There are several different software packages to create your presentation. By far, the most common one is Microsoft PowerPoint. PowerPoint is probably the most well known software, with many templates and options to choose from. A similar Mac version of PowerPoint is Keynote.
In terms of free software, you can use Google Slides, which has the added benefit of being able to share and co-write presentations with collaborators. Although Microsoft PowerPoint includes this feature also, I’ve found it to be far buggier than Slides, which is pretty easy, in my opinion.
Another free and collaborative software tool is Prezi. Unlike PowerPoint, Keynote, and Slides, which are linear (they go from point A to point B), Prezi allows you to present in a more nonlinear fashion. Imagine a bulletin board with all your information, and Prezi allows you to move to, magnify, and visit each part of this board.
Although each software package has many features that you leverage, stick to simple. For example, I’ve found that although you can put sounds and tons of animation features on your presentation, don’t. These features can distract from your message, and in the case of Prezi, you can actually give your viewers motion sickness!!!
Instead, stick to simplicity and your message. Use your software package in a way to focus and emphasize your message. For example, when I put bulletpoints on my slides, I have a very subtle animation, where the bullets phase into the slide as I talk about them. This keeps people focused on the slide right where I want them.