I discovered these tools while ago and since the beginning, this battle keep coming into my mind. I was curious about which one fits better for my purposes. Which one helps me to organize stuff the best. Like, everyone, I tried one and later jumped to another, back and forth.
Notion or Coda it doesn’t really matter. Let’s say it, in the beginning, the tools are really similar. So you wouldn’t probably make a mistake with none of that. Coda is powerful so as Notion. But let’s try to search through the internet and find out what people say about these tools. I wanted to start with this comparison cuz before we start some no-code project we need to organize stuff a little bit an keep track of our goals and roadmaps.
Note-taking apps such a Notion.so or Coda.io can help you big time and improve your journey. I am gonna take the app one by one and write down some cons and pros. At the end of this article, I came up with a little app that I make both in notion and coda so you can compare the results and maybe decide according to that which fits better for you.
So first I am gonna take the older brother Notion.so
Notion came up into the world in late 2016 so it’s a little older than Coda. It should help sort your thoughts in a simple way. Notion is perfect for the knowledge bases, new employees onboarding, keeping the companies know-how in one place.
So what people say about the note-taking app Notion.
- Nested navigation
- Great for team wiki
- Many templates in the gallery
- Good support
- The team still coming up with the new features
- Easy to integrate databases, spreadsheets into my workspace,
- With only keyboards shortcuts
- Better formatting and styling then Coda
- Great support
- After reaching 1000 blocks, its paid (5USD/month)
- Slow on mobile
- Hard for quick entry
- Searching is hard and does not work properly,
- iPad app (usability issues)
- Hard to move a lot of files
- It takes time to set up
- Zero integrations (no maildrop)
- Permissions are confusing
- It takes some time to add a new note
- It cannot click for the first time (need to find the right template and how to organize things
- No auto sort of thoughts
- Not so good database based
- Find the right flow for meeting notes
- Too many options on how to set up,
- You can never be satisfied
Ok but let’s back to Notion. I like the way how the Notion looks. The formatting is nice and easy to use. You can choose the lists and to-dos and sort it nicely in two columns. Personally, I like it.
As I went through the articles about Notion or Coda. I must say that the people used the Notion more, so there are more opinions about Notion than Coda but of course, it doesn’t mean its better right. People like the formatting, like the simple use but a lot of people saying that they needed to find a way to Notion, they must come back a few times before they finally get used to it. Its really common thought across the resources and I agree. Somehow the Notion is not loved on the first sight.
For using Notion you need kinda someone who shows you do way. I mean to share with you some nice template and you can adjust it according to your needs cuz somehow it’s really hard to bring to life your own schedule or organization. To make the start easier for you. Check some templates on the Notion gallery site and start with that.
One thing I don’t like about Notion is that I don’t like the completely new document which comes with every note it’s a little overused.
Notion.so great use for: Managing company’s wikis, Onboarding new team member, Managing your team task, Organizing personal stuff (books to read, movies to watch, things to buy)
Let’s get a closer look about Coda now. Coda is younger than Notion it came back to live in 2017 but since then it got some traction. (I am not 100% sure about this information, maybe the companies are the same age but the official launch of Coda was definitely later than Notions)
I would say the Coda is more database focused. Using formulas and table formatting gives you a powerful tool to build interactive documents. To be honest I have more experience with Coda than a Notion. I discovered Coda through the No-code makers festival and since then I am hooked. I like to play around Coda but at least I can give you deeper thoughts about this app.
So what other people say about the note-taking app Coda
- It’s for free (2020 UPDATE not anymore)
- Supportive team
- Super third-party integration
- Better Databases than Notion
- Group by sorting
- Inline programming – easy and fast to fill
- Better API support
- Charts to visualize the data
- Buttons for Actions
- Better Automation
- Better Calendar formating
- Not so good formatting
- For free can cause insecurity about future updates
- Not that many users as the Notion
- Smaller community
- Support just Google Chrome
What is really important Coda is for free (not anymore, you can see the current pricing here). On the one hand, it’s pretty cool on the other hand, there is still some insecurity back in my mind. I would be a little afraid (I am) that after I’m gonna build heavy docs and for example, my company starts using it. The pricing comes in life and you are imprisoned and must pay even it would cost me some money. I would like to know the pricing possibilities in advance. I would feel more secure. Anyway, let’s forget about pricing for now. I build a few docs in Coda, so let’s see some of my experiences.
The basic templates in Coda are pretty similar to Notion (You can see in the video). To-do lists, CRM, task managers .. you can get everything, directly from Coda templates and do need to adjust it even a little. Of course, if you are curious you can build in some advanced apps. A lot of them you can find in the templates gallery.
Coda team same as Notion don’t stand on one place and keep coming with new features and app updates. I am their subscribers so I know. I must say I went through the resources for this article. The coda community is not that strong. The community forum on the official website can give you advice but there no that many active users. But I said Coda is younger it can build up in time. Also, Coda doesn’t support many browsers, for now, Just Google Chrome, Fortunately, they already have ios and android app. which is bad.
To be honest, I am using coda just on the computer, so I don’t care much about these flaws. As I mentioned I like to play around Coda, I already made some own apps. The working in Coda is pretty intuitive. Unfortunately, Coda lacks the formatting features. I mean some columns formatting outside of tables (which Notion has). That’s basically the only reason I do not go all-in with Coda. I am a visual person and I cannot organize stuff according to my needs which sucks. That’s why I am still in between these applications.
Coda.io great use for: no-code interactive apps, deeper work with databases, Advanced to-do lists
Some final comparison according to me and people around the internet.
For wikis, blog post schedules, for day to day task
➡ pick Notion
For advanced docs, more database-oriented documents
➡ pick Coda.
I made a little walkthrough video. You can see the main differences between these apps.
I wanted to bring you a view of these 2 note-taking apps As I mentioned, in the beginning, you not gonna make the wrong choice if decide for either of them. So enjoy using them and make your life a little bit more organized.
Are you agree with me? Please leave me a comment or reach on social media. I would be happy to hear your opinion. Sure I am gonna update the article regularly according to your opinions.
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Take care. Emil