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Widely recognized as a leading tool for creating diverse diagrams such as flowcharts, network diagrams, organization charts, and floor plans, Microsoft Visio stands out as a popular choice for visualization software. Its web-based counterpart, Visio Online, provides a simplified online version of the desktop application, albeit with limited features.

For users seeking a complimentary online alternative to Visio that caters to creative workflows, the Visio Online Editor emerges as a valuable and user-friendly option.

This article provides an overview of using Visio Online Editor for enhanced productivity and creative expression.

In this article
  1. Brief Overview of Visio Online Editor
  2. Exploring the User Interface of Visio Online Editor
  3. Visio Online Editor: Customization Options and Flexibility
  4. How Visio Online Editor Plans to Evolve
  5. The Best Visio Online Editor Alternative To Use: EdrawMax
  6. Conclusion

Part 1. Brief Overview of Visio Online Editor

using visio online editor free

Visio Online Editor is the free web-based version of Microsoft Visio that allows users to view, create, and edit Visio diagrams online using a web browser. It provides the essential diagramming features but needs the advanced capabilities of the paid Visio desktop app.

Key features of Visio Online Editor include:

  • Create flowcharts, basic network diagrams, workflows, organizational charts, etc.
  • Edit existing Visio files stored on OneDrive or SharePoint Online
  • Add shapes and connectors to diagrams from inbuilt stencils
  • Resize, rotate shapes, add text and formatting
  • Connect shapes and add comments
  • View, print, and share diagrams using a shareable link
  • Available free with Microsoft 365 subscription

Part 2. Exploring the User Interface of Visio Online Editor

The interface of Visio Online Editor is straightforward and intuitive. The main sections are:

  • Ribbon menu - Provides options to add shapes, apply formatting, insert text, etc.
  • Shapes menu - Provides access to inbuilt stencil sets and shapes.
  • Canvas - Main drawing area to create diagrams.
  • Selection pane - Displays selected shape properties.
  • Pages pane - Add, delete, and duplicate diagram pages.

The interface is neatly organized with large icons for easy identification of options. Overall, Visio Online Editor offers a simple, uncluttered UI for basic diagramming needs.

Part 3. Visio Online Editor: Customization Options and Flexibility

Though Visio Online Editor offers a basic diagramming experience, it does provide some customization options:

  1. Choose from different inbuilt templates to quickly create different types of diagrams.
  2. Select the required stencil sets from the Shapes menu to access the relevant shapes and icons.
  3. Apply different colors, line styles, and effects to shapes.
  4. Add custom text and apply WordArt styles inside shapes.
  5. Resize, rotate, align, distribute, and layer shapes with control.
  6. Connect shapes in different styles like a right angle, straight, and curved.
  7. Add comments for collaboration.
  8. Insert images from computer or web URLs.

So while advanced capabilities like macros, 3D shapes, etc. are missing, Visio Online Editor offers decent flexibility for simple diagrams.

Part 4. How Visio Online Editor Plans to Evolve

Microsoft continues to enhance the features and capabilities of Visio Online Editor. Some key improvements planned are:

  • Expanded stencil support - Add more inbuilt shape libraries for expanded diagram types.
  • Enhanced formatting options - Provide deeper control over applying styles and effects.
  • Improved collaboration - Add more options for real-time co-editing, and comments.
  • Integration with Office web apps - Allow embedding diagrams in Office documents.
  • Offline access - Support basic offline editing and syncing capabilities.
  • Accessibility improvements - Enhance screen reader support and keyboard navigation.

While the advanced features may remain exclusive to the desktop app, Microsoft plans to add more cloud capabilities to Visio Online Editor for a smoother web-based diagramming experience.

Part 5. The Best Visio Online Editor Alternative To Use: EdrawMax

EdrawMax proves to be a versatile alternative to Visio Online Editor. It is a desktop app with an online collaborative version.  Experience the next level of diagramming efficiency with EdrawMax, where creativity meets collaboration effortlessly.

Key features:

  • 5000+ inbuilt shapes and symbols covering flowcharts, org charts, network diagrams, floor plans, etc.
  • Powerful customization for shapes, themes, and effects.
  • Smart drawing aids, alignment, and arrangement tools.
  • Connectors, relationship links for different hierarchies.
  • Easy publishing options to Word, PDF, images, etc.
  • Personal Cloud version allowing real-time collaboration.
  • Works on Windows, Mac, Linux, and Online via browser.
  • Affordable pricing with a lifetime personal license option.

For enhanced creative freedom and productivity, EdrawMax beats Visio Online as the best online Visio alternative.

Let's see how to quickly create a data flow diagram using EdrawMax's intuitive interface:

Step 1: Download and install EdrawMax software on your PC. Launch EdrawMax and search "DFD" to select the data flow diagram template.

edrawmax main interface

Step 2: Drag and drop entity, process, and data store symbols from the library to the canvas. Add connection lines between symbols to indicate data flows.

data flow diagram in edrawmax

Step 3: Double-click symbols and connection lines to add text and labels. Use alignment, distribution, and sizing tools for organized positioning.

add connector and symbols

Step 4: Apply colors, line styles, and effects for visual appeal. Add Off-page connectors and reference symbols for multi-page diagrams.

customize colors

Step 5: Export the completed DFD as an image, PDF, or Microsoft Office file.

export and save

Using EdrawMax's extensive built-in shape libraries and smart drawing tools, creating professional data flow diagrams becomes quick and easy.

Conclusion

Visio Online Editor offers a free simplified web-based diagramming experience but lacks advanced customization capabilities. It is ideal for viewing and basic editing of Visio diagrams online. For full-featured creative diagramming with better styles and symbol libraries, EdrawMax proves to be a powerful Visio alternative. Its desktop and online versions provide the flexibility to diagram anywhere comfortably. For professional drawing capabilities without the overhead of complex software, EdrawMax is certainly worth exploring.

edrawmax logoEdrawMax Desktop
Simple alternative to Visio
210+ types of diagrams
10K+ free templates & 26k+ symbols
10+ AI diagram generators
10+ export formats
edrawmax logoEdrawMax Online
Edit diagrams anywhere, anytime
Personal cloud & Dropbox integration
Enterprise-level data security
Team management and collaboration

Edraw Team
Edraw Team Apr 03, 24
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