10 Best Microsoft Visio Alternatives and Competitors

Discover the top 10 Microsoft Visio alternatives and competitors for your diagramming needs. Make informed choices for 2023 and beyond.

This article has curated a list of the top 10 alternatives to Microsoft Visio that will meet your diagramming needs and more. Whether you are a professional designer, engineer, project manager, or someone needing to create visual representations, these alternatives have covered you.

Read on to discover a variety of Microsoft Visio alternatives that will save you time and frustration. Say goodbye to compatibility issues or budget constraints, as these alternatives offer a range of affordable and user-friendly options suitable for all levels of expertise. 

Don't miss out on finding the perfect tool for your diagramming endeavors.

10 Best Microsoft Visio Alternatives and Competitors

Table of Contents

  1. Features to Consider in a Microsoft Visio Alternative
  2. TrulyOffice
  3. Lucidchart 
  4. Creately
  5. Nulab
  6. Miro
  7. Draw.io (Now known as Diagrams.net)
  8. Final Thoughts

Features to Consider in a Microsoft Visio Alternative

When searching for a Microsoft Visio alternative, there are essential features to consider to ensure you find the right fit for your needs. Here are some key factors to look for:

  • Intuitive User Interface: Look for software with a user-friendly interface that allows you to quickly access the functions you need, especially if you are familiar with and enjoy the experience of using Microsoft Visio.
  • Diagramming and Mind Mapping Capabilities: Ensure the alternative offers the complexity and customization options required for your specific use case, whether creating flowcharts, organizational charts, or mind maps.
  • Data Sources Integration: Check if the software can effortlessly pull data from spreadsheets and business intelligence tools, streamlining your workflow. Also, consider whether it allows for the import of Visio files for a smooth transition.
  • Real-Time Collaboration: Look for software that enables real-time collaboration, allowing you and your teammates to edit and comment on the same project simultaneously, facilitating efficient teamwork.
  • Price and Affordability: Consider your budget and check if the alternative offers a free version or if you can afford to pay for additional features.

TrulyOffice

TrulyOffice is a new office software suite that offers seamless integration into your daily life, enabling enhanced productivity and efficiency. It stands out as an all-in-one solution that combines the functionality of Microsoft 365 and PDF tools. 

TrulyOffice

The suite is designed with customization in mind, catering to the unique needs of your business. Whether you're on a train, in a coffee shop, or at the office, TrulyOffice allows you to access all your documents from various common devices such as PC, tablet, and mobile, along with support for multiple operating systems like Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, as well as the Web.

Key Features:

  • Word: The word processing feature has advanced capabilities for creating and editing documents.
  • Sheets: You can work with spreadsheets equipped with built-in formulas and charts.
  • Slides: The presentation software offers customizable templates for creating impactful presentations.
  • PDF: TrulyOffice enables editing, conversion, signing, and other actions on PDF documents.
  • Email inbox: The suite also includes an integrated email inbox.
  • Devices and OS: You can use TrulyOffice on various devices, including PC, tablet, and mobile, and it supports operating systems like Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS.
  • Storage: Truly Office Drive ensures easy access to all your files through a cloud interface.

TrulyOffice brings enhanced compatibility and accessibility to your work, allowing you to edit various document formats and access them from anywhere, making it a versatile and convenient choice for businesses and individuals.

Lucidchart 

Lucidchart is a versatile workspace designed for visualization, diagramming, and virtual whiteboarding, making it ideal for projects of varying complexities, from UML diagrams to business process maps and code visualizations. The platform is widely adopted, with approximately 99% of Fortune 500 companies using it, making it a top choice for enterprises with heightened usage and security needs seeking a Microsoft Visio alternative.

Lucidchart

Key Features:

  • Automation: Lucidchart offers automation for various diagramming tasks, including org charts, mind maps, UML sequence diagrams, and data linking, streamlining the creation process.
  • Offline Access: Users can create and edit diagrams even when offline, ensuring continuous productivity.
  • Integration: Lucidchart seamlessly integrates with Google Workspace, Salesforce, Bamboo HR, and other data sources, enabling easy access to relevant information.
  • Whiteboard Export: Users can export boards from the Lucidspark whiteboard to quickly create diagrams on Lucidchart.

Limitations:

  • Image Insertion: Some users report lag when inserting high-quality images into their diagrams.
  • Learning Curve: First-time users might find Lucidchart confusing initially, due to its vast range of features and functionalities.
  • Custom Icons: Custom icons in Lucidchart may not always behave the same way as default elements, causing minor inconveniences.

Pricing:

Lucidchart offers a free plan and tiered paid plans, starting at $7.95/month for individual users, $9/month per user for teams, and enterprise plans available upon contacting the company.

