Heap vs Amplitude vs Mixpanel for Retention Analytics

Heap vs Amplitude vs Mixpanel for Retention Analytics

Looking for a good retention analytics tool and wondering which one of Heap, Amplitude, and Mixpanel is the best option for your SaaS company? Let’s compare them!

There are plenty of tools for retention analytics on review sites, but they don’t make the choice any easier.

The crux of the issue is – to make the right choice, you need to account for your priorities: your different jobs to be done, budget, and the size of your company. But don’t worry – we’re coming to help!

In this post, we’ll discuss exactly that – which tool is best for retention analytics depending on the different criteria that different SaaS companies may have.

Let’s dive in!


  • Retention analytics, also known as survival analytics, identifies the causes of customer churn. This analytical process is crucial in obtaining insightful information for maintaining a lucrative consumer base — increasing user acquisition, effectiveness, and improving customer retention rates.Continuous retention analysis helps you understand the reasons for customer churn, identify optimal turnover periods, measure the impact on your financial performance, and plan strategies to improve customer retention.

Let’s explore how Heap, Amplitude, and Mixpanel compare when it comes to retention analytics.

  • Heap is a robust product analytics platform that provides users with a plethora of in-depth insights into customer behavior and needs. With Heap, you can track user interactions in real time across all touch points within your product.
  • Amplitude is a powerful analytics tool that gives organizations in-depth, real-time insights into product usage and user behavior. It offers various features, including event segmentation, funnel analysis, user cohorts, and retention analysis.
  • Mixpanel is a simple and powerful product analytics tool that allows product teams to track and analyze in-app product engagement. It allows your team to see every moment of the customer experience clearly, so you can make changes that work.
  • If you’re looking for a better option for retention analytics, Userpilot exceeds both functionality and value for money compared to other tools on the list. Get a Userpilot demo for retention analytics and drive your product growth code-free.

There is a better tool for your SaaS than Heap!

Try Userpilot FREE

  • 14 Day Trial
  • No Credit Card Required

What is retention analytics

Retention analytics, also known as survival analytics, identifies the causes of customer churn. This analytical process is crucial in obtaining insightful information for maintaining a lucrative consumer base — increasing user acquisition, effectiveness, and improving customer retention rates.

Continuous retention analysis helps you understand the reasons for customer churn, identify optimal turnover periods, measure the impact on your financial performance, and plan strategies to improve customer retention.

Heap for retention analytics

Heap offers several features to help you track user actions, behavior, and properties. It lets you dig deeper into how users navigate your product and interact with different elements on a page.

The particularly useful features include:

  • You can track various user sessions and filter the data based on date range and other parameters. It’s also possible to export the data into a .CSV file or Google Sheets.
Tracking user sessions on Heap

Tracking user sessions on Heap.

  • You can use a variety of heatmaps (Clickmaps, Scroll Depth, and Attention Maps) to understand user intent, identify points of friction, and improve UI.
Heatmaps on Heap

Heatmaps on Heap.

  • The Session Replays feature lets you visualize the exact journey a user takes when performing an action.
Session replays feature on Heap

Session replays feature on Heap.

  • You can use the Funnels, Journey Maps, Engagement, and Retention analysis features for a more detailed look at user behavior.
Analytics on Heap

Analytics on Heap.

  • You can segment users into different groups and filter all kinds of data for each segment. Loads of segment criteria are offered by Heap too.
Segmenting on Heap

Segmenting on Heap.

  • The Effort Analysis feature helps you quantify user friction and make immediate fixes to improve the user experience. It particularly helps with retention.
  • The Pro and Premier plans also offer account-based analytics to help you monitor account health and churn. It’s particularly valuable for B2B companies and helps minimize churn.

Heap pros

As a cutting-edge digital insights platform, Heap offers several valuable features for product developers, marketers, and customer success teams. Let’s take a closer look at its benefits.

  • Automated data capture – Heap’s Autocapture feature lets you automatically track user actions, such as clicks, swipes, page views, and form submissions. That means you don’t have to worry about setting up custom tracking for each event. Also, you can track events retroactively.
  • Easy setup – Getting started with Heap is as easy as installing a code snippet into your product. In other words, you don’t need a lot of technical knowledge or expertise.
  • Advanced analytics – Besides Autocapture, Heap also lets you track custom events and services-side events to help you build a comprehensive user behavior data set. With features like Heatmaps and Session Replays, it results in unparalleled insights into how users navigate your product and the paths that lead to desired outcomes.
  • Real-time insights – With the Live data feed, you get a chronological and real time view of all Heap events (raw and labeled). That means you can track and analyze user interactions as they happen.
  • Seamless collaboration – Features like Shared Spaces facilitate collaboration and reporting among cross-functional teams. Similarly, you can share Session Replays with other team members.
  • Web and mobile support – Heap works on all kinds of products, be it websites, web applications, or mobile apps.
  • Extensive integrations – Heap supports integrations with more than 100 platforms, including customer engagement tools, data warehouses, product adoption tools, etc.
  • Emphasis on customer education – Heap provides a variety of helpful resources to get you get started with the platform and use it to the fullest. These include Heap University (video tutorials), Heap Plays (how-to guides), Help Center, and a comprehensive blog and content library.

