Notion vs. GitBook: Which is Better for Documentation?

Compare Notion and GitBook for documentation management. Discover which platform is better for organizing and sharing information. Read the article now!

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Build beautiful documentation portals that answer questions for your users, developers or team.

Creating clear and concise product documents, collaborating with growing teams, updating documents regularly, and sharing information with customers and employees take work! 

Whether you're a small business or SaaS B2B, you need a user-friendly collaborative documentation platform to keep track of the hectic and hefty processes and procedures. With an effective tool, knowing what needs to be done, when, and by whom would be easier. 

A documentation and collaboration platform will help you bring clear, comprehensive information about your products so that customers know exactly what they're buying and why. 

For example, if you're a developer who has recently launched a new software product, you may need a place to keep updating the new features' instructions.

With hundreds of paid and free product documentation and collaborative platforms available, we're here to help you choose between Notion and Gitbook. 

Notion vs. Gitbook: Which one is better?

Notion and Gitbook are powerful tools that can be used for various purposes having their own strengths and weaknesses.

Notion is an all-in-one workspace for teams and individuals to organize their work, projects, and knowledge. It's a flexible tool for note-taking, project management, and team collaboration tasks. It's easy to use and has a clean and modern interface with many features, like the ability to embed files, databases, calendars, and more.

Gitbook, on the other hand, is a platform for creating and publishing documentation and other content. One of the key features of GitBook is its integration with the Git version control system. This allows users to manage their documentation like code, with branching, merging, and version tracking features. It's a good choice for technical documentation and is popular among developers for documenting code and APIs.

To find the most suitable documentation tool for your organization, We'll dig deeper, talking about both the software and its features along with pros and cons and also one alternative. 

What is Notion: Overview

Notion is an all-in-one productivity management and note-taking web tool. 

Unarguably, it is a one-stop solution for accomplishing all your note-taking, knowledge, data, project, and task management needs. 

It's an excellent choice for small businesses, solopreneurs, and students if they want a simple tool for planning and completing small projects without spending much money. 

Notion is easy to collaborate with and helps you with all kinds of class notes, business meeting minutes, collaborative editing, and company wikis. 

All in all, it's highly recommended if you're looking for a tool to streamline your projects. 

In a single workspace, it has features like wikis, databases, calendars, and to-do lists, among other things. Users can make and share pages, set reminders and notifications, embed files and media, and work with others in real time.

The best part is that Notion is available as a web application and on iOS and Android devices.

But before you choose Notion, you must know its best features. 

Here are some characteristics that distinguish Notion from other tools.

Notion's Text Editor for Documentation

One of the most noteworthy Notion features is the simple and user-friendly text editor. 

The text editor makes Notion an excellent place to take notes, write content, manage text snippets, and communicate ideas. 

Inside the workspace, the basic blocks include text elements such as lists, headers, links, dividers, quotes, and callouts. You can highlight anywhere to change the color and add another basic format. You can also add code snippets and formulas, as well as mention other users to bring something to their attention.

Task prioritizer and collaborative calendar for planning and management

Notion's kanban boards, task lists, epic calendars, and sprint organizers make project management and task completion easier.

The team calendar allows each team member to see the ongoing and one-time tasks they can do. It is perfect for creating long-term project schedules. The system also features task checkboxes, a project board, and reminders for to-do, done, and completed statuses.

Board Database For Visual Layout

The board database in Notion has a more visual layout than the table database. It is ideal for folks who prefer to accomplish tasks through drag and drop.

It's also an excellent solution to organize your tasks using the Kanban technique. Additionally, these boards can be customized with images to help you stay ahead of your workload and see where each project stands.

Benefits of using Notion

Some of the features make Notion a highly flexible and competent productivity tool that can be used for multiple tasks. From note-taking and document creation to project management and data tracking, Notion provides multiple services to a large audience. Here are some of the benefits that you can derive: 

Customization: Notion allows users to create custom pages, databases, and templates to fit their needs. This makes it easy to organize your data in a way that makes sense to you and your team.

Markdown Support: Notion supports Markdown formatting, making creating richly formatted documents and notes easy. You can also include images, links, code snippets, and more in your documents.

Kanban boards: Notion offers a visual way to manage tasks and projects, with the option of creating kanban boards to track users' progress.

Workflows: You can make custom workflows that let you know when a task is done. It is helpful for teams whose members are in different places and work at different times.

Databases: The database feature of Notion lets users create databases to keep track of information and data. These databases can be linked to other pages and databases within the platform.

