11 Best Slack Alternatives in 2021 (Free, Premium & Open Source)

Slack, as we all know, is one of the most prominent and undoubtedly amongst the leading collaboration software.

However, its focus has now shifted primarily on enterprise customers in order to maximize their profits. Due to this reason, small companies, startups, home-based businesses, and similar ventures are on the lookout for better slack alternatives. 

All of these Slack alternatives come with unique features, with their primary function being the same – collaboration. We have included various options, including hosted solutions and open-source solutions, as well.

The Contents

  • 1. Flock
  • 2. Spike
  • 3. Microsoft Teams
  • 4. Twist
  • 5. Wire
  • 6. Google Hangouts
  • 7. Element
  • 8. Rocket.chat
  • 9. Chanty
  • 10. Mattermost
  • 11. Ryver 
  • Conclusion

1. Flock

The team chats app Flock includes team messenger and online collaboration as one of its essential tools. It helps you streamline all your decision-making processes along with problem-solving. Organize all your communications and manage the entire work process to hit your business goals and objectives. 

With Flock, you can create channels with a click that help you discuss team processes and company-wide initiatives. It allows you to avoid any discord that is caused due to chats and emails that are messy. In-person communication helps in effective translations, and the enhanced video conferencing features enables you to convey your message clearly.

Flock also gives you. A personalized onboarding experience and lets you onboard your entire company in just 10 days. Data security and privacy are top Flock priorities as it assures you of keeping your data safe and secure with the best admin features available. 

It also connects your CRM and notifies you when you receive a new lead, and also has an option for you to drop a GIF into the channel to celebrate the victory with a personal touch. Its marketing feature converts leads quickly with all sales in the loop and shares all campaign insights in the channels with real-time monitoring.

flock 1

What differentiates Flock from its alternatives:

  • Private messaging feature
  • Web, desktop, and mobile apps
  • Code snippet sharing
  • Comprehensive message search
  • Several personalized channels
  • Voice notes features
  • File sharing, polls, reminders, and to-dos
  • Integrated search
  • Admin control and solid authentication

flock 2

Pricing:

Flock comes with a starter pack which is for free and supports up to 20 members. It provides the team with 5GB storage, 10 public channels, 1-1, and group messaging and video calls. They also have an enterprise plan that has advanced features for teams with over 100 members.

Pricing of the enterprise plan can be known by calling customer support since it is a customizable plan.

2. Spike

Spike is an online workplace used for multiple conversations. It is just like any other messaging app, used mainly for professional discussions. Its chat-style email thread makes it a completely unique platform that aims to add personalization with professionalism through the medium of a single platform altogether. 

It helps you instantly create a group for any team, client, project, or conversation that makes sense concerning your business and lets you quickly collaborate the same way you would face-to-face. 

Spike is different from its alternatives because it does not require you to download the software or app for team communication and collaboration. It gives you everything in one place if you have an email account and lets you join a group at any time and get into the conversation immediately. This is how it amalgamates chat messaging with email messaging as a thread. Quick, simple, easy, and absolutely interesting!

With Spike, you have real0time access, replies, and a friendly user interface that makes your project management more accessible and more efficient. You are always in the loop with Spike and never miss out on any important decision. Additionally, Spike allows you to simply find all files and attachments by giving easy access to anybody whenever they need it.

spike1

 What differentiates Spike from its alternatives:

  • Chat style emailing
  • Easy file access
  • Priority email box
  • Calendars
  • Emailing solutions
  • Asynchronous communication
  • Google inbox alternative
  • iMessage for PC
  • Collaborative notes and tasks
  • Advanced search
  • Video and audio calls
  • In-line RSVP
  • Cloud integration

spike 2

Pricing:

The personal plan starts at $0 and comes with all the essential features that a small team may require. The solo plan requires a minimum 1 business account name costs $12 per account, billed annually. 

The team plan is a popular one with minimum 2 business accounts that cost $8 per account, billed annually. Last but not least, the business account costs $16 per account, billed annually, and requires a minimum of 20 business accounts to be associated.

3. Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams does not need any introduction. It is one of the most renowned and popular collaboration tools that help you meet, call, char, and collaborate in just one singular platform. All your documents, videos, photos, chat history, and meeting notes are stored safely in one place that enables you to work together effortlessly.

You can set up your tram spaces with all the apps so that everything is available in a tone place and not jumbled across different apps. It integrates perfectly with the entire Office 360 suit, making it easy to share and collaborate in real-time.

Since it is a Microsoft tool, the most significant advantage of it is that it supports all Microsoft products, including Azure, AppSource, Microsoft Visual Studio, Office 365, and more. The user interface is almost similar to that of Slack’s, and the only difference is that Microsoft Teams separated all communications into different tabs.

This means you have an additional tab for private conversations and a different one for group conversations. 

microsoft 1

What differentiates Microsoft Teams from its alternatives:

  • Instant messaging
  • Easy file sharing
  • Solid integrations
  • Online meetings and webinars
  • Team rooms and devices
  • Custom backgrounds
  • Screen sharing
  • Video concerning and virtual event organization
  • Guest access
  • One-on-one calls

microsoft 2

Pricing:

It comes with a free plan that provides you with the basic features. The Microsoft 365 business basic plan costs about $2 per user per month, billed annually. The Microsoft business standard costs about $10 per user per month, billed annually.

