Zoho Projects Review: Everything You Need to Know Before You Buy

Our Verdict

Zoho Projects is a top choice if you're on a budget but want top-notch functionality

Zoho Projects is easily one of the cheapest project management tools and one of the best options for small teams. Despite the low cost, it has a lot under its hood, including blueprints, issue tracking, and templates, making it popular for software developers.

It’s also an ideal option for businesses that are after a tool to centralize team collaboration, too – you get built-in chat, a unique social-media-like feed for updates (including comment sections), and forums for detailed discussions.

That said, it’s not ideal for everyone. It only offers 3 project views, and only the highest plan offers security features. Unsure? Read our Zoho Projects review, where we explore its USPs and offer the best alternatives if you feel it isn’t the best choice for your needs.

Pros

  • One of the most affordable project planners
  • Integrations with the Zoho apps
  • 10-day free trial on all paid plans
  • Budgeting, time tracking, and invoicing are available
  • Class-leading team collaboration features

Cons

  • No Gantt charts on the free plan
  • Restrictive issue tracker
  • Limited number of templates and third-party integrations

Our Zoho Projects review explores this popular, budget-friendly project management tool. It’s great for individuals and small/medium-sized businesses, but it’s not the best choice for everyone. Read on to learn where it shines (and where it falls short) and how it compares to rivals before you decide.

Zoho Projects Pricing

Zoho Projects is easily the most affordable project management tool we’ve come across. Here are the plans compared head-to-head for a quick overview of your options:

Free Premium Enterprise
Starting Price $0 $4/user/month $9/user/month
Number of projects 2 Unlimited Unlimited
Free Version Free plan 10-day trial 10-day trial
Time Tracking
Project Views 2 – List and Kanban 3 – List, Kanban, and Gantt 3 – List, Kanban, and Gantt
Automation
Custom Fields
Custom Views
Templates 20 30
Security Single Sign-On, Two-Factor Authentication
Integrations 10, including Slack, Zoho CRM, Zapier, Microsoft Teams, Zendesk 20, including Zoho Invoice, Zoho Books, and Dropbox 22, including Zoho Desk and Zoho Directory
Free Plan

Free Plan

Zoho’s free forever plan is pretty basic but should pull through nicely for small teams – it can accommodate as many as 3 users and offers support for 2 projects.

You also get 5GB of storage space and several other basics, such as document sharing and custom statuses, for example. The free plan also offers multiple integrations.

This includes Slack, Microsoft Teams, Zoho CRM, and Zoho Meeting. This is better than some, as we found in our Notion review, which offers 1, and Monday, which offers none on its free plan.

Another highlight here is that you get pre-built templates – they’re customizable and industry-specific so that you can quickly get on with creating your management/planning boards.

We found the Gantt view was missing, and although many tools reserve this for paid plans, some, as we found in our Wrike review, offer it on the free plan.

Also, this plan, unlike ClickUp and Monday’s free versions, lacks security like Two-Factor Authentication for example.

Premium Plan - $4/user/month

Premium Plan – $4/user/month

Right off the bat, the #1 advantage of Zoho’s Premium plan is its cheap pricing. To give you an idea, Monday starts at $9/user/month, ClickUp at $7/user/month, and Asana at $10.99/user/month.

So, Zoho Projects’ pricing is certainly a plus point for those on tight budgets. There’s plenty of power under the hood, too. You get unlimited projects and an AI chatbot powered by Zia.

You also get Zoho’s very own issue tracker and Blueprints features – the latter helps you visualize and design workflows, loop in the right people, and automate your processes for efficiency.

Despite its measly pricing, Zoho Projects offers some obvious benefits over tools like Wrike, which doesn’t offer time tracking on its first paid plan, for example.

However, this Zoho plan lacks automation when compared to providers like Wrike and ClickUp – and this plan also lacks security. So, it really depends on your specific needs.

Enterprise Plan - $9/user/month

Enterprise Plan – $9/user/month

Zoho Projects’ Enterprise plan also offers unlimited projects plus an additional 20GB of storage space, giving you a maximum of 120 GB. The standout of this plan is its security benefits.

You get Single Sign-On and Two-Factor Authentication, making it ideal for businesses that want peace of mind over the security and privacy of their data.

However, there are only 30 project templates, which, although for the price, is decent, falls short compared to Monday (200+), ClickUp (1,000+), and Notion, which offers a staggering 10,000+ templates.

Overall though, this is one of the cheapest Enterprise plans we’ve seen, whether the functionality is enough really depends on your specific needs.

Zoho Projects Features

During our Zoho Projects review, we were impressed with a number of its offerings. Here are some key standout features we found worthy of including in this review:

Team Collaboration

Zoho Projects Feed

Zoho Projects is unique in that it provides an interactive “Feed” to keep team members up-to-date on what’s happening. As the name suggests, the project feed works exactly like any social media app.

