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How to Create and Use Templates

Learn how to create and use PSD files as Templates in Slate. Walk through compatibility requirements, potential errors, and current limitations.

What's in this article:

What is a Template?

A template is a PSD file that you can upload to Slate and edit from the mobile app or web creation studio. In a template, text layers are fully editable, and snap back into perfect place, size, and alignment.  These files lock in text with specific brand guidelines like font, size, and placement to ensure consistency across the team. Creators will be able to edit the text but not the placement, style, size, or color of the text layer.

Are Templates Included in my Subscription?

Templates are included in our Unlimited and Enterprise subscriptions tiers.

NOTE: Contact your account manager or email support@slateteams.com if you have any questions about upgrading your account.



Building a Compatible PSD

  • FONTS: Make sure any font used in your PSD is also loaded into your Slate brand dashboard.  These fonts will also need to have the same name to sync properly. Learn how to fix missing fonts here
  • ARTBOARDS: Only use one artboard in your PSD file. Learn how to fix multiple artboards here
  • COLORS:  When creating your PSD template, ensure you use the RGB color mode. Other color modes, including CMYK, are not supported. Learn how to fix CMYK colors  and not supported color options here
  • RATIOS: Templates need to be 9:16, 4:5, 1:1, or16:9. Learn how to fix your ratios here
  • EFFECTS: Do not use custom effects or excessive line height adjustments in your file’s font layers
  • SMART OBJECTS: Smart objects are not supported. Before exporting, rasterize the layer. If there are many layers affected 'Merge Layers' to rasterize them together. Learn how to fix smart objects here
  • RASTERIZING: Before saving and uploading, rasterize any font layers that you do NOT want to be editable in Slate
  • TEXT BOXES: Make sure the file’s editable text boxes are the max width your creators will need. Think highest possible score, or largest name you would use in these boxes. Use 8's and 0's as placeholders for numerical data, as they are a little wider than other numbers. 
  • BLENDING MODES: Blending modes are not supported in Slate templates. Using a PNG layer with opacity will work instead, but we realize you can’t always recreate the same effect. We are looking into if/how we can support blending modes in future. Learn how to fix blending options here
  • TRANSPARENCY: Make sure you remove the placeholder media used in design and make it a  transparent area. Templates will go on top of your media, so the photo or video will need a cutout to show through.
  • LAYERS: Color coded layers are not supported currently. Please leave set layers to "[X] No Color". Learn how to fix missing layers here
  • MASKS: Masks are not supported in Slate templates. To fix this, convert it to a smart object, and then rasterize the layer
  • COLOR AND FONT QUANTITY:  We can only support one color and font per text box within a template. If you wish to use multiple colors or fonts in your design, break them into separate text boxes

Uploading a Template

  1. Check that your PSD file is compatible with Slate (specifications above)
  2. Login to the your Slate web dashboard.  Select the 'Templates' tab on the left hand navigation bar
  3. Drag and drop your PSD file(s) into the workspace or select “+” and choose your file(s) to upload
  4. Once your files are uploaded, check to see if any errors appeared. This will be a small red triangle located next to your PSD file name
  5. Publish your changes by selecting 'Publish changes' located at the bottom left of your screen


Potential Errors When Uploading a Template

  • If you upload a PSD that contains fonts that are not in your brand dashboard, you will get a processing error alerting you what fonts are missing.  You will see a popup and red triangle next to your template name in your dashboard.  To fix this, add the fonts to your dashboard and reprocess the template.

NOTE: If you see the missing font error, but the font(s) is uploaded, you likely have more than 1 version of a font on your device. The easiest way to fix this is to make sure the exact version of the font in the dashboard is installed on your computer. Download the missing fonts from your Slate account and install if necessary.  Switch the font layer in the PSD to this new downloaded and installed font. Save, and upload this PSD to your Slate dashboard. 

  • Other processing errors could happen if the PSD is not the correct ratio, contains multiple artboards, or contains unsupported effects/elements. If you receive a processing error but are unsure of what the issue is, email support@slateteams.com with a description of your problem and we will get back to you ASAP.
  • If a font layer isn’t showing up in Slate after the PSD is uploaded, the font layer may be getting cut off.  To fix this,  expand its size.

Help Videos

Having an uploading error? Check out one of these help videos to fix your processing error:


Using Templates in Web Creation Studio

  1. Open your Slate dashboard and click 'Create Content' in the top right corner
  2. Select 'New Project'
  3. Choose the ratio you would like to work in at the top of the screen.  You will only see templates available to use that you have uploaded in the size of your active workspace
  4. Open the templates drawer and select which template you would like to use
  5. Select 'media' and add in the photo or video you wish to use. You can resize the media by dragging the green bar that appears around the edges of your photo or video
  6. Tap on any editable text boxes to change the copy.  These text boxes will snap back to place when you're finished editing
  7. Once ready to export, select 'Export' at the top right of the screen. Name your file and select what file type you’d like your content to be and click ‘Download’

Using Templates in the Mobile App


  1. Open your Slate mobile app
  2. In the bottom navigation bar, select the 'templates' drawer
  3. Choose the template you want to use to start creating your content
  4. Add in media by tapping on the ‘media’ button on the bottom toolbar
  5. Resize media into the space by double tapping the image or video, and pinching in or out to place it in the desired location. Double tap again to lock it in place
  6. Tap on any editable text boxes to change the copy.  These text boxes will snap back to place when you're finished editing
  7. Add any additional text, graphics, or audio to your content
  8. Export your content by selecting the ‘share’ button on the bottom toolbar

Available on:



Q: Can I swap graphics on a template? 

A: Only text is currently editable in a template. However, our team is working on the functionality to make this possible!

Q: Can I use an Adobe Font on a template?

A: To use a font, you must have an .otf or .ttf file to load into your Slate web dashboard. We don't currently offer an integration with Adobe Fonts. 

Q: Can I add dropshadows, outlines, custom line heights, or custom tracking to my text I want to edit?

A: No, this functionality isn't supported at this time. 

Q: Can I upload custom sized templates?

 A: No. Although you can create in a custom workspace on web, filters and templates are only supported in the sizes listed above (9:16, 1:1, 4:5, or 16:9).

Q: Can I control layering in the mobile app?

A: No, you don't have the ability to send things forward or back, and assets lay as they were designed. Therefore, templates will always be on top of media. 

Q: Can I change out the colors, graphics, or font type used in a template?

A: No, templates are locked for consistency and to maintain brand look. You can add in unique media with each element, but can't change aspects designed in the template.