It seems like Appcues doesn’t meet your needs or you’re looking for more knowledge of its alternatives.
Apccues is either hard to use, too expensive or you’re looking for some other alternative that gives you more freedom.
If you’re looking for other Appcues alternatives which could be a better fit for your company than Appcues, then you came to the right place.
We’ve researched (and tried) 5 best Appcues alternatives, and here is our honest feedback.
After reading this article, you will know the differences of all five Appcues alternatives and what’s great about them. We will break down each alternative separately and deeply explain their functionalities and use cases.
We will share with you our thoughts on:
- Intercom Product Tours
- Inline Manual
Without a doubt, there are many digital adoption and user onboarding tools, but these five are the most similar to what Appcues offers. All of them have similar (perhaps even better) functionalities like Appcues has. Unlike the Walkme alternatives, these Appcues alternatives are focusing on more interactive in-app experiences triggered by different behaviours or events.
In case you’re looking for the Appcues alternative suitable for small/medium businesses and SaaS companies, fortunately, almost all of them can be a great fit for you!
If you’re looking for an Appcues alternative that has the same or better functionalities, that more cost-effective or suitable for your product, these five alternatives are the best bet for that.
Why should you listen to our advice?
Well, our team has more than 20 years of SaaS background and we’re a group of people obsessed about UX, onboarding and digital adoption. We’ve created more than 100 in-app experiences and user onboarding flows. In each case, we’ve tried and worked with all of the tools which are mentioned below.
When we say that we tried all Appcues alternatives, we really mean that.
Don’t get us wrong. Without a doubt – Appcues has a great product. It’s one really robust platform with a lot of useful features for product managers. If you have patience, energy and desirable knowledge, with Appcues, you can create amazing user experiences.
However, no matter how great the platform is – there will be always some shortcomings.
Even if they have a great product – it sill brings headaches to its customers.
That was the moment where we realized that there is a market for a user onboarding software with more freedom, control and customization options. For the product that makes creating user onboarding easy and enjoyable. For that reason, the Userpilot is born.
Since we know how hard it is to use Appcues in sometimes, we’ve decided to craft this amazing and in-depth guide of the best Appcues alternatives.
At the end of this article, you will be able to find the most suitable Appcues alternative for your needs and your company. You will also see our in-depth Appcues alternatives comparison table to visualize our feedback and findings.
Before we see the specialities of all Appcues alternatives, let’s see why Appcues is such a great tool, what are its advantages and disadvantages.
Appcues – A company that has educated the SaaS market about digital adoption.
Walkme and other walkthrough products were the pioneers of user onboarding. But from the moment when Appcues came to the scene – everything has changed.
Back in 2013 before Noel and Kim founded Appcues, the only user onboarding methods were walkthroughs and product tours. Nothing more.
Then Appcues introduced us a new method of user onboarding a product adoption. Appcues’s Mantra regarding digital adoption tools is:
Don’t think of it as product tours, introduction or initial onboarding – rather think as a “product experience layer”.
Without a doubt, Appcues has one of the best products out there for user onboarding and product adoption.
What are the things Appcues is good at?
– Big variety of UI elements – Appcues introduced the SaasS market to a whole new world of user onboarding. Besides walkthroughs, Appcues has a big variety of different UI elements you can use inside your user onboarding – you can create checklists, modals, slideouts, tooltips, hotspots and many more.
– A robust platform for the best user experiences – Appcues is on the market for more than six years now – they have an amazing product with great features. You can track entire user journeys or create different user onboarding processes for different segments of user personas.
– Great education – Appcues is the inexhaustible source of information for the SaaS & Cloud-based companies. It has a great blog with a lot of educational material. Everyone in the SaaS world has benefited from Appcues’s Onboarding Academy and reallygoodux.io content.
There are numerous companies who used Appcues to create fascinating user onboarding experiences. These companies really increased their activation and trial to paid conversion rates.
For sure, you can get amazing results with Appcues. But, is using Appcues to create great user onboarding experiences the easiest way to achieve your goals?
When you’re planning to use Appcues, you might find some glitches that we want to give you a heads up:
– It’s hard to navigate through – Since Appcues is a robust platform, sometimes it’s very hard to navigate through the application. For example, if you want to create a new experience, you need to close the builder mode, change to navigate, pick up the element, and go again to the builder mode. But what happens if you want to build and navigate at the same time? A little bit confusing, right?
– The element detection algorithm is not so strong. – With Appcues, you can create different in-app experiences without the code. But sometimes, Appcues have difficulties with detecting in-app elements. For example, if you want to create a tooltip for some option inside the dropdown menu, very often, Appcues can’t recognize that function.