4. Twist

Twist is your distraction-free space where you can have your teams balance their work and collaborative conversations seamlessly. With Twist, each communication is supported by keeping all information organized and transparent. The need for long email threads is easily eliminated through this software.

It is one of the top-rated Slack alternatives as it is specially curated for teams to prioritize focused work with structured communication and company-wide transparency. Due to its asynchronous nature, Twist gives people space that is absolutely uninterrupted by and noise. 

It has been built to enable everybody to work together, even if hundreds of conversations happen at once. No communication or information is ever lost with Twist and is available on one single platform.

All your internal emails can be replaced with Twist, along with the elimination of group chats that might create confusion, too. 

twist 1

What differentiates Twist from its alternatives:

  • Organized threads
  • Department wise channels
  • Public channels
  • Private messaging
  • Inbox gathering all relevant conversations
  • Advanced search
  • No offline or online indicators to maintain privacy
  • Real-time notifications

twist 2

Pricing:

The free plan costs nothing and comes with the essential features that a small team can make use of. The unlimited pack costs $5 per user per month with unlimited integrations, file storage, guests, and priority support.

5. Wire

Wire is known to be one of the most secure collaboration platforms to exist. It is a modern-day collaboration tool that helps you communicate effortlessly with your teammates with the most advanced security and superior user experience.

It offers its users a comprehensive collaboration suite of voice, video, messenger, conference calls, external collaboration, and file sharing, all under one roof protected by end-to-end encryption.

Its messaging layer security helps excel the security of enterprise messaging platform with end-to-end encrypt within-group messaging to protect any shared data and files. It is a one-stop technology that has three solutions for your collaboration enhancement.

The first is the wire pro tool used to consolidate all the collaboration needs together. The next is wire enterprise which is a solution for all large-scale or highly regulated organizations, such as multinationals. The third and the last one is Wire’s unique on-demand crisis collaboration tool which is truly loved by most of its customers.

wire 1

What differentiates Wire from its alternatives:

  • Uncompromising security
  • Full transparency
  • Secure cloud collaboration
  • Enterprise communication
  • Work from anywhere, anytime
  • Three unique solutions
  • Secure eternal collaboration
  • Only pay for the tool you need

wire 2

Pricing:

The Wire pro plan costs around $6 per user per month, billed annually. Wire enterprise costs about $9.5 per user per month, billed annually. It also comes with a free trial!

6. Google Hangouts

Google Chat is the chat solution offered by Google as a part of the G-suite. It helps you keep in touch with your team members or any individual in the organization. Its efficient messaging and video calling make it easier for people to communicate in real-time and have conversations registered for future reference.

You can either have a one-to-one conversation on Google Hangouts or initiate a group conversation with all your team members, not exceeding 100 people. It also allows you to use maps, photos, emojis, stickers, and GIFs.

Google Hangouts enable you to have a group call with up to 10 people and syncs your chats from each device to keep the conversations safe wherever you are at any point in time. It is supported by iOS, web, and Android, too. 

google hangouts

What differentiates Google Hangouts from its alternatives:

  • Different chat rooms serving different purposes
  • Private messaging
  • Comprehensive message search
  • Video and audio calls with groups
  • G-suit supported
  • User friendly interface

Pricing:

Its plans start at around $2 per user per month for a business starter plan, whereas the business standard plan costs about $10 per user per month, billed annually. The business plus plan comes with all the advanced features costs around $20 per user per month. It comes with a free 14-day trial pack, as well.

7. Element

The secure team collaboration, Element is designed not just for your internal members but also for your organization’s entire external and internal ecosystem. Since it is designed for modern-day teams who primarily function virtually, it is an open and universal messaging app. It allowed you to have multiple connections with people at no extra cost.

The privacy it provides you is top-notch since you can yourself choose where to keep your conversation. It can be either on your own hardware or Element’s matrix service or even on a cloud. Its end-to-end encryption and cross-signed device certification deliver a level of security you cannot imagine.

It is a decentralized design, which is made to solve the most significant issues that arise in traditional messaging apps. These issues are that of openness, control, and security. Since these are taken care of at priority, there is less to worry about when sharing information, data, and files through Element. 

element 1

What differentiates Element from its alternatives:

  • Data sovereignty
  • End to end encryption
  • Message storage option
  • Fast and secure messaging app for group chats and private chats
  • Lets you talk to external partners too
  • Interoperates with any matrix-based system
  • By the community for the community

element 2

Pricing:

The basic Nickle pack costs $2 per user and $10 a month for small teams. The silver pack is for medium-sized groups and organizations, costing $3 per user or $75 per month. Lastly, the gold pack is for larger communities and organizations wanting more flexibility, and it costs $4 per user or $400 per month.

8. Rocket.chat

Rocket.chat is the open-source communication platform that helps your workflow intact at any point in time. It centralizes all your tools into one platform for quicker and simpler working. It is specially made for DevOps, customer engagement and enhancement, and team collaboration.

