Appcues vs Userguiding: Which Is Better For No-Code Growth

What is the best tool for no-code growth? Appcues or Userguiding? Is there a better in-app onboarding software that would suit your needs better?

Review sites offer so many options that it’s hard to decide which is best.

Think about what features you’ll need from the tool and what your priorities are. In addition, your budget has to be in line with the price. Right?

In this post, we’ll discuss exactly that – what the perfect tool for no-code growth should deliver and which will be the best choice for your company’s needs.
Let’s dive in!

TL;DR

  • No-code growth relies on your products’ levers and revenue channels for growth without coding or requiring any tools.
  • In SaaS, no-code growth is particularly important because it reduces customer acquisition and support costs while improving customer satisfaction.
  • If you want product-led growth without having to code, you need a no-code tool that tracks in-app events, features usage, and interactive walkthroughs.
  • Digital adoption platforms like Appcues and Userguiding allow you to create interactive walkthroughs, track feature usage, send microsurveys, etc.
  • Though both tools are considered good, they are not the right fit for every SaaS company. For example, Appcues doesn’t have a resource center feature, which means you can’t use it to offer self-service support to your users. Also, their lowest plan is strictly limited.
  • When it comes to Userguiding, there are many bugs and performance issues, as well as their customization capabilities are limited, without branding removal.
  • There is a better alternative for Appcues and Userguiding To achieve code-free product-led growth, try Userpilot. It’s a complete product growth platform that allows you to create interactive walkthroughs with a wide range of UI patterns, track in-app user interactions, segment customers by multiple criteria as well as collect user feedback via microsurveys.

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What is no-code growth?

No-code growth is a method of achieving product-led growth (= using your own product as a lever and revenue growth channel) without coding, using no-code tools.

It essentially allows people like product managers, product marketing managers, or marketers (who may not necessarily have a background in engineering) to create e.g. in-app onboarding experiences, optimize signup and onboarding flows, etc. in order to achieve higher conversion rates, user activation rates – and in the long run –drive retention.

No-code movement in general empowers non-programmers to create software elements using a graphical user interface, instead of writing code. According to no-code advocates, technology should enable and facilitate the creation, not act as a barrier.

Why should you care about no-code growth?

Product-led growth may be a bit of a buzzword, but achieving no-code growth is particularly important for SaaS companies with low ACV, freemium models, and generally those in the SMB sector.

Product-led growth is a way of generating revenue from the product itself – by improving user engagement metrics, working on smarter pricing and product plans to unlock more revenue through expansion, promoting word of mouth, etc.

It’s essentially free revenue from your existing user base, which is particularly important when your customers’ LTV is around $150 in total. By giving your product managers and marketers no-code tools, you can generate more no-code growth. Simple.

Let’s look in more detail at some reasons why no code growth is important, especially for companies such as the ones mentioned above:

  • No code growth can massively reduce your CAC.
  • Generating Product-led Growth without code also means you don’t need to hire programmers to implement these tactics – which further reduces your operational costs.
  • Applying product-led growth practices also reduces your customer support and success costs – as your agents don’t need to reply to the same repetitive questions over and over again, and can replace them with reactive tooltips – themselves, without any help from the developers.
  • This contributes to higher satisfaction from the users in general – as they tend to prefer to self-serve rather than talk to support.
  • Finally, no code product-led growth means free expansion revenue for your company – and who wouldn’t welcome that, especially nowadays?

Why do you need tools for no-code growth?

One thing is clear – to drive no code growth, you will need to use proper tools to automate flows and drive engagement.

To achieve product-led growth without coding, you need a no-code tool that will allow you to:

  • Capture feature usage (with tools like feature tagging) and record all the events happening in-app regardless of the interaction type (clicks, hovers, form fills.)
  • Capture qualitative data with e.g. session recordings
  • Create interactive walkthroughs and onboarding flows
  • Use product to promote upsells

Tool’s must-have features for no-code growth?

Before deciding which no-code growth tool deserves your try, you should have a basic understanding of what features you should be looking for in “the one”.

