Graphic designers are in high demand, especially given the rise in social media use and competition to stay ahead in the digital world. Top companies offer a competitive graphic designer salary in Canada, and the packages include a slew of perks and bonuses. Also, freelancing is a perfect option for graphic designers to enjoy working on a range of projects. A recent survey found that 25% of designers aged 40 and above have been working as freelancers for the past 20 years. The career prospects are promising both as a freelancer and as a full-timer. 

As a graphic designer, you will have to work on creating aesthetic and informative visuals while collaborating with clients to develop the best solutions. Every industry values graphic design professionals and offers the best compensation to skilled experience holders. Continue reading to learn about the various factors influencing a graphic designer's salary in Canada and which companies can pay you the most for this position.

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What Do Graphic Designers Do?

Before learning about the graphic designer's salary in Canada, it is vital to understand the roles and responsibilities of the position. The exact duties of a graphic designer vary based on the company you work with. Here is an overview of the role of a graphic designer in companies: 

  • Work on various projects and media, using different software to develop and visualize innovative graphic designs to meet clients' requirements.
  • Develop innovative concepts by hand or with software.
  • Execute original visual content while finalizing ideal usage of color, text, font style, imagery, and layout.
  • Align with the goals and obtain input from management.
  • Ensure that all designs meet brand expectations and organizational standards.
  • Be accurate in expressing and conveying ideas.
  • Communicate with clients to represent the company appropriately.
  • Work independently and also in collaboration with the company's internal team.
  • Meet deadlines and budget constraints.
  • Identify flaws and create solutions to improve design capabilities.
  • Maintain internal databases of video, designs, and photography.
  • Brainstorm and strategize with multiple teams for a range of products, including web pages, programming collateral, internal communication, newsletters, and marketing materials.
  • Use trend intelligence to design and execute specific classifications. 

What Is the Average Graphic Designer Salary in Canada?

The average graphic designer salary in Canada is C$57,744 per year. However, the salary range fluctuates between C$36k to C$60k per year due to various factors such as experience, education, skills, certifications, etc. The probable factors that can affect a graphic designer's salary are discussed in the next section. 

The total compensation range of C$34k - C$62k as per PayScale can be broken down as follows:

  • Graphic Designer Base Salary: C$36k - C$60k
  • Bonus: C$204 - C$5k
  • Profit-sharing: C$206 - C$6k

With an ever-increasing demand for well-experienced graphic designers in various industries, over the period 2019-2028, new job openings are expected to total 21,500.

Salaries for Different Graphic Designer Job Profiles

Graphic designers find employment in a wide range of industries. The job profiles vary, and every position entails a unique set of skills. As per Indeed, these are the expected salaries for graphic designers - 

  • Visual Designer: C$55,861 per year
  • Digital Designer: C$60,002 per year
  • Freelance Designer: C$28.02 per hour
  • Graphic Artist: C$21.11 per hour
  • Web Designer: C$25.46 per hour
  • Senior Graphic Designer: C$46k — C$76k per year
  • Marketing Specialist: C$41k — C$70k per year
  • UX Designer: C$61,877 per year
  • Art Director: C$65,807 per year

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Graphic Designer Salary Guide - 10 Year Plan 

A graphic designer salary in Canada ranges from C$36k to C$60k per year. An entry-level graphic designer can expect an average compensation of C$38,097 per year. An early career graphic designer can make up to C$43,649 annually with 1-4 years of experience. A mid-career graphic designer with 5-9 years of experience earns an average of C$49,054 annually. The years of experience boost the salary figure, and you can expect a hike of C$1k for every year of experience. An experienced graphic designer with 10+ years of experience can expect an average compensation of C$60k.

The following table summarizes the annual average salary for graphic designers based on their years of experience:

Experience 

Average Salary Per Year

0-6 months

C$38k 

1-2 years

C$40k

3-4 years

C$44k

5-8 years

C$49k

9-10 years

C$52k

10+ years

C$60k

Source

Graphic Designer Salary in Canada by Location: Which Canadian City Pays the Highest?

If you manage to grab a top position in a company, your graphic designer salary will be strongly influenced by the location of the job. As per Indeed, some cities can offer the highest salaries in the country, other locations provide comparatively lower compensation. 