For example, you can add a task, file an issue, upload an image, or post a status message and it’ll be uploaded to the project’s feed – and then your team members can chat about it in the comments.

Zoho’s built-in chat also allows the seamless exchange of ideas. Your team can create both personal one-on-one chat rooms as well as group chat rooms for varying purposes.

We also love Zoho Projects’ Forums. You can organize separate topics of discussion into different folders to make tracking them easier. This is ideal for detailed discussions and lengthier posts.

Pre-Built Templates

Zoho Projects pre-built templates

Zoho Projects recently introduced its Template Library, which houses 20+ pre-designed templates so that you can create the ideal project board for your needs without having to start from scratch.

The highlight here is how Zoho offers different pre-built templates for companies in different industries, including software/IT, construction, manufacturing, HR, and marketing/sales.

We like that there are templates for different use cases within a single niche. For example, under marketing, you’ll find templates for digital marketing, product launches, and event planning.

Although it offers fewer templates than some rivals, the options are great, and we anticipate that more will be added in the future. We found the level of customization great, too.

Blueprints

Zoho Projects Blueprints different task statuses

Blueprint is an automation-based offering by Zoho Projects. It streamlines mundane tasks such as updating specific fields or sending email alerts when a certain task changes status.

We found it effortless to manage and found it worked well to save time. All you have to do is set up task statutes, include the right people for each stage, and let Zoho automate the process.

For example, if a process requires approval stages, you can have the people assigned to this notified when a project is ready for approval and have them simply click whether they approve or reject it.

This vastly minimizes the need for back-and-forth email threads, for example, and speeds up the processes whilst keeping everything centralized for a quick overview of where each task stands.

Issue Tracking

Zoho Projects issue tracking

Zoho Projects’ issue tracking lets your team easily record any issues or bugs for tracking. Furthermore, it also automates issue status updates (just like in Blueprints).

As such, those assigned to a specific task will get alerts to any changes or updates. You can also prioritize bugs that are time-sensitive or important for your project workflow or clients.

What we liked most about Zoho Project’s issue tracking is that you can create custom views and even get detailed reports on the progress of these issues in your projects.

This makes it a solid option for software developers, for example.

Zoho Projects Integrations

Despite offering fewer integrations than rivals like ClickUp and Monday, Zoho Projects offers some of the most common ones, including Slack, Office 365, SharePoint, and Microsoft Teams.

What’s even better is that it allows you to integrate with Zapier – an app marketplace – meaning you connect with just about every application and software your business uses.

A highlight of Zoho Projects’ is its ability to integrate with the Zoho suite of products, including Zoho CRM (one of the best CRM software solutions), Zoho Meeting, and Zoho Desk.

This is a unique advantage of using Zoho Projects, which makes it a no-brainer for businesses that are already in the Zoho ecosystem.

Zoho Projects Customer Reviews

Despite not being as popular as tools like Monday or ClickUp, Zoho Projects has garnered a solid reputation online, with most Zoho Projects reviews being positive.

For example, it’s rated 8.5/10 on TrustRadius with over 100 reviews, where 83% say they’d continue with the tool, while 100% of them claim that it delivers great value for the price.

Zoho Projects customer reviews on G2

On G2, Zoho Projects has received a decent 4.3/5, with around 60% of the users rating it 5/5. One key praise is the platform’s usability and easy integration.

You’ll also come across many who boast that the platform offers incredible value for money, considering how robust the features are. That said, there are mixed reviews on the learning curve.

Also, time tracking isn’t perfect, as you need to select everything rather than directly log the time for a particular task, and it, of course, lacks integrations and templates when compared to rivals.

What is Zoho Projects Good for?

Zoho Projects is one of the most affordable project management tools, especially when you consider the functionality on offer on the base plan, which costs just $4/user/month.

This includes Blueprints, issue tracking, built-in chat, and time tracking. There’s also a free plan. All this makes it among the best project management tools for small teams.

You get 2 project views, pre-built templates, and 10 integrations, including Zoho CRM and Slack, which is rare. However, it is lacking compared to the best free project management tools.

For example, it doesn’t quite meet Monday, which offers unlimited project views, or Notion, which boasts custom fields and 10K+ templates, and ClickUp, which offers unlimited users.

It’s not the best choice for large enterprises either, as it lacks project views like Calendar and Table, for example. Security features are also reserved for the higher-tier plan.

