Product managers work at the intersection of design, engineering and customer centric functions (like sales, support and customer success). A lot of what goes into product management involves collaborating between multiple stakeholders and moving product development forward.
Here are some of the best tools that product managers use to collaborate and drive forward product initiatives.
Collaboration & Project Management
Collaboration and project management products help product, engineering and design teams come together to share work and move projects forward. These products serve as the source of truth regarding the progress of any product initiatives.
Zepel is a solution to help product and engineering teams move from requests and bugs to shipped software.
Zepel streams helps streamline feedback from different sources and turn them into actionable items for your engineering squads to work on.
Zepel squads helps engineering teams plan, build and deploy features using sprints and kanban boards. It has a simple document like interface that is easy to understand and focuses being developer friendly while taking the complexity out of agile project management.
Pricing: Freemium going upto $7/user/month from the 6th member (Squads), $49/month (Streams)
Jira is one of the most popular project management platforms for engineering teams. It has options to be customized to fit complex workflows. Jira is suitable for large engineering teams as it comes with a steep learning curve and requires considerable expertise to set up.
Pricing: Free for upto 10 users and upto $14/user/month for teams of more than 10 members
If you're already using Jira and exploring other options, you might be interested in this list of Jira alternatives.
Miro is a digital whiteboard that allows effortless realtime collaboration between members. The open interface makes the product useful in a variety of ways. Some of the common product management use cases include: idea mapping, user journey mapping, product research and user research.
Pricing: Freemium going upto $16/user/month
Trello is one of the most popular kanban board tools in the market. It is easy to setup and can serve as a basic product management tool for startups and small teams. Trello columns can be customised and used for a variety of purposes like task management, basic roadmapping, product specification & design and basic agile development.
Pricing: Freemium upto $17.50/user/month
If Trello isn't meeting your needs of software development, you might interested in exploring Zepel as a Trello alternative.
Notion is an "All-in-one workspace" that can serve as a documentation hub for product teams. The interface is easy to understand and is designed to be used by technical and business teams. It also has a variety of templates to embed databases, tables, kanban boards and gantt charts into documents.
Notion is renowned for a great user experience and is suitable for small product development teams however larger teams might need something with more specialised constructs.
Pricing: Freemium upto $8/user/month
Coda is a database-in-a-document that is similar to notion, although coda focuses more on bringing the power of a spreadsheet into a document. Coda could be a documentation alternative for product teams and managers who are accustomed to working on excel/spreadsheets.
Pricing: Freemium going upto $36/creator/month
Confluence is the documentation product by Atlassian that serves as the compliment to JIRA. It can be used by product and engineering teams to maintain documentation and bring collaboration and research closer to engineering tickets on JIRA. The ability to link documentation closely to tickets makes it a good fit for product teams where engineering is largely working from the Atlassian ecosystem.
Pricing: Freemium going upto $10/user/month for teams of more than 10 members
Customer Feedback & Support
Canny helps product teams collect, analyze and act on customer feedback. It allows product managers to set up pages where users can submit and vote on feature requests. It also allows you to communicate the status and progress of any feature requests that your users may be interested in.
Pricing: Starts at $50/month going upto $200/month
Intercom is a customer communication platform that has a collection of tools to help communicate and build relationships with customers. Some of these include website & in-app chat, product tours, chatbots, email automation etc. It could serve as your single product for customer communication before individual teams like marketing and sales become large enough to start using their own specialised products.
Pricing: Intercom has a variety of plans for their different products. Detailed pricing can be found on their pricing page.
Zendesk is a suite of products to connect businesses to their customers. Some of their products include help desks with chat and voice, knowledge bases, CRM and analytics. Zendesk products are a good choice for mature teams that need robust products for individual use cases.
Pricing: Zendesk has a variety of plans for their different products. Detailed pricing can be found on their pricing page
Mixpanel is one of the most popular event tracking and analytics platforms for product teams. Mixpanel helps product managers track user actions in their apps and facilitates data driven decision making. It allows you to track your data, slice and dice it to derive insights and take action to improve product KPIs.
Pricing: Free upto 100k monthly tracked users and paid plans starting at $17/month
Heap is a user analytics platform that helps product teams capture in-app user interactions and convert this data into actionable insights. It has various features focused on helping improving conversions around the AARRR funnel.
Pricing: Free upto 60,000 annual sessions and higher plans starting at $12000/year
Amplitude is a product intelligence product aimed at product managers who want to understand their users better, improve product experiences and translate this to improved retention and customer value. It has a variety of custom reports like behavioural and predictive reports.
Pricing: Freemium with custom pricing for higher plans
Fullstory is an analytics platform built around using session replays to observe and improve user experience. It differentiates itself from other products analytics platforms by bringing a focus to the qualitative aspect of a product and its user experience against other tools that are focussed on helping capture and manipulate data for insights. Adding fullstory helps product managers 'see' how users are using their products.
Pricing: Freemium with custom pricing for higher plans
Prioritisation & Roadmapping
Airfocus is a product strategy tool build for product managers to prioritize and roadmap features. The product's strength lies in its strong prioritization flows that allows teams to score and visualize the impact of building features. It has basic roadmapping and the ability to integrate with tools like JIRA and Trello for tickets.
Pricing: Starts at $35/month
Aha! is one of the most famous product roadmapping tools that helps cover the strategic aspect of product management. It can be used to capture ideas and convert them into actionable roadmaps. It has various roadmapping views to help with a large spectrum of activities starting from gathering business requirements going all the way down to planning engineering delivery. It integrates with almost all the popular project management tools.
Pricing: Starts at $59/user/month
Roadmunk is a roadmapping tool for teams that are getting started with product roadmapping. It is fairly robust but feels lightweight at the same time. It allows product managers to capture ideas, plan and visualise their roadmaps in various views like timelines and boards.
Pricing: Starts at $19/user/month going upto $129/user/month
Productboard helps teams capture customer needs, prioritize what to build and align people around a roadmap. It helps teams capture feedback through its integrations with tools like Zendesk, Slack and Intercom, helps prioritise and build the roadmap and passes this data to project management tools like JIRA and trello.
Pricing: Starting at $20/user/month going upto $120/user/month
Design, Wireframing & Prototyping
Figma is one of the most popular interface design platforms used by designers all over the world. It helps UI designers collaborate around mockups and prototypes and helps bridge the gap between designers and developers. In addition to being an excellent tool for multiple aspects of interface design - right from wireframe design to interaction and animation design, it also does a great job solving workflow problems in the product development lifecycle.
Pricing: Freemium going upto $45/user/month
Sketch is another popular design collaboration platform that helps teams design interfaces for web and mobile applications. It is very popular as it has a wide variety of extensions, plugins and libraries which that can be used for everything from illustration design to auto-converting your designs into react components.
Pricing: $99 one-time for individuals, $9/user/team billed yearly
Invision is a design to development platform for mobile and web based products. In addition to helping with interface design on the main product, Invision Studio can be used to create vector based drawings and animations for product transitions. Invision has the option to directly import sketch files to start
Pricing: Freemium going upto $9.95/user/month