– Inflexible customization and styling – Appcues offer you to stylize every in-app experience you want. Unfortunately, to completely customize your style based on fonts and colours, is somehow restricted. There are only basic customization events inside the application. For example, you can only change the text height, colour, padding or the position of the element. For everything advanced, you will need to work hard with the CSS code – which is very annoying and difficult if you bought a tool for the reason to “not code anything”.
– Doesn’t support non-linear user experiences
– The journey user takes inside your product is very often non-linear – that means that the users are usually not following the path you imagined them to do. In other words – they are exploring your product on their own and randomly clicking on different buttons.
– To solve this problem, you should create separate user experiences that are running and playing smoothly with each other and who are following your users wherever they go. This means that the user onboarding experiences should be shown by different priorities and user’s behaviours. For example, if the user is on page Z, you should show them the experience Z instead of keeping the experience A.
– Unfortunately, Appcues supports only linear experiences. That means, that if you created your experiences with Appcues, your users must finish entire experience A, before unlocking the experience B. This can make things messy since users have a tendency to navigate through the product on their own. In other words, if your users skipped your first-run experience, they will never unlock other tooltips and get your guides.
As mentioned, besides its shortcomings, Appcues still has some great advantages. Without a doubt, it’s a great product that will certainly help you to create amazing stuff.
But if you want a little bit more freedom, perhaps Appcues is not the best option for you.
When it comes to pricing, Appcues is one of the most expensive user onboarding tours.
Appcues’s pricing is based on the Monthly Active Users. For annual payments, here is how the pricing looks like:
- 0 – 2500 MAU – $249/month
- 2500 – 10.000 MAU – $399/month
- 10.000 – 20.000 MAU – $649/month
- 20.000 – 50.000 MAU – $999/month
Without a doubt, Appcues is a great product for mid-market enterprises who are looking for “more advanced” user onboarding solutions. But what happens to the new startups, small/medium businesses and SaaS products? Is the Appcues good for them? It all depends on you and your needs, but at the end of the day, we think that Appcues is not the best option for these businesses.
In short, if you want more freedom, complex onboarding flows, more customization and control. Appcues, might not be the solution you’re looking for.
Now when we know what are Appcues’s biggest advantages and disadvantages, let’s see which Appcues alternative is the best for you.
Userpilot – A Behavior-based Digital Adoption Tool
Perhaps this may seem like shameless self-promotion, but honestly, over the year, Userpilot became a great Appcues alternative.
We have a strong product and our customers are achieving great results, just like Albacross did when it improved activation rate for more than 33% in 14 days.
The mission of Userpilot is to help companies to show the right messages, at the right time, to the right people. Not only that, Userpilot is easier to use tool built for teams that want to create simple and complex user onboarding with more freedom, control and customization.
Userpilot makes onboarding more interactive.
You can create different UI elements like tooltips, hotspots, modals, slideouts, checklists and many more.
You can segment your users by different groups or behaviours, and show them triggered and personalized in-app experiences.
With Userpilot, you can also build contextual and behavior-based user onboarding. For example, if you realize that the user doesn’t activate some particular feature, you can remind him or simply show him how to use it. This is really important since showing behaviour-based or context-driven in-app experiences can be extremely powerful. It can significantly increase your user activation and product adoption rates.
The installation of Userpilot is very similar like when you’re installing Appcues. There is no difference.
Userpilot is focused on only one thing. To make it easy for product and customer success managers to build amazing user onboarding and feature adoption flows. With Userpilot, you have the most freedom and you can easily create your user onboarding however you want – without any distractions or coding. That’s the reason why Userpilot doesn’t support some features as Appcues does.
For example, Userpilot doesn’t support NPS, while Appcues does. We’re planning to implement NPS in the second quarter of 2019.
After you install our chrome extension, creating in-app experiences is extremely easy. There are no confusing navigations or distractions. Just drag and drop UI elements, change the styling, text, and you’re there. You can simply navigate and build at the same time.
Userpilot vs Appcues – How is it different?
There are four main reasons why Userpilot is considered as a great Appcues alternative:
- Better element detection – Our own algorithm called fluidity precisely recognizes in-app elements. No struggles or frustrations anymore.
- Full in-app customization available (seriously – no coding at all) – design your elements however you want. You can change the beacon type, colour of the element, position, margin, padding and dozens of other things inside the application. You will need hours to fully customize your elements inside CSS. In Userpilot, you need only one minute.
- Driven actions – This is the feature that no one else has. Honestly. Driven actions enable you to create cross-URL user experiences. That means that you can lead your users through different URLs of your application and show them different in-app experiences. It makes your onboarding more interactive.
