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Retool Alternatives: Which Platform to Choose?

Kate Bukhtsinava
Kate Bukhtsinava

Digital Marketing specialist

May 6, 2024

Updated:

May 6, 2024

Retool Alternatives: Which Platform to Choose?

Retool Alternatives: Which Platform to Choose?

Kate Bukhtsinava
Kate Bukhtsinava

Digital Marketing specialist

May 6, 2024

Updated:

May 6, 2024

Retool Alternatives: Which Platform to Choose?

In the search for efficient software development tools, businesses often turn to platforms that can simplify the creation of internal apps. One of the best options is Retool. But there are so many more suitable low-code alternatives on the market. This guide explores some of them – each is designed with specific strengths in mind that fit different business needs.

Top Retool competitors in this guide:

#1. OutSystems

#2. Appian

#3. Mendix

#4. PowerApps

#5. Appsmith

#6. Budibase

#7. JetAdmin

#8. Directual

#9. Draftbit

#10. FlutterFlow

#11. SuperBlocks

---

- Established platforms

#1. OutSystems – For large enterprises needing scalable, full-stack app development

OutSystems
Image: OutSystems

Key Features:

  • OutSystems accelerates app development, similar to Retool, but offers a broader scope including full-stack development.
  • It supports a wide range of integration, including enterprise systems.
  • Ensures all applications are functional and optimized for any device.

Pros:

  • Reduces development timelines, outpacing Retool in environments where full-stack solutions are needed.
  • Manages large-scale deployments more robustly than Retool.
  • Offers a large, active community for support.

Cons:

  • Complex pricing model.
  • Learning curve to fully leverage the platform.
  • Platform-centric development approach.

Pricing:

Free Plan: Offers access to all development features with limitations on deployment and usage.

Developer Cloud: Includes a wide range of professional features with a price from $32,500 per year.

Advanced add-ons: Offers custom set of additional features for any business’ needs.

#2. Appian – For sectors requiring robust process automation

Appian
Image: Appian

Key Features:

  • Appian excels in automating complex business processes.
  • Offers a user-friendly interface for designing and deploying applications, similar to Retool, but with a stronger emphasis on enterprise-level solutions.
  • Provides deep integration capabilities tailored for large-scale systems.
  • Ensures all applications are mobile-responsive.

Pros:

  • Significantly reduces the time to market.
  • Easily integrates with enterprise systems.
  • More adept at scaling to meet enterprise demands.

Cons:

  • Complex pricing structure.
  • Steep learning curve.
  • The customized nature of apps can lead to dependency on the platform.

Pricing:

Free Trial: Offers a free trial to explore the platform's capabilities.

Professional: Custom pricing based on the specific needs and scale of the organization. There are three modes available: Standard, Advanced and Premium.

#3. Mendix – For medium and large enterprises needing comprehensive development with strong collaboration features

Mendix
Image: Mendix

Key Features:

  • Mendix emphasizes agile methodologies, offering tools for project tracking, sprint planning, and feedback management.
  • Features a user-friendly interface that facilitates collaboration between developers and business analysts.
  • Supports seamless application operation across multiple devices with a focus on full application development.
  • Provides out-of-the-box connectors for major systems like SAP and Salesforce.

Pros:

  • Streamlines the prototyping and deployment process.
  • Bridges the IT-business divide.
  • Excellently suited for handling the demands of large organizational structures and complex projects.

Cons:

  • Complexity for small projects.
  • The cost can be significant, especially for small to medium-sized enterprises.
  • Can require a considerable amount of training.

Pricing:

Free Edition: For new users and small teams to explore the platform’s basic capabilities.

Basic Plan: Allows to create simple workgroup applications. Subscription starts at €52,50 per month.

Standard Plan: Designed for professional developers and teams, offering full platform functionality with scalable pricing based on usage. starts at €900 per month.

Premium Plan: Provides custom advanced features, security, and support tailored to large enterprises with specific requirements.

#4. PowerApps – For organizations deeply embedded in the Microsoft ecosystem

PowerApps
Image: PowerApps

Key Features:

  • It seamlessly integrates with the Microsoft ecosystem, including Office 365, Dynamics 365, Azure, and more.
  • Connects to hundreds of external data sources using pre-built connectors, Common Data Service, or custom connectors.
  • Offers a variety of templates and pre-configured components to speed up app development.
  • Supports the creation of custom business logic and workflows without writing extensive code, using the Power Fx formula language.