Although the exact features you need will differ based on factors such as the size of your company, your business strategy, and your goals, here are the most crucial features you should look for:

  • Truly “no code” – make sure the no code growth tool you pick really allows you to build and style robust and native-looking in-app experiences without coding. You will be surprised how many tools require the knowledge of CSS to publish decent-looking onboarding flows.
  • Make sure the tool you choose has all the basic UI patterns available – e.g. checklists, modals, tooltips, banners, and hotspots. This will allow you to create all the product-led growth experiences you may need.
  • Targeting the experiences to the right user segments is extremely important for your PLG plays to be successful. So make sure your no-code growth tool offers advanced segmentation capabilities so you can build customer segments based on product usage, in-app behavior, feedback, and user persona so you can craft hyper-personalized messages and trigger them at the right time.
  • On that note – real-time, event-based triggering is an important feature of a product growth platform that only a few solutions on the market currently offer. Being able to respond to your users’ actions in real-time can be critical to pushing them toward those precious conversion points.
  • Finally: product analytics is another “must have” that a good no-code growth platform should provide. You should be able to monitor your users’ behavior with it, the engagement with your PLG in-app experiences, and how they contribute towards improving your metrics.
  • The right code-free PLG tool should also offer integrations with other tools so you can add them to your stack and get better insights on your data under one roof.

Appcues for no-code growth

Appcues is another no-code user onboarding platform that helps non-technical teams track and analyze product usage. You can publish in-app onboarding tours, announcements, and launch surveys.

Unlike Userpilot, the functionality is limited if you are using the basic plans.

Appcues used to provide onboarding templates, which made it easy to use the tool. However, it provided a predefined way of thinking about onboarding all while having a higher price tag than other onboarding software. As of the time of writing (end of 2022), Appcues has removed its onboarding templates – without really replacing them with another solution.

Appcues allows you to design flows that make onboarding processes a breeze. These flows are what you use to create product tours and other in-app communication with users.

Here’s what you’ll get when you start using Appcues:

  • Access to an easy-to-use UI that anyone on the team can handle for building in-app flows without coding.
  • Building a product tour in Appcues is relatively easy. You just need to open their chrome extension on top of your application and start building your in-app experiences with a WYSIWYG editor. You simply select a UI pattern and customize it ‘live’, or point to the elements you want to e.g. append your tooltips to.
  • Previously it was even easier – you chose one of its templates, they would basically create the product tour for you, and you just needed to customize each step. This limited the options for customizing but it was useful for beginners. We don’t know if Appcues plans to bring their templates back.
  • You can also create checklists with Appcues (NOT available on the Essentials plan) and prompt users to take action. These are ok but have limited functionality (can’t trigger JS functions, or add gamification elements) compared to alternatives, such as Userpilot.
  • Track UI engagement with Events explorer which allows you to tag elements without coding.
  • Build custom user segments (up to 5 on the Essentials plan) based on user properties, flows, interactions, or events you set up in the events explorer.

Pros of Appcues?

Let’s look at some key advantages of Appcues:

  • It makes it easy to build product tours with a user-friendly UI and predefined templates that can save you time.
  • Can be used on web apps and mobile apps too.
  • It integrates with most user analytics tools: Heap, Segment, Amplitude, and Mixpanel. This compensates a bit for the lack of in-depth analytics but means you need multiple subscriptions.
  • You can use predefined flows or build your own using a good range of UI patterns.
  • Allows basic segmentation and event-based flow triggering.
  • It’s easy to build in-app surveys using modals or the integrated NPS tool.

Cons of Appcues?

But as any tool, Appcues is not without its flows – and at this price point, we think you may really want to consider some options that offer the same or more advanced functionality, but at a lower price tag:

  • Appcues lacks certain transition actions like driven actions, scroll position, or page change, which would make product tours more interactive.
  • It heavily limits the functionality available in the lowest (Essentials) plan. If you need checklists, more than 10 events, or more than 5 user segments, you’ll need to upgrade to the Growth plan (starting at $879/mo payable annually, which means you need to fork out more than $10,500 to start using Appcues for more use cases.
  • Appcues doesn’t have a resource center feature, meaning you can’t use it to offer self-service support to your users.

What users say about Appcues?

What do Appcues users share about their experience? Overall users feel positive about Appcues.

Here’s an example summarizing some key points about its features and the value it offers. You can find more reviews on G2 or Capterra.

