Lessons learned from launching our new free plan

Kevin Garcia
Kevin Garcia
Product marketing @ Retool

Dec 8, 2022

A few months ago, we announced our new free plan to help many more developers build operations software faster. In case you missed it, teams of up to five can build and use unlimited apps in Retool—all for free.

In just a few months, thousands of developers have used our new Free plan to turn manual workflows and operations into custom software for their teams. Here’s what we’ve learned from these new free users:

Free != Limited

Removing limitations increased usage: No matter what Retool plan you choose, we want your experience to be fully functional and powerful. Our Free plan now comes loaded with our complete UI component library, our full set of native integrations, the full app builder experience, and all the hackability of being able to write JavaScript anywhere in your apps. Not only has this helped developers build internal tools significantly faster, but it's also helped increase usage as teams are now iterating on their full use case before having to think about pricing.

Software development is a team sport: Engineering teams at places like DoorDash and Checkout share that they can build better internal tools when more teammates—especially those closest to the process like Support, Sales, Ops, or Risk teams—can contribute to the software building process. We decided to reflect that in our new Free plan and expand the number of seats we offered for free, and the early results are really promising: we’ve seen 50% more apps getting actively shared and used since launch.

Don’t forget free users when you launch new products and features: We’ve launched dozens of new products and features this year, and we ensured that each is available to get started on with a generous free tier as well. Free users can now:

As just one example, around 90% of our early access users have been able to run their production Workflows within the 1 GB limit for free, and millions of workflows have been run in the last month.

Build scalable apps from day one

We’re especially excited by the potential we’re seeing from our new free users for custom software becoming a viable option from day one. New users have used Retool to eliminate manual work in every corner of their day-to-day operations—and they can now iterate on production software as quickly as they could on a spreadsheet or a quick prototype.

Take, for example, a financial services company. Even small teams need to:

  • Onboard users
  • Manage users (e.g. user info, CRM)
  • Handle common issues (e.g. card replacement)
  • Handle support escalations (e.g. flagged transactions)

Our free users report that in the time it takes to hack together a prototype or a constellation of spreadsheets, they can actually build the exact tool they need to manage users from the outset. (Fun fact: over one third of our free plan builders get started by building tools to manage users.)

And as their needs change, their Retool apps evolve to meet their requirements at every stage of the next chapters of growth with minimal edits—no need to undertake massive rewrites or re-architect all the tools.

You can get from here:

To here:

Want to see it live? Explore this app here. 
Want to see it live? Explore this app here. 

All by iterating with your team, all in Retool.

Get started

While we’re thrilled to see the interesting new apps developers have built with our new free plan so far, this is just the start. We’ve got a lot in store on our roadmap in 2023. To learn more about our free plan, check out our pricing page or sign up for a free account. We can’t wait to see what you build!

PS. If you’re an early-stage startup, you can also check out our startups program to get free credits toward any of our paid plans.


Kevin Garcia
Kevin Garcia
Product marketing @ Retool
Dec 8, 2022