Distill.io web content monitoring

Website change monitoring software enables businesses to keep an eye on changes to their competitors’ websites efficiently, as well as changes to their own websites. 

Users typically receive automated alerts when content is updated on their chosen web pages and can use that data to enhance decisions, both business and personal. They can watch for changes in pricing, updates to product offerings, changes to sales copy—the list goes on. 

In our Distill.io review, we look at how its features and pricing stack up against the best webpage change monitoring software to help you decide if it’s right for you. 

Pricing

Distill.io offers flexible pricing plans to suit every business’ needs (Image credit: Distill.io)

Plans and pricing

Distill.io’s pricing plans afford fantastic value. The free version enables you to monitor up to 25 different URLs, which is more than is included on most of their competitors’ free plans. The software scans for changes less frequently on the free plan—every six hours compared to every two minutes on the premium plan—so bear this in mind when choosing your plan.

There are three paid plan options that each offer more functionality. Upgrading for $12 a month enables you to use Distill.io on more devices, to scan up to 50 URLs every ten minutes, to receive 2,000 new alerts per month, and to receive mobile push notifications or SMS updates. 

For $28 per month, you can set alerts for up to 150 URLs and receive unlimited notifications—great for e-commerce businesses that need to keep regular watch of competitors pricing and sales, for example.

Plans are billed either monthly or annually. For the annual payment option, you receive a 20% discount on the monthly price. For monthly users, you can cancel your plan or return to the free plan at any time. 

Distill.io also offers a Flexi plan with unrestricted usage. A base fee of $80 per month is paid to cover the included functionality. Any additional usage will be billed separately at the end of the payment period. Expect to pay $1 for every additional 20 URLs you want monitored.

Features

Distill.io comes with impressive features for its pricing. The free version has enough URL scans for personal users or small businesses to monitor their favorite sites or main competitors, while the paid plans support the needs of businesses of any size. Distill.io’s functionality isn’t radically different from the competition, but it does make monitoring website changes as easy as possible.

Tracking

Only track the information you need, keeping alerts relevant (Image credit: Distill.io)

Distill.io enables you to visually select the information you need to track on each webpage and discard the rest, making your alerts more relevant. Simply use their selector tool to pinpoint the information you need to create your alert.

On paid plans, saved version histories enable you to compare older versions of the pages you’re tracking. It’s a common feature with website change monitoring software. Considering the price of the plans, you get a lot for your money with Distill.io but some competitors do offer more here. Those that rely heavily on this feature might want to consider paying more for different software.

Interface

The interface is clear but some of the customization isn’t too user friendly (Image credit: Distill.io)

Interface and in use

Distiill.io can be installed as a browser extension on Chrome, Firefox and Opera. It’s easy enough to get set up and start creating alerts, but the interface isn’t the most user friendly when it comes to customization. 

The same can be said for the mobile app, which is available on iOS for paid plan users, with an Android app currently in the testing phase. 

To create a desktop alert, simply go to the URL you wish to track and open the Distill.io browser extension. From here, you can choose to monitor the full page or choose which sections you wish to track. Then, add it to your watch list and start tweaking your settings to tailor the alerts.

Once you’re all set up, you can tag alerts, batch edit them, and choose which devices you want them to be monitored on. The customization process takes some getting used to but it’s easy enough to get to grips with the basics.

Support

All users have access to an extensive knowledge base (Image credit: Distill.io)

Support

In terms of support, Distill.io has a handy FAQ guide and knowledge base available to all users, featuring use cases, setup guides, and more. For more hands-on support, there’s a contact email which promises a reply within one business day. However, paid users don’t get any additional support benefits, which is disappointing.

The competition

Distill.io has some strong competition but we still think it’s one of the best options for personal users and small-to-medium-sized businesses. 

Competitor Wachete is more user-friendly and still offers great value, but Wachete’s free plan is far more limited than Distill.io. With Wachete, you can only check for updates to monitored pages every 24 hours, as opposed to six with Distill.io, and you can only check up to five URLs, whereas Distill.io enables you to check up to 25 on its free plan.

Similar could be said for ChangeTower, which only enables free plan users to check up to 3 dynamic web pages. However, if you want an upgraded plan which is good value for money then ChangeTower fits the bill, offering up to 500 pages for just $9 per month. For the same number of pages on Distill.io, you’d need to upgrade to their $80-per-month Flexi plan.

Final verdict

The free plan offered by Distill.io keeps it up there with the best website change monitoring tools, making it usable and accessible to all. The value and functionality of its paid plans are also fantastic, making it a great all-rounder in our books.

E-commerce businesses that may wish to monitor reams of competitors’ product-listing pages might find better value elsewhere. However, for personal users and small to medium businesses in most other sectors, we would heartily recommend Distill.io to keep up-to-date with any  competitor website changes.

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