This article is part of a larger series on Unified Communications.
Slack is a popular team communication app, but it lacks advanced task management and conferencing capabilities most remote teams require. If you’re looking for Slack alternatives, the best options let you communicate easily as well as collaborate on and accomplish tasks without leaving the platform. In this article, we evaluated dozens of team communication apps on the market to help you find the right solution.
Based on our research, these Slack alternative apps are the ones that stood out for small business needs:
- Microsoft Teams: Best overall Slack alternative for its broad range of messaging features
- RingCentral MVP: Great for teams that frequently collaborate on audio and video calls
- Chanty: Ideal for businesses looking for an affordable team messaging solution
- Bitrix24: Excellent for teams that need advanced task management tools
- Google Chat: Solid choice for businesses wanting a chat app connected to email
- Mattermost: Good for developer teams prioritizing strong data security
- Rocket.Chat: Best for businesses that provide omnichannel customer service
Slack & Best Alternatives at a Glance
Best Slack Alternatives
Monthly Starting Price
Key Messaging Features
Free or $7.25
Free or $4 per user
4.69 out of 5
$19.99 per user for 1 to 20 users
4.59 out of 5
Free or $3 per user
3.96 out of 5
Free or $49 for 5 users
3.88 out of 5
Free or $6 per user
3.86 out of 5
Free or $10 per user for both cloud and self-hosted deployment
3.84 out of 5
Free or paid plans start at $7 per user for a minimum of 25 users
3.81 out of 5
Microsoft Teams: Best Overall Slack Alternative
Microsoft Teams is the top Slack alternative, offering a broad range of messaging features, including its channels automatically categorized under specific teams. In Slack, all channels are under the Channels section, wherein the list quickly grows overwhelmingly long when users join several groups. There’s an option to customize the sidebar and classify group channels according to the user’s preference, but with Teams, you don’t have to do that manual work.
Another standout feature that makes collaboration efficient in Teams’ chats is the ability to edit a file without leaving the messaging platform. When a colleague sends you a Word file, select the “Edit in Teams” option to enable working on the document right on the chat app. Learn more about the features of this platform in our detailed Microsoft Teams review.
Unfortunately, with all its robust features, Teams is a little overwhelming for many users. If you’re looking for a simpler, easier-to-navigate tool, Google Chat is an excellent option. Its interface is neat and very straightforward.
Microsoft Teams Monthly Pricing at a Glance*
- Microsoft Teams (Free): Maximum of 100 chat users, unlimited chat messages and search, 2GB file attachments in chat per user, 5GB file storage across all teams, and online meetings of up to 100 participants, and 60-minute duration
- Microsoft Teams Essentials: $4 per user for a maximum of 300 chat users, 10GB file storage, online meetings of up to 300 participants and 30-hour duration, collaboration tools, like screen sharing, together mode, and English-only live captions
- Microsoft 365 Business Basic: $6 per user for a maximum of 300 chat users, 1TB file attachments in chat per user, 1TB file storage, online meetings of up to 300 participants and 30-hour duration, and live captions of over 30 languages
- Microsoft 365 Business Standard: $12.50 per user for meeting recording and transcripts, breakout rooms, and webinar hosting features
- Free trial: One month
*Pricing is based on annual billing.
Microsoft Teams Features
- Multi-window: Use the pop-out chats, meetings, calls, and documents whenever you need to multitask. Even when you’re in the middle of a video conference, you get to track conversations in your channels.
- Conversation pin: If you need to keep referring to a specific conversation for a project, pin it to the top of your Chats list. To do this, hover over the conversation to find the “Pin” in the submenu.
- Filters: With this, it’s easy to find different types of messages: unread, mentions, replies, and messages with reactions.
RingCentral MVP: Best for Hosting Highly Collaborative Online Meetings
RingCentral MVP is one of the best Slack app alternatives in the market, especially for businesses requiring advanced audio and video conferencing solutions. It features a one-tap, desktop-to-mobile meeting switch, enables launching up to two meetings at a time, and allows joining meetings from Zoom, Microsoft Teams, WebEx, GoTo Meeting, and BlueJeans.
While Slack allows up to 50 participants in its huddles or audio calls, RingCentral MVP hosts up to 1,000 users. For video conferencing, Slack accommodates up to 15 individuals, whereas RingCentral MVP has a 200-participant capacity.
On top of this, RingCentral MVP’s conferencing features allow users to do more in online meetings. Right from the platform, you’re able to schedule sessions, send messages during conference calls, share your screen and allow co-annotation, and have participants follow the discussion through notes and transcripts. Become more familiar with the platform’s features by reading our comprehensive RingCentral review.
