Software development is a lot easier today than ever before thanks to numerous technologies. One such tool is Retool, an internal code builder that streamlines the process so technical teams don’t have to develop everything from scratch.
Besides Retool, we also have other tools that are similar and even better. Among the more popular ones are Internal.io, Jet Admin, UI Bakery, DronaHQ and others. Though the best Retool alternative is Softr. One doesn’t need any coding knowledge to get started with Softr. It’s easy, secure and offers an impressive library of templates and other resources.
Why discover alternatives to Retool?
Though Retool comes with many benefits including a drag-and-drop user interface, a well-curated library of templates, and the ability to connect third-party apps and services using APIs.
However, the platform is targeted at developers and technical teams, which means that you need a fair bit of tech knowledge to use it, including database understanding, REST API coding, SQL, and JSON. Also, Retool has limited frontend and responsive features.
For these and other reasons, you might be better off with one of the software’s many alternatives.
In this guide, I present a list of alternatives to choose from so you can build internal tools more effortlessly. Without further ado, let’s get right to it.
Best Retool Alternatives
Softr is an all-around tool for building powerful internal tools with no coding knowledge. It’s simple to use and needs limited effort and investment.
While Retool is aimed specifically at developers, Softr’s intuitive drag-and-drop builder makes it ideally suited to non-technical SMBs.
The internal tool builder comes with an intuitive, user-friendly interface that is easy to navigate, even for complete beginners.
There is a well-stocked library of ready-made templates, including some internal tools. From sales CRM portals to employee directories, editorial calendars, events planning, and more – you can create any type of internal tool you want.
All templates are beautiful and feature-rich. They do the heavy lifting so you don’t have to worry about much of the technical work. Instead, you can focus on your workflow and on making your business processes more efficient.
Unlike most other solutions, Softr uses server-side authentication to keep your internal data secure. Also, it’s powered by AWS for top-level performance and scalability. You are guaranteed a high uptime to ensure maximum availability.
You can sign up for free on the website to test out the software and see if it meets your needs.
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As the name implies, Internal is highly focused on internal tools. The platform is ideal for very specific internal tools use cases and can be used for everything from workflows to automations.
All you have to do to get started building your custom internal app is connect a database, Google Sheet, or API. You won’t have to start from scratch thanks to the pre-built templates.
Use the simple drag-and-drop builder to accelerate your process. You can also supercharge your teamwork by automating each step of your workflow. Chain together database queries, API calls, custom logic, etc. to create a multi-step workflow.
The simplicity and flexibility of this tool ensures that non-technical teams like Ops and PMs can take part in the creation of internal tools, not just engineering teams.
All in all, this is a powerful tool that makes it easy to build internal tools quickly and easily, without the need for developers.
Unlike Retool, Internal does not have a steep learning curve or lengthy technical setup. Also, it doesn’t come with limited permission controls. It’s faster and easier that is powerful enough for developers, yet designed for everyone.
3. Jet Admin
This is another Retool alternative that helps businesses build custom apps quicker and without design or coding skills.
Jet Admin’s main focus is on providing a wide range of data connectors for distributed data sources. The platform comes with the ability to connect to many data sources and is best for cross-functional teams.
In essence, the software allows users to create dashboards, charts, and other types of front-end interfaces with data imported from different tools and sources.
With Jet Admin, you can connect to multiple sources from FireBase to MySQL to Google Sheets, Slack, Sendgrid, PostgreSQL, and more.
The platform’s drag-and-drop interface makes it easy for non-tech-savvy users to create their own internal tools or customer/partner apps by simply combining different UI components to get the desired functionality.
There’s also a range of pre-built modules that you can use so you don’t have to start from scratch. If you need assistance at any step along the way, Jet Admin offers 24/7 live chat support – which is a feature you won’t find on Retool.
There is a free, albeit limited plan, and all premium plans come with a free trial so you can test out the software before you commit.
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4. UI Bakery
UI Bakery’s most acclaimed feature is the suite of UI elements that include templates, widgets, and libraries. The low-code platform is perfect for UI-focused teams that want to build apps faster.
There are dozens of ready-made templates for everything from CRM and admin panel to support tools, eCommerce dashboards, approval apps, and more. This means you never have to develop from scratch. Simply connect data sources and customize any template to meet your needs.
In addition to the templates, there is also a huge library of widgets that you can use. The platform offers great customer support, and you can get help anytime via the 24/7 live chat on the website.
Also, the platform provides a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editor for adding components to the interface as opposed to Retool’s less visual way of adding components to the workspace.