Pros:

  • Known for its intuitive interface, making it accessible for non-developers.
  • Strong Integration with Microsoft Products.
  • Offers an extensive range of templates and components.

Cons:

  • Dependence on Microsoft Ecosystem.
  • Complexity in more advanced uses.
  • Performance issues with more complex applications, especially on mobile devices.

Pricing:

Developer Plan: Allows to build and test unlimited apps across three environments to experiment before moving to production – all for free.

Power Apps Premium: Enables licensed users to build, modernize, deploy, and run unlimited applications with a subscription fee $20 per month.

---

- Emerging Platforms

#5. Appsmith – For developers seeking a flexible, open-source platform for building custom tools

Appsmith
Image: Appsmith

Key Features:

  • Unlike Retool, Appsmith is completely open-source, which can be a significant advantage for security-conscious teams.
  • It offers extensive customization options for UI components and workflows.
  • The platform supports a wide range of databases and APIs, similar to Retool, but with the added flexibility that open-source provides.
  • Can be self-hosted or used on Appsmith’s cloud, giving teams control over their data.

Pros:

  • No cost to use the core features.
  • Active community.
  • Extensive integrations with major databases and API services.

Cons:

  • The vast range of capabilities may require a learning curve.
  • Enterprises might find the lack of dedicated professional support.

Pricing:

Free: The core platform is free to use, including most features necessary for building and running applications.

Business Plan: For teams seeking more customisation and collaboration, the option requires a subscription that starts at $40 per month.

Enterprise Plan: For large teams with more security, scale, and support needs. To get the price you need to contact sales department.

#6. Budibase – For businesses requiring automated workflows and internal tools

Budibase
Image: Budibase

Key Features:

  • Like Retool, Budibase offers a layer of transparency, but as an open-source platform, it also allows for deeper customization.
  • Thanks to automation capabilities and dynamic data binding options, it offers a simple process of connecting UI components to data sources.
  • Can be self-hosted or used via Budibase’s cloud service, giving users control over their deployment.
  • Comes with a wide range of pre-built components and templates.

Pros:

  • Extensive integration options without premium costs.
  • Cost-effective solutions.

Cons:

  • Limited customization in UI in early stages.
  • Learning curve.

Pricing:

Free: Budibase offers a free tier that includes most features needed for building and managing applications.

Premium Plan: For advanced features and enhanced support, the Premium plan starts at $50 per user per month.

Enterprise Plan: Tailored for large organizations, pricing is available on request.

#7. JetAdmin – For non-developers and companies needing fast setup and deployment of internal tools

JetAdmin
Image: JetAdmin

Key Features:

  • JetAdmin allows you to construct applications and dashboards using a no-code, and drag-and-drop interface.
  • Offers a comprehensive set of ready-to-use components, providing a simpler alternative to Retool's more flexible, code-enhanced customization.
  • Enables instant data updates and display within applications.

Pros:

  • Development is accessible to non-developers.
  • Allows for the rapid creation and deployment of tools.
  • Supports a broad array of data sources and APIs.

Cons:

  • Limited customization.
  • Dependence on pre-built components.

Pricing:

Free Plan: Offers a basic set of features at no cost, suitable for small teams and simple projects.

Starter Plan: Priced at $24 per user per month, designed for professional teams that need more advanced functionalities and support.

Pro Plan: Allows to create custom domains and includes custom code. Starts at $48 per month.

Enterprise Plan: Offers full capabilities including premium support and custom integrations. Price is available on request.

#8. Directual – For developers requiring a platform for complex data management and scalable backend logic

Directual
Image: Diretual / Medium

Key Features:

  • Directual offers data modeling tools that simplify the management of complex data structures, going beyond Retool's database management capabilities.
  • Focuses on building applications with a strong API foundation, ensuring seamless integration with other systems.
  • Allows users to design application logic, workflows, and data interactions without extensive coding, but with a focus on complex backend logic.
  • Supports integration with a wide range of external systems and services.

Pros:

  • Offers greater flexibility in customization compared to Retool.
  • Excellently suited for projects requiring backend solutions.
  • Benefits from an active community and responsive support.