Since the tool packs communication and collaboration features, it comes with a higher cost than other Slack alternatives. If you’re looking for a more affordable option, Chanty is a good platform, costing only $3 per user, per month.
RingCentral MVP Monthly Pricing at a Glance*
- Essentials: $19.99 per user for up to 20 users only, team messaging, file sharing, business phone or toll-free numbers, toll-free minutes, and unlimited calls within the U.S. and Canada
- Standard: $27.99 per user for an unlimited number of users, unlimited audio and video conferencing, and video meetings for up 100 participants
- Premium: $34.99 per user for video meetings with up to 200 participants, automatic call recording, and integrations with third-party tools
- Ultimate: $49.99 for unlimited storage
- Free trial: 21 days, including a maximum of five users and two desktop phones; only new subscribers can avail of the trial
*Pricing is for one to 20 users, based on annual billing. A monthly billing option is also available.
RingCentral MVP Features
- Call flip: Jump from laptop to mobile when you’re in a meeting by clicking the “Switch call to this device.” This is especially useful for team members who are always on the go.
- Automatic meeting recording: You never have to worry about forgetting to hit the record button on video meetings. When scheduling a meeting, tick the option “Record this meeting.”
- Advanced meeting insights: The built-in artificial intelligence (AI) in RingCentral MVP automatically generates a summary, transcript, and highlights after every video meeting. Even without watching the video recording, you’ll know the important details discussed in the session.
Chanty: Best for Teams Needing an Affordable Chat App
Out of all the best alternatives to Slack we evaluated, Chanty provides the most affordable package for businesses. The subscription plan, which costs $3 per user, is significantly lower than Slack ($7.25). But even with its affordability, the platform boasts excellent features, including the Teambook—a centralized hub for all the tasks, one-on-one chats, public and private group discussions, calls, pinned messages, shared files and links, and history.
With this feature, it’s easy to refer to different types of content without unnecessary scrolling. Moreover, Teambook makes the platform neater and more organized than Slack.
The problem with Chanty and Slack, however, is that they only allow group audio and video calls on paid packages. If you’re looking for a team communication app that offers these features for free, Microsoft Teams is the best option.
Chanty Monthly Pricing at a Glance*
- Free: Up to 10 members, 20GB file storage per team, unlimited public and private conversations, unlimited searchable history, unlimited one-on-one audio calls, and unlimited voice messages
- Business: $3 per user for unlimited integrations, unlimited group audio calls, unlimited group video calls, unlimited screen sharing, and three guests per member for free
*Pricing is based on annual billing, but there’s a monthly subscription as well.
- Task assignment and creation: Create and delegate tasks right off the chat messages. Hover over the message that mentions an action to be done and select “Create task.” If you need to change the person responsible for the task, hover over the name of the initially assigned team member and select the correct name from the options.
- Kanban board: Monitor the progress of tasks with this visual board that outlines all the “To-Do,” “In Progress,” and “Done” tasks. Check more details for each task by clicking the “See discussion” option.
- Voice messages: Instead of typing long messages, record your instructions or feedback to team members. Tap the microphone icon on the chat menu to start the recording.
Bitrix24: Best for Its Advanced Task Management Features
Bitrix24 is the ideal Slack alternative for businesses needing a team communication app with a broad range of features for organizing tasks, including workflow visuals and automation tools. Unlike Slack, this platform has a built-in task management dashboard with over 35 tools that enable task delegation and monitoring, collaboration and discussion, and document storage.
In monitoring projects, for instance, users are free to choose among different visual aids: Kanban board, Gantt chart, calendar, planner, or list. Meanwhile, when assigning tasks, you get to use subtasks, checklists, and project templates. For repetitive tasks, the automation option is available to reduce the hassle and save time. Every task ticket has fields for the start date and deadline so it’s easy to keep track of the assignments.
While Bitrix24’s advanced task management features are useful, they can be a bit overwhelming for some. You might experience a steep learning curve when trying it out. In case you need a Slack alternative that’s easier to use, Chanty and Google Chat are excellent options. Learn more about this software in our in-depth Bitrix24 review.
Bitrix24 Monthly Pricing at a Glance*
- Free: Unlimited users, one-on-one chats, public and private chats, channels, and one-on-one and group video calls for up to 48 participants, 5GB online storage, unlimited call duration, and company social network
- Basic: $49 for five users, online meeting features, such as screen sharing, recording, background blur, meeting brief, 24GB of file storage, and calendar
- Standard: $99 for 50 users, 100GB of file storage, polls, and announcements
- Professional: $199 for 100 users, 1024GB of file storage, and unlimited company knowledge base
- Enterprise: $399 for 250 users and 3TB of file storage
- Free trial: 30 days
*Pricing is based on annual billing. Month-to-month contracts are also available.
