Selecting the Ideal eSignature Solution for Small Businesses: DocuSign vs. PandaDoc Comparison

Last updated on September 20, 2023
Selecting the Ideal eSignature Solution for Small Businesses: DocuSign vs. PandaDoc Comparison

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In todays digital world, electronic signature (eSignature) solutions are vital. Theyve transformed how we sign documents, offering speed, convenience, and eco-friendliness. With remote work on the rise and the demand for secure, globally accessible signatures, eSignature solutions are indispensable.

This article compares two top eSignature platforms: PandaDoc and DocuSign. Both offer features to streamline document signing, each with its strengths and weaknesses. Our aim is to help you choose the right fit for your needs, whether youre a business owner, legal professional, or someone seeking an efficient way to sign documents. This comparison provides valuable insights into the world of eSignature solutions.

Introduction to DocuSign and PandaDoc

DocuSign and PandaDoc are two leading electronic signature and document management platforms that have revolutionized the way businesses handle documents and signatures in todays digital age.

What is DocuSign ?

DocuSign is a widely recognized name in the electronic signature industry. It provides a comprehensive platform for managing the entire document lifecycle, from creating and sending documents to tracking and storing them securely. DocuSign offers a range of features that enable users to electronically sign, send, and manage documents with ease. Its trusted by businesses of all sizes and across various industries for its robust security measures and compliance with legal requirements. DocuSign has become synonymous with electronic signatures and is known for its reliability and extensive integration capabilities.

DocuSign HomePage

What is PandaDoc ?

PandaDoc, on the other hand, is another prominent player in the eSignature and document management arena. It specializes in providing a solution for creating, sending, and tracking documents for sales teams. PandaDoc is often chosen by businesses looking to streamline their sales processes, as it offers features such as document automation, eSignatures, and analytics. It is user-friendly and designed to improve efficiency in the sales department, making it easier for teams to create, send, and close deals with clients.

PandaDoc Home Page

Comparing DocuSign vs PandaDoc

Heres a comparison of DocuSign and PandaDoc in a tabular form:

Electronic SignaturesWidely recognized, legally binding electronic signaturesOffers eSignatures with ease of use and compliance
Document TemplateRobust template library and creation toolsTemplates designed for sales documents
Document CollaborationReal-time document editing and collaborationCollaboration features for sales teams
Document TrackingExtensive document tracking and status updatesSales-focused document analytics
IntegrationExtensive integrations with various third-party appsIntegrates with CRM and other sales tools
Workflow AutomationAdvanced workflow automation and customizationStreamlines sales document workflows
Mobile AccessibilityMobile app for iOS and Android devicesMobile app for on-the-go document management
SecurityHigh-level document security and complianceSecure document sharing and storage
PricingMultiple pricing tiers, scalable for businessesPricing tailored for sales teams
Customer SupportComprehensive support resourcesCustomer support and knowledge base

1. Electronic Signature

  • Legally Binding Signatures: Complies with industry regulations.
  • Signature Authentication: Offers various authentication methods.
  • Signature Workflow: Flexible for complex processes.
  • Audit Trails: Maintains detailed document histories.
  • Advanced Features: Includes in-person and remote notary options.
  • Ease of Use: Designed for simplicity.
  • Sales-Focused: Streamlined for sales documents.
  • Role-Based Signing: Simplifies multi-party signing.
  • Document Tracking: Real-time status updates.
  • Mobile Accessibility: On-the-go signing with mobile app.

2. Document Templates

  • Robust Template Library: DocuSign offers a comprehensive library of document templates across various industries and use cases, including legal agreements, contracts, and HR documents.
  • Template Creation Tools: It provides robust tools for creating and customizing templates, allowing users to design templates tailored to their specific needs.
  • Template Management: DocuSign offers effective template management features, making it easy to organize, update, and share templates with team members.
  • Sales-Focused Templates: PandaDoc specializes in sales documents, offering templates tailored for sales proposals, quotes, and contracts. It is designed to enhance the sales process.
  • Template Customization: While it focuses on sales, PandaDoc allows users to customize templates to align with their brand and specific sales needs.
  • Template Library: PandaDoc has a library of templates specifically designed for sales teams, making it easier to create sales-related documents.

