Notion Vs Google Docs – Which One Should You Choose

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Are you looking for a comparison between Notion vs Google Docs for your business and personal documentation needs and confused between which one you should choose?

While Microsoft Office remains a popular option for document creation, it does have its limitations. In response to these challenges, Google introduced Google Docs in 2006 to simplify and streamline the process. With Google Docs, you no longer need to worry about saving your work every few seconds or dealing with the bulky task of attaching documents to emails.

As time passed, the developers developed a new productivity tool to replace Google Docs called Notion with some advanced tools and some more new features. And in this guide, we will delve into the features, pros, and cons of both Notion and Google Docs, to help you make an informed decision regarding which one to choose for your documentation needs.

We will compare Google Docs and Notion on the basis of the following categories:

  • Flexibility to customize
  • User-friendly interface
  • Sharing and collaboration
  • Format for exporting
  • Templates
  • Pricing and reviews

Brief Introduction Of Notion and Google Docs

Notion

Notion

Notion is an all-in-one platform used for making notes, planning, documenting, data storing and managing, designing, and many more. It was introduced in 2016 and provides a user-friendly interface and a lot of formatting options to make the document appealing and pleasing.

It is a one-stop shop for companies to create tables, charts, graphs, blocks, notes, calendars, checklists, and many more.

Productivity Features of Notion

  • Exporting of data
  • Provides a variety of templates in organized categories
  • Documentation
  • Database management

Drawbacks of Notion

  • Its usage with teams is quite complicated.
  • Limited to security features.
  • Need a lot of learning before usage.

Google Docs

Google Docs

Google Docs is an application similar to Microsoft Word, used for composing, editing, sharing, and printing documents. It was introduced in 2006 and frees users from the hectic procedure of attaching documents to emails for sharing or saving them every while with the fear of data loss. It is a web-based platform that is mostly used in the education sector and small businesses.

Google Docs is part of Google Suite, which includes numerous other tools like Google Sheets, Google Slides, and more. It facilitates the creation of text-based documents and collaboration on them.

Productivity Features of Google Docs

  • Easily shared with others
  • Provides a variety of templates
  • Real-time updates
  • No risk of data loss

Drawbacks of Google Docs

  • Needs internet connectivity for usage.
  • It improves a limited variety of templates.

Notion Vs. Google Docs – Which One Would You Choose?

So far, we’ve covered the basics of Notion and Google Docs. As you’re aware, these aren’t the only document processing tools available on the market. However, when evaluated based on factors such as user-friendly interfaces, pricing, and a variety of templates, the list narrows down significantly. Two standout applications in this narrowed field are Google Docs and Notion.

Both of these tools are decent, providing real-time processing, saving, and management of documents along with a variety of templates for effective use. However, significant differences exist between these two tools. In this article, we’ll outline these differences and identify which tool excels in document processing.

So, let’s get started…

User Interface

We all learned Microsoft Word in our school and college days. If you’re familiar with it, then you will find Google Docs much more comfortable to use than Notion, as it follows a similar document processing structure. This similarity makes it very easy to use for note-taking, with no new handling techniques to learn for this software.

Google Docs will further let you format your text, add various fonts, colors, and background colors to enhance the visual appeal of your document. Additionally, it eliminates the need for manually pressing the “CTRL + S” button for every new change you make, which we all have faced in Microsoft Word.

On the other hand, when we’re talking about Notion, it is a tool that follows a block-by-block approach for writing documents. While using Notion, you’ll see they’ve got more than 50 types of blocks, from simple text blocks to complex database blocks. Similar to Google Docs, Notion also saves your document on its cloud. However, the only limitation is that you cannot store it in other cloud storage systems.

Flexibility to Customize

Google Docs is a proper traditional software used for documentation. It offers editing features such as font color, font size, text highlighting, paragraph sizing, and more. Furthermore, it allows users to seamlessly add tables, charts, and images to their documents.

On the other hand, Notion offers note-making capabilities; however, its formatting tools are not immediately visible in the application – but they can be accessed by typing “/” which is hidden.

So, it can be said that Google Docs is a more productive tool for customization as Notion can only be used after having a good knowledge of it, and Google Docs can be used by any user who has previously used Microsoft Office.

Sharing and Collaboration

Both these tools are great for sharing, but I like Google Docs more. It’s easier to share your documents with friends, teachers, and business partners. Not just sharing, you can also let them edit and make changes in real-time.

Sharing Documents in Google Docs

I personally use Google Docs and share access with my writers to collaborate with the articles accordingly and keep an eye on the changes they’ve made. This tool is also very handy for businesses. For example, when a writer shares an article with me, I can highlight problems for them to correct and do many other things. This is very helpful for students who use this app for group study or taking notes in class.

Sharing in Notion

Moving to Notion, it can do everything you can do with Google Docs and also beyond what Google Docs can do. For instance, Notion allows you to create a database, collaborate with your team on larger projects, and many other features. However, to access these features, you need to purchase a premium subscription of Notion, which is priced at $8 per user per month.

