cartoon depicting the top 5 online project management software

Choosing an online project management software for your small business can be like wandering into a candy store. There’s a dazzling choice of bright and shiny apps, and everyone’s keen to recommend a different flavor – but you can start to feel a bit queasy if you try too many. Thankfully though, there are some simple things to look out for that can help you sort the juicy fruits from the sour apples.

Before rushing off and trialing a whole bunch of online project management software solutions based only on friends or colleagues’ recommendations or on what you think looks nice, there are some simple considerations you should think about first that might save you wasting your time. Five things to start thinking about include:

  • User reviews: what are other users like you saying about the project management software they use for their small business?
  • Integrations: how well does the application integrate with the other software you’re using in your small business?
  • Mobile support: mobile capabilities are a must-have in today’s top online project management software, so make sure the solution has reliable app support.
  • Security: the last thing you want is to lose project data or for it to be compromised, so make sure that you do your homework when it comes to cloud app security.
  • Popularity: popular doesn’t always equal a good solution, but if an online project management software for small businesses is being talked about and has a large user base, it’s likely to be more established, making it easier to find support or help.

In fact, these five factors form the basis of GetApp’s cloud app ranking system GetRank, which is an independent ranking designed to help take some of the gut-wrenching pain out of trying to find the right small business apps. Our Q1 2016 project management GetRank reveals the top 25 online project management software for small business, based on scores given for the five factors listed above.

Top 5 online project management software

Here’s the run-down of the top five online project management software overall. We’ll give you a breakdown of each app’s scores in four of the five ranking factors to offer a deeper explanation about why these particular apps ranked so highly. We’ll also list the security score for each app. You can get a detailed breakdown of the software’s security data by visiting the product page on GetApp, and clicking on ‘Read More’ in the ‘Security and Privacy’ section, as you can with all the other apps in this list. Each score is out of 20, adding up to a possible overall score out of 100.

1. Wrike

Total GetRank score: 77 (out of 100)

Wrike trumped the rest of pack in the online project management software for small business field. Wrike is a management and collaboration software that delivers real-time project insights to its users. The idea of Wrike is to help project managers organize all of their projects and related tasks into single, unified workspaces. Managers are encouraged to assign tasks to specific employees, adjust for scheduling changes using interactive Gantt charts, and host collaborative group discussions in real-time.


Wrike reviews score: 20

Wrike has attracted more than 150 reviews and ratings from the GetApp community, and the online project management software has an average user rating of 4.37/5 at the time of writing. One thing that Wrike users are continuously raving about is the way that it integrates with Google Apps.

Bernabe Torres Campo, Analytics and Technologies at Vitalza, said: “The compatibility with Google apps is really helpful because you can share files that you’re working on”. GetApp user MNBlockhead agrees, saying that Wrike “has perhaps the best Google Apps integration of any project management platform I’ve tried.”


Wrike integrations score: 18

Wrike boasts integrations with a wide range of other kinds of business software including CRM, coding platforms, content management systems, and team collaboration apps. Besides Google Apps, some of Wrike’s popular integrations include Zendesk, for automatically turning tickets into Wrike tasks; Salesforce, for giving sales staff visibility of client projects; and QuickBooks, for automatically creating Wrike projects when new customers are added.

Check out the full list of Wrike’s integrations.

Wrike mobile score: 14

Wrike scored well for mobile support, thanks to its Android and iOS project management apps, which allow you to create and edit tasks on the go, helping teams stay connected when they are away from the office. You can use the app to attach images and files from your device and even take photos from within tasks and instantly attach them.

For more info on the app, check out this Wrike for iOS review over on our sister site, AppStorm.

Wrike for iOS

Wrike social media score: 9

Wrike’s Twitter account, @Wrike, has more than 6,000 followers. As well as talking about the latest features of the Wrike app, the vendor is keen to share tips on project management from other sites. Oh, and it was quick to share the news about reaching the top of the project management GetRank!

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2. Insightly

Total GetRank score: 74

Insightly is an interesting hybrid software that marries the important features of CRM with a project management system that uses tasks, milestones, and pipelines to keep your team on track. It’s a popular online project management software for small businesses, aiming to help companies build better relationships with their customers and streamlining everyday processes to improve efficiency.

insightly screenshot

Insightly reviews score: 14

At the time of writing, Insightly scores an average of 3.88 out of 5, based off of 51 reviews and ratings. The software has a mixed bag of reviews on GetApp. Many users are delighted by Insightly’s ease of use.

Jamie Lin, CRM Specialist and Cloud Strategist said of the software: “Insightly is super easy to implement and use…It’s easy to use for projects, HR, and vendor management, as well as sales”.

insightly review

Insightly integrations score: 18

Insightly is becoming renowned for its depth of integrations. Whether it’s online file sharing apps, marketing solutions, a CRM, or accounting tools, there are plenty of integrations that Insightly can help you link up with to draw data intelligence into your project management.

Some of the top integrations for Insightly include Xero for live invoicing and billing; Evernote, for connecting your notes, photos and voice memos to your project management system; and Hubstaff, for tracking time spent on tasks.

Insightly mobile score: 15

Insightly has apps for both Android and iOS. The project management features in the Insightly app allow you to see recent activity on any project, and track project performance against milestones over time. You can use the app to create milestones, pipelines and tasks for projects, receive automatic email reminders, and view completed tasks and events by project.

Go check out the Insightly for Android review over on AppStorm for more details.


Insightly social media score: 16

Insightly’s official Twitter channel, @insightlyapp, is well worth following if you run a small business. Insightly, which has more than 4,000 followers, shares tips from all over the web about how to grow a small business, as well as keeping you informed of the latest features within the app itself.

