Pendo vs. Intercom 2024 Comparison – Which tool is better for your business?

Pendo is a great product adoption tool with strong analytics and surveying capabilities. But when it comes to customer support and user engagement, well…

That is where Intercom comes in.

Intercom is an easy-to-use product that provides live chat and onboarding features, but… it can’t help you with analytics as much as Pendo does.

So which one is better for you?

Which one of these tools is the one that is the better fit for your needs and goals?

To help you find an answer to those questions, I will:

  • Introduce Pendo and talk about the tool’s cons and pros,
  • Introduce Intercom and talk about the tool’s cons and pros,
  • Compare those tools side-by-side for you to have a better overview.

And also, if you want to skip all of those, you can benefit from this quick table:

TL;DR – Side-By-Side Comparison Table

Starting Price$1000/month$74/month
G2 Rating4.4⭐4.5⭐
Interactive WalkthroughsAdd-on $199/month
TooltipsIncluded in the add-on above
HotspotsIncluded in the add-on above
Onboarding ChecklistsIncluded in the add-on above
Announcement Modals/BannersIncluded in the add-on above
NPS Surveys
In-Product SurveysAdd-on $49/month
In-App Resource Center
Avg. Deployment Time≈ 1 Week3-5 Days
User Segmentation
User Analytics
Multi-Language Support
User Tracking
Knowledge Base IntegrationOnly Available For Pro Plans
Product Analytics
Custom Dashboards
Learning Curve😟 Steeper😐 Steep

What is Pendo?

Pendo is a robust product analytics and user engagement platform businesses use to build better products.

what is pendo

You can onboard users, introduce new features, survey users, gather feedback, and prepare a product roadmap with Pendo.

Although it is a great product that solves multiple problems at once, Pendo users usually complain that it takes them more than a few days to figure out how they can use the product.

It is definitely an amazing tool to add to your toolkit, but you might still have to find different solutions to provide engagement features such as resource centers.

Pros 🤩 Pendo is 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.

Cons 😮‍💨 Pendo isn’t good 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 Pricing

Pendo has a free plan called “Pendo Free“ for up to 1,000 monthly active users, one web and one mobile app.

For bigger plans, Pendo doesn’t have a set pricing.

Instead, you can get a custom plan for your business by contacting their sales team.

However, a former Pendo user claimed that they are a medium-sized business that paid $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 – which is included in the free plan for up to 1,000 MAU

Pendo’s pricing is feature and usage-based, and it possibly scales with how many users you have, like other analytics tools.

What is Intercom?

Intercom is a widely known and capable customer service tool providing many features and leveraging customer satisfaction.

The tool also has a G2 rating of 4.4 and is trusted by giant companies such as Amazon, Facebook, Shopify, and Microsoft.

While the tool is known mostly as chat software, there is more than that to Intercom. It is a full package for almost any customer support team with features such as:

  • Business Messenger,
  • Customizable Bots and Automation,
  • Product Tours,
  • And Help Center Articles.

Pros 🤩 Intercom is good for:

✅ Intercom is a good choice for people who need an all-in-one tool to analyze, engage, and guide users.

✅ The tool’s starter plan is fairly priced, and it is a good choice for newly established businesses with fewer users.

✅ Intercom’s live-chat feature and chatbots are definitely top-tier and useful for businesses that need to provide support to users as quickly as possible.

Cons 😮‍💨 Intercom isn’t good for:

❌ Although Intercom is fairly priced for starter-level companies, the pricing becomes unbearable very quickly. Most companies complain about how Intercom finds ways to charge users more and more each passing day.

❌ Intercom’s live chat feature simply rocks, but the onboarding feature is limited to tooltips only, which is not enough to create a fully-cooked onboarding sequence.

❌ Intercom helps you provide better support to your customers, but their own customer support is horrible since they usually respond late and can’t come up with quick solutions.

❌ Intercom isn’t a data tool, and the analytics and data they provide are very limited. Therefore, you will have to adopt a second tool for analytics—such as Google Analytics—to handle the data part for you.

Intercom Pricing

According to user comments on Reddit and HelpCrunch, Intercom’s pricing can range between $74/month (only for newly established companies with under 5 employees) and $999/month. Also, some features are billed separately and cost an additional monthly fee.

  • Starter Plan: $74/month for small businesses
    • Product Tours Add-On: $199/month
    • WhatsApp Add-On: $9/user
    • Surveys Add-On: $49/month
  • Support Plan: Custom quotation upon request
  • Engage Plan: Custom quotation upon request
  • Convert Plan: Custom quotation upon request

How about having the best of both? 😎

Way too many products hide their pricing like it’s a big secret nowadays, and honestly, even before.

What difference does doing that make, I couldn’t tell.

best of both


But I know a different user onboarding tool that can make a huge difference in your onboarding flows – and budget.

UserGuiding is an (absolutely) no-code digital adoption tool that’s easy to use, geared up for effective onboarding for both customers and employees, and budget-friendly.

Some of UserGuiding’s features are:

✅ Interactive guides and product tours,

✅ Tooltips, checklists, hotspots, and other onboarding elements, 

✅ Powerful analytics,

✅ User segmentation and targeting,

✅ Resource centers, 

✅ NPS survey, and more!

Don’t want to pay thousands of dollars for a product you cannot use effectively? You know where to go.

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:

Don’t Pay a Fortune for Other Tools!

Don’t Pay a Fortune for Other Tools!

UserGuiding starts from only $89/month.
Create tours, tooltips, and surveys without coding

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Intercom vs Pendo

Even though Intercom isn’t only an onboarding product, the onboarding feature is much easier to use and well-designed than Pendo’s.Onboarding
⬅️ 🤩
Pendo mainly focuses on data and feedback collection, so it doesn’t have a complete set of onboarding features.
Intercom makes data collection easy, but if you need in-depth analysis and better segmentation, Pendo will be a better choice.Analytics
🤩 ➡️
As a digital adoption tool, Pendo rocks it when it comes to analytics. If you can afford the bigger plans, Pendo definitely gets this one.
Intercom is a complete user engagement platform, so it is not a surprise that their surveying and user feedback options are more comprehensive and higher-rated on G2, compared to Pendo.Surveying
⬅️ 🤩
Pendo provides a variety of surveys that can be customized for each need. However, Intercom provides more comprehensive stack of surveying types and automations.
The enterprise plan of Intercom is only as expensive as Pendo, but since Intercom’s starting price is quite reasonable, it would be fair to say that Intercom is cheaper.⬅️ 🤩Although Pendo does have a freemium price, it is very limited and insufficient. The actual pricing starts from $1000/month, without most features.
Ease Of Use
Intercom is surprisingly easier to use than most other engagement tools and platforms on the market. The integration process will take some time, but after you get through it, Intercom could even become your best friend for customer experience.⬅️ 🤩Pendo is a mostly no-code tool, but it still takes lots of technical knowledge to integrate the tool and customize it to your liking. The tool itself has a steep learning curve, and will take an employee dedicated to Pendo only.
Simple, Affordable, and Powerful User Onboarding & Survey Software.

Simple, Affordable, and Powerful User Onboarding & Survey Software.

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Ready to Boost Product Adoption, Without any Coding

Ready to Boost Product Adoption, Without any Coding

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Hilal Çökeli

Hilal Çökeli

I’m UserGuiding’s growth-obsessed product marketer. I like to research and write about product, onboarding, and inbound marketing. If you feel like we could exchange ideas, feel free to reach out via LinkedIn or email! P.S. If I don’t respond, please know that I’m on a road trip with my camera and motorbike.