- Task roles: Assign different roles for each task: Responsible, Creator, Participants, and Observers. This way, the team members tagged will know what’s expected of them.
- Online document editing: Work on files right from the Bitrix cloud. The platform allows several team members to edit the same file at the same time.
- Feed: Similar to a social media timeline, this is where you find news, updates, announcements, and more. Write a post, send appreciation to a specific employee, or share an event, and maximize the visual editor to make your message animated.
Google Chat: Best Team Communication App Connected to Email
Google Chat is the best Slack alternative for businesses that want to have a team communication tool integrated with their email inbox. The platform makes it easy to talk to colleagues regarding action points mentioned in emails. Google Chat removes the need to switch between your inbox and chat app—a feature Slack doesn’t have.
There’s a seamless, uninterrupted workflow in Google Workspace. When a client asks for an appointment via email, you’re able to hop on the Google Chat Space and ask about the team’s availability. It’s also easy to discuss what you need to prepare before seeing the client.
If you need a lengthier discussion for the preparations, click the “New meeting” option under Meet on the sidebar and you instantly meet team members. Maximize this video conferencing feature by checking out our comprehensive Google Meet review.
Unfortunately, the group conversations on Google Chat are private by default so there’s no broadcasting feature for important company-wide announcements. If this is something you need, Chanty and Bitrix24, which are also equally great competitors to Slack, have public channels on their free plans.
Google Chat Monthly Pricing at a Glance*
- Free: Access to one-on-one and group chats and Spaces, online meetings via Google Meet of up to 100 participants, and 60-minute duration
- Starter: $6 per user for unlimited, optional message history, auto-accept invitations, one-on-one external chat, access to channels or Spaces, 30GB cloud storage per user, and online meetings of up to 100 participants
- Standard: $12 per user for advanced chat room features, like threaded rooms and guest access, 2TB per cloud storage per user, online meetings of up to 150 participants, and meeting recordings saved to Google Drive
- Plus: $18 per user for 5TB cloud storage per user and online meetings of up to 500 participants
- Enterprise: Custom pricing for cloud storage as much as a business needs
*Starter and Standard plans have introductory prices of $6 and $12 for 12 months. The pricing shown above will apply after the mentioned period.
Google Chat Features
- Spaces: Work with various teams in channels dedicated to different topics. Share files quickly and view the list of files uploaded since the group was created.
- Third-party integrations: Add apps to your Google Chat to support various types of communications. If you want to streamline task management, connect Asana and Trello. For customer relationship management (CRM) tools, Salesforce and HubSpot are available.
- Accessibility features: Google Chat supports screen readers, including ChromeVox, NVDA, JAWS, and VoiceOver. Chrome is the recommended browser for using these tools.
Mattermost: Best for Development Teams Requiring Reliable Data Security
Mattermost is the best alternative to Slack for businesses with in-house development teams since its features allow for customizable workflows and access to project overviews. It’s a project management tool as much as a communication app. On top of that, the platform has strong data protection protocols, including built-in identity and access controls, granular admin controls, advanced compliance auditing, and on-premise and secure cloud deployment options.
Both Mattermost and Slack feature channels that foster collaboration: public channels, private channels, direct messages, and group messages. But Mattermost takes its offerings up a notch with Playbooks and Boards. Playbooks is a collaboration tool that lets users manage workflows using checklists and templates. Automation options are also available for editing welcome messages, inviting members, and streamlining other repetitive tasks.
Meanwhile, boards allow teams to see the status of projects in a visual format. The Kanban board gives an overview of all the team’s activities, making it easy to spot delays and address inefficiencies immediately.
Take note that some users find Mattermost’s interface confusing and monotonous. If you prefer a clean interface that won’t require much learning, Google Chat is a great alternative.
Mattermost Monthly Pricing at a Glance
- Starter: Free for one workspace team, unlimited number of users, 10GB of file storage, unlimited number of channels, playbooks, and boards, and message history search up to the last 10,000 messages
- Professional: $10 per user for unlimited workspace teams, 250GB of file storage, and unlimited message history search
- Enterprise: Custom pricing for unlimited file storage
- Starter: Free for unlimited workspace teams, unlimited number of users, unlimited channels, playbooks, and boards, unlimited file storage, unlimited message search and history, and group calls with screen share
- Professional: $10 for single sign-on, guest accounts, and custom user groups
- Enterprise: Custom pricing for shared channels, granular permissions, custom admin roles, and custom enterprise mobility management
- Free trial: 30 days
- Retrospectives: This feature under Playbooks allows users to report what happened during the project development. The document serves as a reference for improving activities in the future, readily accessible anytime a team member needs it.