3. Document Collaboration

  • Real-time Collaboration: DocuSign offers real-time document editing and collaboration capabilities, allowing multiple parties to work on a document simultaneously.
  • Commenting and Markup: Users can leave comments, annotations, and markups on documents to facilitate communication and revisions.
  • Multi-Party Signing: DocuSign supports complex signing workflows, enabling sequential or parallel signing by multiple parties, making collaboration in document signing efficient.
  • Sales Team Collaboration: PandaDoc is designed to enhance collaboration within sales teams. It focuses on sales document collaboration, allowing sales professionals to work together on proposals, quotes, and contracts.
  • Role-Based Collaboration: Users can assign specific roles to recipients within a document, streamlining the collaboration process for sales deals.
  • Document Tracking: 3. PandaDoc provides real-time tracking of document statuses, ensuring transparency in the collaboration process.

4. Document Tracking

  • Extensive Document Tracking: DocuSign offers comprehensive document tracking features, allowing users to monitor the entire document lifecycle, from sending to signing and completion.
  • Real-time Status Updates: Users receive real-time notifications and updates on document status, including when a recipient views, signs, or takes action on the document.
  • Detailed Audit Trails: DocuSign maintains detailed audit trails, providing a complete record of who signed the document, when, and from where, ensuring document integrity.
  • Real-time Tracking: PandaDoc provides real-time tracking of document statuses, making it easy for users to know when a recipient has viewed, interacted with, or signed the document.
  • Sales-Focused Analytics: While it offers tracking, PandaDoc places emphasis on sales document analytics, helping sales teams understand how recipients engage with proposals and contracts.

5. Integration

  • Extensive Integration Ecosystem: DocuSign has a vast and established integration ecosystem with various third-party applications, including popular tools like Salesforce, Microsoft Office 365, Dropbox, and more.
  • APIs and Developer Resources: It offers comprehensive APIs and developer resources, allowing businesses to create custom integrations and automate document-related workflows.
  • Pre-built Connectors: DocuSign provides pre-built connectors and integrations for common business software, simplifying the integration process.
  • CRM Integration: DocuSign seamlessly integrates with Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems, making it easy to manage documents and signatures within your CRM platform.
  • Integration with Sales Tools: PandaDoc primarily focuses on integrations with sales-related tools, such as Salesforce, HubSpot, and Pipedrive, to streamline the sales document workflow.
  • Limited Third-party Integrations: While it offers integrations with key sales tools, PandaDocs integration ecosystem is not as extensive or diverse as DocuSigns.
  • Custom Integrations: PandaDoc provides APIs and developer support for creating custom integrations, but its primary strength lies in its native sales-focused integrations.

6. Workflow Automation

  • Advanced Workflow Customization: DocuSign offers robust workflow automation capabilities, allowing users to create and customize complex signing workflows. These workflows can involve multiple signers, conditional logic, and document routing.
  • Template-Based Workflows: Users can create templates for frequently used workflows, which is particularly helpful for businesses with standardized processes.
  • Integration with Business Systems: DocuSign integrates seamlessly with various business systems and apps, enabling the automation of document workflows within existing processes.
  • Document Automation: DocuSign supports document automation, reducing manual data entry and streamlining document creation and distribution.
  • Streamlined Sales Workflows: PandaDoc is designed with a primary focus on streamlining sales workflows. It offers workflow automation tailored to sales documents, such as proposals and contracts.
  • Role-Based Signing: Users can assign specific roles to recipients within a document, simplifying the signing process, especially for sales teams.
  • Document Status Tracking: PandaDoc provides real-time tracking of document statuses, allowing users to monitor the progress of sales documents throughout the workflow.

7. Mobile Accessibility

  • Mobile Apps: DocuSign offers dedicated mobile apps for both iOS and Android devices, providing a seamless and user-friendly mobile experience.
  • Feature-Rich Mobile Experience: The mobile apps provide a feature-rich experience, allowing users to create, send, sign, and manage documents on the go.
  • Offline Access: Users can access and work on documents even when they are offline, ensuring productivity in various situations.
  • Mobile Notifications: DocuSigns mobile apps provide notifications for document status updates, ensuring users stay informed about the progress of their documents.
  • Mobile App: PandaDoc also offers a mobile app for iOS and Android devices, allowing users to access their documents and workflows from anywhere.
  • Sales-Centric Mobile Experience: The mobile app is designed to cater to the needs of sales professionals, making it easy to access and manage sales documents on mobile devices.
  • Offline Access: Users can work on documents offline, and changes are synced once an internet connection is re-established.
  • Mobile Notifications: PandaDocs mobile app provides notifications related to document statuses and interactions, keeping users updated on the progress of sales documents.

