What do you like best?
Xara Designer Pro offers an excellent graphics package that provides; graphic design, illustrations, marketing materials (brochures, flyers, used as print or PDF), and simple website design. Once you learn the concepts the program gives you a lot of flexibility and is fairly easy to use. The design gallery templates provide a great starting place for many design projects. The program is fast! I have a small 2-n-1 laptop-tablet I use for one on one meetings. The laptop is not very powerful but Xara runs just fine. Learning, support and help via the available help, videos and user forum are very good.
What do you dislike?
On websites, there are some issues with embedded widgets working on both desktop and mobile variants. Would like to see that improved. Direct support from Xara could be better. I usually get support from a user forum. I would very much like Xara to add a good table tool similar to MS Word. I usually build tables in Word and bring them into Xara.
Recommendations to others considering the product
Download the 30-day trial. Watch the instruction videos on the Xara website. If you have questions go to Talkgraphics.com forum. The advice you get there is usually good and pretty quick. As a website development tool, you can do very nice looking sites but it is not the right tool for complex sites with database backends, cms systems, etc. Make sure you define your project to determine what you need.
What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?
As a small business internet marketing consultant, I use XDP to build websites, google static display ads, google animated display ads, social media banners, company flyers, company logos, etc. I can build a small business website, a logo and a set of google display ads in a day or two. My target is small businesses so I can make a fair profit and still offer my services for much less than other providers using more "advanced, complex" tools