FREE Flowchart and Diagram Apps

Thaisa Fernandes
Jan 24, 2017 · 6 min read
Photo by Isaac Smith on Unsplash

I create a lot of flowcharts, wireframes, and diagrams in my daily work routine as a Project and Product Manager. I’ve tried a bunch of software lately, and some people have asked me about them so I made a list with seven alternatives I like!

sxkcd.com

1 — LucidChart

Online collaboration tool with an unlimited free account that allows creation of an unlimited number of diagrams with a limit of 60 objects per diagram.

Source: Lucid Chart

Pros

  • Creates flowcharts, organizational charts, website wireframes, UML (Unified Modeling Language) designs, mind maps, software prototypes, and diagram types;
  • Web app that works in Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Microsoft Edge, and Internet Explorer 8;
  • Cloud-based;
  • Offers collaboration between teams in real time;
  • Allows publication and sharing;
  • Exports to vector PDFs, JPEG, and PNG images;
  • Imports from Visio, OmniGraffle 6, and OmniGraffle 6 Pro;
  • Integrates with Google Apps, Confluence, and JIRA;
  • Features Enterprise-level security and admins controls.

Favorite feature

  • It’s a web app, and it also works in tablets.

Trial & Prices

  • Limited Free account allows creation of an unlimited number of diagrams with a limit of 60 objects per diagram;
  • Free trial for 7 days;
  • Basic with a single user, $4.95 per month;
  • Pro with a single user and Microsoft Visio import and export, $8.95 per month;
  • Team with 3 users and third-party integration, $20 per month.

2 — Microsoft Visio

Diagramming and vector graphics application; part of Microsoft Office family.

Source: Microsoft Visio

Pros

  • Creates flowcharts, organizational charts, website wireframes, UML designs, mind maps, software prototypes, and diagram types;
  • Allows publication and sharing;
  • Features Enterprise-level security and admins controls
  • Not a cloud and web app;
  • Doesn’t allow collaboration between teams in real time;
  • Has to be downloaded and installed;
  • Windows only.

Favorite feature

  • Integration with Microsoft Excel, SQL server, SQL Azure, and SharePoint.

Trial & Prices

  • Trial for 30 days;
  • Office 365 for $13 a month, per user (paid annually) or $15,50 a month, per user (paid monthly);
  • Visio Standard 2016 for $299.99;
  • Visio Professional 2016 for $589.99 (full feature software).

3 — Creately

Collaborative diagramming application that works offline and online.

Source: Creately

Pros

  • Creates flowcharts, organizational charts, website wireframes, UML (Unified Modeling Language) designs, mind maps, software prototypes, and diagram types;
  • Works online and offline;
  • Cloud and desktop-based;
  • Allows publication and sharing;
  • Integrates with Google Apps, Confluence, and JIRA;
  • Plugins: FogBugz Server, Confluence Server, and JIRA;
  • Features Enterprise-level security and admins controls.

Favorite feature

  • Collaboration between teams in real time on desktop or online.

Trial & Prices

  • Cloud Free with 5 public diagrams and 3 collaborators;
  • Cloud Personal for $5 per month with unlimited diagrams and projects;
  • Cloud Team for $25 per month with unlimited project sharing and collaborators;
  • Desktop Personal for $75 per year with a year of free updates and online premium user;
  • Desktop for Teams for $40 per user annually with offline usage and diagrams.

4 — Pidoco

Cloud-based collaboration online wireframing and prototyping tool.

Source: Pidoco

Pros

  • Creates flowcharts, organizational charts, website clickable wireframes, software prototypes, and diagram types;
  • Cloud-based;
  • Allows collaboration between teams in real time;
  • Allows publication and sharing;
  • Integrates with Planio and JIRA;
  • Exports as a PNG, vector files, or as HTML;
  • Features Enterprise-level security and admins controls.

Favorite feature

  • Creates interactive prototypes.

Trial & Prices

  • Free 31-day trial version;
  • Starter for $12 per month with 2 active projects;
  • Standard for $25 per month with 8 active projects;
  • Premium for $55 per month with 30 active projects and ;telephone support;
  • Platinum for $175 per month with 100 active projects and telephone support.

5 — Balsamiq

Graphical user interface mockup and website wireframe builder application.

Source: Balsamiq

Pros

  • Creates flowcharts, organizational charts, website wireframes, UML (Unified Modeling Language) designs, mind maps, software prototypes, and diagram types;
  • Not a cloud-based or a web-app;
  • Allows publication and sharing;
  • Exports to vector PDFs, and PNG images;
  • Features Enterprise-level security and admins controls.

Favorite feature

  • Integrates with Google Apps, Confluence, and JIRA.

Trial & Prices

  • Free 30-day trial;
  • Single user license $89;
  • Volume license starting at $178 for 2 users;
  • Upgrade license based on volume discounts which you need to add a license key.

6 — OmniGraffle

Graphical user interface mockup and website wireframe builder application available for Mac, iPhone, and iPad.

Source: OmniGraffle

Pros

  • Creates flowcharts, organizational charts, website wireframes, UML (Unified Modeling Language) designs, mind maps, software prototypes, and diagram types;
  • Not a cloud-based or a web-app;
  • Available in MacOS, and iOS version only;
  • Imports from Visio, Photoshop with layers and XCode.

Favorite feature

  • Exports to JPEG, BMP, EPS, GIF, HTML images, template, Stencil, PNG, OO3, TIFF, and PDF.

Trial & Prices

  • Free 14-day trial;
  • Pro License OmniGraffle 7 for $199;
  • OmniGraffle 2 Standard iOS License for $49.99;
  • OmniGraffle 2 Pro iOS for $99.89;
  • OmniGraffle 7 License for $99.

7 — Google Slides

Create and share your work online and access your documents from anywhere for free!

Source: Google Docs

Pros

  • Creates flowcharts, organizational charts, website wireframes, UML (Unified Modeling Language) designs, mind maps, software prototypes, and diagram types;
  • Available in web-app that works in Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Microsoft Edge, and Internet Explorer 8
  • Cloud-based;
  • Allows collaboration between teams in real time;
  • Allows publication and sharing;
  • Exports to Microsoft Word, OpenDocument Format, Rich Text Format, PDF, Plain Text, Web Page, and EPUB Publication.

Favorite feature

  • Works in tablets as long it’s a web app.

👋 Feel Free to Clap and Share your Thoughts!

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Thaisa Fernandes

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Problem solver and perfectionist in recovery willing to stretch myself and risk making mistakes to achieve innovative solutions and validate my learnings

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