The use of signatures as a legally binding way of saying “I approve” has been around for millenia.
Fortunately, there are a number of tools that are bringing this ancient practice into the digital age. DocuSign and SignRequest are two such tools.
They each have the same core purpose, but they take different approaches to it. Let’s break down the differences between SignRequest and DocuSign.
SignRequest is an e-signature tool that provides a low barrier to entry and focuses on the environmental benefits of paperless workplaces.
It offers a free, no-obligation signature request from its landing page. You can use your own document or try a sample one to see how simple and effective the service is.
It also promises to plant one tree for every license bought, which shows a real dedication to the environment and reinforces the company’s mission to help create paper-free offices.
DocuSign aims to be the No. 1 solution for document signing, and it pursues that goal by focusing on business and enterprise needs.
DocuSign offers tailored solutions for several industries and business units. The company’s offering shows that it really has its finger on the pulse of businesses and understands their needs.
It also has an impressive set of advanced features and tools. It offers tools for managing the entire life cycle of your documents, developing AI-powered insights into your contracts, working through contract negotiations, and much more.
The catch is that you’ll never see the industry-specific customizations and most impressive features unless you’re an enterprise-level customer.
The one exception is for Realtors. DocuSign offers Realtor-specific customizations as part of a separate pricing plan. But you still won’t see the top-tier features unless you’re part of a brokerage and can afford the enterprise plan.
Both tools will allow you to sign unlimited documents for free. That’s generally a given in the document-signing industry. However, only SignRequest offers a free plan with other benefits.
SignRequest’s free plan will let you send up to 10 signature requests per month. And you’ll get multi-language support, Google integrations, and an audit trail as part of the deal.
DocuSign’s lowest-priced tier is the Personal plan, paid monthly. It offers a similar feature set to SignRequest’s free tier but only lets you send up to five signature requests per month.
Both companies offer unlimited signature requests at this tier. SignRequest releases the bulk of its feature set with this plan, whereas DocuSign offers only a few new features.
At the top tier before the enterprise-level plans, both products’ top-tier plans offer several new features that will appeal to larger businesses with numerous teams that need to collect signatures.
Once you get to the enterprise level, things diverge a little. SignRequest focuses on hands-on attention and custom solutions. DocuSign, on the other hand, has an arsenal of advanced, high-tech tools ready to support your business.
The best option for freelancers
If you’re an individual freelancer, you probably won’t need all the bells and whistles that these tools offer for teams and multi-team companies. If you just need to get a few signatures for your work contracts, SignRequest’s more affordable plans would probably be a better fit.
If you’re a small firm, you may quickly outgrow the lower tiers of both apps. DocuSign can help you automate contract generation and give you insights into your documents with AI-powered analytics, but only if you can afford the enterprise plan. On the other hand, SignRequest offers a lot of value with its Professional plan and will fit most businesses that don’t have a lot of admin needs.
SignRequest vs DocuSign for small businesses
What if your business is too small to justify an enterprise plan? If you have a few dozen people working in your company — or even a few hundred — you still might want to stick to the less expensive tiers.
However, you’ll have to contact DocuSign’s sales team if you want more than five users, even for the more expensive plans.
The best direction for enterprises
DocuSign really shines at the enterprise level. The company offers cutting-edge tools that are tailored to big businesses.
At the enterprise level, SignRequest offers on-premises hosting and will work directly with your tech team. If your company is a tech startup, this could provide a lot of benefits.
DocuSign, on the other hand, offers several custom solutions to fit established corporations in specific industries. Helping build custom programs for individual organizations doesn’t seem to be its focus.
The solution to start collecting signatures now
But what if you just want to send a document and get a signature today? What’s the easiest and best way to do that?
As mentioned, SignRequest will let you send a signature request right from the home page. But that’s a one-off deal. If you want a solution that will grow with your needs and require no up-front investment, consider using Jotform’s e-signature form widgets. Our form widgets offer multiple ways to collect signatures. And we integrate with DocuSign if you ever decide to go in that direction.
Jotform’s free plan gives you access to all of our features and lets you collect 100 signatures. As your needs increase or your business grows, paid tiers and a stellar Enterprise plan offer more benefits.
On top of that, Jotform does much more than signatures. We have a full suite of form creation and data-collection tools that include PDF creation, tons of integrations, a robust table tool similar to Airtable, and an app builder.