- Supports non-linear approach – this is one of the biggest advantages of Userpilot over other Appcues alternatives. In Userpilot, separate experiences are running together and smoothly playing with each other. You can build your experiences however you want. Our engine will optimize the best experiences to show. Unlike in Appcues, the user doesn’t need to finish the first experience in order to unlock the second one. However your user navigates through your product, he will see the experiences based on real-time behaviours and mouse events.
Now when we know the Userpilot’s advantages, what could get better?
- Supports only web solutions – Unfortunately, Userpilot supports only web solutions. It doesn’t support mobile applications. On another hand, Userpilot is specialized in SaaS products. We do not support mobile or on-premise solutions yet.
Userpilot cares about its customers. Whether you are a small or big company, using the smallest or biggest packages, you will have the same favor as any other customer.
We are really proud of our customer support. You could always rely on our team because that’s what you initially need and when things go south. We will not just help you about using our software, but also about creating the best in-app experiences for your product.
When it comes to pricing, Userpilot is more affordable than Appcues. Just like in Appcues’s case, our pricing is based on the monthly active users you have.
Whether you have 2000 MAU or more than 20.000, you can enjoy all the features we can offer you.
For early-stage startups with less than 1000 monthly active users, we have a package for $79/month.
If you have more MAU, here is our pricing information on an annual basis:
- 1000 – 2500 MAU – $119/month
- 2500 – 10.000 MAU – $239/month
- 10.000 – 20.000 MAU – $359/month
- 20.000 – 50.000 MAU – $599/month
Userpilot Summary – Why to choose it?
Userpilot can be an amazing Appcues alternative if:
- You’re looking for the user onboarding software that gives you more freedom, control, and in-app customization.
- You don’t want to waste your time and resources to code anything at all.
- You need better and more dedicated customer support.
- You’re frustrated with the Appcues’s bad element detection algorithm.
- You want to build cross-URL user experiences and non-linear user onboarding.
- You’re looking for the more affordable Appcues alternative.
- You’re the new startup or SaaS company who just started acquiring new customers and you don’t want to pay $249/month for the Appcues’s most affordable solution.
Chameleon is another Appcues alternative on the market that enables you variety of different UI elements and in-app experiences to choose from.
The greatest advantage of Chameleon over other Appcues alternatives is that Chameleon has more collection of UI elements.
With Chameleon, you can create modals, slideouts, tooltips, hotspots, checklists and something that is very unique for them: launchers or in-app widgets.
Launchers are a different set of in-app widgets that helps you to activate your users and make them adopt your features. You can create special in-app announcements or different notifications.
If you want to segment or personalize your users more advanced, Chameleon enables you to do that through their in-deep segmentation features. You can either build different user segments inside the product or, you can integrate your Chameleon account with other tools and import your data.
When it comes to styling and customization, you can customize only basic things. For everything advanced, you will need to put a lot of time for coding in CSS (While in Userpilot, you can customize whatever you want without coding at all).
Although it’s hard to customize UI elements and you don’t have too much freedom, with Chameleon, you can create user onboarding campaigns – different sequences of product tours showed over time. It’s really important to distinguish Chameleon’s campaigns and Userpilot’s non-linear onboarding:
- Chameleon’s campaigns are sets of different user onboarding experiences who are showed in a timeline. For example, experience A is showed in the first week of the user journey, experience B in the second, and experience C in the third week.
- If still can’t build non-linear user onboarding flows like you can in the Userpilot.
In short, here are the biggest differences between Appcues and Chameleon.
Chameleon vs Appcues – How is it different?
Chameleon positioned itself as a great Appcues alternative for several reasons:
- You have more in-app and UI elements to choose from – as mentioned, Chameleon has the most number of different UI elements you can use to build your user onboarding flows – like Chameleon launchers for example.
- Chameleon supports employee onboarding – If you are looking for the tool that supports both user and employee onboarding, Chameleon can be the great fit for you.
- In-depth personalization and segmentation – Chameleon is the tool that offers you variety of options for personalization and user segmentation. You can either create in-app user segments or, you can import different data through integrations (like Intercom for example).
Chameleon’s shortcoming is that it is built only for single-page apps – that means you can’t build experiences that are running over multiple URLs.
Chameleon’s pricing is different from both Appcues and Userpilot. It has two main packages, and the price of both of them is based on the number of monthly active users.
As you can see, in the basic package, you can create unlimited guides, but only one launcher. Your user onboarding will be branded with Chameleon’s logo, and you will only get the Help Center support.
In the standard package, you have access to almost all features like you have in the Appcues’s and Userpilot’s only package.