Heap cons

Heap comes with an impressive set of features that provide you with a 360-degree view of how users navigate your product and interact with various elements. But the product analytics platform isn’t without limitations.

Here are a few drawbacks of Heap worth mentioning:

  • Steep learning curve – While the setup is a cakewalk, Heap involves a fairly steep learning curve due to its vast array of features. As a new user, it’ll take you a while to get a grip on all its features.
  • Data storage requirements – Heap’s Autocapture feature requires you to collect and store a ton of data. Things can get expensive quickly as your product attracts new users.
  • Lack of an engagement layer – While Heap offers an in-depth overview of user behavior and product usage, it doesn’t let you act on these insights. You’ll need other customer engagement tools to trigger targeted in-app experiences based on data and insights from Heap.
  • Limited segmentation capabilities – Heap lets you segment users based on events and properties. It can be restrictive when you want to build hyper-personalized user journeys.

Heap pricing

Pricing for Heap is available on request. You’ll have to contact the sales team for a quote. The final price will depend on various factors, including the number of sessions and integrations you need.

That said, Heap offers a free plan that lets you track up to 10,000 user sessions per month and stores your data for 6 months. Review platforms like G2 say that paid plans start at $3,600 per year. All paid plans come with a 14-day free trial, too.

Pricing plans of Heap

Pricing plans of Heap.

You can choose from the following plans:

  • Free – Ideal for teams looking to establish product-market fit.
  • Starter – Suitable for startups looking to scale their business.
  • Growth – Useful for companies that need advanced features, such as account analytics and report alerts.
  • Pro – Tailored for enterprise businesses with robust security and compliance requirements.

It’s worth mentioning here that Heap offers a handy ROI calculator to help you get a clearer picture of whether it’s worth the investment.

Amplitude for retention analytics

Amplitude offers several tools and features to help you monitor user behavior, engagement, and preferences within your digital products. From in-app user activity and new sign-ups to session durations and retention rates, you can track various metrics. Also, Amplitude quickly turns this data into easy-to-understand, shareable reports.

Amplitude user activity report

Amplitude user activity report.

When it comes to user analytics, the most helpful features include:

  • Event tracking You can set up and track custom events to monitor user actions.
  • User segmentation – You can group users into different segments and monitor how each segment navigates your product.
  • User journey mapping – Amplitude’s Pathfinder feature helps you understand how individual users move through your product.
  • Other features, such as user cohorts and retention analysis, also come in handy.

Amplitude pros

Amplitude is one of the most feature-packed stand alone product analytics platforms for digital products at the moment. It’s designed to meet the needs of modern product and growth teams that want to embrace data-driven decision-making.

Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of Amplitude:

  • Advanced product analytics – Amplitude enables you to dig deep into user behavior, including how they interact with your product and where they convert or drop off.
  • Cross-platform analytics – Amplitude lets you track product usage across native apps, web apps, and web pages. It can help you understand how users move between these platforms.
  • Designed for collaboration – It enables you to easily share dashboards and reports with other team members. Amplitude also facilitates collaboration among different teams, including product, marketing, and customer success.
  • Powerful integrations – Amplitude connects with more than a hundred platforms, including data warehouses, marketing automation tools, ad networks, and customer data platforms. This helps you harness the full potential of product and user behavior data.
  • Customer education – Amplitude offers an extensive resource center and a community where you can connect with product analytics experts. Moreover, you get easy access to a chatbot and help center from your dashboard.

Amplitude cons

Despite its impressive suite of features, Amplitude comes with a few drawbacks. These include:

  • Steep learning curve – Amplitude’s fully customizable dashboards can be intimidating for new users. You’ll need basic technical knowledge to set up and track events using Amplitude. It may not be particularly suitable for teams without in-house analysts.
  • No user engagement functionalities While Amplitude offers a ton of user behavior data, it doesn’t provide any tools to act on these insights. In contrast, a product adoption platform like Userpilot lets you harness usage and behavior data to optimize in-app experiences.
  • Lack of automated event tracking – Amplitude doesn’t automatically track events like clicks, page views, and swipes. You have to define the events you want to track before getting started.

Amplitude pricing

Amplitude offers three distinct pricing tiers:

  • Starter – A free plan suitable for small teams.
  • Growth – Suitable for teams that need to scale fast; pricing is available on request and depends on your requirements.
  • Enterprise – Includes advanced governance and security features; pricing is available on request.
Amplitude pricing plans

Amplitude pricing plans.