The best part of Appcues is the guided tour features which they call flaws. Especially on a team with limited resources, it allows you to improve your activation and engagement overnight by using this feature to guide your users around your product. What I love even more is the design and UX features are modern unlike other tour tools we’ve researched, and the software is easy-to-use with the need for a developer after the initial installation. – Raeann F.

However, there are some points that could be improved:

As with all software, you will run into irritating limitations. Appcues does collect a lot of data that could automatically be turned into user attributes (like the first log-in or visits per month) but they don’t do that. Jumping between the build mode and the studio can also become very confusing at times. – Ville T.

Is Appcues the right fit for your business?

There are good and bad when it comes to using Appcues but to sum it up, here’s why you might need an alternative:

  1. You need to build complex user flows and target them to specific user segments. In this case, you will need more than basic segmentation.
  2. You want to track product usage properly and don’t want to be limited by Appcues’s event explorer.
  3. You want to take full advantage of all onboarding functionalities (like a checklist) without paying a premium crazy price for them.

Appcues pricing

All things considered, Appcues does not offer the best value for money compared to some Appcues alternatives – at $249 per month. If your product has 2,500 active users, the costs for different plans are:

  • Essentials: $249/month (Up to 3 user licenses)
  • Growth: $879/month (Up to 10 user licenses)
  • Enterprise: Custom (Unlimited user licenses)

There is a better tool for your SaaS than Appcues!

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Userguiding for no-code growth

UserGuiding is a lower-cost, entry-level product adoption tool offering a range of features to help companies onboard new customers and boost product adoption.

UserGuiding excels at building simple onboarding experiences for users. It includes a no-code builder, segmentation options, and easily added UI patterns like hotspots, tooltips, and modals.

Although it also has some other goodies like a resource center and analytics, the meat of this product is its onboarding flow builder. If all you’re looking for is a relatively easy way to build simple onboarding flows, this could be a great choice for you. However, people looking for more analytics, customization, or complex integrations should probably look elsewhere.

As a no-code onboarding tool, UserGuiding has numerous features that will help you create onboarding flows for your new customers and guide them throughout their journey.

Here’s what you’ll get when you start using UserGuiding:

  • Create interactive product walkthroughs without disturbing your developers as it’s completely code-free.
  • Build onboarding checklists and drive customers to the activation point by eliminating the guesswork on what the next step should be.
  • Use a variety of UI patterns, like checklists tooltips, modals, and slideouts to prompt the right in-app experience, to the right persona, at the right time in their user journey.
  • Add emojis, gifs, images, or videos to customize your onboarding flows and have them match your brand.

Though UserGuiding is a great tool for startups that don’t have much money to invest in an onboarding tool, it has very strict limitations for the Basic plan.

You can only create a maximum of 20 guides, 2 onboarding checklists, and 1 resource center. If you want to create unlimited guides with unlimited UI patterns, you should go for the Professional plan that costs $299.

Pros of Userguiding

There are some advantages when it comes to choosing UserGuiding. Here are its pros:

  • For small startups or independent businesses, the price is an attractive element to consider.
  • A good variety of UI patterns to choose from when building flows and guides
  • Unlike some of the more expensive options, you can choose to add a Resource Center (a bonus for self-service support).
  • For a budget tool, UserGuiding still offers integrations with other applications, such as Mixpanel, Hubspot, Woopra, Slack, Webhook, etc.

Cons of Userguiding

Though UserGuiding is a solid product many improvements are still needed. The cons of using UserGuiding include:

  • There are many bugs and performance issues when using the tool. The UI is also fairly tricky to navigate.
  • It has limited functionality, particularly on the basic plan. There you only have a small range of features available – all with the UserGuiding watermark/branding.
  • Technical knowledge is required to get the maximum out of this product.
  • Customization and design options for UI patterns aren’t the greatest.

What users say about Userguiding?

If you check the product review sites, most people like using UserGuiding.

Here are some reviews from real users:

Creating guides/checklists are easy to implement. It does not take a lot of time to make adjustments when you need to make changes.
You can go live with a simple guide or checklist within minutes. I was able to go live within a few days of getting started. – Administrator in Computer Software

However, some people think there’s too much friction due to bugs. Let’s have a look at some negative reviews to see why users complain about:

It is a bit buggy, sometimes it lags or freezes.

