What Are the Best Tools to Use for Design Ideation?

In a previous article, the Mighty Panda showed you the role of Ideation in design thinking. In fact, this is the third stage of this global process, which precedes the creation of a prototype.

Below, the Mighty Panda suggests a few software tools to help you optimize your brainstorming process. Some of them have already become popular, and some are indie projects that were launched quite recently.

By the way, here you can read a great interview of Pete Sena from Google about design thinking. 


10 Tools That Can Help Grow Bamboo From Your Ideas

Brainstorming is a very abstract process that can be difficult to organize and visualize correctly. The tools that the Mighty Panda will tell you about now can help you with this.



This is perhaps the best-known brainstorming optimization product. Use this library with over 600 tools to bring your thoughts and ideas to life during your brainstorming session. Specifically, you can choose Brainwriting templates and 3-12-3 Brainstorm templates to create collaboration solutions. This product is free.




This is another whiteboard product that will make your sessions as productive as possible. Here you can prioritize your ideas (using stickers), share them if you are working remotely, and also vote for them. The version for up to 5 people is free, the cost of a business account starts at $ 10 per user per month.




Ideaflip is a simple and concise tool for your team and you to brainstorm your ideas online (although it can be used individually). It will facilitate quick and balanced decision-making. This online application can be used on any computer or tablet. A personalized plan suitable for small teams starts at $ 9 per month.




It is an endless online whiteboard where you can pull pictures, documents (pdf and google docs), and take notes (draw, write, attach stickers), saving the results in real time. Plus, you can invite friends and colleagues to work together from anywhere in the world. This is where teams can create whiteboards to visualize ideas and concepts for discussion. On the platform, you can plan tasks, take notes, brainstorm, create sketches, build diagrams, and more. The service also supports integration with Google Docs, Slack, Sketch, Jira, Trello, Dropbox, and other applications. The business version of Miro starts at $ 10 per user per month.




FigJam is an interactive whiteboard for designers to help them come up with ideas and brainstorm with extended teams. It's a lighter version of Figma that's easier to learn and more fun to use. It is designed to identify user problems, find inspiration, and explore ideas. FigJam has many built-in features that make it a great place for design thinking early in the design phase. Teams can use stickers, emoji, and drawing tools to brainstorm. The cost for the business version starts at $ 12 per user per month.




Notion is another service for creating notes and text documents, to-do lists, databases, spreadsheets, kanban boards, knowledge bases, project management, and collaboration. Notion is like a multifunctional notepad, each page of which can be organized as you like. But, unlike paper, where you can only write and draw, the functionality of Notion is much broader. In addition to just text, here you can add almost anything to the page: video, audio, codes, tables, and another 30+ content options. The result is an organized workspace. The cost of a team account starts at $ 8 per month per user.




Mural is an online virtual whiteboard application where you can post almost any content you want. In addition, the service allows you to invite your colleagues to work and is great for teamwork. In particular, you can apply this to meetings, discussions, brainstorming sessions. The cost of a team account starts at $ 10 per month per user.




This is the first indie tool on my list that also allows you to remotely generate, discuss, and modify ideas. There is also a very convenient voting system, and in general, the whole interface pleases with a playful approach to visualization. No signup is needed.




This is the second indie project that aims to simplify solving complex problems through visualization. In particular, instead of jotting down all the ideas on a piece of paper, you can use its advanced tools for brainstorming, planning, mood-boards, journaling. It is the ideal product for both collaborative and individual work. No sign up required.



Fabricating Alternatives

And finally, the last, yet unpopular, but very cool solution, is called remix and multiply ideas using artificial intelligence from any topic you choose. Experience how far technology has gone to help you generate and select good ideas.



Final Thoughts of the Mighty Panda

The Mighty Panda hopes he helped you decide on the right brainstorming tool, and now the process of choosing the best ones will be as easy as possible for you. So what about you? What tools have you already tried?

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