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The best document compare software for 2024 are Macro, Draftable, Version Story, Litera Workshare Compare, and Microsoft Word Compare.

This article covers each product in detail, along with its most popular features, reviews, and pricing. 

Why do you need a contract comparison tool? 

Getting a legal document through the finish line (signed by all parties) is the equivalent of playing pong. 

With each side proposing edits, sending it to the other party, the other party making new edits to the same file, and on and on and on…

Ping pong illustration showing how lawyers exchange versions of a document back and fortha

Ask any lawyer, and they’ll tell you how painful legal document comparison is, often involving a scattered review process like having Word docs buried in long email threads. 

Have you ever seen “Is final_final_v9d.pdf is final?” in an email? 😅

Document comparison software allows for a consistent document review process, where source code files can be compared against newer versions until a consolidated, finalized document is executed. 

Although legacy platforms have failed at it, the promise of great compare software is to help you minimize document reviews and get deals done faster. 

Illustration showing how compare software can help consolidating versions into one final document

Who needs document compare software?

Both in-house corporate attorneys and outside counsel usually leverage document comparison software. However, as shown below, anyone dealing with legal documentation can benefit from a good document compare tool.  

Examples of how different business functions can use comparison software

How non-legal professionals get value from compare software: 

  • How easy it is to learn and use the software.
  • The range of available capabilities.
  • Compatibility with existing tools and workflows.
  • Price. 

Keeping those factors in mind, here are the 5 best document comparison software for 2024 ⤵️

What’s the best document comparison software for 2024?

#1. Macro

25% of the AmLaw 50 adopted Macro in 2023. It is quickly gaining popularity amongst legal teams for the combination of advanced capabilities and a simple, intuitive user interface. 

Furthermore, Macro’s Compare product comes readily available with any Macro subscription at no added cost, whereas legacy document comparison tools can force firms into 6-figure deals.

Let’s review Macro Compare’s key capabilities 👇

Document comparison capabilities

Multi-document redlines

Add as many versions of a document as you need. Macro will return a detailed redline for each and a consolidated version with all edits.

Screenshot of Macro Compare

Conflicting edits versus tracked changes

Redlines follow industry standards for tracked changes, with additions in blue 🟦, deletions in red 🟥, and moves in green 🟩. 

We take this further to help you manage conflicting edits. When multiple people have rewritten a provision, definition, clause, etc, those sections appear color-coded in labeled boxes (view image below). 

Screenshot of compared document with conflicting edits in Macro

Accept and reject changes from Macro

Open redlines directly from Macro. Accept and reject changes right from the editor or leave comments to be reviewed by other stakeholders. 

Screenshot of Accept and Reject changes in Macro's editor

Switch modes 

👎 Current workflow: Run your redline, accept simple revisions in PDF, export the document as a DOCX file, make changes in Word, convert back to PDF, send over a new version, etc. 

👍 With Macro: Accept and reject changes in PDF mode. Toggle to draft mode to make longer edits.

Screenshot of mode toggle in Macro

Reviews

✅ Can compare multiple documents at once. 

✅ Free with every Macro subscription. 

✅ Interlinking makes reviewing redlines much faster.

✅ Accept and reject changes without exporting to other platforms.

❌ Doesn’t work on phones or tablets. 

Senior M&A partner at an AmLaw 50 firm: “Macro Compare gives you time, when you have no time.”
CLO at Ancient: "Macro’s hyperlinking of key terms allows me to work through dense agreements with extensive cross-references efficiently and comprehensively. It’s a time saving powerful tool I use daily!”

Pricing

Macro is completely free to try for 14 days. After 14 days, upgrade to Macro's Professional version for $49/user per month or contact Macro’s sales team for a custom Enterprise plan.

Screenshot of Macro's pricing

Getting started

Macro works for both Windows and Mac, and is compatible with .DOCX and .PDF files. It also integrates with document storage systems like iManage and NetDocuments. 

#2. Draftable

Screenshot of Draftable

Draftable is an affordable document comparison software for lawyers who want to compare two documents and have simpler redlining needs. 

Document comparison capabilities

  • Side-by-side comparison: Compare 2 documents side-by-side, making it easier to understand the revision context.
  • Redline summaries: Draftable returns a one-pager summarizing all detected changes for every comparison.
  • Detects complex changes: Draftable is compatible with various file types (PDF, Word, Excel) and can detect style changes (bold, italics, font size). 

Reviews

✅ Tracks both content and stylistic changes. Versatile file type support.

✅ Can be used for free on Draftable’s website.

✅ Good option for simpler file document comparison needs. 

❌ Can’t compare multiple versions at the same time. 

❌ The software is primarily Windows-based.

❌ No ability to make edits once documents are compared.

Verified law firm user on G2: “Draftable is a powerful document compare software, spreadsheets and PDFs. It works by quickly analyzing two files side-by-side to highlight differences between two versions. Although file-sharing options are available, they are limited to two people at once and require an active subscription in order to access additional features like activity tracking or assignee lists.”