Zoho Projects vs Top Competitors

There’s no doubt about Zoho Projects’ viability to budget-conscious users, but how does it fare against some of the best Zoho Projects alternatives? Here’s a quick look:

Zoho Projects Monday Wrike ClickUp Smartsheet Teamwork
Best For Those on a budget Any-sized company Marketing-focused businesses Free project management tools Spreadsheet-liike project management Client-service teams
Starting Price $4/user/month $9/user/month $9.80/user/month $7/user/month $7/user/month $5.99/user/month
Free Version Free Plan Free Plan Free Plan Free Plan Free Plan Free Plan
Compatibility Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows
Top Features Pre-built templates, blueprints, issue tracking AI assistant, unlimited boards and documents, whiteboard collaboration Project blueprints, customizable dashboards, Gantt charts Sprint management, checklist reminders, 15 project views Fully customizable spreadsheets, no-code app builder, conditional form logic Portfolio management, budget tracking, billing & invoicing

Zoho Projects vs Asana

Asana is one of the best free project management software solutions, offering a lot of free features without any usage caps. For example, you get unlimited storage and tasks/projects for free.

Additionally, it’s better than Zoho Projects for security-conscious teams, as it comes with 256-bit encryption and multi-factor authentication right from the free plan itself.

However, as we discussed in our review of Asana, its first paid plan costs $10.99/user/month, over double Zoho Projects’ base plan – and it lacks time and budget tracking, for example.

Zoho Projects includes this functionality for less than half the price. As such, it’s a tough choice, and it really depends on your specific needs and, importantly, your budget.

Read More: An In-Depth Asana Review for 2024

Zoho Projects vs Monday

Monday, like Asana, has a more well-rounded free version than Zoho Projects, as it offers unlimited project views, 200+ templates, and 2FA.

That said, where Zoho Projects’ free plan shines is in integration support. You can integrate with Zoho CRM, Slack, and MS Teams, while Monday doesn’t offer any integrations on its free tier.

Zoho Projects is also a much more affordable option for large teams with a lot of users, making it the cheaper option for scaling. That said, Monday offers a lot more customization and project views.

Recommended Read: Our Full Monday.com Review

Zoho Projects vs ClickUp

ClickUp is the better option if you want more templates and project views. In fact, ClickUp offers among the most project views (15), and the entry plan costs just $7/user/month.

This is just slightly more expensive than Zoho’s but is still a very cost-effective option, which was also the conclusion in our neatly crafted review of ClickUp.

Despite being more expensive than Zoho Projects on the premium-level plans, ClickUp lacks features like issue tracking, forums, wiki pages, and budget tracking.

However, ClickUp’s free plan is far more generous as it even allows unlimited users and includes time tracking, for example. It’s also among the top options for endless customization.

Read More: An In-Depth ClickUp Review

How We Test Project Management Tools

Our team of experts has over 13 years of experience evaluating dozens of project management tools and other business software spanning CRMs, VoIP services, and loads more.

Our first-hand evaluation of every tool includes 2-3 weeks of thorough testing, where we check its features, ease of use, customizability, and overall how much value for money it offers.

In addition to testing out the platform, we also explore other user reviews to ensure we’re including everything our readers would want to know about the product before deciding if it’s best for them.

Having tested numerous tools within the category, we’re also able to make granular comparisons, highlighting each one’s key USPs and where it falls a bit short when compared to rivals.

How to Choose the Best Project Management Solution

Here are a few things you should consider when choosing the best project management app for your business:

PriceFeaturesScalabilityEase of UseIntegrationsCustomer Support

It’s important to decide how much you want to shell out on a project planner. The key is to zero in on a plan that has all the features you need within the price range you’re willing to spend.

Avoid falling for low-cost plans that lack the features you need. Be sure to note the features you’re after to ensure that the plan you can afford offers this functionality.

At the same time, note that some advanced features – such as security offerings in the case of Zoho Projects – may only be available with higher-tier plans.

As a growing business, you need a project management solution that’s capable of meeting your needs not just at the present but also in the future when your operations have expanded, and that too, without asking you to break the bank.

Pick a project management solution with little to no learning curve, as that will allow your team members to get cracking with the software from the get-go.

To check the suitability of a tool in this respect, before committing to a paid plan, we recommend you take advantage of any free versions on offer.

Integrations help you manage multiple aspects of your business through multiple apps but on the same platform. Look for project management software that offers integrations with tools you already use in your business.

Some tools limit certain integrations to higher-end plans and may not offer the tools you need at all, so this is an important consideration.

Look for friendly 24/7 support via live chat, phone, and/or email. At the same time, consider the support hours of the provider and that it matches your business timings.

FAQs

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References

Vaishnavi Srivastava
Technology Expert

Vaishnavi Srivastava has a computing degree. She joined Techopedia.com in 2023 after working at Techreport.com where she developed her area of expertise in software reviews. She has extensive knowledge of CRMs, VoIP systems, password managers, and hosting services. Her portfolio includes various buyer guides from individual product reviews to highly detailed comparisons.