Collaboration: Notion has robust collaboration features that allow teams to work together on projects and documents in real-time, with options for commenting, sharing, and version control.

Integrations: Notion integrates with many tools and services, including Google Drive, Trello, and Slack, using third-party apps, making it a flexible and powerful tool for increasing productivity.

Pros And Cons Of Using Notion

Pros:

  1. Versatile: Notion is a highly versatile platform that offers a variety of features, including note-taking, task management, wikis, and databases. It makes it a one-stop solution for productivity needs.
  2. User-friendly: The interface is clean, simple, and easy to navigate. It makes it easy for users to get started and become productive quickly.
  3. Customizable: Notion allows users to create custom templates, databases, and dashboards that can be adapted to their needs.
  4. Collaboration: Notion provides a range of collaboration features, making it easy to work with others on shared projects.
  5. Integration: Notion integrates with various other tools and services, including Google Drive, Slack, and Trello. Using third-party apps enhances its versatility and makes it easier to use.

Cons:

  1. Learning curve: While Notion is user-friendly, there is a learning curve for some users. It takes time to get used to the various features and how to use them effectively.
  2. Challenging navigation: Notion's navigation can be tricky for beginners who might need time to understand databases and finding pages. 
  3. Performance: Some users have reported performance issues, such as slow load times when using Notion on larger databases or with many users.
  4. Price: While Notion is affordable compared to other productivity tools, it may still be too expensive for some users.
  5. Missing advanced features: Notion may not be helpful for developers who need advanced features for APIs and product management. 

Notion Pricing

Notion offers several pricing plans for individuals, teams, and enterprises. The following is an overview of the available pricing options:

Free plan: Notion provides a free plan with basic features such as creating pages, databases, and to-do lists.

Personal plan: This plan costs $5 per month and provides access to advanced features such as page history, page commenting, and the ability to add custom domains. If billed annually, it costs $4 per month. 

Team plan: This plan starts at $8 per user per month and provides features like team collaboration, administrative controls, and integration with other apps and services. If billed monthly, it costs $10. 

Enterprise plan: The Enterprise plan is designed for large organizations and provides advanced security, compliance, and support features. The pricing for this plan is customized and can be quoted by Notion's sales team.

Gitbook: Overview 

GitBook is a modern documentation platform that makes it easy for you and your team to write documentation for products, internal knowledge bases, and APIs. 

It is a one-stop platform for creating company wikis and engineering documents. If you're looking for a way to easily create, publish, and search through your documentation, GitBook has you covered. 

GitBook is the best tool for creating and managing public docs like API references, code guidelines, project overviews, etc. It's great for documenting your codebase and helping other developers get up to speed quickly with your projects.

It's easy to plan, centralize, and share knowledge with GitBook.

The best part about Gitbook is that you can start working from scratch or easily import all your documents for other integrated platforms like Google Docs or Notion. 

High-Quality Documentation editor. 

The editor is where you create the content for your documentation. They offer many content blocks: headings, lists, tables, images, code blocks, and more! In addition, you can embed content from other places and use Markdown syntax to help you create content in a flash.

Multiple advanced features. 

There are other features inside the sub-navigation space, like change requests, history, customization, discussions, files, sights, and integration, where you can conduct both sides' conversations and request live changes at the same time. 

Non-simultaneous collaboration and live edits between teams.

Live edits and change requests give you greater control over your workflow. You can use comments and discussions to collaborate with your team or client. You also have access to lock or unlock editing access. It makes Gitbook an invaluable tool for agile software teams.

Pull request system for tech teams.

With GitHub's pull request system, teams can review code changes, talk about suggestions, and merge changes all in one place. This helps to ensure that code quality remains high. It is one of the brag-worthy features of Gitbook and is best for programmers.

Users can see updates and insights in real-time. Collaborate on ideas, assign tasks, and track projects together.

Publish in two modes. 

You have complete control of your content. Gitbook allows you to share the content with the public or restrict it to individuals with proper authentication. It also provides the third option of using collection publication to publish a different version of your document. 

Benefits of using Gitbook

Gitbook is a platform for creating and publishing documentation, books, and knowledge bases. Some of its key features are:

  1. Collaboration: Gitbook allows multiple authors to work on a single document and keep track of changes.
  2. Version control: Gitbook integrates with Git, enabling users to maintain version control over their content.
  3. Customizable layout: Gitbook provides a range of templates and customization options, so users can easily create a professional-looking document.
  4. Publish to multiple platforms: Gitbook allows users to publish their content to a custom domain or generate a PDF.
  5. Integration with other tools: Gitbook easily integrates with other tools such as GitHub, Notion, and Google Drive, allowing users to manage their content from a single location.
  6. Accessibility: Gitbook is designed to be accessible and user-friendly, with a clean interface and easy-to-use editing tools.

