractive design based on the latest UI/UX trends, you get the basic SEO settings and a half of other essentials from your website launch checklist.

Title image: illustration from Ouch, free vector library

Review the checklist on icon design, read how to use icons on landing pages and learn how UX design builds trust for your website