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Desktop Publishing reviews by real, verified users. Find unbiased ratings on user satisfaction, features, and price based on the most reviews available anywhere.

Best Desktop Publishing Software

Desktop publishing software can turn copy and media files into publishable layouts, for things such as newspapers, magazines, brochures, flyers, and books. Completed layouts can be uploaded onto a website or exported and printed onto paper or similar materials. Users can use prepackaged templates or build pages from scratch, and edit individual pages to meet the needs of each projects. Desktop publishing tools may integrate with drawing or photo editing tools, and are commonly used by the editorial and layout staff within an organization. Completed layouts can be uploaded onto a website or exported and printed onto paper or similar materials.

To qualify for inclusion in the Desktop Publishing category, a product must:

Provide templates for constructing layouts of publishable materials (e.g. newspapers, flyers)
Offer tools for refining layouts, such as detailed rulers, text wrapping, and photo layering
Enable files to be uploaded online or printed using external printers onto ordered pages

Top 10 Desktop Publishing Software

  • Canva for Enterprise
  • Adobe InDesign
  • Microsoft Publisher
  • PDFelement
  • Lucidpress
  • Affinity Publisher
  • Quark
  • Crello
  • Venngage
  • iBooks Author

Compare Desktop Publishing Software

G2 takes pride in showing unbiased reviews on user satisfaction in our ratings and reports. We do not allow paid placements in any of our ratings, rankings, or reports. Learn about our scoring methodologies.
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(2,732)4.7 out of 5
Entry Level Price:0 Forever!

Canva empowers users to create social media graphics, presentations, posters and other visual content. Featuring a simple drag-and-drop user interface and a vast library of templates and design ingredients such as fonts, illustrations, stock photography, video and audio content, and the power to include content from the web such as Giphy and Google Maps, anyone can take an idea and create something beautiful. Canva is available on the web, iOS and Android. Learn more about your secret design we

(2,939)4.6 out of 5

Adobe InDesign is a versatile desktop publishing application that gives you pixel- perfect control over design and typography.

(866)4.3 out of 5

Microsoft Publisher is an entry-level desktop publishing solution.

(485)4.5 out of 5
Optimized for quick response
Entry Level Price:20+ Licenses Contact Sales

PDFelement is the easiest way to create, edit, convert and sign PDF documents on Windows and Mac. This leading alternative to Adobe® Acrobat® offers enterprise-grade PDF functionalities and perpetual licensing at a fraction of the price.   Sold globally in 9 different languages, PDFelement is the all-in-one PDF solution for users of all types, and the only complete PDF solution next to Adobe® Acrobat® available on Windows, Mac, iOS, & Android.

(186)4.5 out of 5
Entry Level Price:Free Single user

Lucidpress is a design & brand templating platform that empowers non-designers in your company to create and distribute marketing collateral all on their own (without going off brand). Lockable templates protect your brand while allowing colleagues to make small design tweaks and customizations, easing the workload off your creative team. Say goodbye to rogue branding forever with Lucidpress --the brand templating platform trusted by over 8 million users worldwide.

(30)4.7 out of 5

(246)3.9 out of 5
Entry Level Price:$395 1 User

QuarkXPress 2020 is a leading Digital Publishing platform. Designers, artists, and even novices use QuarkXPress 2020 to create and publish rich, compelling materials for print, the Web, e-readers, tablets, and other digital media. With QuarkXPress 2020, you can focus on what you love the most. Walking into the Digital.

(82)4.5 out of 5

Crello is an online tool for easily creating videos and graphic designs, for social media, print, or any other web-based graphics by using a huge collection of already designed templates and video/photo content. Start with one of 25,000 pre-loaded modern templates, add your texts, images, and brand elements. Upload your own photos, videos or use free stock images, backgrounds, and clipart. With Crello anyone can become a creator with no special training.

(59)4.6 out of 5

Tell your story & present your data with beautiful infographics. Venngage empowers you to easily create infographics, presentations, social media posts and other visual designs with thousands of customizable templates, charts, icons and design elements. With a few clicks, anyone can create beautiful visuals for their business, organization or school. Venngage's mission is to make design accessible and to change the way the world communicates. We cater specifically to your unique design ne

(31)4.2 out of 5

iBooks Author is an amazing app that allows anyone to create beautiful iBooks Textbooks and just about any other kind of book for iPad and Mac.