Pros And Cons Of Using Gitbook

Pros:

Easy to use: Gitbook has a user-friendly interface that makes it easy for users to create, edit, and publish their content.

Integration with Github: Gitbook integrates seamlessly with Github, allowing users to store and manage their content directly from Github.

Collaboration: Gitbook makes it easy for multiple people to work on a project at the same time with features like version control and collaboration tools.

Customization: Gitbook provides a range of customization options, including the ability to choose custom themes, add custom scripts and styles, and integrate with third-party tools.

Good for technical documentation: Gitbook is a great platform for writing documentation, with features like a table of contents and searches that make it easy for users to access the information they need.

Cons:

Limited design options: Gitbook provides a limited set of design options, which may not be suitable for all users, particularly those who require more creative control over their content.

Performance: Gitbook can load slowly, mainly when working with large files or when many users access the platform simultaneously.

Price: Gitbook charges a fee for certain features, such as custom domains and additional storage space, which may not be affordable for some users.

Limited integration with other platforms: While Gitbook integrates well with Github, it has limited integration with other platforms, which may limit its usefulness for some users.

Gitbook Pricing 

GitBook offers several pricing plans for individuals and teams. These are the current price for 2023. 

  1. Personal(Free plan): This plan includes basic features such as unlimited books, privacy control, and collaboration.
  2. Plus Plan: This plan starts at $6.70 monthly for small teams who want to collaborate and work publicly. 
  3. Pro Plan: This plan starts at $12.50  per month and is designed for multiple-role teams who want to collaborate with more advanced publishing options. 
  4. Enterprise Plan: This plan is customized for large organizations and includes dedicated support, enhanced security, and increased control over the content. The pricing for this plan is available upon request.

Gitbook vs. Notion at a glance

Feature Gitbook Notion
Type  Comprehensive management tool  Wiki and public doc software 
Editor Block based Block based
Publishing to custom domains Available Via third party
Customize published portals Available Via third party
Advanced Capabilities GitHub sync Kanban layout boards 
Integration  Can easily integrate APIS Can integrate with third party software

Which is better for product documentation? 

The question is not about which tool is better. It's more about what's your purpose. Notion is more concerned with productivity and task management, whereas Gitbook is more for technical documentation for teams. The major difference is between the audiences of both tools. Notion targets a broader audience, whereas Gitbook is a simple tool for developers and technical teams to manage company wikis, API references, and code guidelines.  

If you're looking for productivity or something to streamline your task, then Notion is the right choice. On the other hand, if you want something intuitive and transparent for your technical briefs, Gitbook is the one for you. 

You must know that the options for tools are not limited till here. Archbee comes under the best productivity and knowledge bases management tool. Here's what you must know about Archbee. 

Is there a better alternative for product documentation?

Archbee is a powerful, customizable documentation platform where you can create and publish APIs or products using only a few simple clicks.

With Archbee, you can manage documents, build knowledge bases, make developer guides, look up APIs, and make your organization more efficient and effective.

This exclusive product documentation platform has all the features to help teams communicate asynchronously. It is one of the best documentation tools for developers who want to streamline workflow and use a content management system that helps customer-facing teams get up to speed on your product.

Everyone in your organization, including customers, can easily access the updated information because everything is on one central platform. We can answer complex questions immediately, not three business days later. 

Companies can keep their knowledge bases public or limit access to them. They can also offer them access to select users‚ÄĒteam members, for instance, or specific customers.

Fast API Documentation Import & Sync. 

Archbee's support for API documentation is exceptional, unlike other tools in this category. The tool allows you to import API files and generates the references on the fly. Or you can insert a single API endpoint and add the endpoint name, methods, parameters, code examples, and other details as you go (without importing an OpenAPI). There's also a block for GraphiQL, the first documentation tooling I've seen to have support for GraphQL. If you prefer the Swagger-UI-styled user experience, you can embed it in a document using the custom block.

Modern Markdown Editor.

Creating and maintaining reference and API documents takes just a few drags and drops. It comes with a tree structure that organizes your documents in infinite ways. You can format your document with shortcuts or a point-and-click interface. You can organize your documents by department, project, or group of people. Using this content management system, the developer will have quick access to the product details, ensuring a quicker onboarding process.

