Top 5 Trello alternatives for small businesses

Looking for an alternative project management software option to Trello? This guide will take you through the brands we think improve on Trello’s pros, cons, and costs.

Our experts

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Trello is one of the biggest names in project management, team collaboration, and digital to-do lists. Yet, while it has its ardent admirers, plenty of users don’t care for Trello’s Kanban board interface, and find themselves hungering for some Trello alternatives. The good news? There are some brilliant options available:

  • We think Monday.com is the number one alternative to Trello, thanks to its affordable payment plans and superb customisation tools.
  • Second ranked is ClickUp, which offers much better value for money compared to Trello, owing to its more advanced features at even the freemium tier.
  • Unlike Trello, Wrike permits many project views – including spreadsheets, which are handy for agile workflows.
0 out of 0
Software
Where does it beat Trello?
Price per user:
When billed annually
Free trial?
Verdict

Jira Software

Basecamp

More customisation

Better value for money

More project views

More complex project management features

Ease of use

£7 (per seat)

£3.62

£7.10

£5.12 per user

£71.59 (flat rate)

Monday.com is a top-rated PM tool for creative teams, with a simple, customisable interface and tons of deals to choose from.

Similarly budget-friendly, but with tons more features, ClickUp provides a huge discount on Trello

Wrike permits many more project views than Trello – useful for flexibility in monitoring different aspects of your project.

Jira's sophisticated functions make it best-suited for developers or tech-heavy SMEs.

Just like Trello, this platform boasts a quick setup time for new users.

Trello has become well known in the project management market for its ease of use and simplified interface, and serves as a strong introduction to PM solutions. This is particularly true for small businesses.

Most SMEs don’t have the time, money or people resource to research every PM solution – particularly given the vast size of the project management market.

However, there comes a point where Trello’s basic set of features simply won’t cut it for your management and planning needs. Maybe you want access to more project views with Wrike, or to try ClickUp’s excellent free version. In that case, it’s time to graduate onto a more comprehensive software choice. But which one do you choose?

Thankfully, we’re here to help you answer that question. Over the past twenty years, we’ve matched thousands of small business owners to the right software to help them drive success.

In the below guide, we’ll go through the top 5 alternatives to Trello to help you find the perfect solution for your specific business goals.

The PM software market is huge, with plenty of options to buy or try. Find out more about the best project management software for small businesses with our authoritative guide.

The top five Trello alternatives

Monday.com
Beats Trello at: customisation

Monday.com screenshot

Our testing found that Trello ranked highly for personalisation. Elements like custom fields and colours allow users to create a uniquely designed workflow that reflects their business’s existing processes.

This is where Monday.com scores best as a PM platform. Its ingenious customisable features easily outrank Trello’s – you can even tailor each subtask to your business’s needs and to the specific scope and complexity of your project.

Custom project templates allow you to design an attractive overview of a project and its current status. Meanwhile, the custom widget builder means you can choose to put the spotlight on any particular aspect of your project. Automations are also available, for you to create a custom scenario and streamline the repetitive, day-to-day tasks.

The Monday.com whiteboard view makes it easy to host interactive and virtual board meetings to brainstorm ideas. Plus, Monday.com also has five optional views – including Timeline, Calendar, Map, and Chart – while Trello requires you to download the Trello Views extension to achieve the same level of functionality.

Ryan Walton is founder of Aura Ads, an e-commerce video advertising service. Walton says: “As a video production agency, Monday.com meets so many of our needs. We manage all our clients through it, use it to manage our monthly workload so we don’t miss out on any tasks, to track our inventory and production kit so that we don’t manage to double book any of our equipment, and manage our client costs and expenses.”

There is so much to do on Monday.com and there are still so many features we’re not using yet. There are a lot of templates that you can choose from so you can find the one that’s best suited to you and the rest of your team. For example, we’ve made use of the content plans to plan our marketing content and also the Gantt charts for project management.

In terms of downsides, I genuinely can’t think of any. Perhaps the only downside is that if it were to ever go down, we’d be pretty stuck as we’ve become overly reliant on this system.”

Is Monday.com better than Trello?

