1. Home Made
There are a few ways to DIY it, creating your artwork for no cost. If you’re a designer and used to playing around in Photoshop or Illustrator, then you don’t need my help here. They’ll provide the best results, so get in and have a play.
If you’re not a designer, though, then you probably need a bit of help. The best option, for me, is Canva. Canva is a self-design tool that provides a tonne of starter design and graphical elements to start you off. It helps even the most designally challenged person to create a nice looking image.
Nowadays they even have a Podcast artwork template to start you off, which gives you the right dimensons and a few ideas. You can bring in your own images too, and I find it most useful to help me format text nicely over an image that I upload myself.
2. Low Cost
One way to get this done at a very low cost is the ever-popular Fiverr. Fiverr is pretty infamous for terrible quality work, but there are actually some really good designers on there.
Bear in mind that the good ones tend now to just be a fiver, really. To get the good stuff, you’ll have to put in a few add-ons, but I’ve got some good Podcast artwork results before by spending around $25. Look for a designer with good references and a really nice looking portfolio.
One tip is to get the bare minimum $5 option first, check out the idea they propose and then you can buy extras to spruce it up, or to buy the source files for example.
3. Professional Design (and an alternative)
The final method is to just go the whole hog and employ a designer. This will, with little doubt, get you the best results, but it’ll cost you.
Professional designers will charge anything from $150 up to $1000 for a piece of design work like this, depending on who you find. You should be able to get good results for around $200, however, and I’d argue that it’s worth spending it here. As I mentioned, this is your first impression, your headline, your audience attractor: make sure it’s attractive!
If you don’t know a designer, or you don’t want to search for one, then a good option here is 99Designs. You can have your artwork designed there as part of a contest, getting suggestions from a large number of designers. The quality depends on how much you invest, but even the bottom level packages tend to be decent, and certainly above the level of Fiverr. But it wont get you the level of attention and detail that hiring a pro designer would.