Today, Trello is one of the most popular Kanban project management tools available online. Many people consider it a definitive Kanban tool because there is a handy free version of it available. That said, the free version happens to lack some of the additional integrations and functions of the paid version. If you are interested in availing these extra features or “power ups”, you will have to pay for them.
If you feel that Trello does not adequately fulfill your requirements, then it is obviously not recommended to pay up for it. Rather, you will be much better served by considering alternatives to Trello. Today, there are a number of excellent Kanban tools that can rival Trello quite fiercely. In this article, I have listed my personal choices for the ten best Kanban tools and Tello alternatives, with a comprehensive understanding of their features and costs.
Before we begin, let’s take a closer look at the concept of Kanban and Trello itself.
What is Kanban?
Basically, Kanban is a workflow and project management method that has been inspired by a work management system created and used in Toyota manufacturing plants, back in the 1960s. It is notable for providing scope to streamline one’s work in progress efficiency, greatly reduce multitasking, and remarkably improve the quality and speed of the work produced by one’s self-managing and collaborative team.
monday.com is an award-winning platform that is one of the best alternatives to Trello that you will find online. In fact, it is one of the few tools which openly proclaims that it is not a project management tool. It has disposed of any of the trimmings you will find in standard tools, and instead focuses on simple structures which help in ascertaining the sequence of work that needs to be carried out.
monday.com offers a number of features that Trello doesn’t. It will give you access to several views of work – on a map, as a list, on a Kanban board, in a spreadsheet, and much more. You will also be able to make comments, mention friends, upload and attach files to cards, and so on. The platform also has an excellent project reporting dashboard that is able to collect data from various boards. That, in turn, allows you to track your progress with greater efficiency.
monday.com also features certain interesting tools to automate certain processes, and customizable task boards which allow you to manage tasks by parameters like the number of hours spent, due dates, assignees, cards, and so on. As you can see, monday.com is a very versatile tool which allows you to work in any methodology which is best suited to your project and team – be it Kanban or otherwise.
Integrations of monday.com include various project management apps like Jira, GitHub, Slack, Dropbox, Trello, Typeform, Google Calendar, Gmail, Google Drive and several more, accessible by using Zapier. As of now, monday.com charges a price of $17 per month for two users. It features an efficient customer support team that is available to contact round the clock by email or phone.
ClickUp is an excellent Kanban tool and project management software with quality features for properly handling all of your team’s projects in a single platform. You can schedule tasks, manage resources, and conveniently plan projects in a centralized workspace on Kanyan boards. It also allows you to deal with timelines, Gantt charts, calendars, and much more. It also possesses other task management features like task templates, subtasks, and task checklists, along with the ability to sort, look for, filter, reorder, and conveniently view tasks in a way that suits your team. You can also visualize tasks by creating timelines, calendars, and Gantt charts.
Apart from this, ClickUp also allows you to create, share, and collaboratively edit documents and Wikis. You have the opportunity to better collaborate and communicate with team members by chatting with them, assigning comments, and commenting on tasks and documents. It also has other reporting features like six inbuilt report types for team reporting, along with the ability to create customized dashboards. It features native integrations with several tools like DropBox, G Suite and Slack, along with over a thousand integrations through Zapier.
The free plan of ClickUp is good enough and has all the necessary primary features. If you want more functionality, you can avail its unlimited plan starting at $5 per month for every user.
Smartsheet is a complete online project management suite that also features some helpful Kanban tools. Its price begins from $14 per month for each user, and it offers a free 30-day trial. You can begin by putting up a readymade Kanban sheet template and importing existing Kanban board data from Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Project, or Trello to it. Notably, Smartsheet’s Kanban tool allows you to switch between calendar, Gantt, grid, and traditional views. This enables you to see your tasks in different ways. It also has all the necessary Kanban features like custom fields, attachments, and the ability to look for or filter cards based on various criteria.
Smartsheet’s Kanban abilities are very much like Trello, in a lot of ways. However, it is worth noting that it offers some extra features like multiple views which are only available through Trello’s paid powerups, for a much lower price. It also features various integrations like Google apps and Microsoft, which are necessary for a Kanban tool. It also has a number of development essentials like Jira, and several helpful business apps like Tableau, Box, Slack, Salesforce, and ServiceNow. Smartsheet is extensible via webhooks and a REST API.
MeisterTask is one of the most wonderfully designed and creative Kanban tools out there. You can customize its Kanban boards to go well with any workflow – from sales funnels to software sprints, and from your company’s onboarding process to editorial calendars. It allows teams to collaborate on a common platform and effectively work together on various tasks, communicate, and track the time they spend on the same.
MeisterTask allows you to both visualize processes and automate them in a number of ways. For example, you can automatically add predefined checklists, create recurring tasks, notify stakeholders when a task has been finished, and make sure that tasks are assigned and tagged properly after being moved to a particular section. MeisterTask’s detailed roles, permissions management, and insights obtained through various reports and statistics are quite helpful for bigger teams.
This tool features an efficient online support center and free webinars for new users. It also has a remarkably simple interface to ensure that even companies that are new to the concept of digital organization are able to get started without trouble after registering. It integrates with the mind-mapping app MindMeister, where you can brainstorm with a mind map and export it onto a Kanban board. It also integrates easily with common tools like Harvest, GitHub, Slack, Microsoft Teams, Zendesk, and different email apps. Apart from these, you can also use IFTTT or Zapier to connect your project with various other tools.