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Built for developers, by developers, this software is a no-code solution that allows you to build internal tools faster.
The platform has advanced mobile responsiveness capabilities, making it ideal for building responsive web apps. You can also build digital journeys and operational apps using any API or data source.
The easy-to-use UI builder lets you drag and drop different elements to create pixel-perfect internal tools and apps.
You get responsive layouts and a huge list of powerful controls to assemble beautiful interfaces in just minutes.
Unlike Retool, there is absolutely no need to tackle code when creating front-end designs. If you can use a mouse to point and click, then you can create different types of screens for defining user navigations and configure responsive layouts with the exact type of functionality you require.
You can try the software for free by signing up on the website. Alternatively, you can schedule a demo, and the platform’s experts will get in touch to show you how to leverage this powerful software in your business.
OutSystems is a powerful low-code platform that’s built for high performance. It comes with features to radically accelerate developer productivity and promote elite-level CI/CD.
This is a great platform to empower teams to deliver complex, unique, and high-value apps fast. You can go from dev to deploy in minutes.
One of the most unique features of the platform is the one-click publish feature which allows you to quickly transform backlogs into different apps for multiple use cases.
There’s also an AI-based dependency analysis feature and automated application lifecycle management. All of these work together to help you deploy apps in minutes, as opposed to days.
Compared to Retool, the OutSystems setup is extremely easy and only takes a few minutes. The platform also has more robust data security, data synchronization, and data migration features.
You can try the platform for free by signing up on the website. This is a great way for you to test out its core features to determine if it’s a great fit for your business.
Mendix is another popular low-code tool that makes a great alternative to Retool. It has enterprise-grade features and use cases that are well-suited to larger companies and enterprises.
It’s perfect for non-technical individuals or teams that need to build web apps without code. One outstanding feature of this platform is that it allows you to deliver compelling customer experiences across all of your digital touchpoints.
For instance, you can create customer portals, responsive web experiences, IoT-connected apps, and native mobile apps to enhance the customer experience without having to hire expensive developers.
Mendix also has end-to-end automation which allows you to digitize all the processes in your entire workflow.
Mendix has more robust project management features than Retool. If you have a larger team with more advanced requirements, then this is an ideal solution that will cover most enterprise-level use cases, from legacy modernization to process automation, and more.
The bottom line is that this is a great tool for businesses in all industries, including financial services, insurance, manufacturing, retail, and the public sector.
Whether you’re looking to automate processes or implement digital transformation in your organization, you’ll find that this platform can help you create the right solutions to meet your needs.
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Appsmith is a powerful tool that lets you easily connect to popular APIs and databases to build your internal tools up to 10X faster.
It comes with ready-made React-powered widgets that you can use to quickly build UI with no tech knowledge required.
This flexible platform allows you to build internal tools without code, which makes it a valuable asset for collaborating effectively across the entire organization. This means more people can contribute toward the success of your next project.
The software has a lot of use cases within an organization. For instance, product managers can create a library of helpful user feedback sessions. HR can sort candidates in the recruitment funnel, and salespeople can use a CRM to track prospective clients.
All of these things and more are possible when using this tool and you can use it to adopt a platform that is better suited to your particular team.
Compared to Retool, a SaaS (software as a service), Appsmith offers you more flexibility since it’s FOSS (free and open-source software).
It’s a great tool for tech companies because you can customize it to make it work exactly the way you want. It ensures that you can deploy reliably and share with end users securely.
Appian is a platform that works to automate business processes quickly and easily. It comes with everything required to design, automate, and optimize every aspect of your business, from data fabric and process automation to customer experience, process mining, and much more.
You can unify data across systems to create powerful applications. Automate any of your processes with unified workflow, RPA, IDP, AI, and APA integrations.
Create engaging internal and external processes to enhance user experience across web and mobile. You can even use the platform to discover process inefficiencies so you can optimize your business outcomes.
While Retool is only designed for Windows, you can use Appian on both Windows and Mac OS. If you want to unleash digital innovation in your organization, then this is a great solution to consider.
It comes with tools to help you drive efficiency, and connect everyone and everything, including customers, employees, partners (and even systems) in end-to-end processes.
Like most other software providers, Appian lets you start for free. Simply sign up on the website using your email, and you can get started right away using this platform for quick and easy process automation.
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Budibase is another great alternative to Retool. It’s an all-in-one low-code platform that will help you build and design apps that you’re proud of.
This modern, open-source platform comes with features to help you move forward, faster. You can either start from scratch with the platform’s built-in database or connect to an external database to create your internal app.