Yes
  • Monday.com has excellent customisation tools
  • It also has a more flexible pricing structure
  • Monday.com’s interface is more attractive and creative
No
  • •Trello’s free version hosts an unlimited number of users. Monday.com’s is only suitable for sole traders

Monday.com pricing vs Trello pricing

0 out of 0
Price Per Month (billed annually)
You can typically save by paying for a year or more in advance
Price Per Month (billed monthly)
Paying monthly is usually the more expensive option
Users
The total number of users for this plan level
Free Trial

Monday.com Individual

Monday.com Basic

Monday.com Standard

Monday.com Pro

Monday.com Enterprise

Contact sales

Free

£12 seat/month

£27 seat/month

£42 seat/month

Contact sales

Up to 2

Minimum of 3

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

Monday.com has some attractive discounts and deals to take advantage of. In comparison, Trello has just three payment tiers, which means there is less flexibility for teams to choose from. The latter also costs around £0.50 more per user, per month than Monday.com, making it slightly less affordable.

One area in which Trello surpasses Monday.com is its freemium platform, which gives an unlimited number of users access to its core project management tools. Alternatively, Monday.com Individual, the platform’s freemium plan, is only suitable for up to two members and therefore decidedly less generous in terms of user limits.

Monday.com has a distinctive payment structure which is based on a set number of seats. For more information, read our Monday.com pricing guide.

Verdict

Monday.com provides much better workflow flexibility and customisation than Trello. We would recommend it for teams with around ten employees that work in creative, design-focused sectors like marketing or publishing.

ClickUp
Beats Trello at: value for money

ClickUp dashboard

ClickUp markets itself as ‘one app to replace them all’ and it is certainly an organisational tool that Sauron would be proud of. Affordably priced and with an excellent freemium plan, it’s also a brilliant option for SMEs, as they’re typically more resource stretched than larger companies.

ClickUp is organised to emulate the hierarchy of a company, so it boasts an intuitive interface and lots of different tools to help you organise your work, including subtasks, goals and portfolios. Plus, unlike Trello, ClickUp allows you to access virtually every tool you would need for project management in a bookmark-style side bar. This means you can input all of your workflow details without needing to navigate a confusing network of buttons and tabs to find the right feature set.

Trello, on the other hand, is less focussed on project setup. Elements like budgeting or task dependencies require you to manually create workarounds, which can be both complex and time-consuming to introduce.

Another area in which ClickUp beats Trello is its team collaboration tools. Document sharing and editing is simple with ClickUp, and you can even leave comments and feedback for your co-workers or future self to review.

Is ClickUp better than Trello?

Yes
  • ClickUp’s ‘Free Forever’ platform offers a much more generous list of features
  • ClickUp is better for team collaboration
No
  • Trello has a shorter setup time

ClickUp pricing vs. Trello pricing

ClickUp is a far more affordable option than Trello. Its ‘Free Forever’ zero-charge plan has everything Trello’s Business plan permits. Its lowest-costing tier, ClickUp Unlimited, is also less than half the price of its competitor.

Plus, although setup might take slightly longer with ClickUp due to its greater capabilities, ClickUp Free users also get access to 24/7 customer support and a live chat – Trello gives no such help with onboarding. Read our ClickUp pricing guide to learn more.

0 out of 0
Price Per Month (billed annually)
You can typically save by paying for a year or more in advance
Price Per Month (billed monthly)
Paying monthly is usually the more expensive option
Users
The total number of users for this plan level
Free Trial

ClickUp Free

ClickUp Unlimited

ClickUp Business

ClickUp Enterprise

Contact sales

Free

£6.51 per member

£13.74 per member

Contact sales

Unlimited – but only 5 spaces

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

Verdict

Budget-conscious small businesses will appreciate ClickUp for its affordability – a trait that doesn’t come at the cost of functionality. We recommend it for Trello users that need more capabilities, but still want a low-cost platform.

Did you know?

Research from Harvard Business Review has found that time spent working collaboratively has grown by 50%.

Read our guide to learn more about the top 7 collaboration software for small businesses, and find out how technology can help your team to work more efficiently, together.