In any case, just like we did for Appcues and Userpilot, here is the Chameleon’s pricing info for the certain number of monthly active users:
- 0 – 2500 MAU – Basic: from $99/month to $132/month – Standard: from $199/month to $249/month
- 2500 MAU – 10.000 MAU – Basic: from $132/month – $289/month – Standard: from $249/month to $469/month
- 10.000 MAU – 20.000 MAU – Basic: from $249/month – $384/month – Standard: from $469/month to $589/month
- 20.000 – 50.000 MAU – Basic from $384/month – $594/month – Standard: from $589/month – $843/month
When we have this in mind, we can conclude that the Chameleon is a little bit more affordable than Appcues, but also a little bit more expensive than Userpilot.
Chameleon Summary – Why should you choose it?
At the end of the day, despite some shortcomings (like the lack of in-app element customization), Chameleon can be a great tool for you if:
- You’re looking for Appcues alternative that has more UI elements to build
- You like Appcues, but Appcues doesn’t support employee onboarding, but Chameleon does.
- You want to code more and have bigger freedom with coding, but you’re looking for the better and more affordable Appcues alternative just to kickstart your onboarding development.
- You are looking for better and in-depth customization than Appcues.
Intercom Product Tours
Intercom recently released its new feature called product tours. Although Intercom is more customer engagement and customer support software, it just landed in the user onboarding waters.
Since product tours are not Intercom’s core feature, we can’t expect from it to be a great Appcues alternative.
Just like Walkme, Intercom supports only walkthroughs and product tours. You can’t create either slideouts, checklists, driven actions or non-linear user onboarding.
So, how is Intercom different from Appcues, and for what reason it can be considered as good Appcues alternative?
Intercom vs Appcues – How is it different
Intercom product tours can be powerful especially because of two things:
- It’s naturally integrated into other Intercom features and products – if you are looking for a basic user onboarding solution that can integrate with your customer support and customer success data, then Intercom product tours can be a good fit for you.
- It supports only basic UI elements – although this can be considered as an shortcoming, it can be considered as an advantage. If your product requires only basic UI elements like walkthroughs, tooltips or modals, Intercom can be everything you need. This makes it a little bit easier to use than Appcues.
On another hand, if you’re looking to build engagement, complex and new-generation user onboarding and in-app experiences, perhaps Intercom will not solve your problems.
Unfortunately, you will have to code again. Full UI element’s customization is available only through CSS. There is no A/B testing.
Intercom’s pricing is very confusing. When you land on its pricing landing page, you can find anything except clear and detailed pricing information.
The first shortcoming of the Intercom’s pricing is that they count MAU (monthly active users) in the spectre of 90 days, while all other Appcues alternatives are counting it as 30 days.
People behind Intercom team said that you need to pay two things in order to user Intercom product tours:
- Intercom billing package (Essential or Pro)
- Product tours Add-on who costs $119/month
Essential and Pro packages are billed according to the number of 90-day active users you have. In other words, if you have 200 monthly (30-day), active users, for intercom, you will have 600 active users in 90 days. A little bit confusing, right?
In Essential package, you will pay $49/month for 200 90-day active users – that means that you’re paying $49/month for a little bit over 66 30-day active users.
When you add on that $49/month the price of the product tours add-on which is $119/month, we get a price of $168/month for 66 monthly active users.
On the first look, when you take a look at the Intercom’s pricing page, it seems like Intercom Product Tours is very affordable Appcues alternative. But in reality – it isn’t.
In any case, since we also aren’t sure how exactly Intercom’s pricing looks like, we’re recommending you to visit their pricing page or contact their customer support.
Intercom Product Tours Summary – Why to choose it?
Intercom can be a very good Appcues alternative for you if:
- You’re looking for a basic and easy to use user onboarding software that will satisfy your essential needs
- You’re already using Intercom from day to day, you’re familiar with other products and it’s product tours add-on will naturally fit into your team’s workflow.
- If you’re an early-staged startup and want to take advantage of $49/month pricing of Intercom. We’d suggest to definitely go with it.
Because of its features and functionalities, UserIQ is probably the most different tool than all other Appcues alternatives.
UserIQ is very similar to Pendo (We’ve analyzed Pendo here). In order words, UserIQ isn’t only focused on making great user onboarding flows, but it’s also focused on in-depth analytics, NPS, customer health score and many other things.
That means that we can break down UserIQ’s functionalities in two groups:
- Customer success – UserIQ measures your customer’s health score. You can create different NPS surveys, customer feedback pools, or even email re-engagement campaigns.