And, some people think that there is still room for improvement:

The analytics felt a little elementary. Other than the Mixpanel integration, it wasn’t possible to analyze user data directly on the UserGuiding dashboard. There was an API we could use that required some set up, but this was something I expected to be baked into the product for sure.- Administrator in Computer Software

Is Userguiding the right fit for your business?

UserGuiding is a great fit for small SaaS businesses but it might be not the right fit if you want to:

  1. Create fully interactive product tours
  2. Build segments completely code-free as segmentation features aren’t very intuitive and may require additional help from a developer
  3. Get in-depth analytics. Though UserGuiding does have analytics functionality, it’s not complex and doesn’t give you much data.

Userguiding pricing

UserGuiding’s pricing model is far simpler than others on our list. There are three tiers, each one charging a set amount for access to certain tools.

Here are its packages:

  • Basic will give you access to only the most essential onboarding tools: Starting at $99/mo or $69/mo (if you buy the yearly contract), this budget option has a few limitations to consider (i.e. just 1 Team Member, a limit of 20 guides, and 2 checklists, UserGuiding branding on all UI patterns).
  • Professional adds unlimited guides, hotspots, and checklists. Starting at $399/mo or $299 /mo if billed yearly.
  • Corporate gives you access to everything plus personalized coaching. Starting at $699/mo or $499.mo for a yearly plan.

There is a better tool for your SaaS than Userguiding!

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Is there a better alternative for no-code growth?

Appcues and Userguiding are good tools for no-code growth. We’ve seen how they compare to each other and what you can achieve with them. Call us biased, but if you’re looking for something better, Userpilot offers more value for your money than these tools.

Userpilot for no-code growth

Userpilot is a powerful product adoption platform that enables you to quickly build personalized, flexible, contextually relevant in-app experiences targeted to different user segments – all without writing a line of code.

userpilot-user-onboarding-ui-patterns-dashboard

Userpilot was built specifically for SaaS product teams that want to improve their user onboarding experience and boost user activation.

You can build a huge variety of user onboarding experiences and in-app guidance flows without needing to code.

Here’s what you’ll get when you start using Userpilot:

  • Forget about coding in-app experiences: Userpilot is a no-code solution and only requires your dev to install a line of javascript inside your app and for you to download a chrome extension that opens up the visual builder.
  • Build in-app flows using the largest range of UI patterns (modals, slideouts, tooltips, hotspots, banners) and in-app onboarding experiences (checklists, microsurveys, NPS surveys, in-app resource center)
  • Get access to a built-in NPS tool for collecting and analyzing user sentiment so you can improve your onboarding process based on real data.
  • Create and track combinations of in-app events like clicks, hovers and form fills, and then analyze all these interactions under your own custom events, which can be built without code or API calls.
  • Use advanced product analytics and in-app flows analytics to identify where users need help and create granular user segments to trigger in-app experiences contextually (segment based on user identification data, in-app engagement, custom events, clicks, hovers, form fills, user feedback responses, NPS scores and more)
  • Enhance the onboarding experience with in-app help by launching a Resource Center directly inside your app. Add in-app guides, and video tutorials, and give users access to search the knowledge base or reach out to support. Self-service has never been easier.

The best user onboarding is contextual and it happens right where the users need it, inside your app. There isn’t a better user onboarding tool out there that offers more value for the money than Userpilot.

Schedule a demo with our team and get ready to build the best onboarding experiences your users have seen.

Pros of Userpilot

Userpilot has a number of advantages, especially for mid-market SaaS companies looking for a robust but at the same time very easy-to-use, a no-code tool for user onboarding, product adoption, and simplified product analytics. Let’s have a look at the pros of using Userpilot:

  • No-code builder – Userpilot comes with an easy-to-use Chrome Extension builder.
  • Multiple UI patterns – choose from a range of options to build customized flows: modals,
  • slideouts, banners, tooltips, hotspots, and checklists are all at your disposal.
  • UI patterns are not limited by plan – you get access to all of them on every single plan, meaning you get value even with the Traction plan (this is the entry-level one).
  • Engaging walkthroughs and onboarding flows- build interactive walkthroughs targeted to distinct user segments.
  • In-app help – build a resource center offering self-service support to your users, customize it with your branding, and select from a range of help options to boost user satisfaction (i.e. videos, in-app flows, chat, and more).
  • Experimentation – built-in A/B testing for flows lets you explore and quickly iterate based on direct user behavior.
  • Powerful feedback options- integrated NPS surveys with analytics and response tagging unlock insight into how your users feel.
  • Advanced analytics and segmentation- analyze product usage and in-app flow engagement and build user segments using the data.
  • Event tracking and feature tags- tag UI engagement (clicks, form fills, hovers) and group them into one custom event to track what really matters.
  • More value with integrations- unlock value faster with built-in integrations with popular tools like Segment, Amplitude, Mixpanel, Kissmetrics, Intercom, Heap, and more.

