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What WebM and GIF Formats Are for, and How to Convert between Them

Edited by Ben Jacklin

July 24, 2019

GIF and WebM are both used to make the web more attractive for browsing. We can send a funny animated GIF to a friend or use a moving picture to illustrate an article. GIF is also widely used on social networks.

WebM can do the same as GIF and a whole lot more: you can have a video with a timeline and soundtrack. But there may be a problem in that your friends won’t be able to enjoy it if they don’t have a program that supports WebM files.

So, where can one use these files, and which one should you choose? There is a short summary at the end of this article that we hope will help. Also you will learn how to convert between these formats.

How to Convert WebM to GIF and Vice Versa

What should you do if you need to convert WebM to GIF or GIF to WebM? Of course, you need a WebM-to-GIF converter or, even better, a program which can perform both conversions. Download the Movavi app and change WebM to GIF and vice versa easily. Just follow the steps below.

Get the Movavi Software

Download Movavi Video Converter, run the file you’ve received and follow the directions to install the software.

Add Your Files

Run the program. Once it’s loaded, click on the Add Media button. Select Add Video if you are going to convert WebM or Add Images if the source files are GIFs. Choose the files you are going to convert.

Pick the Format Needed

To change the format from .webm to .gif, click on the Images tab and then on the GIF button. Specify the preset that best suits your needs.

The reverse operation is also very easy: if you have .gif files and want to convert them to .webm, just go to the Video tab, find the WebM button, click on it, and specify the preset that offers the resolution you need.

Start the WebM-to-GIF Conversion

Regardless of which option you have chosen – to convert GIF to WebM or vice versa – all you need to do now is click the Convert button. Converting will take a while (the timing information will be shown at the bottom of the program window); as soon as the process is complete, Movavi Video Converter will automatically open the folder with the output videos or images. Enjoy them and share them with friends!


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WebM vs GIF: How to Choose

GIF, developed in 1987, is one of the most popular formats in the world. GIF is basically a graphic format, but it also supports short animated images. Everyone who has access to the Web probably knows what GIF is but, if they don’t, just show them a moving GIF image and they’ll recognize it.


  • All modern browsers support GIF, so you can be sure that your image can be seen by anyone.
  • GIFs are easy to create and work with.
  • GIFs are lossless, meaning there’s no loss of quality during compression.


  • It only supports 256 colors.
  • You can’t attach a soundtrack to a GIF.
  • The size/quality ratio was impressive in the 1990s, but modern formats offer much better ratios.

WebM is relatively ‘young’ – Google introduced it in 2010. WebM was created for both audio and video as an open-source container based on HTML5; it originated from a Matroska media container.


  • WebM provides very high quality and a small file size.
  • You can control the file you’re watching: for example, stop it or turn off the sound.
  • And, of course, WebM can have a soundtrack.


  • WebM is not supported by older browsers, and you may experience problems with lack of playback support on some players or even smartphones. iPhones and iPads, for example, do not have native support for WebM.

One cannot definitively answer the question as to which format is better. There’s a time and a place for everything. GIFs are good enough when you’re not too bothered about the quality or file size, and they are good to share with friends. But if you want to use animated files for professional purposes, you may prefer to switch to new technologies like WebM.