Why Figma is the best software for digital product development.

William Martinsson
3 min readOct 24, 2019

This is a part of my series where I explain how I’m building digital products. I will talk about everything between work-methodologies to the different tools I use everyday.


For a long time, the biggest players in the UI design market were Adobe(Photoshop, Illustrator) and Sketch. Both of these tools aren’t very collaborative. They are locally based if you wanted to share a design you had two options, either you let the other person work on your computer which is an enormous waste of resources or you send the file via email/slack/database which creates another source of truth that often leads to the files becoming out of sync with each other. Could you imagine developers sending files via email to each other?

“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.” — Michael Jordan


In 2016 Figma launched intending to make the UI-design industry more collaborative. It did so by making the tool browser-based which opened up the possibility to live edit in the browser, work with others on the same file at the same time, easily share the design via a link to the client, no downloads, no file structuring, no crazy plugins. But the most significant benefit is that you will always have a single source of truth because that is what enables the collaboration.

Figma has all the features of Sketch, Abstract, InVision, Craft, Zeplin together. Here are some of the features Figma has:

  • Multiplayer Live Edit, It’possible for an entire team to work on the same file at the same time. You even see each other’s cursors!
  • Commenting, You can leave comment bubbles that coworkers can reply too. Similar to how it works in Google Docs.
  • Version Control, Figma has a version history for all collaborators where you can roll back to or fork from a previous state. It’s not close to being as functional as Github, but a step on the way.
  • Prototyping, Nothing special, similar to Invision, Sketch and Adobe XD.
  • Plugins, Figma Plugins launched earlier this summer(2019) so the library is not yet that extensive if you compare with Sketch. But they already got some good ones, like Unsplash, Iconify, and Stark(checks if your design is accessible).
  • Components, Team Libraries, Design Systems, Components are reusable design patterns, similar to Sketch symbols. As a developer, I relish the fact that they named it components to make the naming more alike the dev terms. Team Libraries are components but not project-based, which is useful if your company works with different projects that share the same design system.

Show the design process.

For many developers(especially remote ones) and product owners is the design stage complete darkness. With Figma, you can have the design open to view all the time. Some tech companies have even started putting up screens showing realtime designing.

Bring in the development team earlier into the design process.

Want developers’ thoughts on a new design update? Just send a link, and let the developer comment. The days of requiring everyone to have Sketch installed are over.

Design is a collaborative process.

Figma is built around the single principle that collaboration is the most crucial part of modern product development. That’s why I prefer Figma in front of Sketch.