Both Growth and Enterprise plans come with a 14-day free trial. Amplitude also offers a free annual subscription to the Growth plan under the following programs:

  • Scholarship Program for startups with under $5 million in funding and fewer than 20 employees.
  • Black Founders Program for US startups with a Black co-founder, fewer than 150 employees, and under $30 million funding.

However, it’s worth noting that Amplitude’s pricing plans are complex because they’re based on the number of monthly events or features. Other tools like Mixpanel and Userpilot offer more transparent pricing based on the number of monthly active users.

Mixpanel for retention analytics

Mixpanel provides deep, granular, user-level analytics that can help teams build profitable products.

Here are the features available for user analytics on Mixpanel:

  • Data collection and storage: Mixpanel seamlessly gathers data from diverse sources, establishing a consistent inflow on monthly, weekly, and real-time bases. This data, meticulously stored, remains accessible and secure, encouraging scalability.
  • In-depth data analysis: Mixpanel uses machine learning to mine user data for insights that transcend conventional queries. These insights hold the potential to reveal unexplored avenues for product enhancement. The tool acts promptly, notifying product teams of anomalies and suggesting adjustments to amplify user value.
  • A/B and multivariate testing: Mixpanel provides a suite of tools for A/B and multivariate testing. Testing new forms, text, images, and workflows can help analyze hypotheses and improve the user journey.

Mixpanel pros

Let’s have a look at the pros of using Mixpanel:

  • Sophisticated features that enable granular data analysis are a significant advantage of using Mixpanel because they allow you to gain deeper insights into user behavior, interactions, and trends. For example, with the event tracking feature, you can track user sign-ups, product purchases, clicks on specific buttons, and more.
  • Unlimited segmentation capabilities: It offers unlimited segmentation capabilities on attributes, user properties, and cohorts. This level of segmentation gives you a more detailed view of your consumers and their engagement level.
  • Easy-to-navigate UI patterns: The user interface of this platform is simple and has a wide variety of functions and resources to help you work in the most organized way, have better team coordination, and keep efficiency high.
  • Seamless onboarding for your product team: Getting started on Mixpanel is easy and without stress. Register, choose a plan, or hop on for a free trial.
  • A free plan that is sufficient for small SaaS companies: This free plan offers valuable features and resources — unlimited integrations, unlimited collaborators, templates, and essentials to get started quickly — that can help you gain insights into user behavior and make data-driven decisions, even when operating with limited budgets.
  • Powerful interactive and easily accessible visuals: For quicker decision-making to beat analysis paralysis.

Mixpanel cons

While Mixpanel is a powerful product analytics tool with many great features, there are still some downsides. Here are the main cons of the tool:

  • The free plan works well for small SaaS businesses, but enterprise-grade features can be expensive depending on your needs.
  • You will need the help of your engineering team to set up and configure the tool — The platform’s advanced functionalities, custom event tracking and segmentation, might require a steeper learning curve, especially for those without a strong background in data analysis.
  • Limited Attribution Models: While Mixpanel offers various analytics features, its attribution modeling capabilities might be more limited.
  • There is no user feedback or engagement functionality, so you need third-party tools.

Mixpanel pricing

Mixpanel’s pricing plan is divided into 3 plans; the starter plan, the enterprise plan, and the growth plan.

Here’s an overview of the pricing plans and features of each plan:

  • Starter plan: This plan features essentials to find product-market fit. It is free and allows up to 20M monthly events. In addition, you get access to all core reports for user journey analysis, templates to get started easily, unlimited integrations, and unlimited collaborators.
  • Growth plan: This plan costs $20+ per month for up to 100M monthly events. You get all features in the starter plan plus unlimited saved reports to monitor, update, and iterate on KPIs, Mixpanel modeling layer, and group analytics and data pipeline add-ons.
  • Enterprise plan: This plan empowers your team, especially if you have a large organization. It costs $833+ per month for up to 5M-100M+ monthly events. This plan features all the benefits of the growth plan plus advanced access controls, shared data views for collaboration, automated provisioning and SSO, and prioritized support.

Better alternative to Heap, Amplitude, and Mixpanel

We have discussed Heap, Amplitude, and Mixpanel for retention analytics with their pros, cons, and pricing. Let’s take a look at a better alternative – Userpilot.

Userpilot for retention analytics

User analytics lets you track and analyze the behavior of users within your product. Userpilot lets you filter through customers from a unified dashboard, extract insights from specific segments or time periods, and create custom segments for all users who meet certain conditions.

Here’s an overview of Userpilot’s analytics features:

  • Users dashboard: Userpilot’s users dashboard gives you an overview of all user data in one place. You’ll be able to filter by segments, which companies users are from, or when they were last seen active. You can also export data in bulk as a CSV or perform actions on individual users.

