GIFs have only increased in popularity across the internet and they are great tools for digital marketing.
In fact, they’re used by about 21 percent of all the websites. In addition, about 63 percent of Americans are GIF users, and one in five Americans can’t get enough of them.
GIFs are typically a short piece of muted footage that include some text (often as a punchline of sorts). Consider them between a photo and a video, where they require less time to load and view than videos but can be more expressive and engaging than photos.
This is because:
- Users can express their emotional responses quickly while chatting in texts, comment threads, etc.
- A sense of identity can be expressed through the pop culture references used.
- It’s all about the world’s meme culture online.
Thinking about making your own custom GIFs? The following are 11 of the best free GIF-maker tools that you can consider using in your own digital marketing.
Offering numerous different ways to create GIFs, MakeaGIF is both flexible and free. Options include creating a GIF from:
- Uploaded Photos
- Uploaded Videos
- YouTube URLs
- Facebook video URLs
- Your webcam
You also can upload existing GIFs into MakeaGIF. These options give you the power to be as creative as you want to be.
This tool also has a library of available, ready-made GIFs for you to use, and you can share your GIFs with others in the library as well.
Filmora can help you make both GIFs and videos. While free, the real bonus of this tool is that you can download your creations without a watermark.
All you have to do is upload whatever images or videos you want to use in your GIF creation. Then, create your text caption. You can download your preferred file format when you’re done.
Filmora includes detailed, thorough instructions on its website to help you every step of the way.
Looking to be able to import from such platforms as Picasa and Flicker? Picasion might be the free GIF-maker tool for you. It also supports four languages:
You also can adjust the size of your images in Picasion, as well as download your completed GIF with no watermark.
Screen to GIF
Screen to GIF is specific to Windows and allows users to record activities through web cameras, screens and more that can then be used to create GIFs.
This free tool is available for Windows 7 and later versions of the operating system.
While it is specific to Windows, Screen to GIF does have a powerful editor with a full set of built-in editing tools. Plus, it supports more than 18 different languages. When you download it, it automatically detects the language of your operating system.
With no download required, Kapwing allows you to edit images, videos and GIFs with various effects, transitions and titles. This free GIF-maker allows you to share your created GIF directly to your preferred social media platform.
You can start with a blank canvas or upload files directly into Kapwing to then edit.
GIF Maker does more than help you create GIFs. This free tool offers the ability to make animated buttons and banners as well that you can then use in your emails, documents or websites.
GIF Maker offers a wizard tool to make your animating fast and easy, as well as a built-in image editor with a full set of editing tools. Plus, it supports different graphic formats, such as JPEG, PNG, TIFF, BMP, PSD, WMF, AVI and more.
ImgPlay’s GIF Maker
Only available for iPhones, ImgPlay’s free GIF Maker best feature is its ability to create different canvas sizes. This means that you can appropriately optimize based on the platform you want to share on.
Once created, you can directly share your GIF to Twitter, Instagram, Messenger and iMessage.
GIF Maker – GIF Editor
On the flip side of an iPhone-only GIF-maker tool is an Android-only tool. GIF Maker – GIF Editor is available for free in the Google Play store. A top feature is that you can upload up to 200 images at one time.
It also has hundreds of available stickers to use as you like, as well as a manager section where you can access all of the GIFs you’ve created and edit them anytime.
While this app is free, it does have in-app purchases available.
The free GIF-maker ezGIF can seem odd since all its features technically reside on separate webpages on its website, but it’s still easy enough to use.
You can crop images, resize your GIF, flip or rotate your GIF, alter the speed, add text and much more. It also gives you the ability to use grayscale, sepia, and monochrome effects.
Of course, being able to download without a watermark is a bonus.
GIFPAL definitely makes GIF creation easy. The free tool automatically plays your GIF as you’re editing so that you can observe the effect of your changes in real time.
It also allows you to rearrange your images, reverse the frames, change the quality of the images, overlay filters, adjust animation speed and more. You also can download with no watermarks. Just beware that GIFPAL is missing a text tool.
Last but not least, GIFMaker.me is a free tool that can actually combine multiple GIFs into one. You can make a GIF from up to 300 PNG, GIF or JPG files.
The live preview shows you how your GIF is turning out as you’re working on it, and the controls make it easy to alter its speed, choose how many loops (even if infinite loops) and more. In addition, you can overlay audio from a YouTube video.
You can’t upload video files to use in your GIF, however, and the site won’t store your GIF for later editing.
If you’re not already using them, GIFs could be exactly what is missing from your digital marketing strategy. Of course, if making your own is not an option right now, there are many websites where you can find engaging pre-made GIFs to use, including:
- Google image search (just click on Search tools and select “Animated” under the “Type” option after you start an initial image search)
The key is that you explore what’s possible for your brand within your skillset and resources.