Compared to Retool, Budibase supports more databases, including MySQL, PostgreSQL, Oracledb, Airtable, MongoDB, Snowflake, Google Sheets, Rest APIs, and many more.
All apps are 100% customizable and responsive by default. You can easily automate workflows with just a few clicks.
Simplify all your manual processes and streamline business operations with over 20 automation blocks, including Slack notifications, webhooks, CRON, and more.
The platform also allows you to run automations on a schedule. You can create predefined or custom schedules according to your specific needs. This way, you’ll be able to build apps, forms, workflows, etc. to perfectly fit your business without having to spend money on expensive developers.
The platform lets you get started for free and offers fair, scalable pricing for individuals and teams of all sizes.
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UiPath helps to streamline your processes, provide insights, and uncover inefficiencies in your business processes. It helps companies implement fast and cost-effective digital transformation.
You’ll be able to save time and effort by leveraging existing systems to minimize disruption. Use the platform to improve customer experiences, ensure compliance, and elevate employee experience.
For example, you can automate business tasks so your team has more free time to spend on higher-return work. The platform has over 200 ready-made components that you can use so you don’t have to create your own from scratch.
With this platform, you can create robots to handle repetitive or mundane tasks, leaving your team free to deliver extra service to high-level customers. You can boost efficiency and productivity by standardizing processes across your entire organization.
While Retool is considered by many to be the fastest way to create apps on any data source, UiPath does the same thing but it is a lot easier to set up and use. This makes it the better choice for non-technical users who want an easy way to streamline development.
Airtable is a powerful platform for building collaborative apps. It’s another low-code alternative to Retool with the tools to create apps that perfectly fit your business needs.
Anyone can quickly create simple solutions for any need. There is no need to start from scratch, either. You’ll find dozens of predesigned templates for the most popular use cases.
You can customize your workflow and collaborate easily across the entire organization. Perfect for teams with ambitious outcomes, the software comes has an intuitive interface and features to connect everything – data, teams, workflows, etc.
With it, you can accelerate your work and unlock your business’s true potential through the power of unique apps that mirror your business.
For example, you can create custom interfaces to give each team member relevant information and a simple way to take action. This will save time rather than having people sift through cluttered dashboards to find the information they need before they can take action.
Airtable is extremely easy to use. Working with the software is like editing a spreadsheet. Also, the platform is backed by a full database, which means it offers rich features that far exceed what a spreadsheet can offer.
Airtable lets you sign-up for free. You can get started immediately and see value fast.
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Quickbase is a flexible platform that empowers teams to solve unique problems and build custom software solutions quickly and effortlessly.
Unlike Retool, which requires a significant level of technical knowledge, Quickbase is a no-code operational agility platform. The platform promises to help you remove the fragmentation in your workflows and transform sluggish silos into an efficient ecosystem.
You can sign up for a free trial or take a guided tour of the website to see what this platform can do for you.
One of its most prominent features is that it allows you to see, connect, and control all your project details. This way, you’ll have an easy way to see if budgets are on track, deadlines are being met, and if every aspect of your project is running smoothly.
From project management to budgeting, resource management, and more – you can do it all from one convenient place.
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Tooljet is a game-changer when it comes to building internal tools. It’s an open-source, no-code platform that enables efficient internal operations and allows organizations to build to scale, transforming from startup to established enterprises.
There are over 35 UI compliments you can use, and more are being added all the time. Drag and drop relevant components to create simple or complex frontends in React with zero experience.
A great feature of Tooljet is that it allows you to create apps with multiple pages that can easily be linked with each other.
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Kissflow is an enterprise-friendly app development platform. It’s a low-code and no-code solution that is ideal for individuals and teams of all sizes.
The software comes with a powerful workflow management feature that lets you automate your workflows in just minutes.
The unified platform makes it easy to manage all your team’s work in one place. You can use it to discover, create, modify, and use unique business applications. Each app is guaranteed to be easy to use and accessible.
Kissflow makes it significantly easier for non-technical people to build apps since it requires no coding or complex mapping.
One of the best things about using Kissflow is that you can create any number of business applications without having to upgrade your plan.
Wrapping It Up: What is the Best Retool Alternative?
There you have it. Some of the best Retool alternatives that make suitable solutions for businesses in every industry.
After researching all the options, I find Softr to be the best Retool alternative that will help you generate code-free apps and web portals.
But, depending on your specific needs, you might be better served by one of the other alternatives outlined above. Use this guide as your resource to help you choose the best software to meet your internal tool development needs.