  • Graphic designer's salary Toronto: $50,917 per year
  • Graphic designer's salary Vancouver: $72,893 per year

Vancouver is the highest-paying Canadian city for graphic designers. Discover who comes next on the list. Take a look at some famous Canadian cities and their offers in terms of average graphic designer salary:

City

Average Salary Per Year

Vancouver, BC 

$72,893

Burnaby, BC 

$69,898

Edmonton, AB 

$63,046

Calgary, AB 

$58,546

Mississauga, ON 

$52,576

Scarborough, ON 

$52,496

Toronto, ON 

$50,917

Markham, ON 

$48,055

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Top Companies for Graphic Designers in Canada

The organization's reputation and size are major determiners of a graphic designer's salary. Here is a comparison of graphic designers' base salaries in top companies (PayScale): 

  • Sony Pictures: $119,133 per year
  • York Region: $110,153 per year
  • Scanline VFX: $101,875 per year
  • Fera.ai: $93,672 per year
  • Ubisoft: $87,300 per year

Skills That Influence Graphic Designer Salary

Different relevant skills can affect your salary. Here is a list of some most popular skills that can help uplevel your salary. Include them in your resume and exhibit them in your interview to land the most lucrative offers.

  • Advertising
  • Email Marketing
  • 2D Animation
  • User Experience (UX) Design
  • Adobe Creative Suite
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe InDesign
  • Acrobat
  • Dreamweaver
  • Corel Draw
  • Social Media 
  • Typesetting
  • Web designing
  • HTML 
  • 3D Rendering
  • User Interface Design
  • Adobe Creative Suite
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Packaging
  • Digital Design
  • InDesign
  • QuarkXPress

Graphic designers must demonstrate the following soft skills in an interview to convince the hiring manager of their capabilities:

  • A creative flair
  • A flexible approach 
  • Teamwork and collaboration
  • Excellent communication skills that would help negotiate briefs 
  • Good presentation skills 
  • Attention to detail
  • Time management skills 
  • Effective networking skills to strengthen contacts
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Education and training play a crucial role in boosting a graphic designer's career. One of the options is to enroll in Simplilearn’s Post Graduate Digital Transformation Certification Program in collaboration with Purdue University. The course offers a host of reformative concepts to help graphic designers kick-start their journey. A strong foundation can help progress to higher positions, such as design leader, creative head, and so on. So, take your design career to the next level by earning your certification today!

If you have a creative flair for design, Canada has a host of options in a wide range of industries, including marketing, advertising, manufacturing, publishing as well as other specialized areas. Graphic designers' salary depends largely on their years of experience and core skills. Work on your skills and earn lucrative salaries, exciting perks, and health benefits. Explore professional courses by Simplilearn and become a design expert. Start learning today!

FAQs

1. Is a graphic designer's salary in Canada more than that of a web designer?  

Graphic designers in Canada can earn up to C$57,744 per year on average, while web designers can make approximately $50,211 per year. Thus, a graphic designer earns more than a web designer in Canada.

2. What are the common benefits earned by a graphic designer in Canada?

According to Payscale, graphic designers are eligible for various health benefits, including-

  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Vacations
  • Sick leave
  • Retirement plans

3. How much does a graphic designer earn per hour in Canada?

A graphic designer can earn up to $21.59 per hour on average in Canada. Different job profiles have varying salaries. For instance, a graphic artist earns up to $21.11 per hour, while a digital designer makes $38.03 per hour on average. 

4. How do I become a graphic designer in Canada?

A diploma or a university degree in visual arts specializing in graphic design, graphic communications, cartooning, or commercial art is required to bag a graphic designer position at top companies. If you plan to work as a freelancer, your skills and  impressive portfolio matter more than your degree/diploma. Earning a certification in design can help uplevel your career and boost your salary. Canada has some of the best graphic design colleges, including George Brown College, Toronto, Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, Edmonton, and OCAD University, Ottawa. 

About the Author

SimplilearnSimplilearn

Simplilearn is one of the world’s leading providers of online training for Digital Marketing, Cloud Computing, Project Management, Data Science, IT, Software Development, and many other emerging technologies.

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