Have you ever panicked when your designer asks you to send over the .indd file of a project or worse an open source file? Don’t worry, you’re not alone.

 

On the other side, I cannot tell you how many times I have had clients contact me worried that the supplied open source document is corrupt. It’s not, but files ending in .ai .psd and .indd are just a few of the files designers use to produce the work you have commissioned and can only be opened with a certain type of software.

Different files serve different purposes, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. In addition, each programme a graphic designer uses will have a default file type – some may allow for manipulation, some may not. As a designer, knowing what limitations these different files have is almost like second nature, but we completely understand that for most people   it’s not.

The infographic below is an introduction to the most common filetypes you may encounter while working with a designer. Knowing how and when to use a specific filetype can save you as the client money and time, and your designer a lot of headaches.

You can also download a copy of our filetype cheat sheet here: