Inline Manual is an overpriced tool that doesn’t have a full set of onboarding features.
Thus, you can find the most popular alternatives to Inline Manual, including free (open source), low-cost, and enterprise-ready tools in this article.
I’ve evaluated reviews from around the web, developer forums, Capterra, G2, and Reddit, and utilized my experience with the mentioned tools to help you select the best onboarding solution for your business.
I also have prepared a comparison table of Inline Manual and its competitors at the end of the article, to help you better compare.
Let’s begin with getting to know the cons of Inline Manual:
- Inline Manual is just another onboarding tool that is very expensive for no reason.
- The tool provides a reasonable amount of key features for a digital adoption platform, but some of those features are not comprehensive enough, such as the analytics feature.
- UserGuiding is the best alternative to Inline Manual since it provides:
- Interactive product walkthroughs,
- Tooltips and hotspots to guide users,
- Checklists and Resource centers for self-serve support,
- User analytics and user tracking,
- Lots of integrations with various types of tools,
- NPS surveys and feedback collection,
- Maximum security with EU server compatibility and GDPR compliance.
- UserGuiding does all that for as low as $89/month for 2500 MAU.
UserGuiding also offers free migration services for your in-app content created using other software to minimize your switching costs.
Schedule a demo with one of our experts or start your free trial now:
- Other alternatives to Inline Manual are WalkMe, Appcues, Pendo, Intro.js, and Crumble.
Why Do You Need An Alternative To Inline Manuals?
1- 💰It is very expensive
Unless you have around 35,000-40,000 MAU, Inline Manual’s pricing falls above average when compared to the other tools on this list (considering the value they provide.) Normally, similar products charge the same starting price for 2500-5000 MAU while also providing better features.
2- 🧩 The tool itself has bad UX
It is a known fact that reinventing the wheel isn’t always the best idea. Inline Manual proves this statement right. Some features and buttons within the tool aren’t where you would expect it to be, making it very difficult to figure out and get used to the tool.
3- 📉 Insufficient analytics
Even though the tool does provide some sort of user analytics, it is not sufficient for all needs. Since it doesn’t provide 3rd party integrations with tools for non-enterprise plan users either, the tool falls short of providing insights about users.
4- ⛰ Steep learning curve
Inline Manual isn’t completely no-code, and you need to have some sort of technical knowledge to integrate, customize, and maintain the tool. Since their customer support isn’t the best either, it can be said that you’re very likely to have a hard time getting the hang of the tool.
Top Alternatives to Inline Manual
- Gainsight PX
I will briefly explain each of the tools and their functions, go through their pricing information, and finally, I will provide you with the most highlighted reviews of the tools from Capterra and G2.
1- Inline Manual vs. UserGuiding – easier and more affordable user onboarding
UserGuiding is a no-code digital adoption solution that helps you provide better in-app experiences.
👉 Compared to its alternatives, UserGuiding is much simpler to use since it is a no-code platform. It doesn’t require a single line of code to work.
It works with a Chrome browser extension that lets you create various user onboarding elements directly on your website.
Compared to other tools, UserGuiding’s user onboarding features are much more extensive and significantly more affordable, while its analytics functions are limited.
But, this lack of product analytics can easily be covered with product analytics software (that’s more capable than Pendo) such as Mixpanel or Amplitude, which are easily integrated with UserGuiding.
UserGuiding offers a wide range of features, including:
- Interactive Product Tours,
- Tooltips and Hotspots,
- User Onboarding Checklists,
- Resource Centers,
- NPS Surveys,
- Easy Localization,
- Advanced Analytics with User Activity Feed,
- Custom user segments,
- Material Tagging and Easy Targeting,
- No-code customization,
- Advanced integrations.
There are three main upsides of using UserGuiding for user onboarding instead of Pendo:
Interactive in-app guidance
UserGuiding is the easiest tool to use among digital adoption platforms that offer a full scope of onboarding features, with a 93% satisfaction rate regarding the ease of use on G2.
UserGuiding’s guides are not only easy to install, but also quick to create. It is possible to push your guides live in under 15 minutes, and see instant results on how much the customer journey has improved.
With tooltips, modals, hotspots, announcement banners, checklists, and resource centers; UserGuiding offers powerful features for all pricing tiers – meaning that you don’t have go out of budget to have a good quality customer retention strategy.
By using UserGuiding’s browser extension, you can start building and customizing your interactive guides directly on your web app.
Surveys and NPS
In July 2023, UserGuiding launched their new feature, “Surveys”, which now allows users to create multiple different types of questions and combine them within a single survey (or launch different surveys for different segments).
With this feature, you can get the most specific user feedback that you need, exactly when you need it. UserGuiding also offers NPS surveys for companies to measure their promoter score, and combines all survey results in the dashboard.
Also, thanks to their user details & activity log feature, you can dig deep into how each user journey comes together, and find what is it that makes the customers’ digital experience special for them.
UserGuiding’s easy-to-create intuitive resource centers have increased their users’ activation rates over 25%.
Resource centers allow you to create a self-paced learning environment right within your app without covering too much space.
You can trigger guides or surveys within UserGuiding’s resource center, insert external links, direct people to help center articles, or provide quick tips based on their usage – all from a single source
Analytics and Customization
UserGuiding brings analytics to a new level.
UserGuiding’s Analytics dashboard gives you actionable insight on the performance of your onboarding content. UserGuiding allows you to track view and completion data for each guide, tooltip, hotspot, checklist, and resource center – while also giving you information about daily active users, and satisfaction scores.
You can mix and match different survey responses and data on the analytics dashboard, and dig deep into each user’s activity using the user details page and activity log.
What is UserGuiding good for?
✅ The #1 strength of UserGuiding is the value it provides for the price it costs. UserGuiding offers a full set of no-code engagement and adoption elements for as little as $89/month.
✅ Unlike many other competitors, UserGuiding’s interface is very user-friendly so that even first-time users can set up and publish their own product engagement sequences.
✅ UserGuiding is also very customizable. You can play with your engagement elements’ shape, color, positioning, and much more.
✅ UserGuiding provides fast and solution-oriented customer support. This means that customers can get help quickly – no matter which time zone you are in – and solve their problems without friction.
What is UserGuiding bad for?
❌ Since UserGuiding’s main focus is onboarding, the analytics features it provides might not be enough for some companies. However, the tool provides various integration options with most analytics tools.
❌ Although you can use UserGuiding on mobile web browsers, it doesn’t work on mobile apps. If you need a solution to work on web and mobile, UserGuiding isn’t the one for you.
- 14-day free trial (no credit card required)
- Basic Plan: $89/month when billed annually for up to 2500 MAU. UserGuiding doesn’t limit the number of features available to the customers, and you can benefit from all features – with limitations on active campaigns. For instance, you can create as many surveys as you like, but set only one active at a time with the Basic plan.
- Professional Plan: $389/month when billed annually for up to 20.000 MAU with unlimited user guides. You get unlimited product engagement features, and you can have. 3 live surveys at a time with the professional plan. This plan also provides you with a dedicated customer success manager.
- Custom Quotation, Available for Larger Companies, removes all limitations and provides you the smoothest UserGuiding experience.
UserGuiding also provides add-ons, so if there is a specific feature that you need while you are on the basic plan, you can have it as an add-on without having to upgrade your package.
“Before UserGuiding, we’ve tried a few other user onboarding software to increase our free trial conversion. Others had problems with multi-page onboarding flows and iframes. UserGuiding team helped me implement it quickly and I had everything working in only a few days. Great support team!”
“Sometimes interface and Chrome extension could become confusing, but once you get used to, it is not a big deal. As mentioned above, UserGuiding lacks in-depth analytics.”
UserGuiding vs. Inline Manual
|On-Screen Slide Modals
|In-App Resource Centers
|Knowledge Base Integration
|Only Available For Pro Plans
|Avg. Deployment Time
2- Inline Manual vs. WalkMe – enterprise-oriented key features
WalkMe seems to be a product experience platform enterprise businesses can’t live without.
And they might be right.
Compared to Pendo, WalkMe is an enterprise-focused and expensive digital adoption platform for user analytics and product experience.
Although both products have very similar key features, the way these features (such as product tours, analytics, and event tracking) are set up in each product differs a ton.
Here are WalkMe’s two strongest features:
Analytics and Insights
WalkMe excells in enterprise level DAP oriented data management.
If you’re more interested in using a DAP for instilling the adoption of digital products through organizations and teams, WalkMe should be your go-to. The setup takes more time, and it’s not as easily operated as Pendo, but it gets the job done for those who need to get other people to get the job done.
If you need a tool for customer onboarding, WalkMe isn’t the one for you. If you need a solution for employee onboarding, tracking, and management, then WalkMe can offer you quite a variety fo features that will maximize the employee’s productivity and get them quickly up to speed.
What is WalkMe good for?
✅ WalkMe users get to enjoy an extensive set of high-value features and different onboarding UX patterns like tooltips, checklists, and progress tracking options with progress bars
✅ Although technical knowledge might be required, WalkMe offers a lot of customization options
✅ WalkMe is perfectly scalable for enterprises, especially if the use case is employee onboarding rather than customer education
What is WalkMe bad for?
❌ Among the WalkMe features, even core features might be too sophisticated for inexperienced users
❌ WalkMe’s feature amount/feature usage ratio is often low if there is no dedicated user or employee onboarding team
❌ WalkMe requires a technical skillset and occasionally coding knowledge; this makes setting up and using WalkMe harder than average
❌ Not so accessible pricing, WalkMe is not the best option for small or medium-sized businesses or enterprises with an immature budget structure
❌ WalkMe is enterprise software designed for enterprises, so feature updates following customer feedback might not be possible; likewise, customer service might be less accessible
WalkMe doesn’t have public pricing, but most of its users agree on pricing plans that vastly change in the 5-figure range. The average pricing for the small teams seems to be around $10,000/year, but since WalkMe is an enterprise solution that specializes as a DAP for large organizations, you might have to multiply the alleged numbers.
“How innovative and smart it is, it makes our relationship with our customers so much easier and fluid, so many great tools, and functionalities, it has very to no little limitations on what you can do.”
“I dislike how picky and problematic it can be to setup. Depending on your web page’s set up, it can be a simple point and click to build, or require you to learn jquery to build every single step.”
3- Inline Manual vs. Appcues – better onboarding with comprehensive features
Appcues, as one of the first user onboarding tools on the market, offers much more comprehensive user onboarding features compared to most onboarding tools.
The tool is beautifully designed for non-technical people to create and track in-app elements they use for their onboarding flows. With various features and in-depth customization complemented with ready-to-use templates, the tool has everything you need to create power users.
- Interactive Product Tours,
- Tooltips and Hotspots,
- User Onboarding Checklists,
- Resource Centers,
- NPS Surveys,
- Easy Localization,
- Advanced Analytics with User Activity Feed,
- Custom user segments,
- Advanced integrations.
Although the pricing of Appcues matches the price of Pendo’s “only product tours” plans, if you have to choose between the two for user onboarding features, Appcues wins by a landslide.
Here are the main features and reasons why:
Although Appcues is not the easiest tool to set-up, or the most affordable one, it is definitely a strong tool in terms of technical capabilities. Depending on your pricing package, Appcues gives you the liberty of coding and editing your guides to your ideal.
Once you get used to the UI and functionalities of Appcues, the tool becomes relatively easier to use, and maintaining your guides won’t be an issue. Of course, this is only applicable if you get past the steep learning curve with your technical capabilities or with the help of someone knowledgeable.
Experiments and A/B testing
You can choose to experiments with new flows or UI elements using Appcues’s new feature, experiments.
Using Appcues, you can create multiple kinds of UI elements and show them to some. of your end-users while others don’t see it and compare the results. This way you can see which of your ideas reach the users more easily, and act accordingly.
Analytics & Data
Appcues’s analytics isn’t much different from it’s close competitors, such as UserGuiding or Pendo. You can see al the data of your guides, surveys, checklists, and so on. What makes Appcues’s analytics strong are the “journeys” and “experiments” features, which allow you to play with custom parameters and dive deep into details.
What is Appcues good for?
✅ Appcues can help you create beautiful and interactive product walkthroughs to provide your customers with an engaging onboarding experience, and get them to like your product easily.
✅ Appcues provides exquisite customer support. They are great at coming up with quick and highly personalized solutions to all your problems whenever you have one.
✅ Founded in 2014, Appcues is among the firstcomers of no-code digital adoption; it has a strong background and customer portfolio.
What is Appcues bad for?
❌ Appcues isn’t the best when it comes to analytics features. If you would like to get the best out of your customers, you will have to use integrations.
❌ No matter how friendly the UI is, Appcues has a steep learning curve that you must get past – which is only possible if you have enough technical knowledge.
❌ Appcues is also not affordable. Their starting price is not only above the market average, but they also don’t grant access to all features in the essentials package.
- 14-day free trial (no credit card required)
- Essentials Plan: $249/month when billed annually for up to 2500 MAU. This plan has lots of limitations, such as not being able to get localization features or any kind of account security possibilities. And if you are looking for custom CSS customization, you will have to make a huge price jump and pay for the Growth plan.
- Growth Plan: $879/month when billed annually for up to 2500 MAU. This plan removes most of the barriers, while some limitations persist. You still don’t get a dedicated customer success manager or security options, and you still don’t get localization support. Also, you cannot sign-up for the Growth plan without signing an annual contract, which can be a big burden for a lot. of companies.
- Custom Quotation Available for Enterprises
“Easy to get started and easy to edit along the way. You’re not stuck with anything you create and can continually integrate based on user interactions with your product.”
“One pain point that I have experienced is in the way Appcues interacts with our site. On many pages, users open and close windows without actually navigating away from a specific URL.”
4- Inline Manual vs. Pendo – better analytics in enterprise quality
Pendo is a robust product analytics, and user engagement platform businesses use to build better products.
Founded by the software entrepreneur Todd Olson, Pendo is based in North Carolina, US.
It is a very popular solution with thousands of customers, including big names such as Verizon, Zendesk, and Salesforce.
The platform has two core functions that users can benefit from: behavior analytics and user onboarding.
Pendo’s product analytics features can help businesses track user behavior, and product insights across the web and mobile devices.
Once integrated, you can see every user activity, which allows you to create different reports that can later be combined in custom dashboards that fuel your business decisions and help you find actionable insights.
Data-focused product managers use Pendo to understand what users are doing inside their product, what functions/features are being more utilized, how product changes affect business metrics, and more.
User/Employee Onboarding and Guidance
Additionally, Pendo has a “Guides” feature, using which you can create different in-app elements to pop up on the user interface to boost user experience and guide and engage with your users.
You can create interactive product tours, tooltips, announcement modals, and resource centers using Pendo; to set up a customer journey that sets users up for success.
Once combined with the analytics part of Pendo, in-app guides, and other elements can help your teams onboard users and employees with higher engagement.
Additionally, Pendo provides its users with a variety of in-app feedback collection elements that are extremely valuable when used correctly.
What is Pendo good for?
✅ The best feature Pendo provides is its in-depth analytics; meanwhile, its user segmentation truly makes a significant change in the way users consume onboarding material.
✅ Pendo puts together different solutions like user experience, user onboarding, and highly sophisticated data collection and analytics under one tool to guarantee customer success and easier customer engagement tracking for digital product teams.
✅ Founded in 2013, Pendo is among the first comers of digital adoption; it has a strong background and customer portfolio.
✅ Though Pendo is quite expensive, it offers a free trial and a freemium, something other platforms of its caliber rarely do.
What is Pendo bad for?
❌ Though Pendo represents itself as a digital adoption solution, its onboarding UX elements are pretty limited to the very basics, leaving out checklists, hotspots, and more.
❌ Being a highly sophisticated tool with a complex UI, it might be hard to set up and use if not used by an experienced user.
❌ Likewise, Pendo’s features tend to be complex and use case-specific, so it might be hard to leverage all features and possibilities without a fully established game plan dedicated to Pendo.
❌ Though Pendo does not publicly share its pricing, it is very well known that Pendo is more expensive than the market average.
❌ Yet another enterprise-level tool, Pendo’s customer service might not be as responsive as smaller products’ customer service teams.
Pendo has a free plan called “Pendo Free“. Pendo free allows up to 1,000 monthly active users for one web and one mobile app. Although Pendo claims it can be used to test the waters and see the software’s value, I’ll have to say you can only see if the platform works with your product or not with only a thousand users.
Also, Pendo recently released a fixed-pricing plan called the “starter plan,” which costs $7000/year but includes only a very limited set of features and no customer support.
For bigger plans, Pendo doesn’t have set pricing.
Instead, you can get a custom plan for your business by contacting their sales team.
However, there are various Pendo users that revealed the details of Pendo’s pricing. One user claimed that they are a medium-sized business that pays $12,000/year for the standard package of Pendo, while another user upped this number to $20,000. Additionally, there is a Pendo customer that claims to pay $2000/year just for the “Guides” feature of the product; so, you get the picture.
Pendo’s pricing is feature and usage-based, and it possibly scales with how many users you have, like other analytics tools.
“The tagging method is easy and intuitive. Paths and funnels are useful to analyze”
“It can be kind of difficult to find what you want to do. Starting out, the difference between features, pages, guides, etc. can be confusing because they have the same page layout to search.”
5- Inline Manual vs. Gainsight PX – All-in-one tool for engagement
Gainsight PX is Gainsight’s Product Experience tool which combines advanced analytics tools and user engagement features and creates a really good product experience for all end-users.
Gainsight positions this tool as a “product experience tool that provides human insights for Product Managers”.hea
The tool has integrations to many platforms and also provides you with a way to collect and act on user feedback.
The main features of Gainsight PX are:
- Engagement element creation – such as product tours and surveys,
- Knowledge center articles and bots,
- Product Mapping,
- And in-depth analytics.
Let’s dig through each of those features one by one:
Gainsight PX’s engagements feature is quite rich. So rich that it could be a product by itself.
In the “engagements,” you can create:
- Interactive product walkthroughs,
- Slider guides and messages,
- In-app update notifications and banners,
- And 5 different types of surveys.
It is honestly amazing how much depth this single feature has to it.
But I have to warn you, if you are familiar with other digital adoption platforms, it will take a whole new learning curve to get used to Gainsight PX. This is because the UI is quite unusual, and you might have to digest the whole UI for a few days just to get acquainted with it and get going.
Knowledge bases have almost completely taken over help centers since they are more user-friendly and easier to access.
Gainsight PX didn’t stay behind the trend, and introduced their own interpretation of knowledge bases, the “knowledge centers”.
Here, you can create your own articles, or integrate your existing knowledge base and start using it on the “knowledge center bots” – which are basically collapsable resource centers.
You can also include your engagements (your product tours) and custom web links within these bots.
And the newest addition to these bots – the recommendation feature – promises to help users with event-based custom resources right when they need it.
If you use a robot cleaner at your home or office, I’m sure you will quickly see the value of this feature.
Here is how the product mapping feature works:
- First, you map and link all your features and modules,
- Then, you put in a desired route for the users,
- And lastly, Gainsight recommends a path for the end-users, and you have a better system to analyze.
Although it seems like an over-the-top feature, there are two obstacles that make this feature difficult to use:
- It takes hard work and a lot of time to map out your product since it has to be done manually – or through linking pre-created features. If your product/website has more than 3-4 layers, creating a complete map could cost you weeks.
- It is also difficult to maintain those maps. Since Gainsight doesn’t work based on AI or internal bots, you would have to update the map manually if any little change occurs on your product.
Gainsight values data and actionability almost more than anything else. And so does Gainsight PX.
The tool collects both account-based and product-based data, and converts this collection into a sea of actionable information.
Without you having to interpret all the numbers that Gainsight PX provides, it shows you what each data means and how close you are to your KPIs.
Gainsight PX’s customer segments feature makes it even easier for everyone using the tool to see what’s relevant to them.
However, that’s pretty much all you can do with the product. The tool has lots of features, but each of those features is very limited, and there are more affordable products that do more than Gainsight PX does.
What is Gainsight good for?
✅ Gainsight is a complete tool for businesses since it brings together data and action.
✅ Gainsight also provides an endless amount of integrations. Even if you don’t find some features good enough, you can always get backup from your other tools, directly into Gainsight.
✅ Gainsight is great with analytics. All three Gainsight tools provide more than enough real-time data about user behavior and product usage, letting you take action quickly and strongly.
✅ Gainsight’s product mapping feature is like a breakthrough for no-code automation.
What is Gainsight bad for?
❌ Gainsight has all the features, but most of those features are only surface-level and not worth the price.
❌ Gainsight requires different accounts for different tools, which means the price will only go higher as you choose to benefit from all tools.
❌ Gainsight is expensive for what it provides. There are better alternatives to all Gainsight products – and fun fact – the sum of those tools is usually more affordable than one single Gainsight tool.
❌ Most users complain that Gainsight has a very steep learning curve. The tool doesn’t have the most intuitive UI, and most features are hidden within other features – making them very hard to find.
Gainsight PX Pricing
Gainsight offers a free trial for their Product Experience (PX) tool. As for the paid plans, users across the internet claim that the pricing of Gainsight PX starts from $500/user/month, which is way above the average digital adoption platform cost.
- Free Trial available (for PX only)
- Product Experience Pack: Custom quote for each company (starting from $500/user/month.)
Gainsight PX Reviews
“A great tool to extract info from customers that will lead to data-driven decisions.”
“It does have some limitations when it comes to implementation and compatibility”
6- Inline Manual vs. Stonly – Knowledge bases with product tours
Stonly is a self-serve support and user education platform that offers engaging and (not so) interactive guides for software products.
The customer service software especially started generating more attention after the series A investment of $22M it received in January 2022.
Stonly offers a fairly basic solution to educate users and take some weight off the shoulders of the customer support team on a small budget, but it might not be giving you the best bang for your buck.
Stonly helps you create help centers and knowledge bases that are much more engaging compared to the traditional ones that are just chunks of writing piled up on a website.
Stonly onboarding offers step-by-step instructional guides that you can add images inside to illustrate your topic better, and the content of these step guides can be optimized based on end-user segments and preferences.
These step interactive guides can also be triggered through tooltips and hotspots for a more hands-on experience.
Of course, you can use these guides to create product tours, that show your users how different UI elements and core functions of your product work.
Stonly Knowledge Bases and Resource centers
Along with onboarding flows and knowledge bases, Stonly also allows you to create basic launchers with resource centers in them. From those launchers, you can trigger guides, access knowledge base articles, or get support information.
Because Stonly doesn’t offer surveys or such, this is about everything that their launcher can do.
Also, Stonly doesn’t provide analytics capabilities. Therefore, you will have a difficult time understanding how your users behave and navigate within your product.
Although it doesn’t actually have the most interactive content, it can be a good choice for small to medium-sized businesses that would prefer free/affordable products.
But if you have quite a few users, then you should be ready for questionably high pricing plans, since Stonly only has a starter plan, and an expensive plan.
What is Stonly good for?
✅ Stonly is relatively more affordable and has a free plan, which is something that most of its competitors don’t have.
✅ Stonly makes it easy to create product walkthroughs. Once you pass the integration step, the ease of use increases quickly.
What is Stonly bad for?
