Difference between Manual and Guide

The terms “guide” and “manual”, given their similarity and relationship, are often used interchangeably; However, it is important that you be clear that they are not entirely synonymous (although there are exceptional cases in which they do become so).

Both guides and manuals are documents that provide information that may be considered necessary by some people. They are generally related to machinery, consumer products, training …

If you have doubts about it or need more information, keep reading; because below we explain the difference between manual and guide.

GUIDE  Difference between Manual and Guide

As the name implies, the guides serve to guide and explain how something should be done. A guide is always expected to be short, clear, precise, and concise.

The guides do not include all the information about how something works, but rather their objective is to teach us how to make that something work.

The guides are not necessarily written as if they were books , but they can be adjusted to the type of consumer and in some cases they are even included in a CD, video or note.

The guides are usually informal and their content is more relative.


On the other hand, manuals tend to be longer than guides. They contain more information and instruction. You could say that a manual is somewhat more complete.

The manuals detail how and why each thing works in this or that way. In said document certain details are mentioned more precisely, in order that the user can understand the system and be able to solve the possible problems that it may present.

Manuals are often written in book form and are more formal than guides.

In spite of everything, as we already told you before, there are times when these words are used interchangeably; because some manuals are published with the title of guides and some guides are as long as manuals.

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