Feature Comparison

Web Designer vs Web Designer+ (formerly Premium): Web Designer is now only available from Xara in the + version. If you are an owner of the old classic version, this table offers a handy list of all the additional features in the + version, including web authoring, publishing and graphic design tools.

This table is a list of the additional features in + (not a list of all Web Designer features!) clicking on any of the features will give you a little more info.

Web Authoring and Publishing

Single Page SuperSites

We're all used to the idea of websites presented as separate pages, where you have to click a link to navigate from one page to another. Web Designer Premium offers the option to present your whole site as one single, fast scrolling document using scroll or swipe to navigate. Or you can present one page at a time in the traditional way, but with super-slick animated page transitions triggered by scroll, swipe or click.

Direct support for Google Fonts

The Font Picker provides direct access to the 600+ Google Fonts collection.

Extra Animation Effects

In both versions of Web Designer there's a great choice of animation effects on mouseover, but in Web Designer Premium you also have the option to make objects animate on reveal (ie when the object first comes into view, so for example you can set objects to slide or fade into view as you scroll down a page) and animate on click (or tap on a touch device), plus there's an additional type of 'scrolling' animation that includes parallax effects.

Sticky Objects

These are objects that you can 'stick' in place as the page scrolls underneath. A good example is the NavBar which you can stick to the top of the page as viewers scroll down, so they can still easily navigate to other pages without having to scroll back up to the top. In Web Designer Premium any object can be stuck to any position on the page.

Animated page and layer transitions

Web Designer Premium makes it easy to add a wide range of animated effects to the layers and page links in your website. You can add animated transitions to any page link or pop-up layer in your web pages.

Extra templates, themes & SmartShapes

Web Designer Premium has a much larger selection of web page themes (see examples, select the Web Designer and Web Designer Premium filter to see some of the differences). Premium also offers a wider range of page components, such as bullets & numbers, photo clipart and stickers, and it includes extra SmartShapes such as smart charts and smart photo grids. Premium also includes social media templates such as Facebook and Twitter covers.

Business Themes

Web Designer Premium includes 160+ business web themes. Each theme is a complete website, with all the pages typically required for that business type, and with professional photography suited to the business.

OpenType Ligature Support

Many modern OpenType fonts include typographical ligatures, which allow sequences of consecutive characters in text to be displayed with a single glyph. These are now supported in Web Designer Premium, and they can be used to improve the legibility and presentation of text and to introduce stylistic flourishes.

Stretchy Backgrounds

Website designs with no obvious page boundary are now very popular, and in these sort of designs you'll commonly see a page background that covers the entire browser window and stretches to fill the browser width. In Web Designer Premium you can make any rectangle or image stretch to fill the browser window, either horizontally or vertically.

Embedded Fonts

Web Designer Premium's font embedding technology overcomes the serious design limitation of having to stick to the very small selection of so called 'web safe' fonts. The technique is compatible with the vast majority of modern web browsers, and works by embedding a special version of the font on your website which the web browser can download and display.

Extra Widgets including slideshows, e-commerce and charts

Web Designer Premium includes a larger selection of Widgets in the Content Catalog, including the photo slideshows & galleries, and photo hovers that can make your sites more interesting and dynamic. Plus Premium includes a selection of interactive chart and graph Widgets (see examples), a choice of e-commerce Widgets, Google AdSense widgets, a table widget and a neat 'embed a website' widget - perfect for embedding blogs, microsites and other sites within your page.

Animation (flash and gif)

Web Designer Premium includes a genuinely easy way to create really efficient flash animations. It also supports Animated GIF creation.


You can automatically generate a sitemap to assist search engines with the crawling of your website.

FTP explorer

You can browse, view and delete files and folders on your FTP server using Web Designer Premium 's built-in Web Space Explorer.


With Web Designer Premium you can create web-based 'slide-show' style presentations that your website visitors can step through using the keyboard arrow keys. Apply animated transition effects as each step and page is displayed. See an example presentation.

Graphical bullets and numbers

In Premium you can design your own bullets and numbers for use in lists, which can make a surprisingly big improvement to the appearance of any lists and is particularly useful for presentations.

Graphics Tools

Freehand and Brush tool

You can use this tool to draw in a freehand manner, as you would with a pencil. It can also be used to create brush strokes. And it includes the option to draw variable width lines using a compatible pressure sensitive drawing device such as a graphics tablet.

Some options in the Text tool (find and replace)

The Find & Replace function performs live search so that as you type the search string the text is searched and highlighted in real-time.

Some additional options in the Fill tool (some fill shapes and profiles)

The Fill tool lets you apply color fill to objects. Premium includes conical, diamond, 3 color and 4 color fills and a Fill profile control.

Some additional options in the Transparency tool (some transparency shapes and profiles)

The transparency tool lets you specify how much of the underlying colors and objects appear through an object. Premium including non-mix type transparency types and a transparency profile control.

Some additional options in the Shadow tool (profiles)

The Shadow tool lets you apply, remove, and modify semi-transparent (or "soft") shadows. Premium includes an adjustable shadow profile for advanced control over the rate of change of a shadow.

Bevel tool

The Bevel tool gives objects an appearance of depth instead of being flat on the page.

Mould tool

The Mould tool lets you perspectivize shapes to give an impression of depth.

Feathering tool

The Feather tool enables you to blur the edges of an object so it blends, or fades, into a background object.

3D Extrude tool

The Extrude Tool provides a fast and easy way of turning 2D drawn shapes and text into high quality 3D extruded versions, with colored light illumination and very high quality shading.

Photo tool: Red eye

The Red Eye tool allows you to quickly remove red eye effects from faces in your photos.

Photo tool: Panorama

Web Designer Premium includes a tool that can automatically stitch together up to 6 photographs into a single wide, high-resolution panorama.


Line Gallery

The Line Gallery can be used to apply a range of line styles or attributes, such as brush strokes, dash patterns, arrow heads, and more.


Some additional import and export formats

AVI export, Flash and animated GIF export, WebP import and export, Beta import of Open Office (.odp) and PowerPoint (.pptx).

Advanced Paste

Additional options which give more flexibility to pasting operations: Paste position, Paste size, Paste replacing selection, Paste in current layer and Paste in place in current layer.

Open Graph Support

Present the best possible image for your site on social media by adding an Open Graph image, title and description.

Color naming and some color models

Premium includes support for RGB, greyscale, 3D and web palette colors. Also the ability to name a color: If you want to use a color many times throughout a document, you can create your own Named Color, which will appear on the Color Line. When you edit it later all objects using this color are instantly changed.


In Web Designer Premium you can print your documents!

Screen capture

Web Designer Premium includes an easy to use screen grab utility.

Combine shapes

The menu option "Arrange -> Combine shapes" (or right click and choose Combine Shapes) provides you with a range of advanced options to combine shapes to make new shapes, such as adding, cutting, or slicing. You can use combine shapes on any type of object, including bitmaps.

Auto-correct / abbreviation expansion

With Web Designer Premium you can create your own list of abbreviations that will be automatically expanded as you type, so for example XWD could be expanded to Xara Web Designer as you type. It's great for symbols too - for example you might set up yen to render ¥.

Support for Retina screens

Web Designer Premium automatically creates the high-resolution photos and web graphics required for Retina displays (the web pages are smart and only load the correct resolution graphics for the browser being used).

12 months free domain

Web Designer Premium has one year's free top level domain name included with the 'Website M' hosting.

Google Analytics

A quick and easy way to add Google Analytics to your site.

M Hosting free for 1 year

Premium includes Xara Online 'M Hosting' free for 1 year, with 2 GB of space and a free top level domain name.