  • Audience insights: Much like the overview dashboard, the Insights section lets you filter metrics by segment, company, and time period. You’ll be able to choose between a daily, weekly, or monthly view and then compare data between the current and previous time periods.

  • Conditional segmentation: Practical use cases for user analytics include creating segments for all users that meet certain conditions. For instance, you could reach out to companies in a certain country when creating a new flow or target customers who have tried certain features.

  • Saved reports: The saved reports dashboard lets you view, edit, duplicate, or delete any trend and funnel reports you’ve created. You’ll also be able to sort by report type, filter by the teammate who created the report, or export in bulk if you need a CSV of your user analytics.

Userpilot pros

As a full-suite digital adoption platform, Userpilot has all the features you need to onboard users, track analytics, and gather feedback from customers without writing a single line of code. Here are a few pros of using Userpilot as your product growth solution:

  • No-code builder: Userpilot’s Chrome extension lets you build flows, add UI elements, and tag features without writing a single line of code.
  • UI patterns: There are plenty of UI patterns to choose from when using Userpilot, such as hotspots, tooltips, banners, slideouts, modals, and more!
  • Startup-friendly: Userpilot’s entry-level plan gives you access to all available UI patterns so you can hit the ground running.
  • Walkthroughs and flows: Build engaging interactive walkthroughs and personalized onboarding flows that target specific segments of your user base.
  • Self-service support: Build an in-app resource center to help users solve problems, customize its appearance to align it with your brand, and insert various types of content (videos, flows, or chatbots) to keep your customers satisfied.
  • A/B testing: Userpilot’s built-in A/B testing capabilities will help you split-test flows, iterate on the best-performing variants, and continually optimize based on user behavior.
  • Feedback collection: Userpilot has built-in NPS surveys with its own unified analytics dashboard and response tagging to help you retarget users. There are other survey types to choose from and you can even create your own custom survey.
  • Survey templates: There are 14 survey templates to choose from so you can gather feedback on specific features or run customer satisfaction benchmarking surveys like CSAT and CES.
  • Advanced analytics: Userpilot lets you analyze product usage data, monitor engagement on all in-app flows, and use the data to create user segments that are based on behaviors instead of demographics.
  • Event tracking: Userpilot’s no-code event tracking lets you tag UI interactions (hovers, clicks, or form fills) and group them into a custom event that reflects feature usage.
  • Third-party integrations: Userpilot has built-in integrations with tools like Amplitude, Mixpanel, Kissmetrics, Segment, Heap, HubSpot, Intercom, Google Analytics, and Google Tag Manager so you can share data between all the solutions in your tech stack.

Userpilot cons

Of course, no tool is perfect and there are a few cons to consider before choosing Userpilot as your user onboarding or product growth solution:

  • Employee onboarding: Currently, Userpilot only supports in-app customer onboarding.
  • Mobile apps: Userpilot doesn’t have any mobile compatibility which could make it difficult for developers with cross-platform applications to create a consistent user experience for both versions of their product.
  • Freemium plan: There’s no freemium Userpilot plan so those bootstrapping their startup and need sub-$100 solutions should consider more affordable onboarding platforms like UserGuiding or Product Fruits.

Userpilot pricing

Userpilot’s transparent pricing ranges from $249/month on the entry-level end to an Enterprise tier for larger companies.

Furthermore, Userpilot’s entry-level plan includes access to all UI patterns and should include everything that most mid-market SaaS businesses need to get started.

Userpilot has three paid plans to choose from:

  • Starter: The entry-level Starter plan starts at $249/month and includes features like segmentation, product analytics, reporting, user engagement, user feedback, and customization.
  • Growth: The Growth plan starts at $499/month and includes features like resource centers, advanced event-based triggers, unlimited feature tagging, AI-powered content localization, EU hosting options, and a dedicated customer success manager.
  • Enterprise: The Enterprise plan uses custom pricing and includes all the features from Starter + Growth plus custom roles/permissions, access to premium integrations, priority support, custom contract, SLA, SAML SSO, activity logs, security audit and compliance (SOC 2/GDPR).


In conclusion, as we’ve explored Heap, Amplitude, and Mixpanel for retention analytics, it becomes evident that there is a diverse landscape of solutions available to cater to your specific needs. Each of these tools brings its own set of features, advantages, and unique capabilities to the table. Whether you’re seeking enhanced functionality, cost-effectiveness, or a different approach to tackling your tasks, our guide has showcased a range of options.

Ultimately, the choice of the best alternative depends on your individual requirements and preferences. We hope that our exploration of these tools has provided you with valuable insights to help you make an informed decision.

There is a better tool for your SaaS than Heap!

Try Userpilot FREE

  • 14 Day Trial
  • No Credit Card Required
previous post next post

Leave a comment