Creately

Creately is a user-friendly diagramming tool that simplifies the creation of visuals such as mockups, organizational charts, and process maps. Users can choose from various templates or start from a blank canvas for freeform diagramming.

Creately

The platform's interface welcomes those new to diagramming software or who find Microsoft Visio challenging.

Key Features:

  • Data Linking and Syncing: Creately allows users to link and sync data from external sources, ensuring that any changes to the data are automatically reflected in their visualizations.
  • Task and Context Management: Users can add tasks, notes, and metadata to any visual object in their diagrams, streamlining project management.
  • Personal Task View: Creately provides a view of tasks assigned to the user across all workflows and diagrams, aiding in task organization.
  • In-App Conferencing: The platform offers in-app conferencing features, simplifying communication and collaboration among team members.

Limitations:

  • User Interface: The drag-and-drop user interface in Creately can sometimes be buggy, resulting in objects not responding as intended.
  • Saving Errors: Users may encounter occasional saving errors when working on their diagrams.
  • Performance: Creately might experience slowness when loading large, complex diagrams with numerous objects.

Pricing:

Creately offers a free version and tiered paid plans, including Starter at $5/month per user, Business at $89/month for unlimited users, and an Enterprise plan with pricing available upon contacting the company.

Nulab

Nulab is a comprehensive collaboration suite that offers integrated tools for project management, online meetings, and diagram creation. One of its standout tools is Cacoo, a diagramming tool that allows multiple users to collaborate on the same project simultaneously, communicating through in-app video and chat.

Nulab

Cacoo's real-time collaboration, version history, and exporting options make it a compelling alternative to Microsoft Visio, especially for virtual teams engaged in occasional visualization projects.

Key Features:

    • Real-Time Collaboration: Cacoo enables multi-user editing, commenting, and revision tracking, facilitating seamless teamwork on diagrams.
    • Version History: Users can access a complete version history of their diagrams, allowing them to compare changes over time.
    • Exporting and Sharing: Cacoo offers numerous exporting and sharing options, and users can also embed diagrams into content, such as company wikis, through integrations.
  • Limitations:
  • Grouping Items: The process for grouping items in Cacoo lacks straightforward simplicity and requires improvement.
  • Connector Flexibility: Some users find Cacoo's connector flexibility to be limited compared to other diagramming tools.
  • Occasional Lag: The software may experience occasional lagging, which can be a minor inconvenience during usage.

Pricing:

Nulab's Cacoo offers a free version and two paid plans, Pro at $6/month for one user, and Team at $6/user per month, making it an affordable option for teams seeking efficient and collaborative diagramming capabilities.

Miro

Miro is a widely-used whiteboarding tool with more than 45 million global users. It is a popular alternative to Microsoft Visio, particularly favored by marketing, UX, engineering, Agile, and product management teams for brainstorming and visualizing connections between ideas.

Miro

Miro boasts a straightforward interface with a minimal learning curve, making it easy for all team members to use.

Key Features:

  • Workshop Facilitation: Miro offers features like an infinite whiteboard, video calls, timer, and voting system, making it great for running workshops and collaborative sessions.
  • Versatility in Content: Users can work with various content types, including text, post-it notes, documents, images, videos, and tagged comments, facilitating a dynamic and engaging collaboration environment.
  • Integrations: Miro supports over 100 integrations with popular tools such as Zoom, Google Workspace, Jira, and Notion, enhancing workflow and connectivity.

Limitations:

  • Performance Lag: Miro can experience some lagging issues when multiple users work on the same canvas.
  • Overwhelming Features: The wide range of features may overwhelm new users, initially making the user interface feel cluttered.
  • Limited Template Customization: While Miro offers numerous templates, users have limited customization options for their specific needs.

Pricing:

Miro provides a free version and three paid plans: Starter at $8/month per user, Business at $16/month per user, and an Enterprise plan with pricing available upon contacting the company.

Draw.io (Now known as Diagrams.net)

Draw.io, now known as Diagrams.net, is popular among highly technical users due to its robust support for complex diagrams and flowcharts. Being an open-source software, it offers the advantage of customization, allowing users to tailor it to their specific needs and integrate it seamlessly into various platforms.

Draw.io

Moreover, Diagrams.net is a completely free alternative to Microsoft Visio, making it an attractive option for users seeking cost-effective diagramming solutions.

Key Features:

  • Data Storage Flexibility: Diagrams.net allows users to store their data on their local device, GitHub, GitLab, or cloud storage platforms, offering flexibility and security in data management.
  • Multi-Platform Editing: Users can create and edit diagrams using the web app, offline (available for Windows, Mac, or Linux), or on third-party platforms like Atlassian, Notion, or Google Workspace.
  • Extensive Plugins: Diagrams.net offers various plugins, including a custom sidebar, voice assistant, animation, and more, enhancing the software's functionality and user experience.
  • Easy Embedding and Importing: The software allows effortless embedding and importing of various file types and elements, including iframe, HTML, SVG, Lucidchart files, Griffey files, and PNG.

