User onboarding is crucial to the success of a brand. It’s the process where new users get familiar with the product or service and make the key decision on whether or not to trust your brand.

This is a big deal. It’s the point where new users recognize the value of your brand. As such, it can have a huge impact on retention rates, satisfaction, as well as retention.

Hurree links onboarding with six benefits: increased customer loyalty, increased LTV, decreased customer churn, reduced customer issues, better word-of-mouth marketing, and lower acquisition costs. This undoubtedly affects every part of how a business operates and how people respond to it.

In other words, user onboarding determines the fate of a brand.

How do you achieve great onboarding for your brand, then?

There’s no single way to do this, but there are plenty of things that can make it happen for you. Quality user onboarding relies on research and understanding of who your audience is and what they want and need.

Nowadays, there are tons of tools you can use for this, including emails and checklists, tutorials and walkthroughs, surveys, and more. Now you’re probably thinking – this is too much to handle! Implementing these can take forever and become very costly for your brand. You’d be wrong to think this way.

Some tools are so good that they can make the process very simple. We’ve discussed the best of them in this article.

Top tools for user onboarding to use for your business

Best overall: Appcues

Judged by how popular this tool has become in the last couple of years, it comes as no surprise that we’ve placed it at the top of the list. Appcues is an onboarding solution that allows you to track, plan, and implement every part of the process. The best thing about it is that you don’t need any experience with coding to use this tool.

As a matter of fact, Appcues compiled a nice selection of top tools for user onboarding, including not only their own offers but a versatile list of other choices, too. This particular tool allows marketers to use a combination of product tutorials, hotspots, tooltips, slideouts, and modals, all with the goal to promote user engagement and value for their business.

Thanks to a free trial version, everyone can try Appcues free of charge without having to enter a credit card. If you decide to try it out, you can expect various onboarding tools, as well as features like in-app surveys that help with user segmentation.


Basically, you’ll be able to uncover and learn about the needs and demands of your target audience and target them with your onboarding campaign, all with the help of a single tool. This is why Appcues is ranked as ‘best overall’.

This might not be applicable for every company or product but in most cases, users could use some guidance in terms of how your services and products work. While most companies create a nice FAQ section to be done with it, you’ll achieve much better results if you invest some time in this. 

Video walkthroughs can be too lengthy and time-consuming, so they are sometimes unlikely to reach a wide audience. Small tutorials, on the other side, can be very beneficial in providing users with context.

This is where AppCues comes into the picture. If you want to create quality tutorials and guides for your website to assist the onboarding process, this tool can certainly help you achieve it.

AppCues can be used to put tooltips on your website, create in-app alerts, include a full-screen welcome page, and more. If you use its feature to segment users, you can track how your demo walkthrough performs with different groups, and whether or not it is successfully converting customers.

Best email-based: Intercom

Sometimes, you need less than a full on-screen tutorial and more than nothing. Users should know what they can get and where they can find it. This used to be handled with live help and email-based support service. Nowadays, there’s such a thing as email-based onboarding, which is basically more streamlined support mixed with an analytics system.

One excellent tool for email-based onboarding is Intercom. Intercom’s guide on better email creation and higher open rates makes for a truly informative piece, while the tool assists the process tremendously. This tool has many features, one of which is its engagement system. Let’s say that you released a new update of your product and want to tell users that they can download it. You can use the dashboard of this tool and make it immediately visible to users via email or the app.


Another great feature is their user onboarding. To use it, you need to set a goal and scheme the journey for the users. The entire process can be automated and be triggered as soon as a new user signs up on your site.

Best in-product user onboarding: User Guiding

Users need some guidance, something that will tell them what is next and lead to that realization point where they think: “Aha!” User Guiding is a great tool that unifies all the in-product elements that facilitate the onboarding process.

This popular company is focused on offering simple and accessible solutions. User Guiding has created a list of no-code tools, which includes their own creation, meaning that you can use it without any coding experience.


If you opt for this particular tool, you can enjoy features like onboarding checklists, analytics, user guides, segmentation, NPS surveys, and collect customer feedback.

Best for in-app messaging: Chameleon

The majority of well-rated tools for this purpose share one feature: in-app messaging. However, if you want a more advanced system targeted to only apps and developers, Chameleon is it. It offers users in-app messages with analytics, integrations, custom styling, WYSIWYG editing, and much more.

The main use case of Chameleon is onboarding, but you can also use it for gathering customer feedback, upsells, and feature adoption.


Best for user interaction tracking: Hotjar

You can’t just throw things at users and expect them to find the value themselves. As a marketer of your product or service, you need to make the onboarding process clear and pain-free. This means that the journey has to be seamless, clear, and accurate. To achieve this, you should use tools that track the behaviors of users, such as Hotjar.

Hotjar’s article on the importance of user behavior for your site is inspiring, and it tells you all you need to know about this. If you want to better understand what your audience thinks and how they respond to your strategies, this is a great tool to make it simple.

Hotjar uses analytics, recordings, feedback tools, and heatmaps to provide you with an accurate, complete picture of how people are experiencing your service or product. This is an invaluable tool that will help you identify their pain points, as well as come up with great solutions for the onboarding process.


Best for employee performance tracking: Trainual

What if we told you that you can enjoy all the perks of a user manual for your employees, but also track how they interact with it? Employees are key to good company performance and their onboarding process is as important as that of your users. Not to mention, how your employees perform can significantly affect the onboarding of users.

That’s why you need to consider Trainual, a tool that helps you not only train your team but also see where they struggle with the material. You can use it to segment the users and ensure that they get the information they need – nothing more or less.


If you have trouble with onboarding or training, this is an excellent solution for you. It’s a playbook for different processes, roles, and responsibilities, and you can embed any type of content into it. Once you are done, you’ll just need to add your team and track their progress. It will tell you what was completed and at what point, whether or not your team progresses in their training, and even send email reminders for assignments and new documents.

Trainual also has an internal knowledge base that your team can refer to when they get stuck. It is a collaboration tool, which means that they can work together and lend a hand to people who are struggling.

Wrapping up

The user onboarding process is a work in progress. It will require a lot of time, smart strategies, and continuous effort on your behalf. These tools can make the process much easier, but they do not replace your contribution to the user onboarding process.

Knowing this, make sure to choose tools that can strengthen and augment your work on user onboarding, and provide you with accurate and insightful data you can use for better onboarding. Don’t be afraid to spread out your choices – many marketers use several tools such as these to ensure that the users are happy with what they see and get.