Pricing

The differences between Draftable and Draftable Legal aren’t very clear. In a nutshell, Draftable has 3 main pricing plans to choose from: 

  • Free trial: A fully-featured 5-day trial version is available for the desktop version, with no credit card requirement and no limits on usage during the trial period​​.
  • Standard: Priced at $129 USD per year, offering unlimited comparisons, offline functionality, and support for multiple document types.
  • Legal: Tailored for lawyers at $199 USD per year, providing features like PDF Redline output, Word Tracked Changes output, OCR support for scanned documents, integration with Outlook, Word, and iManage, and comprehensive side-by-side comparison capabilities.
screenshot of Draftable's pricing

Getting started

You can try the web version for free from Draftable’s site. As for the desktop version, the company is misleading about its free version. You can’t try trial versions without giving away information to Draftable’s sales team or buying the software from the get-go.

screenshot of Draftable's free trial

#3. Version Story

Version Story's web page screenshot

Version Story focuses on document “versioning.” While it may lack editing capabilities, it does a great job detecting tracked changes across documents and allowing document merging from email threads. 

Document comparison capabilities

  • Document timeline: Version Story provides a historical timeline of a document’s versions. 
  • Tracked changes and comments: see who’s made edits or comments and when. 
  • Email merging: With Version Story’s Outlook plugin, gather all document versions from an email thread. 
  • Accept and reject changes: Accept or reject changes directly from Version Story’s app. 

Reviews

✅ Simple and intuitive.

✅ Great email plug-in for Outlook. 

❌ Isn’t adopted much by law firms. Product value remains unproven. 

❌ Cannot be tried before buying.

Pricing

You must request a demo to get Vision Story’s pricing information. 

Screenshot of demo form on Version Story's site

Getting started

Version Story is both a standalone desktop application and a Microsoft Outlook plug-in. You must talk to Version Story’s team to download either version. 

#4. Litera

Screenshot of Litera Compare interface

Litera is the most adopted document compare software by law firms. It’s an industry standard increasingly facing pushback for its price, clunkiness, and lack of innovation. Although a solid option if your company has purchased other products from the Litera family, more modern options are now available. 

Document comparison capabilities

  • Change summary: Get a list of all conflicting edits across agreements. Accept or reject them in real-time.
  • Offline: Compare files from your computer, tablet, or mobile device.
  • Complex detection: Compare changes in tables, charts, excel files, and even image files.
  • Word plug-in: Run Litera Compare directly from Microsoft Word.

Reviews

✅ Safe choice for conservative firms. 

✅ Good choice to compare files during travel.

✅ Integrates with document storage systems like iManage and NetDocs.

❌ Cannot compare multiple documents at once.

❌ Unreliable document comparison tool when comparing PDF files. 

❌ Support and training costs are substantial. 

❌ Notoriously hard to use.

Verified Litera user on Capterra: “The best thing about the Litera products is their comparison tool, which does seem to work well. But the software is wildly overpriced for what you get.”

Pricing

An entry-level version of Litera Compare can be bought for $425 per user per year. However, prices can increase significantly to unlock all capabilities. Contact Litera’s sales team for more details. 

Screenshot of Litera Compare's pricing

Getting started

Litera’s products are known to require extensive support, training, and maintenance costs. You can purchase Workshare Compare and install it independently but risk low adoption rates internally.

#5. Word Compare

Screenshot of Word Compare in MS Word

Microsoft Word can act as a document comparison software with a feature called "Microsoft Word Compare." This functionality helps legal professionals track changes between simple documents.

While it can’t match industry leaders like Macro and Litera, it does generate a legal blackline and lets you edit in real-time. 

Document comparison capabilities

  • Change detection: Detects and highlights text changes. Changes like additions, deletions, and modifications.
  • Comments: View comments from both document versions in the comparison output.
  • Track changes: Integrates with Word’s 'Track Changes' feature.
  • Customized reports: This lets you customize the level of detail shown in the comparison output. Including, for example,  formatting changes, edits in headers/footers, and even spacing changes.

Reviews

✅ Easy to use for existing Microsoft Word customers.

✅ Does not require additional subscription beyond the Microsoft Office suite.

✅ Good for simple comparison needs and cheaper than other document comparison tools.

❌ Won’t detect complex revisions or follow industry standards.

❌ Can’t compare large documents.

❌ Can’t compare PDF documents.

Pricing

Word Compare is included with the Microsoft Office suite. A few plans are available: 

  • Apps for Business: For $8.25 per user per month, you can access web-based versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook.
  • Business Essentials: Priced at $6 per user per month, it offers only web-based visions of Office apps.
  • Business Standard: Priced at $12.5 per user per month, it includes all desktop-based Office applications.
  • Business Premium: Priced at $22 per user per month, it includes all desktop-based Office applications and advanced security, identity management, and access control.
Microsoft 365 pricing plans for business

Getting started

Here’s how you can use Microsoft’s file comparison tool from Word: 

  1. Open one of the two document versions you want to compare.
  1. On the Review menu, select Compare Documents.
  1. Select the original document from the Original document list.
  1. In the Revised document list, select the other document version.

Choosing your document comparison tool: Compare documents today

The above products are all great document comparison software options. As mentioned previously, it is best to evaluate what your company needs and make sure to consider ease of use, capabilities, price, and workflow compatibility when choosing the right document comparison software. 

Unlike most document comparison tools, Macro Compare is free to try

Don’t feel like signing up just yet, try it below 👇