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3. Trello

Total GetRank score: 69

Trello has made a name for itself as a free task and project management application in the cloud. It uses a card-based system to help you organize your day-to-day activities. Trello can be used both by individuals and to collaborate with team members. There’s a progress meter that helps you quickly check how projects are doing, and you can apply checklists to cards to mark off individual tasks that need to be completed.


Trello reviews score: 18

Trello scored very highly for reviews in Q1 2016, achieving an average rating of 4.36/5 at the time of writing. One thing users seem to really like is Trello’s visually-rich interface and the way the card-based system aids organization. For instance, GetApp user Rachel Reid, Assistant EMS Director, Alanson-Littlefield Fire Department, said: “Boards are easy to organize, and able to have different sections within themselves (ex ideas, to-do’s), can add users and assign tasks to them and it keeps track of who does what and allows users to add comments and ideas themselves.”

However, others bemoan the way Trello boards can start to look messy quite quickly. Daniel Nice, UI/UX Designer, Charter Communications comments that Trello: “gets complicated and hard to view lots of work, really works better for 100 cards or less.”

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Trello integrations score: 17

Trello comes with a treasure trove of software integrations, allowing you to pull data from lots of other sources into your Trello projects. For instance, you can make sure that everyone between development and QA is on the same page with projects by getting notifications from HipChat or Slack, instantly turn Gmail emails into cards, or track time spent on projects via integrations with time tracking apps such as Harvest and Toggl.

Trello mobile score: 18

Trello bags a high score for mobile support thanks to its highly praised iOS and Android project management apps. The flexible applications allow you to create boards and organize everything you’re working on so that you can access your projects remotely. You can add checklists, comments, avatars, and even attach photos, videos, and PDFs to keep everyone in the loop.


Trello media score: 16

Trello is very active on social media and is a great account to follow to get tips on using online project management software for your small business. Trello posts advice on a wide range of topics through its Twitter handle, @trello, covering things like how to run meetings, techniques to break down projects more effectively, and lots about integrating Trello with other apps to improve your productivity.

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4. WORK[etc] CRM

Total GetRank score: 67

WORK[etc] is a business management solution that blends project management with CRM, billing, and more to help you run your small business more effectively. The software, designed for companies of between 5 and 1,000 employees, lets you tailor it to the different requirements of your operations – from planning projects to managing customers, tracking sales, invoicing, and sharing documents.


WORK[etc] reviews score:18

WORK[etc] is a popular application, which scores highly with GetApp users for ease of use, value for money, and customer support. The boon that many users leaving reviews pick up on is the way WORK[etc] can be used to manage multiple aspects of a small business’ operations.

For instance, Branden Maynes, software developer at FACTORinteractive says: “I like having everything we need in one system. We have to-dos, we have time sheets, we have project details, we have knowledge bases (for storing our company-.wide information, important details, etc), and we have a CRM to store contact details, lead information and support emails.”


WORK[etc] integrations score: 9

WORK[etc] doesn’t score as highly as other online project management software for small businesses in GetRank when it comes to integrations, but it offers some useful syncing with other products nonetheless. Many of its features come out-of-the-box so perhaps there’s no need for as many integrations, but it integrates with popular apps such as Xero, Microsoft Outlook, Evernote, and Box.

WORK[etc] mobile score: 16

WORK[etc] has beautifully-presented iPhone and Android apps, which score highly in their respective app stores. The mobile application gives you an instant view of what you’re working on, and which scheduled tasks and projects you have. The WORK[etc] app integrates most aspects of the software, including projects, CRM, billing, sales, help desk, and more.


WORK[etc] social media score: 8

The @WORK[etc] Support Twitter feed is a good one to follow as it offers information about updates and improvements to the product, helping you stay in touch with what’s happening to the software. It’s also worth following the company’s Founder and CEO, Daniel Barnett @WORKetc, who offers tips on using software to improve the productivity of your small business.

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5. dapulse

Total GetRank score: 66

dapulse’s strapline is that “project management tools are dead”, pointing out that today’s teams need the ability to work together dynamically. This complete online project management software for small businesses gives you a place to store all communication centrally and to keep the entire team focused on the tasks at hand. The dapulse user interface is designed to engage employees and give them recognition and accountability for their work.

dapulse reviews score: 13

The ease of use and “fun factor” of dapulse comes through in the comments of users who have left a review on GetApp. Many users also rate the company’s customer support.

Alejandro Olryd, Operational Manager at SeFactura, described dapulse as: “fun, easy to use and configure, good price, configurable, colorful.” Elliot Black, Project Manager at RapNet concurred, saying: “This tool does everything I need without becoming complicated/overkill.”


dapulse integrations score: 9

dapulse isn’t one of the most well-integrated online project management software for small business in GetRank, but it does include some key integrations. For example, it integrates with Google Drive and Dropbox so that you can pull files in from these services, as well as GitHub for development purposes.

dapulse mobile score: 14

dapulse’s mobile solutions follow the vendor’s ethos of offering the bigger picture of projects rather than giving each person in the team a separate view based only on their part in these projects. dapulse’s attractive Android and iOS apps offer a clear view of what’s going on, allowing users to view main boards, private boards, and shareable boards.


dapulse social media score: 16

dapulse scores highly for social media presence, thanks to its burgeoning Twitter (@dapulseLabs) and Facebook accounts. The company’s Twitter feed is particularly helpful as it offers tips not only on project management, but also on other aspects of operating a small business, such as sales, marketing, and working with investors.

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Find out more…

Interested in knowing which other apps made it into in the Q1 GetRank? Click here for the full list of the top 25 online project management apps. You should also pay a visit to GetApp’s comparison page, where you can compare the top project management apps.