❌ If you want to integrate Stonly into your UI elements, and, of course, implement Stonly’s knowledge base and help center into your platform, you’ll definitely need a bunch of developer hours to get it done.
❌ It looks like most of the interactivity, in Stonly’s case, is pressing the “Next” button on the guide steps after reading a bunch of text and looking at a screenshot.
❌ Your customization options are very limited with Stonly. After a while, a lot of the guides look very similar to each other, and since you’re limited to a single element, you can mix things up as you can in other user onboarding products like UserGuiding.
Stonly’s pricing model has 3 pricing tiers at the moment, and a 14-day free trial:
- Free plan forever without charge for up to 1000 MAU and 5 guides. On this plan, you don’t have access to multiple knowledge bases or guides, and you can’t localize your content.
- Business Plan: $199/month with 4000 monthly guide views, $399 with 15000 monthly guide views with unlimited active guides. On this plan, you get access to language localization, 3 knowledge bases, only 4 integration options, and SEO customization. You don’t get any additional support experience as this plan lists the support as “self-serve”.
- Custom Enterprise Plans: Additional Enterprise features with increased usage limits, but you need to contact Stonly’s sales team for a custom quote.
“I love the variety of guide options Stonly supports (like product tours, NPS surveys, checklists, knowledge bases, etc).”
“There’s not a lot of visual customization, and the design is a bit clunky. Setup is difficult”
7- Inline Manual vs. Whatfix – Enterprise-oriented engagement
Whatfix, similar to WalkMe, can be the solution you’re looking for if you’re more interested in organization-wide digital adoption rather than product analytics.
Its analytics side lacks a ton compared to Pendo, but Whatfix can be a powerful solution for employee onboarding and training. It has a variety of options for creating on-screen guidance for end-users.
Whatfix’s analytics features are focused on tracking the on-screen content you create with it and the effects of this content on core product metrics.
With a more affordable pricing range, Whatfix can be a better DAP solution for small-medium-sized companies than Pendo, maybe even WalkMe.
While Whatfix offers a wide variety of features, they categorize it under 2 different aspects:
Whatfix focuses on enterprise-level customers, that’s why they specialize in providing highly detailed and personalized experiences. Whatfix allows you to create in-app elements such as checklists, onboarding flows, hotspots, and so on.
While Whatfix does offer a great range of features, I have to warn you that its elements are not the most pretty and pleasing to look at. So if you want your onboarding elements to look good on the screen, Whatfix probably shouldn’t be your first choice.
Whatfix doesn’t disclose what kind of features you can use within their product analytics plan, but here are the details that are listed on their pricing page:
What is Whatfix good for?
✅ Whatfix can help you create beautiful and interactive product walkthroughs so that you can provide your customers an engaging onboarding experience, and get them to like your product easily.
✅ Whatfix provides exquisite customer support. They are great at coming up with quick and highly personalized solutions to all your problems whenever you have one.
What is Whatfix bad for?
❌ Whatfix isn’t the best when it comes to analytics features. If you would like to get the best out of your customers, you will have to use integrations.
❌ But Whatfix doesn’t provide enough integration options either. Only if you only use Amplitude, Google Analytics, Salesforce, and Slack, well, then you won’t be disappointed.
❌ No matter how friendly the UI is, Whatfix has a steep learning curve that you must get past – which is only possible if you have enough technical knowledge.
❌ Whatfix is also not affordable. Even though they don’t share their pricing plan or provide a free trial, users on the internet say that Whatfix charges them much more than other similar tools.
Whatfix also doesn’t have public pricing that you can go through, but according to its users, it’s not as bad as Pendo.
According to reviews, plans for enterprise businesses can go as high as $1000/month with access to all features, and it won’t get to five figures unless you’re a really large corporation with a ton of users/employees.
“Best value I found when researching for a product like this. Also the service can not be beat.”
“Setting up analytics is a little difficult and an added step to check.”
8- Inline Manual vs. Userlane – Simplicity meets user onboarding
Userlane is also one of the solid digital adoption platforms that are suitable for creating employee and user onboarding experiences.