Limitations:

  • Large Design Load Issues: Some users report difficulties with large designs not loading correctly, resulting in overlapping elements.
  • Alignment Issues in PDF Export: Users may encounter alignment issues when exporting large diagrams as PDFs.
  • Limited Line Customization: Diagrams.net provides limited options for customizing line designs, such as style and thickness, which may be a drawback for users seeking extensive customization.

Diagrams.net (formerly Draw.io) offers a powerful and free alternative to Microsoft Visio, catering to the needs of technical users and teams dealing with complex diagramming tasks. Its open-source nature, versatility in platform integration, and diverse features make it a compelling choice for those seeking an efficient and customizable diagramming tool.

EDrawMax 

EDrawMax is a user-friendly software that enables you to easily craft diagrams, flowcharts, floor plans, and more. Designed for simplicity, the interface helps you quickly locate the necessary tools. 

It's available for individual use as a standalone tool or bundled with dedicated mind mapping and Gantt chart apps.

Key Features:

  • Lifetime Use: EDrawMax is currently offered for download with a one-time payment, and though they're shifting to a subscription model, the option for lifetime use is a plus.
  • Variety of Templates: The software has various templates catering to diverse business, technical, and design needs.
  • Cross-Platform Compatibility: Downloadable versions are available for Windows, macOS, and Linux, offering flexibility across different operating systems.

Limitations:

  • Payment Options: While there's a choice for an annual plan, a monthly payment option is lacking.
  • Customer Service: Some users mention that customer service response times could be improved.
  • Learning Curve: Beginners and non-technical users might find it overwhelming initially.

Pricing:

  • For Individuals:

Free trial

Annual Plan: $8.25/month (billed annually)

Lifetime Plan: $198 one-time payment

  • For Businesses:

Team Annual Plan: $8.43/user per month (billed annually)

Business Plan: Contact for pricing

EDrawMax offers an accessible solution for creating visuals, but its upcoming subscription model change and the range of templates make it a tool worth considering.

SmartDraw

SmartDraw emerges as an excellent Microsoft Visio alternative, particularly well-suited for large enterprises. This versatile design software simplifies document processing, strategic planning, and project management tasks. 

Its user-friendly interface sets it apart from competitors, offering a range of templates and symbols for various design needs.

Key Features:

  • Extensive Templates and Symbols: SmartDraw boasts an array of templates and symbols that facilitate effortless design, making it suitable for creating flowcharts, organization charts, project visuals, and more.
  • Integration and File Sharing: It seamlessly integrates with software like Word and PowerPoint and supports collaborative file sharing, enhancing team productivity.
  • Automation and Advanced Administration: SmartDraw excels in automating drawing processes and offers advanced administrative capabilities, streamlining complex tasks.

Verdict:

SmartDraw's ability to replace Microsoft Visio and its mobile and cross-platform compatibility (Windows or MAC) make it a compelling choice. The software's broad range of inbuilt content and automated drawing procedures enhance its appeal.

Pricing:

SmartDraw offers a 7-day free trial and paid plans:

  • Single User: $297 per month for individual use
  • Multiple User: $595 per month for teams of 5 or more users

Though SmartDraw's pricing may be higher, its extensive features and compatibility with large enterprise requirements make it a robust solution for businesses seeking a user-friendly alternative to Visio.

Gliffy

Gliffy stands out as a native diagramming application tailored for Atlassian's Confluence and Jira users. For those immersed in Atlassian's ecosystem, Gliffy eliminates the need to switch between different software to create or modify network diagrams, user flows, wireframes, and more, resulting in a smoother and more efficient workflow.

Key Features:

  • Integration with Atlassian Apps: Gliffy seamlessly integrates within Confluence and Jira, allowing users to create interactive diagrams directly within the familiar interface.
  • Linked and Synced Diagrams: Updates to a diagram are automatically reflected across all linked duplicates and embedded versions, ensuring consistency.
  • Searchable Text: All text within diagrams is fully searchable within Confluence/Jira, enhancing accessibility.
  • Security and Access Management: Gliffy offers advanced security features, ensuring data protection and controlled access.

Limitations:

  • Performance with Large Diagrams: Occasional lags and errors may arise when working with intricate or sizable diagrams.
  • Lack of Mobile Apps: Gliffy lacks dedicated mobile apps, potentially limiting flexibility.
  • Large Graph Presentations: The software might experience slowdowns when presenting extensive, detailed graphs.