Streamline all your conversations with reduced costs and increased team performance on this omnichannel platform. It comes with unlimited integrations with either a self-managed platform or on the cloud. The workspace can be customized with different user permissions and centralized data teams. 

The open-source has an infinite innovation potential without any gatekeepers and total flexibility to adapt the platform in whichever way one needs to. Its fast creation of solution and transpiration makes it reliable like Linux and Firefox. Security standards are always met when it is Rocket.Chat. 

rocket chat 1

What differentiates Rocket.Chat from its alternatives:

  • It is an open-source platform that can be transferred into whatever your business requires for seamless communicating.
  • Flexible
  • One platform connecting all social media channels, websites, support tickets, and CRM
  • Manage conversations with anybody from one place
  • Automated processes
  • Maximize customer satisfaction
  • Scalable pricing
  • Sustainable growth

rocket chat 2

Pricing:

The self-managed hosting comes with a free community pack with all the necessary basic features. The pro plan starts at $3 per user per month, billed annually. And they also have a customizable enterprise pack, and the pricing depends on your specific requirements; call their customer support to know the pricing of this pack.

9. Chanty

Chanty is an easy-to-use communication and collaboration tool which helps you in unlimited messaging at no cost, forever. Work becomes super easy with Chanty as you are able to share your entire team’s knowledge from one place. 

Stay synced with messaging, voice mailing, or video calling and share files, screens, links, and even tasks for better collaboration every day. It also lets you bring all the apps that you use to one streamlined channel for easy operation. Filter, search, and brose your team activity with one click and take control over all the notifications yourself.

Chanty has invite-only access, keeping the entire platform totally safe and data encrypted. You can also import features to transfer message history and other team-related data on Chanty from any third-party messenger. 

chanty 1

What differentiates Chanty from its alternatives:

  • Easy code sharing
  • Mentions and push notifications
  • Dark themes to reduce eye strain
  • Emojis and animated GIFs
  • Renowned clients like Upwork, HubSpot, and more
  • 24/7 support team
  • Seamless oonboardingIntuitive user experience
  • Teambooks at fingertips

chanty 2

Pricing:

It starts with a forever-free plan that, of course, costs nothing. The business plan costs $3 per user per month, billed annually, which comes with all the features that a person needs for effective team collaboration.

10. Mattermost

The second open-source software on our list is Mattermost. It is one of the most excellent open-source collaboration platforms for developers that comes packed with all the features one can imagine. It is built with privacy-conscious encryption for enterprises with confidential information and data flowing in their networks daily.

Being the leading open-source collaboration tool, it runs as a single Linux binary with features like real-time group chat, sharing, webhooks, and so much more.

Apart from everything other collaboration tools do, Mattermost also modernizes workflows and accelerates innovation with regulatory compliance for industries like financial services, government, healthcare, enterprise DevOps, and more. It also works well with remote workers and chatops.

mattermost 1

What differentiates Mattermost from its alternatives:

  • Seamless automation
  • Flexible deployment model
  • Self-hosted or SaaS
  • Enterprise-grade security
  • Complete control and privacy of data
  • Solid compliance
  • Enables DevOps workflows

mattermost 2

Pricing:

The self-managed enterprise E0 plan comes for free and is used by small teams and evaluations. Whereas the enterprise E10 plan costs $3.25 per user per month, billed annually. Their most elite plan, the enterprise E20, costs $8.50 per user per month, billed annually.

11. Ryver 

Ryver helps you use multiple apps and emails to effectively talk with your team without making the process complex, difficult or expensive. It organizes your team’s collaboration in one single platform. 

Ryver allows you to use the group messaging feature for team discussions with unlimited file sharing, chat and conversation searching. It also helps you manage the tasks with unlimited team and personal task boards, specific detailing, and checklists. The voice and video call are Ryver’s beta feature that lets 5 users call each other in a group call, for an unlimited time and easy joining.

All in all, it is one of the best platforms to optimize your business’ conversations and collaborations with a single sign-on login and solid regulation compliance. 

ryver 1

What differentiates Ryver from its alternatives:

  • Premium support
  • Solid integrations
  • Easy and unlimited file sharing
  • Forums for open discussions
  • SSO
  • News streaming for automatic receiving got news articles, media posts, and content
  • Unlimited growth

ryver 2

Pricing:

The starter pack offered by Ryver costs $49 per month and allows up to 12 users. The unlimited package, which is also the most popular pack, costs $99 per month and allows unlimited users. The highest-ranging pack is the enterprise pack costing $199 per month with premium support and features. All of them come with a 14-day free trial!

Conclusion

Teal collaboration is one of the most important things for any organization. Especially in today’s times, when everything has gone virtual, it becomes all the more important to have a streamlined platform that provides us with all the necessary tools and features required for an effortless communication process.

The above-mentioned alternatives fit perfectly well in the category of collaboration tools and are on par with Slack, with many of them surpassing features provided by Slack itself. Try them out today with their free trial plans to get a Lok and feel of how to software operate!

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