Cons of Userpilot

Userpilot has a number of advantages, especially for mid-market SaaS companies looking for a robust but at the same time very easy-to-use, a no-code tool for user onboarding, product adoption, and simplified product analytics. Let’s have a look at the pros of using Userpilot:

  • No-code builder – Userpilot comes with an easy-to-use Chrome Extension builder.
  • Multiple UI patterns – choose from a range of options to build customized flows: modals,
  • slideouts, banners, tooltips, hotspots, and checklists are all at your disposal.
  • UI patterns are not limited by plan – you get access to all of them on every single plan, meaning you get value even with the Traction plan (this is the entry-level one).
  • Engaging walkthroughs and onboarding flows- build interactive walkthroughs targeted to distinct user segments.
  • In-app help – build a resource center offering self-service support to your users, customize it with your branding, and select from a range of help options to boost user satisfaction (i.e. videos, in-app flows, chat, and more).
  • Experimentation – built-in A/B testing for flows lets you explore and quickly iterate based on direct user behavior.
  • Powerful feedback options- integrated NPS surveys with analytics and response tagging unlock insight into how your users feel.
  • Advanced analytics and segmentation- analyze product usage and in-app flow engagement and build user segments using the data.
  • Event tracking and feature tags- tag UI engagement (clicks, form fills, hovers) and group them into one custom event to track what really matters.
  • More value with integrations- unlock value faster with built-in integrations with popular tools like Segment, Amplitude, Mixpanel, Kissmetrics, Intercom, Heap, and more.

What users say about Userpilot

Let’s check what real users like about Userpilot.

Userpilot is an incredible, user-friendly software that allows us to create unforgettable experiences for our clients! From basic to complex experiences, we have been able to do them all with ease! I would highly recommend this software to anyone who wants to provide their clients or users with the best product tour experience. The possibilities of what you can create are endless! – Tayla G.

Userpilot is simple to set up, use, and does not require any dev – which means instant publishing. This is critical for us as a SaaS company that releases new features frequently; we need the ability to inform our customers of changes quickly, and doing this in our platform through Userpilot allows us to reach the right audience, at the right time, in the right place. There have been many awesome extra features we’ve discovered since coming on board, and it’s been great to see new features released frequently. The tool itself is intuitive and reliable. Having used similar products previously that were clunky and buggy this has really made us happy with our decision to move to Userpilot. – Melina K.

Get more value for your money with Userpilot!

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Userpilot pricing

Userpilot offers great value for money compared to other similar tools on the market. Even its entry-level plan (Traction) provides all the necessary features without any usage limit.

The price-to-feature ratio is the best for Userpilot. Other cheaper tools in the market would definitely not fulfill your needs, and others like Pendo would be out of budget. Userpilot sits in that sweet spot. – Saurav S.

The pricing differentiation happens mostly on the service level (e.g. custom domain hosting, dedicated Customer Success Manager, SLA) and is based on the number of Monthly Active Users (MAUs) your company has.

Here’s the detailed Userpilot pricing:

  • Traction: For up to 2500 users, this plan is $249/ mo.
  • Growth: For up to 10,000 users, this plan is $499/ mo.
  • Enterprise: For large-scale businesses, these plans begin from $1000/ mo.

Conclusion

That’s all you need to know. Now, it should be easier for you to decide between Appcues and Userguiding.

Both tools have advantages and disadvantages, so there isn’t a single best tool. It will depend on your product and current needs. If you want the best value for money, going with the alternative option would be our recommendation.

Want to see how Userpilot can help with no-code growth? Book a demo below.

There is a better tool for your SaaS than Appcues!

Try Userpilot FREE

  • 14 Day Trial
  • No Credit Card Required
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