Wrike
Beats Trello at: project views

One of Trello’s most unique selling points is its easy-to-use, colour-coded, drag-and-drop style Kanban boards.

But Wrike works just as well, if not better, as a Kanban-based software. Its interface is intuitive and clean, and is designed to quickly report information on project progress and scheduling with low-tiered features like custom widgets. Because of this, it’s larger scaled, easier to read, and also slightly more modern looking than Trello.

Wrike also gives you tons of other views, including a list view where you can examine your project and a table view where you can store project data. Plus, you have access to Gantt charts, a type of bar chart that illustrates how the tasks in a project are dependent on each other. This added flexibility in your workflow is a practical way to accommodate the different working patterns of your employees or business.

Wrike’s team collaboration tools are also impressive, with its payment plans featuring very generous resources – the free version of the platform, for example, permits an unlimited number of users and a project message board for you to directly communicate updates to co-workers.

To give Trello some credit, if you want to add on similarly advanced features, it offers Trello ‘power-ups’. These are downloadable upgrades which you can use to smarten up the platform. However, the quality of these power-ups isn’t as strong as those which come pre-established within Wrike.

Is Wrike better than Trello?

Yes
  • •Wrike has tons more project views to explore different aspects of your project, including Gantt charts and spreadsheets
  • Wrike offers better security features including constant platform-initiated data backups.
No
  • Trello provides more automation functions at the lower tiers

Wrike pricing vs. Trello pricing

Wrike Professional is slightly more expensive than Trello Business, at £0.10 more per year.

However, whereas Trello only has an Enterprise option at the higher level, Wrike also offers Wrike Business as an alternative to its Enterprise plan. This gives scaling SMEs greater choice, and still provides advanced tools like real-time reports and resource tracking.

0 out of 0
Price Per Month (billed annually)
You can typically save by paying for a year or more in advance
Users
The total number of users for this plan level
Free Trial

Wrike Free

Wrike Professional

Wrike Business

Wrike Enterprise

Contact sales

Unlimited

5 to 200

5 to 200

Unlimited

Read our Wrike pricing guide to learn more about the deals on offer.

Verdict

Wrike’s emphasis on project scheduling – Gantt charts, task dependencies and spreadsheets all feature here – means we recommend it for businesses with more than five employees that work to tight deadlines, such as those in the financial services industry.

Jira Software
Beats Trello in: complex project management

Jira Software

Jira Software is a best-selling tool from software giant Atlassian, and could really be described as Trello’s polar opposite.

It has a very different interface to Trello. The design is sleeker, with a number of modern ready-made templates available to match the preferences of the team or manager that’s in charge of a project.

Jira is also much more specialist than Trello – it’s designed specifically for software teams and developers. While Trello is a simple, lightweight PM choice, Jira has functions for agile work management, with a focus on Scrum technologies (quick tasks completed by small teams that are usually time sensitive).

These specialties also mean that Jira has stringent security features, including:

  • Password policies
  • Business continuity and disaster recovery strategies
  • Audit logs
  • Anonymous access
  • Data residency

It also has over 1,000 integrations with cloud-based apps like Slack and Zoom – whereas Trello users need to download most of their third-party integrations as add-ons.

Put simply, Jira is a much more complex and intelligent tool than Trello, with the former providing dedicated features for task dependencies and resource management. It is for SMEs who have outgrown the capabilities of their current PM tool – whether in terms of team size or required functions – and want something they can really dig deep into and customise, to not only manage but also to control their projects with.

Dave Chaplin is CEO and founder of IR35 compliance solution IR35 Shield. Chaplin told us: “We use Jira for our software development task management. It’s competitively priced and does more than we need. For more high-level and strategic management planning we use alternative tools that are available in the Google Suite.

“Our developers chose Jira, because they were already familiar with it. It’s a low friction tool and doesn’t hamper our productivity.”

Is Jira better than Trello?

Yes
  • Jira has much better security features than Trello
  • Jira also gives users access to over 1,000 add-ons and extensions
No
  • Jira is too complex for basic task management

Jira pricing vs Trello pricing

Jira is lower priced than Trello at £5.12 per user for Jira Standard. However, its freemium version also places much tighter restrictions on users, with a maximum of just 10 allowed.