- User onboarding – It allows you to create guided tours with simple UI elements like tooltips, hotspots, walkthroughs and modals.
So, if UserIQ doesn’t offer you great user onboarding features like Userpilot or Chameleon do, why it is considered as a good Appcues alternative?
UserIQ vs Appcues – How is it different?
The main advantages of UserIQ over Appcues are:
- Better analytics and data – as we mentioned, UserIQ is an all-in-one tool for your customer engagement, success, and onboarding. You can collect valuable in-app feedback and track customer health score of every user separately.
- Supports Web (SaaS) and Mobile onboarding – UserIQ has done a great job with mobile onboarding, so if you’re looking for the best of both worlds, UserIQ is your solution.
- Better user segmentation – because of its in-depth analytics and data, UserIQ offers you better user segmentation – you can create and personalize your user onboarding by different data – like login activity for example.
On another hand, if you’re looking for the Appcues alternative that does a great job in only one thing – helping you to create amazing user experiences – perhaps UserIQ isn’t the best fit for you since it doesn’t support all features as Userpilot or Chameleon do.
UserIQ pricing is indifferent. You have a free trial that includes all the basic features. For the premium plan, you will need to contact their customer support.
UserIQ Summary – Why should you choose?
UserIQ can be a great Appcues alternative if:
- You’re looking for the tool that does decent user onboarding but also gives you powerful analytics, reports and data.
- You’re looking for the Appcues alternative that supports both Web and Mobile user onboarding. This can be especially useful if you have a mobile version of your product.
Finally the last, but not the least important of all Appcues alternatives.
Inline Manual also supports other UI elements than walkthroughs – you can create tooltips, hotspots, modals and also, in-app widgets.
You can trigger different in-app events and create customized user segments.
Just like UserIQ, it provides you with detailed analytics, custom events, NPS and people tracking.
So, if Inline Manual is similar to Appcues, what are the differences?
Inline Manual vs Appcues – How is it different?
- Better multilingual user onboarding – Inline Manual supports more languages and multilingual user onboarding.
- Better customer support – Inline Manual claims, they have much better customer support than Appcues does. Everyone who uses Inline Manual, whether he’s using the lowest or the highest package, can enjoy high-touch and human support
When we’re speaking about customization, the good thing about Inline Manual is that it has a lot of predefined templates. But on another hand, in order to fully customize your in-app experiences, you will need to code in CSS.
Inline Manual’s pricing is relatively expensive for new startups with a low number of monthly active users. But as you grow, it seems like the price per MAU is cheaper.
When you finish your 14-day free trial, you can count on this pricing:
- 0 – 250 MAU – $158/month
- 250 – 2000 MAU – from $158/month to $202/month
- 2000 – 10.000 MAU – from $202/month to $307/month
- 10.000 – 20.000 MAU – from $307/month to $397/month
- 20.000 – 50.000 MAU – from $397/month to $790/month
Inline Manual – Why should you choose it?
Inline Manual can be a good Appcues alternative if:
- You’re looking for the user onboarding software with more analytics and data
- You’re serving the multilingual and multicultural market.
Which Appcues alternative is the best for you?
Now we have a clear view and insight in all five of the best Appcues alternatives on the market. It’s time to see which one is best for you and your needs.
To clearly identify the unique features and comparisons between all five Appcues alternatives and Appcues itself, we’ve created this catchy, informational and in-depth comparison table:
Now, let’s see which Appcues alternative can be the best fit for you and your company.
- If you’re looking for an Appcues alternative that can serve multicultural and multilingual markets with almost the same functionalities like Appcues has – than Inline Manual can be a great fit for you.
- If you’re looking for an Appcues alternative with better analytics, data and reports than Appcues has, than the UserIQ will be a good solution for you.
- If you already use Intercom as your go-to tool for customer engagement and support, and you’re looking for the simplified user onboarding solution with limited capabilities then Intercom Product Tours is your answer.
- If you are looking for the Appcues alternative that offers you a little bit more UI elements and supports both user and employee onboarding, Chameleon can be the best bet.
- If you’re frustrated when using Appcues and you are looking for the alternative that is entirely focused on creating amazing user onboarding flows without coding at all, and alternative that offers you more freedom, control and better UX features, than the Userpilot is the best solution for you!
If you belong to the last group and you can’t wait to see amazing stuff you can do with Userpilot, then schedule your Userpilot demo and one of our dedicated product experts will help you to create the best in-app and user experiences for your product and your customers.
Please note feature information correct as of May 2019. Userpilot has made every attempt to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information provided on this website. However, the information is provided “as is” without warranty of any kind. Userpilot does not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, completeness, legality, or reliability of the information contained on this website.