Unified portal for Employers and customers 

Archbee is the easiest way to build documentation portals, including a web interface and gated access to specific readers using public access control options. Your documentation can be published to the web in two clicks, or you can use a subdomain or subfolder, and we will host the content on a 99.9% uptime with fast CDNs and image optimization.

In-depth Document Analytics.

Archbee provides visibility on every search query and feedback analytics for each document. You can see how often a query is searched for and how many documents appear in the search results. You'll also get qualitative analytics like the average score, the number of upvotes, the number of downvotes, and more.

PROS:

  • All documents are centralized in one place.
  • Enhances group communication.
  • Support Swagger, the OpenAPI specification, and GraphQL.
  • Diagramming tools are useful for mapping out processes and workflows.
  • File storage space is unlimited.
  • Instantaneous chat support.

CONS:

  • There are no native apps for mobile devices that can be used, but it provides desktop apps for computers (Mac, Windows, or Linux).

Why should you prefer Archbee over Notion and Gitbook

  • You'll be able to create high-quality knowledge bases and technical docs without needing specialized skills or expensive developers.
  • ¬†A customer that visits your knowledge base can find answers independently instead of contacting support.¬†

Due to its user-friendly interface and editing experience, Archbee is an easy-to-use unified platform for product and engineering teams.

Here's a deeper look at how ArchBee compares to both Notion and GitBook:

Feature Archbee Notion Gitbook
Advanced Version Control Available Limited Limited
More flexible and powerful search  Available Not available  Limited
Better collaboration and commenting  Yes Yes Yes
Native Support of code snippets  Yes  No Yes
Customizable branding and domain support Available  Not available  Not available 
Advanced permission and access control Available  Available  Available 
Better content organization and hierarchy  Available  Not available  Not available 
Integration with popular tools Come with variety of options  Limited Limited

Conclusion

Archbee, Notion, and Gitbook are top-rated tools for creating and managing documentation. 

In summary, GitBook is specialized in creating and publishing documentation using Git version control, while Notion is specialized in organizing and managing various types of information in a flexible and customizable workspace.

However, the best tool for you will depend on your needs and preferences. That said, if you're looking for technical documentation with robust collaborative features like real-time coediting and advanced customization options, Archbee should be your one-stop solution. 

In terms of features, Archbee offers a more flexible and customizable documentation system with a range of advanced collaboration and publishing features. For example, Archbee allows you to create multiple knowledge bases, customize your branding, and collaborate with team members in real time. Archbee also offers more options for customization, such as custom CSS and JavaScript.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Notion's primary purpose?
Expand FAQ
Notion is an all-in-one workspace for teams and individuals to organize their work, projects, and knowledge. It offers note-taking, project management, and team collaboration tools. It's a flexible tool with many features such as the ability to embed files, databases, calendars and more.
What are some of the benefits of using Gitbook?
Expand Button
Gitbook is a platform for creating and publishing documentation, books, and knowledge bases. It allows multiple authors to work on a single document and keep track of changes. Gitbook integrates with Git, enabling users to maintain version control over their content. It provides a range of templates and customization options and allows users to publish their content to a custom domain or generate a PDF. Gitbook also integrates with other tools such as GitHub, Notion, and Google Drive.
What are some of the pros and cons of using Notion?
Expand Button
Notion offers a versatile platform for note-taking, task management, wikis, and databases. The interface is clean, simple, and easy to navigate. It also offers good collaboration features, and integrates with various other tools. However, there is a learning curve for some users. Some users have reported performance issues, such as slow load times when using Notion on larger databases or with many users. It can be expensive for some users and may lack advanced features for APIs and product management.
What is the main difference between Gitbook and Notion?
Expand Button
Notion is primarily a productivity and task management tool, targeting a broad audience. It is ideal for tasks such as note-taking, project management, and team collaboration. On the other hand, Gitbook is designed for technical documentation for teams. It specializes in creating and publishing documentation using Git version control and is popular among developers for documenting code and APIs.
Why might someone prefer Archbee over Notion and Gitbook?
Expand Button
Archbee provides a more flexible and customizable documentation system. It allows users to create multiple knowledge bases, customize branding, and collaborate with team members in real time. Archbee also offers advanced customization options, such as custom CSS and JavaScript, along with robust collaborative features. It is ideal for creating high-quality knowledge bases and technical documents.

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