- Board templates: Schedule content production using the content calendar. Use the project tasks feature to monitor progress and determine what needs to be done first. If you have recurring meetings, the meeting agenda feature helps in planning discussions.
- Custom emojis: Upload your own smileys and icons onto the platform to bring out your organization’s unique culture. You’ll find this option in the emoji picker.
Rocket.Chat: Best for Enhancing Social Media Customer Service
Rocket.Chat emerged as an excellent alternative to Slack not only for its robust messaging features but also for its customer support capabilities. While Slack supports external communications, clients must be on the platform to talk to you. In contrast, Rocket.Chat allows customers to reach out to you on their preferred platform without necessarily being on your chat app.
Rocket.Chat consolidates client communications from different channels, including Instagram, Twitter, Messenger, WhatsApp, Telegram, email, LiveChat, and SMS. Other customer support features include templates for common messages, inquiry distribution and forwarding across teams and departments, and queue waiting time display.
One drawback in Rocket.Chat is that some users find its mobile interface clunky, a huge deal-breaker, especially for on-the-go teams. Microsoft Teams and Google Chat are great mobile-friendly alternatives.
Rocket.Chat Monthly Pricing at a Glance
- Community: Free for unlimited one-on-one and group messaging, full messaging history, up to 10,000 push notifications a month, up to five third-party integrations, and inquiry distribution for customer support
- Enterprise: $7 per user for a minimum of 25 users, unlimited push notifications, advanced identity management, video conferencing integrations, customizable user permissions, guest users, and more omnichannel customer support features, namely templated messages and queue waiting time display
- Free trial: 30 days
- Customizable interface: Own the team chat app you’re using by including brand identity elements. Rocket.Chat offers comprehensive, easy-to-follow documentation for adding theme customizations.
- Third-party integrations: Enhance the capabilities of your communication platform with tools for different needs: CRM, productivity, customer service, and even development and operations.
- Last chatted agent preferred: Route returning customers to the last agent they talked to so your representatives will quickly understand the context of the customer’s inquiry and build rapport with them.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why might a business look for a Slack alternative?
Although Slack is an excellent communication tool, it has its limitations. For instance, the platform’s channels get overwhelming and long in the sidebar list when you join several conversations. Its audio and video conferencing tools also have limited participant capacity.
Slack lacks native task management tools, which many businesses look for in chat apps since most of the to-dos are discussed on these platforms. The most that Slack does in terms of task management is to connect you with Asana or Trello. If you want to know whether or not this platform will fit your business needs, read this in-depth Slack review.
What should I look for in a Slack alternative?
Your business needs should influence your considerations for a collaboration tool, but in general, you should include these factors: pricing, channel organization, search history, file storage, audio and video conferencing capabilities, task management features, and data security. Check out our top picks for the best team communication apps.
Can Slack & Teams work together?
Another way is to install the Teams app from the Slack App directory. When you use the slash command “/teams-calls,” you’re able to set up and join Microsoft Teams meetings. If you want to know which platform is better for your business, refer to this Microsoft Teams vs Slack review.
How We Evaluated the Best Slack Alternatives
Several team communication apps similar to Slack have emerged as great alternatives, accommodating the needs and demands of growing remote teams. These providers vary greatly in cost and features. To level the playing field and make an accurate evaluation of the best tools, we considered these criteria points are shown in the tab below:
10% of Overall Score
We noted the cost of Pro plans of each provider and gave more points to those that have cheaper annual pricing. We took into account the availability of a free trial as well.
30% of Overall Score
The general features we included in our evaluation are unlimited messaging to channels, group calls, third-party integrations, and analytics.
35% of Overall Score
We considered the features that would foster better and more efficient team collaboration: to-do lists, calendar management, polls, and screen sharing in online meetings
25% of Overall Score
For this, we noted the Slack competitors’ standout features, popularity, and ease of use. Value for money was also a consideration as we weighed how many useful features businesses get from the paid plans.
With the rise of remote work, many Slack alternatives have popped up in the market, promising better communication for organizations. Based on our evaluation, Microsoft Teams is the best, given its reasonable pricing, excellent collaboration features, and clean, simple interface. Streamline communications with your colleagues with this tool. Subscribe to Microsoft Teams today for only $4 a month per user.