Pricing:

Gliffy for Confluence and Jira:

Free trial available

Teams of 1-10 users: $10/month flat fee

Tiered pricing for more users, starting at $3.80/month per user for 11-100 users

Teams of >100 users: Contact for pricing

Gliffy Online:

Free trial available

Professional (1-9 users): $10/month per user

Professional (10-50 users): $8/month per user

Enterprise: Contact for pricing

Gliffy streamlines diagramming for Atlassian enthusiasts, offering a harmonious blend of integration, efficiency, and collaborative capabilities within the Confluence and Jira platforms.

Pencil Project

Pencil Project offers a versatile and open-source alternative to Microsoft Visio, making it an excellent choice for small businesses. This tool stands out for its compatibility across Linux, Windows, and Mac platforms, catering to users' preferences.

Key Features:

  • New Tools and Stencil Work: Pencil Project presents a range of tools and stencils for enhanced diagram creation.
  • Professional Diagramming: It supports professional-grade diagramming, accommodating both new users and experienced diagramming professionals.
  • Multi-Project Assistance: Pencil Project aids in managing multiple projects simultaneously, streamlining workflow.
  • OpenClipart.org Integration: The tool integrates OpenClipart.org, enabling users to source images and elements from various websites.

Verdict:

Pencil Project is a captivating open-source solution that mirrors the capabilities of Visio, serving as an ideal platform for exploring diverse dimensions of diagramming. Particularly well-suited for small enterprises, Pencil Project offers creative tools and design options without cost.

Pricing:

Pencil Project is free to use, eliminating any financial barrier and making it a budget-friendly choice for small businesses seeking robust diagramming capabilities.

Coggle

Coggle, a user-friendly mind-mapping tool, provides a valuable alternative to Microsoft Visio, especially for brainstorming and visualizing ideas. Coggle offers a seamless transition if you primarily use Visio for creativity and strategy visualization.

Key Features:

  • Flow Visualization: Coggle allows linking multiple diagrams, facilitating easy comprehension of concept flow.
  • Flexible Annotations: Annotate diagrams with floating text and images beyond the diagram tree.
  • Version Tracking: Every change is saved and tracked, enabling swift reversion to prior diagram versions.
  • User-Friendly: Coggle's intuitive interface makes it more accessible than other Visio alternatives.

Limitations:

  • Sign-In Options: Coggle supports Sign in with Apple, Google, or Microsoft Account, which enhances security but limits sign-in choices.
  • Design Limitations: Shape, line, font, and branch color choices are relatively limited.
  • Public Diagrams: Free plans result in public and searchable diagrams, potentially affecting privacy.

Pricing:

Coggle offers a range of pricing tiers:

Free plan available

  • Awesome: $5/month
  • Organization: $8/month per user
  • Enterprise: Contact for pricing

While unsuitable for complex technical tasks, Coggle excels in its simplicity and efficacy for brainstorming and idea visualization, making it a valuable choice for individuals and teams seeking an uncomplicated Visio alternative.

FAQs

What can I use instead of Microsoft Visio?

There are several alternatives to Microsoft Visio, such as Lucidchart, Draw.io, Gliffy, and Creately.

Is Lucidchart better than Visio?

The superiority of Lucidchart over Visio depends on individual preferences and needs, as both tools offer unique features and capabilities.

Is Visio still the best?

Visio remains a popular choice for diagramming, but the "best" tool varies based on user requirements and familiarity with the software.

Is Microsoft discontinuing Visio?

As of my last update in September 2021, there was no official announcement regarding Microsoft discontinuing Visio.

What is the Google equivalent of Visio?

Google has a diagramming tool called "Google Drawings," the closest equivalent to Microsoft Visio in the Google Workspace suite.

Final Thoughts

Exploring the top 10 Microsoft Visio alternatives and competitors reveals a diverse range of powerful diagramming and visualization tools available to users. Each alternative offers unique features, integrations, and pricing plans, catering to various needs and preferences. 

From cloud-based solutions like Lucidchart and Creately to versatile collaboration platforms like Miro and Cacoo, the options provide a wealth of possibilities for enhancing productivity and team collaboration. Whether users seek simplicity, compatibility, or specific functionalities, these alternatives showcase the ever-evolving landscape of diagramming software, offering viable alternatives to Microsoft Visio for users across different industries and domains.

One more thing

If you have a second, please share this article on your socials; someone else may benefit too. 

Subscribe to our newsletter and be the first to read our future articles, reviews, and blog post in your email inbox. We also offer deals, promotions, and updates on our products and share them via email. You won’t miss one.

Related articles 

» Top 6 Great Tools for Online Retailers to Grow Their Business Fast
» Essential Excel Functions: Top 10 Most Important Excel Functions
» Top 10 Best Free Logo Makers in 2023