How to Design Podcast Cover Art 
Podcast cover art is one of the most important pieces of your podcast's brand:
- its the first thing potential listeners see in Apple Podcasts,
- it signifies the quality of your podcast, and
- 62% of new listeners are more likely to listen if they like its cover art.
Follow this guide to create high-quality podcast artwork that will make a great first impression.
12 tips to create excellent podcast cover art
1. Make sure it meets Apple Podcasts' requirements
Your cover art must meet Apple Podcasts' artwork requirements:
- 3000 x 3000 pixels
- Resolution of 72 dpi
- JPG or PNG file type
- RGB colorspace
3000 x 3000 looks massive, but each podcast directory will resize it in their app. Artwork that follows these guidelines will work in all of the podcast directories.
Tip: If you use Photoshop, keep your image at 72 dpi. Programs like Canva will do this automatically.
2. Design for a variety of sizes
Make sure your podcast artwork looks great everywhere it's displayed:
- as a small thumbnail in podcast apps,
- in podcast directories like Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or Spotify,
- in iTunes on large monitors, and
- as an icon in Apple CarPlay.
Tip: Use this tool to preview how your artwork will look in podcast apps.
3. Clearly communicate the subject of your podcast
Make sure that potential listeners can tell what your podcast episodes are about by looking at your artwork.
Which one of these scenarios best fits your podcast?
Podcasts about hobbies
If you are launching a hobbyist podcast, use artwork specific to your hobby.
For example, a Star Wars podcast should incorporate Star Wars themed images.
Make sure your fellow superfans can easily see what the podcast is about!
Podcasts promoting a business, brand, or church
If you are launching a podcast for an existing brand, use your existing logo and brand colors.
Following your existing brand guidelines will help current customers and members recognize your podcast.
Personality driven podcasts
Some of the most popular podcasts are personality-driven shows.
Consider using a picture of the podcast host in your podcast cover artwork if the show is hosted by a celebrity or well-known person.
4. Limit the number of words in your artwork
Podcast artwork can quickly get overwhelmed with too much text.
Most artwork doesn't have space for the podcast title, tagline, and host's name.
Limit yourself to using a maximum of seven words to ensure legibility.
5. Don't use explicit language or imagery
Your podcast album cover must be censored even if it's labeled as explicit in your RSS Feed.
- Most podcast apps don't allow nudity
- Remove references to hard drug use or violence
- Curse words should be censored in the artwork
Tip: If you're unsure if your podcast violates these rules, search Apple Podcasts for similar podcasts to see what is acceptable.
6. Use attractive typography
Limit visual distractions and focus on legibility by following these typography best practices.
- Use a maximum of two fonts in your design
- If you use two fonts, use one serif and one sans-serif font
- Don't crowd the image with text
- Maks sure it's readable at small sizes
- Avoid visually distracting typefaces like papyrus or comic sans
7. Avoid overused podcasting imagery
Unless your podcast is about the podcast industry, don't use images of microphones and pop-filters.
Podcasting is the medium you're using—it isn't the subject of your show. Including headphones on your artwork is like putting pictures of DVDs and cameras on a movie poster.
8. Use consistent branding
Apple, Coca-Cola, and Nike are all masters at branding because they use consistent imagery across all their platforms.
Use the same colors, fonts, and images in your podcast artwork that you use on your website and on social media.
9. Use high-resolution images
Make sure your podcast artwork looks great by using high-resolution images.
If you use high-quality stock photos from Pexels or Shutterstock then they'll be large enough to not look pixelated on any devices.
10. Use color selection to your advantage
If you're creating a new brand with your podcast, you can be intentional about the colors you pick.
Contrasting colors are more eye-catching and attract potential listeners.
Look through the color pallets on Canva and Dribbble for inspiration.
11. Compress your final image
High-resolution images are large and can take a while to load.
Apple Podcasts suggests you compress your podcast artwork to optimize your file for mobile devices.
If your podcast is hosted on Buzzsprout, we'll optimize your artwork automatically.
12. Repurpose your artwork
Design your artwork so that it can be repurposed on other mediums.
You can use versions of your podcast cover art on social media, in business cards, and on your podcast website.
This creates a consistent podcast brand that listeners will recognize at a glance.
How to design your podcast cover art
You don't have to be a graphic designer to create incredible podcast artwork.
There are tools that make podcast logo design simple and free.
Here are our favorite DIY design tools:
Buzzsprout's Canva integration
Buzzsprout's Canva integration allows you to create your own podcast cover within your Buzzsprout account.
It also guarantees that your cover art will meet the requirements for every podcast app.
- Log in to Buzzsprout
- Go to Podcast Settings
- Click Design Artwork with Canva in the podcast artwork section
- Choose from 250,000+ free Canva templates
- Edit the template to match your podcast brand
- Click Send to Buzzsprout
Tip: Watch this tutorial on how to create podcast artwork with Canva.
Adobe Creative Cloud Express (Free Plan)
Adobe Creative Cloud Express (previously Adobe Spark) is similar to Canva with free templates, text styles, and color pallets to design your podcast logo.
Once you create a free account, follow these steps to create your logo:
- Click + at the top left
- Select Custom Size Graphic and use 3000 x 3000 as the dimensions
- Create your podcast artwork from scratch or use a free template
- Download your file as a .jpeg or .png
Other free design tools:
Hire a professional designer
You can also hire a freelancer or graphic design professional to create your podcast cover artwork.
Here are our top recommendations:
Start a design contest, and you pick the winner. 99designs has created high-quality artwork for some of our own podcasts. Use this link for $20 off any contest.
Tip: Write a detailed design brief explaining the exact type of podcast artwork you’re looking for. Do you want something modern or retro? Something colorful or minimalist?
2. The Podcast Design Company
Professional graphic designers that focus on cover art designs. They offer a 30-day guarantee, unlimited revisions, and 24/7 support. Use code Buzzsprout15 to save 15% on your first order.
3. Jenny H. Design
Jenny has done a ton of great artwork for successful podcasts, so you're sure to recognize some of her work.
4. Podcast Branding
Mark specializes in creating visual identity brands for podcasters, including podcast cover art.
5. Podcast Designs
You tell them what you want, they will create a podcast cover design mockup for you, and you get something great.
If these options are out of your price range you can look into using Fiverr. But make sure you find a designer with examples of good cover art in their portfolio.
Alban Brooke is the Head of Marketing at Buzzsprout and the co-host of Buzzcast. Have any questions about this guide? Reach out on Twitter.
How do I create my own podcast art?
You can create your own podcast artwork for free with Canva or Adobe Spark. If you want professional help, consider hiring a graphic designer or freelancer.
How much does a podcast cover art cost?
Some of the best podcasts created their own artwork for free, but you can also hire a professional to create your podcast cover art. Typical costs range from $65 - $1,000 depending on the graphic designer you hire.
What should a podcast cover include?
Podcast artwork should include your podcast title, your podcast brand colors, and a graphic that represents the subject of your podcast.