0 out of 0
Price Per Month (billed annually)
You can typically save by paying for a year or more in advance
Price Per Month (billed monthly)
Paying monthly is usually the more expensive option
Users
The total number of users for this plan level

Jira Software Free

Jira Software Standard

Jira Software Premium

Free

£512 (flat rate for 1-10 users)

£1,024 (flat rate for 1-10 users)

Free

£5.12

£10.24

Up to 10

Up to 20,000

Up to 20,000

Verdict 

Strong security features and sophisticated, agile tools make Jira Software a good substitute for larger software and developer SMEs that need a more functional platform than Trello.

Basecamp
Beats Trello at: ease of use

Here at Startups, we have consistently talked about Trello’s ease of use and gentle learning curve, which we think make it a superb choice for SMEs that aren’t as tech-savvy and need software that they can set up and begin using quickly.

Basecamp, like Trello, has an incredibly intuitive interface which has been designed with the user experience in mind. Rather than Trello’s Kanban-style structure, Basecamp has six core tools that you can use to control your project. These are:

  • Message boards
  • Docs and files
  • Campfire (chat tool)
  • Schedules
  • Automatic check-ins (daily reports requested by the project manager)
  • To-dos (tasks)

As you can see, these tools make for a very basic project overview that works well for delivering on simple task management and not much else. In terms of data visualisation, Basecamp offers no dashboards, charts or widgets. Like with Trello, you’d need to take advantage of add-ons to get access to these functionalities.

Is Basecamp better than Trello?

Yes
  • Simple pricing suitable for large or growing teams
  • Excellent messaging tools for project team discussions
No
  • Only gives one project view
  • Needs integrations to offer more than just the core PM tools

Neil Maycock is managing director at Digital Impact Solutions, an SEO company. Maycock says: “What I really love about Basecamp is its simplicity. I add tasks with dates and either the client, myself, or members of staff to the task and comment. We can add files, comment and add subtopics. It allows me to be transparent about what we are doing and brilliant for diary management and managing people remotely. The cons are that I could do with a more robust calendar to add out of office notifications, events, etc.”

Basecamp pricing vs Trello pricing

Basecamp’s flat rate pricing means that, unlike with Trello, the more team members you have, the better value for money your plan is. Basecamp is priced at £71.56 when billed monthly, and you’re better off purchasing it over Trello if you have eight or more employees.

However, one way that Trello outscores Basecamp is its freemium plan. The former permits an unlimited number of users, whereas Basecamp members are limited to a maximum of twenty. Still, this shouldn’t be a problem for most SMEs.

0 out of 0
Price Per Month (billed annually)
You can typically save by paying for a year or more in advance
Price Per Month (billed monthly)
Paying monthly is usually the more expensive option
Users
The total number of users for this plan level

Basecamp Free

Basecamp Business

Free

£715.60 (flat rate)

Free

£71.56 (flat rate)

Max 20

Unlimited

Verdict

Basecamp is much the same as Trello due to its simplicity and basic feature set. We recommend it for large teams with eight or more employees that don’t have complex software requirements, such as those in the retail or hospitality sectors.

Is Trello worth choosing?

Trello is an excellent platform for new starters in project management. We think it works well as an entrance into the PM software market, which is often confusing for newcomers due to the many different brands available.

In celebration of its anniversary, Trello recently released a huge list of updates that give members access to new features and views – so it’s safe to say this platform is keeping up to date, relevant, and responsive to the current needs of business owners. Its pricing is also low on the cost spectrum, and reasonable for SMEs – although still not as good a deal as ClickUp’s.

However, Trello is designed to be a stripped-back version of project management software, and most growing businesses will quickly find its simplified feature list unsuitable for meeting their workflow requirements and objectives.

