Discover the top Qualtrics alternatives in 2023, offering powerful features and intuitive interfaces to meet your survey and UX research needs. Compare and choose the perfect solution for your business.
What is Qualtrics?
Qualtrics is a customer experience platform that allows organizations to create a single source of truth for customer data and research. The platform offers solutions for multiple teams, including marketing, business, user experience, product, brand, and HR.
Qualtrics' strongest features are its surveys, automation, and advanced statistical analysis capabilities. The platform's CRM centralizes this data, giving organizations a holistic visualization of the customer experience across multiple domains and touchpoints.
Why would you use Qualtrics?
Qualtrics is the world’s leading CX platform for a reason. It offers powerful survey capabilities and an intuitive user interface to create campaigns with sophisticated logic. Where other platforms require customization and integrations Qualtrics does natively—but you pay tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
At this price tag, Qualtrics is an excellent enterprise product, employee, and market research tool. The platform's research panels provide organizations with cheap participants for targeted studies, which are particularly useful for entering new markets.
Qualtrics is versatile with lots of customization and functionality, allowing organizations to design UIs and campaigns to meet brand and user experience requirements. The platform's sophisticated dashboard, reports, and statistical analysis tools are why Qualtrics is the preferred enterprise CX solution.
Why would you rather use a Qualtrics alternative?
While Qualtrics is a powerful CX tool, it lacks many features UX researchers need to manage studies. Qualtrics is built for surveys rather than participant recruitment, meaning ResOps teams must use external tools and integrations to achieve results comparable to leading panel management software.
Another significant downside to Qualtrics is pricing. The platform's high pricing structure means Qualtrics only makes sense for enterprise clients.
Best alternative for: Research Ops teams who care about the highest degree of privacy, ownership, communication, and branding.
Ethnio is the industry-leading ResearchOps platform allowing UX researchers to manage end-to-end UX research studies from initial recruitment to final payout.
Where most panel management software, including Qualtrics, want to sell participant databases, Ethnio offers 100% organic ownership of your end-to-end participant management without bloat, upsells, and external panel offerings.
Ethnio's Pool provides a CRM tailored to meet the tasks and functions unique to research operations. You can import participant data from three primary sources:
Import lists from internal cohorts (CSV, Excel, Sheets)
Two-way sync product integrations
Native and Web Intercepts
Intercept-based participant recruiting is a vehicle to get our teams as close to our customers as possible.Intuit Research Ops
Ethnio's Intercepts allow you to embed recruitment popups anywhere in your product ecosystem, including Web, iOS, and Android. Researchers can recruit relevant study participants using 30+ targeting variables and custom filters. These Intercepts allow UX researchers to recruit high-quality, relevant participants who actually use their products rather than a random panel database.
Ethnio's Screeners are a great alternative to Qualtrics offering light surveys and quant support purpose-built for Research Ops. These Screeners also help qualify participants for research studies. Any data captured using Intercepts and Screeners automatically enrich your participant database, which can help for future recruitment campaigns and customer research.
Ethnio's Scheduling is another powerful automation tool Qualtrics doesn't offer. Sync team members' and stakeholders' calendars to automate studying scheduling at a suitable time for everyone. Ethnio's Scheduling automation includes Round Robin logic, multi-session scheduling, group session scheduling, and more.
Additionally, ResOps teams can set hard and soft quotas with customizable logic to always book the best participants for every study, including:
Creating multiple hard and soft quotas
Customizing condition logic for each quota
Using color coding and shortcuts to visualize quotas
Inviting team members and stakeholders to review and approve or decline participants
Qualtrics' incentive payouts are limited to survey participation, and the platform uses a third-party provider, resulting in extra fees and user privacy complications. Conversely, Ethnio's native Incentives allow payments in any currency worldwide and the option to donate payouts to 40+ charities. Researchers can also track every participant's payout, set tax limits, and create automated expenditure reports for key stakeholders.
Best alternative for: easy-to-use quick survey tool.
SurveyMonkey is arguably the most popular and widely-used survey tool on the market. The low learning curve, helpful resources, a wide variety of templates, and affordable plans make it suitable for novice to expert researchers.
SurveyMonkey is an excellent Qualtrics alternative for users who need basic survey functionality. While SurveyMonkey isn't as sophisticated as Qualtrics, it's significantly easier to use and a fraction of the price.
One of SurveyMonkey's strongest selling points is that the company has been around since 1999, resulting in more than two decades of R&D in the survey space. The result is an incredibly intuitive survey builder and highly optimized user journey, ensuring you get more conversions and meaningful results.