With a focus on employee training, Userlane provides interactive UX elements that guide users through any web software.
Although the customization and the features are limited, Userlane has all the core elements of the average user onboarding experience:
User Onboarding Guides
Userlane offers interactive product guides that you can customize as you like. The targeting and segmentation for those guides are sufficient for most but if you have complicated segments or lots of different language requirements, Userlane might not be the one for you.
Setting up Userlane guides. is easy. You simply download the browser extension, edit and adjust your tooltips and modals, and you are ready to go.
Checklists and Knowledge Base
While most user onboarding tools offer separate user onboarding checklists and knowledge bases, USerlane brings those two elements together on one launcher.
Just like any other tool, you can use these features to launch product tours. The downside of USerlane’s launcher is the fact that you can’t insert surveys and sort in it.
Data & Analytics
Userlane allows you to track how your users are doing with the onboarding material, but it doesn’t provide any advanced analytics capabilities.
You can try the other tools on the list, like UserGuiding, if you’re looking for something more advanced than basic.
What is Userlane good for?
✅ Userlane is very user-friendly so that even first-time users can set up and publish their own product engagement sequences.
✅ The same goes with the integration, it is relatively easier than most competitors.
✅ Userlane provides good customer support. They are great at coming up with quick and highly personalized solutions to all your problems whenever you have one.
What is Userlane bad for?
❌ If you value the visuality of your product, then you will be disappointed to hear that Userlane doesn’t offer the best customization options. The elements are not really customizable, and they don’t offer many templates.
❌ Userlane isn’t the best when it comes to analytics features. If you would like to get the best out of your customers, you will have to use integrations.
❌ But Userlane doesn’t provide enough integration options either. However, if you only use Zendesk, Google Analytics, Hubspot, and Salesforce, well, then you won’t be disappointed.
Userlane offers custom pricing based on your needs and the size of your company, so you’ll need to get a demo to get a quote and give the product a try.
“We are especially enthusiastic about the focus on supporting start-ups in their founding phase. We are benefiting from the idea to help young companies that have not the resources and opportunities to fully support their new customers yet.os.“
” The implementation was at the first time challenging us a bit but not more than the first use of any other tool. After a while, you get used to it and learn how to get the best overview of all functions and possibilities.”
9- Inline Manual vs. Intro.js – an open-source alternative that offers official support
Intro.js is an open-source library for user onboarding that is used by big brands such as Nestle, Amazon, SAP, and more.
You can create product tours and feature introductions using the library.
The good thing about using an open source is that it is affordable, even free, if it is not for commercial use.
The bad thing is… actually, there are two bad things:
- The product requires a developer to function at all times, making it not such a viable option for businesses that need to keep updating their products.
- The onboarding elements are very limited, so any user onboarding designed with Intro.js will not be likely to satisfy every need of a user.
“I really like the Intro.js plugin because documentation is straightforward and easy to understand. This can work in almost any webpage using jQuery as an included library.”
“The library is definitely open source and free software, but at the same time if I want to use it for commercial use it seems I need to pay a license fee. Why is this required if the code is open source?”
10- Inline Manual vs. Crumble – free open-source for technical people
If you have a good technical background and experience in open-source tools, and your expectations from an onboarding tool are not that big, Crumble is the tool to use.
Crumble is a free jquery plugin that helps you create product tours using little bubbles all over your product.
The tool is free to download on public repository on GitHub. If you trust your coding skills and only need little bubbles for minor reasons, Crumble will be a much better alternative than Inline Manual.
Top Inline Manual Alternatives – Comparison Chart
Frequently Asked Questions
Who should use Inline Manual?
Product managers and customer success managers should use Inline Manual to improve their user onboarding.
How much does Inline Manual cost?
For companies below 250 monthly active users, Inline Manual costs $158/month. The essential price increases as the number of monthly active users increase as well.
What are the top alternatives to Inline Manual?
The top 6 Inline Manual alternatives are UserGuiding, WalkMe, Appcues, Pendo, Intro.js, and Crumble.