Trello costs vs. competitor costs

0 out of 0
Price Per Month (billed annually)
You can typically save by paying for a year or more in advance
Price Per Month (billed monthly)
Paying monthly is usually the more expensive option
Users
The total number of users for this plan level
Free Trial

Trello Basic

Trello Business

Trello Enterprise

Free

£7.24 per user

Contact sales

Free

£9.05 per user

Contact sales

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

0 out of 0
Price Per Month (billed annually)
You can typically save by paying for a year or more in advance
Price Per Month (billed monthly)
Paying monthly is usually the more expensive option
Users
The total number of users for this plan level

Trello Business

Monday.com Basic

ClickUp Unlimited

Wrike Professional

Jira Software Standard

Basecamp Business

£7.24 per user

£512 (flat rate for 1-10 users)

£715.60 (flat rate)

£9.05 per user

£12 seat/month

£6.51 per member

N/A

£5.12

£71.56 (flat rate)

Unlimited

Minimum of 3

Unlimited

5 to 200

Up to 20,000

Unlimited

How did we pick the top 5 Trello alternatives?

In order to find platforms that might be good substitutes to Trello for small businesses, we decided to identify the best and worst features of the platform. That way, we could better select alternative platforms that improve upon these functions.

Here’s what we identified as the biggest pros and cons of Trello:

ProsCons
Strong customisation toolsExpensive for more complex features
Gentle learning curveOnly offers a Kanban-style view of projects
Only suitable for basic PM needs

Final review

Trello offers lots of opportunities and tons to write home about. However, as a project management tool, it is very stripped back. We think there are brands out there that can offer you more.

Monday.com is a better alternative to Trello due to its customisation and collaborative tools. It is the number one option for small business owners, particularly creative teams in design-focused sectors
ClickUp provides better value for money than Trello thanks to its feature-rich lower-tiered payment plans, meaning it is a good option for any size team that wants to focus on saving money
Wrike scores higher than Trello for project visualisation, particularly for time tracking, making it a good choice for small businesses with more than five employees that are working to lots of deadlines
Jira Software has smarter tools and integrations than Trello, making it the best alternative for the complex needs of tech-heavy or developer-led SMEs
Basecamp is simple to use, like Trello, with a quick setup time. We recommend it for newcomers to project management software that aren’t fans of Trello but want a similarly gentle learning curve and strong online knowledge base

Maybe you’re not sure about what you like or dislike about Trello – you just want to try a new PM software tool and see how it performs for your business’s specific needs.

We know how time consuming researching software can be. Our experts are here to help you quickly match with the best PM software provider for your company. Simply fill in our specially-designed online form and let us do the work for you.

Trello alternatives: FAQs

Is there anything better than Trello?

Following extensive testing, we ranked Monday.com, ClickUp, Wrike and Jira Software as better-performing project management tools than Trello. We think in terms of our three general metrics – price, integrations and ease of use – these options all surpass Trello to provide greater overall value for money.

Basecamp performs just as well as Trello, and is a good substitute if you just want to try an alternative PM platform without adding much complexity.

Is there a free alternative to Trello?

We know that when it comes to purchasing expensive products, such as software, budget is a big concern for SMEs. Freemium platforms offer a superb way to figure out if you like a product and think it’s a good fit for your company – without risking your wallet. Every option on this list offers a free-tiered payment plan that allows you to try out its top tools and tricks, completely free of charge.

Is Monday.com better than Trello?

We think Monday.com is better than Trello. While being similarly priced to Trello, it demonstrates much better functionality – particularly for customisations, an element that we know is popular with Trello users.

Is ClickUp better than Trello?

Our testing found ClickUp is better than Trello due to its increased functionality. Both are low-cost platforms, but ClickUp is more generous with its freemium version. Plus, as an ‘all-in-one’ solution, ClickUp users don’t have to worry about downloading add-ons and extensions to plug Trello’s gaps.

Is there a Microsoft/Google alternative to Trello?

Trello is a web-based platform, so it works using any internet browser – including Google Chrome and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. There are even Trello add-ons for Google Apps such as Gmail and Google Calendar to keep you organised across all platforms.

Helena is from Yorkshire and joined Startups in 2021 from a background in B2B communications. She has previously written for a popular fintech startup covering everything from money-saving tips to cultural reviews.

She is particularly interested in project management software and the films of Peter Jackson.

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