This subscription will further allow your team members to work on the same document and make changes to it, as it provides the option to share the entire workspace with the team members.

Exporting

Exporting Documents

If we talk about exporting, Google Docs allows users to export the document in several formats such as rich text format, normal, HTML document, PDF, plain text format, etc. Google Docs supports importing documents in OpenDocument Format and Word format.

In contrast, Notion supports exporting files in PDF, HTML, CSV, and MarkDown formats. It can import documents in Word files and files in CSV formats. The choice of platforms and formats depends on the specific needs, such as collaborating, sharing, publishing, or archiving your content.

Templates

Google Docs has a variety of templates that are available for everyone. It has a template gallery with plenty of options relevant to people belonging to any field. It has something for everyone. The process is also very simple to apply to your document; just select it and copy it to Google Docs. You’ll find templates from simple invoices to business letters that have a professional look and many more.

Templates in Notion

On the other hand, also provides a wide variety of appealing and designed templates in its template gallery. But unlike Google Docs, Notion provides templates in a categorized manner. Some of them are subscription trackers, note-making, project planning, etc. Due to this categorized and modernized approach, Notion proves to be a more personalized tool than Google Docs for users.

Pricing and Subscriptions

Google Docs is available for free to use, and it’s connected to Google Drive, but if you run out of storage space on Drive, you’ll need to subscribe to get more. The good news is that the storage space used for Google Docs doesn’t count towards your quota. If you need more workspace and storage, you can subscribe to different tiers of Google Workspace app plans.

It’s no wonder why educators love using this software!

Notion Pricing

Notion, on the other hand, used to limit users to creating 1,000 blocks (where each paragraph, image, etc., is considered a block). However, this limitation has since been removed, making Notion virtually unlimited for most users’ needs. As of early 2022, Notion’s pricing plans are available for specific needs, catering to teams, businesses, and various other types of organizations, and the pricing starts from just $8 per user per month.

Organization and Structure

Notion shines in an organization with its flexible structure of an all-in-one workspace. Users can create interconnected and nested databases, pages, and subpages within a single document.

On the other hand, Google Docs offers basic structure for organization like notion but naming files and folders can be proved as a somewhat cumbersome process for larger projects. So, for this reason, I will only prefer using Notion for business needs.

Use Cases

Google Docs is known for users who want traditional text creation, formatting features, and real-time collaboration. It is expertise in extensively text-based content such as academic papers, collaborative writing projects, and business reports. Unlike Notion, Google Docs has not proven to be good for users who are working in teams remotely as it requires consistent formatting and editing in the document.

On the other hand, Notion is good for people who are working in teams and seek a comprehensive workspace for project management, content creation, and note-taking. It shines in the customizable workspace to store databases where it is needed to have different content types within a single document, such as combining tables, images, graphs, texts, and many more.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Still have questions? Here, we’re sharing some frequently asked questions related to Notion vs. Google Docs, which are commonly asked by our readers.

Q. Is there offline access available on these platforms?

Google Docs has better offline access. It can be used without the internet through browser extensions and mobile apps.

On the other hand, Notion also provides mobile apps, but it requires the internet to edit documents. So, Google Docs is better when we consider offline use.

Q. How do these platforms handle organization and structure?

Notion is known for its hierarchical structure, databases, and nested pages. Users can create detailed databases and connect content across different pages, making it perfect for project management.

On the other hand, Google Docs depends on the naming of files and folders. This method can be quite difficult for larger projects.

Q. What are the differences in the interfaces of these two tools?

Notion offers a visually pleasing interface with its block system, but it might be a bit complex for new users. Conversely, Google Docs has a straightforward and easy-to-use interface, making it simple to navigate even for those new to the platform.

Q. What type of content can be created by using these tools?

Google Docs is mainly used for creating text-based documents and offers basic formatting features like altering font size and color, highlighting text, and so on.

On the other hand, Notion allows for the creation of a wide variety of content. This includes text, images, tables, charts, graphs, databases, among others, all within a single document.

Q. How do Notion and Google Docs perform on mobile devices?

Notion offers a reasonable user experience on mobile devices, providing various editing options. However, extensive editing is best performed on larger screens.

On the other hand, Google Docs, with its traditional focus on document creation, provides many formatting features on mobile. These include changing font style, text color, paragraph spacing, and much more.

Conclusion

In this guide, I have tried my best to compare both of these platforms based on their features, usability, pros, and cons. If you’re still confused between choosing the one for your document processing, I would suggest determining your needs first and what is the purpose of the document you’re creating.

You also need to ask yourself if you’re going to use any visualization or presentation you’re going to use in these platforms. Based on your needs, you need to choose the one that fulfills all your needs. As we’re more of a notion guys, we find it much easier and simpler to use for easier as well as complicated document processing.

But the choice will depend on the nature of your work. So, take the time to assess your requirements, think about your preferred interface, and decide which tool aligns best with your needs to boost productivity.

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