(15)4.5 out of 5

25,000+ Beautifully Designed, Easily Editable Templates to Get your Work Done Faster & Smarter

(26)4.0 out of 5

FrameMaker is one of Adobe's desktop publishing offering and a piece of Adobe's Creative Suite of design products.

(12)4.4 out of 5

Oxygen XML Editor provides a comprehensive suite of XML authoring and development tools.

(12)4.7 out of 5

We make cool software that helps your creative side.

(223)4.4 out of 5
Optimized for quick response
Entry Level Price:$1,799 USD

Designed for advanced topic-based authoring, single-source publishing and content management (CMS), MadCap Flare is more than a help authoring tool. Create self-service support and online Help sites, documentation portals, learning centers, training guides, knowledge bases, policy & procedure manuals, and more – all while maximizing content reuse and leveraging multi-channel publishing capabilities.

(28)4.0 out of 5

Oracle BI Publisher is the reporting solution to author, manage, and deliver all your reports and documents easier and faster than traditional reporting tools.

ArcGIS Maps for Adobe Creative Cloud is ideal for design and communications professionals.It gives access data-driven maps inside Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.

(18)4.1 out of 5

Scribus is an open source alternative for entry-level desktop publishing.

(10)4.4 out of 5

InPage Urdu is the industry standard tools for page-making of Newspapers, Magazines & Books in Urdu/Arabic languages.

(20)4.0 out of 5

The Print Shop is your one-stop digital design solution, offering the widest range of design & layout tools available for the everyday user, including page layout, photo editing, graphic design and more.

(15)4.3 out of 5

iStudio Publisher is a powerful and intuitive page layout application for desktop publishing on Mac computers. It's ideal for designing a wide range of document types, including newsletters, brochures, adverts, flyers, booklets, invitations, menus, reports, posters, greetings cards, and yearbooks. Start with a professionally designed template or blank document of any size and produce beautiful, professional quality documents with ease. Export finished documents as PDF files or print them out. P

(9)4.7 out of 5

Smore provides tools to design online flyers and newsletters.

(7)4.4 out of 5

ArcReader is a free, easy-to-use desktop mapping application that allows you to view, explore, and print maps and globes.

(6)3.7 out of 5

Altova® is a software company specializing in tools that assist developers with data management, software and application development, mobile development, and data integration.

(13)4.2 out of 5
Entry Level Price:$2000 10 user - lifetime

Kotobee Author is a comprehensive ebook creator and EPUB editor, suitable for education, training, and publishing. Kotobee Author is a winner of the Academics' Choice 2016 Smart Media Award. With Kotobee Author, you may easily create interactive ebooks rich with video, audio, 3D, book widgets, questions, and more. Customize the look and feel of your ebook apps, and emulate the result on different platforms and devices. Export your ebook to many different formats, such as web apps, desktop app

(9)4.2 out of 5

PUB HTML5 is a digital publishing platform to publish interactive magazines, catalogs, and brochures.

(5)4.8 out of 5

Graphic design software that lets you easily create stunning social media posts and promo videos in minutes by customizing ready-made templates. Our templates make designing a breeze for small businesses, sports teams, retail promotions, concerts, events, gifts and much more. No design skills needed! PosterMyWall allows you to seamlessly collaborate with your team by sharing designs, folders, and digital assets with granular access control options. You can also publish designs directly on soci

(5)4.2 out of 5

The fast, easy and fun way to create spectacular print projects.

(4)4.6 out of 5

Design beautiful content quickly and for free. Join 5 million people using Desygner to create social media posts, ads, presentations, cards, flyers & more.

(4)4.6 out of 5

The drag and drop way to design graphics like a pro in seconds; without leaving your web browser!