While SurveyMonkey is a cheap survey alternative to Qualtrics, it doesn't offer many of the other features that make Qualtrics such a powerful tool, most notably:
Rudimentary analytics and automation
No employee/talent research functionality
No panel management
Limited brand research features
No ad testing
Best alternative for: affordable CX alternative.
SurveySparrow is an affordable CX alternative to Qualtrics, starting at just $19 for Individual Plans and $499 for Enterprise solutions. The platform offers similar features, albeit less advanced and without a CRM. Like SurveyMonkey, SurveySparrow's intuitive dashboard and survey builder.
SurveySparrow's conversational-style forms and surveys create an engaging user experience which the company claims significantly increases survey completion.
Researchers have over 30+ question types and a fully white-label survey UI with CSS customization, so your surveys always meet brand and campaign requirements.
You can create surveys in 70+ languages and collect video and audio responses. SurveySparrow will even transcribe spoken survey responses to text so that teams can analyze keywords and patterns.
Researchers can personalize survey experiences with SurveySparrow features like Question Piping, Custom Params, Contact Params, and variables. The platform's case management feature allows research teams to sort responses, assign tasks, and define subsequent actions.
With SurveySparrow's Reputation Management, you can visualize your product reviews in one central location. A Sentiment Analysis lets you sort views, create tickets, and take action on problem areas to minimize reputational damage. You can also send review requests to satisfied customers for app stores, Google, TrustPilot, Facebook, and other platforms.
SurveySparrow falls short of many advanced Qualtrics features, notably analytics, reporting, automation, and customization. The platform also doesn't offer any CRM or features suitable for UX research campaigns.
Salesforce Feedback Management
Best alternative for: CRM and shared database functionality.
If your company uses Salesforce, then the Feedback Management addon is a great Qualtrics alternative for basic surveys and customer feedback.
As Feedback Management is part of the Salesforce suite, data collected from surveys will automatically enhance your existing customer database and instantly share this information across the organization.
Unlike Qualtrics and SurveySparrow, Salesforce Feedback Management offers basic survey functionality, focusing on CSAT or NPS analysis. The survey UI is also very elementary, with customization limited to changing images, some text options, and button color. Still, Feedback Management's survey builder is super easy to use, allowing anyone on your team to create and distribute surveys via the CRM.
Best alternative for: customer experience, social listening, and market research.
Forsta (formally Confirmit) is one of Qualtrics' closest competitors, offering similar features and functionality, including fully customizable surveys and a comprehensive CRM to manage customer data and interactions.
One of Forsta's popular features is Genius Text Analytics, an AI-powered tool for collecting and analyzing customer feedback from multiple sources, including emails, chat logs, social media, surveys, and even customer support voice calls.
Genius Text Analytics can identify emotions behind communication and uses a 12-emotion scoring system to provide sentiment feedback. Researchers can create rules, prioritize text, and customize the AI tool to monitor feedback based on organizational objectives.
Like Qualtrics, Forsta offers tools for customer experience, employee experience, market research, and marketing tools like social listening, landing pages, and more.
Forsta's Digital Diaries and Communities is a feature you won't find on Qualtrics. Organizations can create a social-media-style customer community to engage with audiences, run diary studies, and gather valuable first-party data. The feature comes with a mobile app so customers can connect via the Web or native applications.
While Forsta is a powerful CX tool, its pricing is as ambiguous and costly as Qualtrics. The platform also doesn't offer tools or features for UX research, meaning UX teams would need to use third-party apps at an additional expense.
Best alternative for: experience management and advanced listening.
Medallia is one of Qualtrics' biggest competitors offering many of the same features at enterprise pricing. Unlike Qualtrics, Medallia focuses less on surveys and more on listening technology through AI and machine learning—both internal and external communications.
Medallia's surveys, automation, and reporting are not as sophisticated s Qualtrics, with limited functionality and customization. Customers also complain that the platform isn't user-friendly, and they often fail with the "self-service" plan resulting in hefty fees from Medallia's customer service to help with implementation.
Medallia's strongest feature is its listening and machine learning capabilities, allowing enterprises to monitor internal and external communications to identify issues and gauge sentiment. Organizations can even monitor IoT devices like Amazon Alexa, Google Home, and Samsung Smart Fridges to build valuable customer data.
Medallia's listening capabilities extend to competitors and market segments, allowing organizations to define benchmarks and identify opportunities.
Like most of the tools we reviewed for this article, Medallia doesn't offer UX research and participant recruitment features.