Cons:

  • Might be challenging for newcomers or non-technical users.
  • Setting up complex applications can be time-consuming.

Pricing:

Startup Plan: Ideal for launching an MVP, testing your idea, or building an internal app. Pricing starts at $29 per month.

Pro Plan: For $99 per month you’ll get advanced features for app developing and scaling, including personal on-boarding.

Business Plan: Great for high loaded, business-critical apps, enterprise-ready SLA. The price starts at $300 per month.

#9. Draftbit – For projects focused on mobile-first design and rapid prototyping

Draftbit
Image: Draftbit

Key Features:

  • Draftbit supports a unique blend of no-code and code-centric development, allowing users to switch between visual building and coding.
  • Provides real-time previews across multiple devices, a crucial feature for mobile development.
  • Includes a comprehensive library of pre-built components that can be quickly implemented.
  • Facilitates seamless integration with APIs, databases, and other services.

Pros:

  • Flexibility in design and development.
  • The bi-directional code generation and real-time previews significantly cut down development time and effort.
  • Strong community support and a wealth of educational resources.

Cons:

  • Primarily focused on mobile apps.
  • Learning curve for advanced features.

Pricing:

Free Plan: Allows users to explore the basic features and build apps with some limitations.

Basic Plan: Offers additional features, enough to build a fully functional internal platform. The price begins at $19 per month.

Pro Plan: Starting at $49 per month, this plan includes more integration options, and higher levels of support for professional development teams.

Team Plan: Allows to add collaborators for the project – for $199 per month.

#10. FlutterFlow – For teams looking for quick development cycles and cross-platform compatibility

FlutterFlow
Image: FluterFlow

Key Features:

  • FlutterFlow allows users to visually build apps using Flutter components, enabling native performance across iOS and Android from a single codebase.
  • Offers a live preview feature during the app development process, allowing for real-time adjustments and testing.
  • Supports a wide range of API and database integrations, including Firebase.

Pros:

  • Builds applications that are compatible with both Android and iOS.
  • Makes development accessible to people with limited coding knowledge.
  • Offers access to a growing community and responsive support channels.

Cons:

  • Dependency on Flutter.
  • Limited web support.
  • Early stage platform that is still evolving.

Pricing:

Free Tier: Allows users to explore the basic functionalities with some feature limitations.

Standard Plan: Includes additional features such as code and APK download, custom domain web publishing. The price starts from $30 per month.

Pro Plan: Offers a full access to all the features of the platform for additional $40 per month.

Team Plan: Great for the projects that need collaborative work. Monthly fee – $70.

Enterprise Plan: Optimized for enterprise compliance, security, support and operational integration. The price is available on request.

#11. Superblocks – For medium and large organizations looking to swiftly build and deploy internal tools

Superblocks
Image: Supeblocks

Key Features:

  • Simplifies the development of internal tools, making it accessible even for those with limited coding expertise.
  • Facilitates easy creation and management of APIs, offering capabilities that extend beyond Retool’s primary focus.
  • Provides tools for automating complex workflows.
  • Offers extensive integration options with databases, third-party applications, and internal systems.

Pros:

  • Significantly reduces the time required to develop and deploy tools.
  • Capable of scaling to meet the demands of growing businesses.
  • Offers advanced features, allowing for customizations that go beyond typical no-code limits.

Cons:

  • Being relatively new, there are fewer user reviews and case studies available.
  • The breadth of capabilities and some advanced features may require a learning period.
  • Primarily designed for internal tools and workflows.

Pricing:

Free Tier: Offers basic functionalities suitable for small teams or individual developers.

Pro Plan: For growing businesses managing internal tools across teams. Price starts at $49 per month.

Custom Plan: For businesses with advanced security, management, and support needs. The set of features is tailored to specific business.

---

The bottom line

Choosing the right development platform can make a significant difference in your project's success. That’s why it’s important to look into alternatives to find the right fit.

For larger enterprises, tools like OutSystems and Mendix are ideal due to their robust integration capabilities and extensive customization options. Newer platforms like Appsmith and Budibase might be more suitable for startups and mid-size businesses due to their cost-efficiency and ease of use.

If you're unsure which of Retool competitors can cover your needs, or if you need assistance with development, our team is here to help. We offer expert consultations and development support to ensure you select the best tool for your goals.

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