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Check out the G2 Grid® for the top Desktop Publishing Software products. G2 scores products and sellers based on reviews gathered from our user community, as well as data aggregated from online sources and social networks. Together, these scores are mapped on our proprietary G2 Grid®, which you can use to compare products, streamline the buying process, and quickly identify the best products based on the experiences of your peers.
High Performers
Adobe InDesign
Canva for Enterprise
MadCap Flare
Adobe FrameMaker
Microsoft Publisher
Comic Life
iBooks Author
iStudio Publisher
The Print Shop
ArcGIS Maps for Adobe Creative Cloud
Oracle BI Publisher
Oxygen XML Editor
Affinity Publisher
Market Presence

Learn More About Desktop Publishing Software

What is Desktop Publishing Software?

Desktop publishing tools allow users to create and publish page designs and printable materials in a polished, professional style. Digital creations comprise text and graphics and can be made for print and online viewing. Additionally, materials can be exported in a variety of different formats. Desktop publishing tools often come with premade templates that require little to no editing, so the software is ideal for inexperienced users. For expert designers and experienced users, the tool also comes with many editing and design features that facilitate the creation of custom layouts for specific use cases.

Key Benefits of Desktop Publishing Software

  • Provides prebuilt templates for page designs
  • Lets users edit and design page layouts
  • Allows users to export and share high-quality designs in a variety of formats

Why Use Desktop Publishing Software?

Desktop publishing software is ideal for all types of businesses that create and publish distributed content, whether it’s internal or consumer-facing.

Flyers — Flyers are typically created for advertising purposes. They are one-page handouts that are often colorful and designed to be eye-catching. Marketing and advertising teams can use desktop publishing software to design flyers for distribution.

Newsletters — Newsletters are bulletin-style prints that are created to showcase news, events, and other notable activities related to the distributor. Desktop publishing software makes it easy for businesses to create memorable newsletters for internal or client-facing updates.

Articles — Articles typically have specific layouts that include columns and unique line spacing. Desktop publishing software often comes with prebuilt article templates to make creating these specific layouts easier for businesses.

Posters — Desktop publishing software also includes ways to create engaging posters for larger designs. Despite the size, desktop publishing tools ensure image quality is retained throughout the printing process.

Who Uses Desktop Publishing Software?

The approachable design features of desktop publishing software makes it easy for any business to implement without much training beyond the commonly included platform tutorials. Writers, designers, and marketers commonly use desktop publishing software for creating and distributing published materials.

Writers— Newsletters, articles, blogs, and other published content can be easily created using desktop publishing software. Writers and editors can write within the platform and design the layout using prebuilt templates or their own design.

Designers — Designers can use desktop publishing software to create and edit new and existing page layouts for businesses. For example, a business may request a custom newsletter template for internal distribution. Designers can create a template for businesses and export it into an editable format for that business. Additionally, designers can also design article templates for writers and editors.

Marketers — Marketers typically benefit from the poster and flyer design capabilities of desktop publishing software. This tool comes with templates and stock image repositories for efficient material creation.

Desktop Publishing Software Features

Desktop publishing tools come with a wide variety of design-focused features that are straightforward and easy to use. Additionally, these tools also offer supplementary features that help users share and export their designed materials.

Layout editor — The overall layout editor encompasses a variety of design capabilities, including editing images, text, borders, and more.

Prebuilt templates — Prebuilt templates come with fully formed material designs and are organized by material type. Prebuilt newsletters, articles, and other types of materials can be chosen and edited further by the user.

Publishing formats — Created designs can be easily exported and shared within the desktop publishing platform. In addition to the digital exporting features, designs can also be optimized for printing. Print optimization takes size into account to ensure the designs retain their quality during the printing process.

Layout adaptation — Layout adaptation automatically formats images and content to fit perfectly into blank areas of available space. For example, a column within a newsletter that has an area suited for an image will automatically scale the image to fit the area, so the user does not have to spend time resizing the image.

Saved preferences — For designers who often work with a specific layout, desktop publishing software can save specific preferences, such as the template and export type, automatically. This lets the designer create and distribute the layout multiple times without starting from scratch.

Potential Issues with Desktop Publishing Software

Printing issues — Digital materials have more robust color availability compared to printed materials. Most ink printers are only capable of using the RGB color mode (red, green, and blue). In some cases, ink colors can be expanded, but it still would not compare to the vast color schemes available digitally. Laser printers can be used in place of ink printers to print particularly colorful materials, but they are often expensive.