MeisterTask offers a free plan with limited functions, and a paid plan starting at $8.25 per month for each user.
5. Kanban Zone
Kanban Zone is a powerful tool that connects processes and teams to help them visualize their complete organization and agency. It comes with a very versatile Kanban board editor which, instead of forcing users to perfect grids, lets them map their ideal flow of work freely. It also has a number of other useful features like project and Kanban metrics, workflow management capabilities, improved planning capabilities, and various templates. Its interface is user-friendly and allows you to concentrate on your tasks efficiently. It also features a team of experienced professionals to answer your ongoing and onboarding questions.
The price of Kanban Zone starts at $5 per month for a personal plan, and $7 per month for enterprise plans. It also offers a free 30-day trial.
ProjectManager is a self-proclaimed “ultimate Kanban board tool” which indeed offers pretty much everything that is required in a Kanban board. For example, it offers opportunities for collaboration, real-time reporting, and expense and time management features. It is an especially great option for users who are looking for an entire project management ecosystem around their Kanban board. It allows you to make comments, attach files to cards, assign tasks and work-in-progress limits, and receive an overview of your progress using the dashboard view.
ProjectManager’s reporting feature is quite efficient and allows you to both create customized
reports and use a number of preset reports if needed. It can be integrated with Microsoft Project, Microsoft Office, and various Google apps. Although it leaves something to be desired when it comes to building automated workflows, it does have a handy viewing feature that allows you to visualize your workflow and easily switch between various task views.
Its pricing begins at $15 per month for each user, with a free 30-day trial. Its basic personal plan requires a minimum of five users.
7. Zoho Projects
This award-winning collaboration and project management tool from Zoho is admirably flexible and allows various customizations to meet the requirements of both agile teams and traditional project managers. You can drag and drop Kanban cards towards completion and arrange them as per your needs. You can also customize the dashboard according to your preferences. By virtue of Zoho’s Analytics integration, you can get access to enhanced capabilities, such as generating over fifty reports and charts.
Zoho also allows you to adjust the visual aspects of the user interface according to your tastes. You can reuse preexisting assignees and timelines for future projects by converting projects to templates. Zoho projects also provide free support and onboarding for customers, along with a detailed online help guide for all users. Projects which are a part of Zoho’s ecosystem can access various services owned by Zoho, such as Zoho’s finance suite, Zoho CRM, and Zoho Books. Third party integrations are supported on Zoho’s new marketplace, including integrations via Zoho Flow and Zapier.
Zoho’s pricing starts at $18 for six users, with a free 10-day trial available.
If you are looking for agile project management, then Kanbanize is just what you need. It allows companies to track projects, optimize workflows, and visualize work to increase efficiency and acquire organizational transparency. It offers various features like initiatives and timeline workflows for planning, an excellent analytics module, customizable Kanban boards, and much more.
The system allows users to visualize and structure their daily work in various ways. Since work and project progress is displayed in real-time, you won’t require continuous reporting and status updates. Thus, project delivery becomes much more transparent, convenient, and efficient. Kanbanize can integrate with various other systems including Dropbox, Google Drive, Jira, and GitHub.
It costs $149 for fifteen users per month.
Wrike is a highly reputable, award-winning project management software that is trusted by over 20,000 organizations worldwide. It is suitable for teams of all sizes – whether they have just a handful or countless members.
It has Kanban board features and is highly configurable, letting users customize reports, dashboards, workflows, and much more. It features a user-friendly interface which allows you to switch between one-click Gantt charts, traditional workload views, and shareable and customizable Kanban boards. Also, Wrike has other useful features like file sharing, calendars, task lists, and much more. You can switch between the homescreen and timesheets, calendars, reports, dashboards, and the notification system. Wrike also allows over 400 prebuilt native integrations, including integrations with well-known file management software from Dropbox, Google, and Microsoft, and marketing and sales software from Marketo and Salesforce.
It is priced at $9.80 per month for each user and features four different price points including a free version.
Founded in 2007, Teamwork is widely known to be one of the easiest project management software to work with. It is a cloud-based tool that boasts of over 3,000,000 users all across the world. You can conveniently use it to improve your team’s performance by communicating, assigning tasks, and tracking progress in one place. You can also create task dependencies and check up on anyone’s progress and availability easily, whenever you want.
Teamwork features an innovative visual and intuitive interface which stands well above that of its rivals. It also has a host of useful features like printable and powerful interactive Gantt charts, and is an excellent option for managing projects of all sizes. It can be integrated with other platforms like Harvest, Freshbooks, Google Docs, and Dropbox.
When it comes to pricing, Teamwork is quite exceptional. It has a “forever free” plan that comes with 100 MB storage space for up to 5 users. Its paid plan begins at $100 per month and supports up to 100 users, with 100 GB storage space.
Although Trello is undoubtedly one of the best project management tools in existence, it is good to have some additional options available so that you can select a tool that meets your team’s requirements properly. I hope this list helps you find such a tool and achieve success in managing your projects efficiently.