8. Security

  • Robust Security Measures: DocuSign is known for its strong security protocols and measures to protect documents and sensitive data.
  • Secure Document Storage: DocuSign provides secure storage for signed documents with options for encryption and access controls.
  • Authentication Methods: It offers multiple authentication methods, including email verification, access code, SMS verification, and knowledge-based authentication, to ensure the identity of signers.
  • Compliance: DocuSign complies with various international and industry-specific regulations, including GDPR, HIPAA, and SOC 2 Type II, making it suitable for a wide range of industries.
  • Audit Trails: Detailed audit trails are maintained for each document, providing a record of who signed, when they signed, and their IP address, enhancing document integrity.
  • Secure Document Handling: PandaDoc prioritizes the security of sales documents, offering secure storage and transmission of sales-related content.
  • Encryption: Documents sent and stored in PandaDoc are encrypted to protect sensitive information.
  • Authentication: While it provides authentication for signers, PandaDoc's focus is more on user-friendly document sharing and signing experiences.

9. Pricing

DocuSign Pricings
  • Pricing Tiers: DocuSign offers a range of pricing tiers to cater to businesses of various sizes and needs. These tiers include Personal, Standard, Business Pro, and Advanced Solutions.
  • Custom Pricing: DocuSign provides custom pricing for enterprises and larger organizations with specific requirements, offering flexibility to accommodate complex workflows.
  • Free Trial: A 30-day free trial is available for users to explore DocuSigns features before committing to a paid plan.
  • Transparent Pricing: DocuSigns pricing structure is transparent, with clear details on what each plan includes and any additional costs for optional features.
  • Volume Discounts: Businesses with high document volumes may be eligible for volume discounts, reducing costs for frequent users.
PandaDoc Pricing
  • Pricing Tiers: PandaDoc offers pricing plans tailored primarily for sales teams. These plans include Essentials, Business, and Enterprise.
  • Custom Pricing: For larger enterprises with specific needs, PandaDoc provides custom pricing to accommodate unique requirements.
  • Free Trial: PandaDoc offers a 14-day free trial, allowing users to test the platforms features and functionalities.
  • Transparent Pricing: PandaDocs pricing is transparent, detailing what each plan offers and any additional costs for optional features.
  • eSignature-Only Plan: PandaDoc offers an eSignature plan for users who only require electronic signatures without other document management features.

10. Customer Support

  • Comprehensive Support Resources: DocuSign offers a wide range of support resources, including extensive documentation, guides, FAQs, and video tutorials to help users navigate the platform.
  • 24/7 Customer Support: It provides 24/7 customer support via phone and email, ensuring users can get assistance at any time.
  • Community Forum: DocuSign maintains an active user community forum where users can ask questions, share experiences, and get advice from other users.
  • Training and Certification: DocuSign offers training and certification programs for users and administrators to become proficient in using the platform effectively.
  • Dedicated Account Managers: For enterprise customers, DocuSign assigns dedicated account managers to provide personalized support and assistance.
  • Customer Support: PandaDoc offers customer support during business hours, providing assistance through email and live chat.
  • Knowledge Base: It provides a knowledge base with articles, guides, and FAQs to help users troubleshoot issues and learn about the platform.
  • Onboarding Services: PandaDoc offers onboarding services to help new customers get started and make the most of the platform.
  • Community Forum: While not as extensive as DocuSigns community, PandaDoc maintains a user community where users can ask questions and exchange information.

Which is better PandaDoc or DocuSign?

The choice between PandaDoc and DocuSign depends on your specific business requirements, the importance of customer support, and the significance of user feedback. Below, we break down the strengths of each platform to help you make an informed decision:

PandaDoc: Ideal for Small to Midsize Scaling Teams

PandaDoc excels in seamlessly integrating with native CRM tools, making it a standout choice for businesses heavily reliant on CRM software. It offers a user-friendly experience for creating documents, collecting payments, and facilitating the signing process. While some users find its complex workflows slightly challenging, PandaDocs strengths lie in dynamic pricing tables, a content library, and advanced solutions, making it an excellent choice for rapidly scaling small to midsize businesses.

DocuSign: Perfect for Larger Enterprises with Complex Document Needs

DocuSign is a reliable and flexible solution tailored for larger enterprises with diverse and intricate document requirements. Its extensive feature set, including signer attachments, advanced fields, formulas, and PowerForms, is highly regarded by users. The ability to customize pricing plans to meet specific business demands makes DocuSign adaptable for larger organizations. Although there have been some concerns about customer support, DocuSign stands out with its robust features, secure e-signatures, and user-friendly interface, making it a top choice for digital signature solutions in the corporate world.

What to choose DocuSign or PandaDoc for Small Businesses?

For small businesses, DocuSign is generally the better choice between DocuSign and PandaDoc. DocuSign is a well-established electronic signature solution with a strong track record for reliability, user-friendliness, and extensive integrations. It offers a wide range of features and flexibility that cater to the needs of small businesses effectively. PandaDoc, on the other hand, is better known for its document creation and management capabilities, but DocuSign excels in electronic signatures and document workflow, making it a more comprehensive solution for small business needs.

BoloForms: An Excellent Substitute For Small Business

BoloForms Signature page

If youre seeking an e-signature solution thats both user-friendly like PandaDoc and budget-friendly like DocuSign, BoloForms is the perfect choice.

Unlike DocuSign and PandaDoc, you can jump right in with a free account on BoloForms. With the free account, you can send up to 50 form responses while getting signature requests per month.

Need more flexibility? For just $10 per month, BoloForms unlocks 100 form signature requests, enabling you to send 5 documents per month which is cheaper compared to the other two and is a great option for small businesses.

Distinguishing itself from other solutions like DocuSign and PandaDoc, BoloForms offers a swift and streamlined platform that gets you started effortlessly.

Creating online documents with BoloForms is a breeze. Start by specifying whether you need to sign the document or not. Then, name your document, import it, or create it using the built-in editor, and designate the signers and the display message to accompany it.

You can even set the order in which signers receive the document and review it before sending it to ensure everything is in order.

Once you hit send, BoloForms guides your signers through the entire signature process, allowing them to create their own eSignature if needed.

Begin your BoloForms journey by signing up for free today!

FAQs about DocuSign vs. PandaDoc:

Is PandaDoc more cost-effective than DocuSign?

The cost-effectiveness of PandaDoc compared to DocuSign depends on your specific business requirements. While PandaDoc offers plans at different price points, DocuSigns pricing structure may vary, making it essential to evaluate which platform aligns better with your budget and needs.

How does PandaDoc compare to DocuSign in terms of quality?

Both PandaDoc and DocuSign offer quality e-signature solutions. PandaDoc boasts strengths like CRM integration and an intuitive drag-and-drop editor, while DocuSign excels in reliability and a wide range of features. Your choice should consider the aspects most relevant to your business.

Are e-signatures generated through PandaDoc legally binding?

Yes, e-signatures produced through PandaDoc are legally binding and compliant with eSignature laws globally.

Who are the main competitors of DocuSign?

DocuSign faces competition from several e-signature providers, including PandaDoc, Adobe Sign, Dropbox Sign, and Zoho Sign. Additionally, BoloForms is emerging as a significant competitor, offering an intuitive platform with robust features and competitive pricing.

What are the Disadvantages of DocuSign?

  • Cost: DocuSign can be relatively expensive for small businesses, especially if they have a high volume of documents to be signed regularly.
  • Learning Curve: Some users may find DocuSigns interface a bit complex, requiring time and effort to fully grasp its features and capabilities.
  • Limited Offline Access: While DocuSign primarily operates online, it may pose challenges when users need to access or sign documents without an internet connection.

What are the Disadvantages of PandaDoc?

  • Pricing Complexity: PandaDocs pricing structure can be confusing, as it charges separately for document creation and electronic signatures, potentially leading to unexpected costs for users.
  • Limited Document Templates: While it offers document templates, the selection is not as extensive as some competitors, which may require more manual document creation for specific needs.
  • Integration Dependencies: Effective use of PandaDoc may depend on integrating with other tools, making it less suitable for businesses that prefer standalone solutions or have limited tech resources.


In summary, when deciding between PandaDoc and DocuSign, its crucial to consider the size and specific needs of your organization. PandaDoc shines as a user-friendly and CRM-focused solution, making it an excellent choice for small to midsize businesses seeking to streamline sales processes and integrate seamlessly with CRM tools. On the other hand, DocuSign stands out as a robust, highly customizable platform, making it the preferred option for larger enterprises with intricate document requirements, advanced features, and the need for secure and reliable e-signatures. Your decision should align with your organizations scale and document complexities, ensuring you select the platform that best addresses your unique business needs.

BoloForms offers a compelling alternative with its intuitive interface, robust features, and cost-effective pricing, combining the strengths of both PandaDoc and DocuSign. Its worth considering in your search for an ideal e-signature solution.