Instant Messaging & Chat Software

Instant messaging and chat applications offer two or more people the ability to communicate in real-time over the internet. Along with text chat, many popular IM apps also offer voice, video chat, and even screen sharing.
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Here's our list of apps for Instant Messaging & Chat software.

Instant messaging & chat software allows two or more people to communicate in real time over the internet.

Highlighted apps are recognized as Category Leaders — the leading business apps within a category. Our data-driven rankings are based on 5 key factors that will help you choose the right app for your business.

You can also sort & filter results by Category Leaders or click on the ‘Leaders’ tab to see the full list, compare apps, and find out more about our scoring methodology.

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150 apps

Wrike   

1,588
Manage your projects from start to finish with Wrike
Turn discussions into results with instant messaging and chat features in Wrike's work management. Collaborate in real-time with internal and external stakeholders, share tasks and the latest files, and keep decisions clear and on-the-record. Read more about Wrike
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Manage your projects from start to finish with Wrike
Turn discussions into results with instant messaging and chat features in Wrike's work management. Collaborate in real-time with internal and external stakeholders, share tasks and the latest files, and keep decisions clear and on-the-record. Read more about Wrike
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Slack   

18,672
90 pts
A single place for team communication and workflows
Slack is a single workspace that connects users with the people and tools they work with everyday, no matter where they are or what they do. Read more about Slack
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A single place for team communication and workflows
Slack is a single workspace that connects users with the people and tools they work with everyday, no matter where they are or what they do. Read more about Slack
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monday.com   

2,085
Project Management Made Easy
monday.com is a cloud-based Work OS, where teams create workflow apps in minutes to run their processes, projects, and everyday work. Read more about monday.com
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Project Management Made Easy
monday.com is a cloud-based Work OS, where teams create workflow apps in minutes to run their processes, projects, and everyday work. Read more about monday.com
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Blink   

42
Employee app & portal for remote teams
Blink is a complete employee app and portal solution for mobile teams to encourage communication, enhance productivity, and keep everyone informed. Read more about Blink
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Employee app & portal for remote teams
Blink is a complete employee app and portal solution for mobile teams to encourage communication, enhance productivity, and keep everyone informed. Read more about Blink
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Beekeeper   

62
95 pts
A mobile-first communication app for non-desktop employees
Peer to peer secure chat messenger. Work better together with secure and organized communication channels to message any employee in real time. Read more about Beekeeper
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A mobile-first communication app for non-desktop employees
Peer to peer secure chat messenger. Work better together with secure and organized communication channels to message any employee in real time. Read more about Beekeeper
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GoToMeeting   

7,338
Online meeting software with HD video conferencing
GoToMeeting is an IM & chat tool that allows users to host an online meeting with high-definition video conferencing from their Mac, PC, iPad, iPhone or Android device, with up to 250 participants. Users can meet, screen share and chat via internet browser, mobile or desktop application. Read more about GoToMeeting
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Online meeting software with HD video conferencing
GoToMeeting is an IM & chat tool that allows users to host an online meeting with high-definition video conferencing from their Mac, PC, iPad, iPhone or Android device, with up to 250 participants. Users can meet, screen share and chat via internet browser, mobile or desktop application. Read more about GoToMeeting
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Orion Voice Platform   

14
AI-enabled collaboration & communication management solution
Orion helps businesses streamline processes related to voice communication, employee onboarding, task mapping, and more. The platform comes with automated notifications, which facilitate communication during emergencies and allow teams to send help alerts. Read more about Orion Voice Platform
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AI-enabled collaboration & communication management solution
Orion helps businesses streamline processes related to voice communication, employee onboarding, task mapping, and more. The platform comes with automated notifications, which facilitate communication during emergencies and allow teams to send help alerts. Read more about Orion Voice Platform
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Trainual   

149
Easy onboarding and training software for growing businesses
Trainual helps growing businesses build better teams and scale faster by providing one central app for documenting processes and SOPs, then automating onboarding and training. Capture every process, policy, and procedure in one place and turn best practices into standard practices. Read more about Trainual
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Easy onboarding and training software for growing businesses
Trainual helps growing businesses build better teams and scale faster by providing one central app for documenting processes and SOPs, then automating onboarding and training. Capture every process, policy, and procedure in one place and turn best practices into standard practices. Read more about Trainual
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Front   

165
Email management software and shared inbox for teams
Front provides a simple way for teams to manage email inboxes (sales@, support@, etc), chat, social media, SMS messages in a single collaborative platform. Read more about Front
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Email management software and shared inbox for teams
Front provides a simple way for teams to manage email inboxes (sales@, support@, etc), chat, social media, SMS messages in a single collaborative platform. Read more about Front
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Trello   

16,937
Visual collaboration tool for shared project perspectives
Spreadsheets, emails, and never-ending notifications are major teamwork blockers that affect today’s business teams—no matter their size. Project assignments, tasks, and daily to-do’s get lost, transparency gets trumped, and people lose productivity in the shuffle. Read more about Trello Not only do teams need to manage this constant overflow, but they also need to build projects, track progress, and achieve major business goals. What’s needed is a clear view of the entire process to keep everyone on the same page. Introducing Trello: A visual collaboration tool that creates a shared perspective for your team on any project in a fun, flexible, and rewarding way.
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Visual collaboration tool for shared project perspectives
Spreadsheets, emails, and never-ending notifications are major teamwork blockers that affect today’s business teams—no matter their size. Project assignments, tasks, and daily to-do’s get lost, transparency gets trumped, and people lose productivity in the shuffle. Read more about Trello Not only do teams need to manage this constant overflow, but they also need to build projects, track progress, and achieve major business goals. What’s needed is a clear view of the entire process to keep everyone on the same page. Introducing Trello: A visual collaboration tool that creates a shared perspective for your team on any project in a fun, flexible, and rewarding way.
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Jostle   

50
The People Engagement® platform.
New kind of employee intranet that drives engagement & workplace culture. Achieves social participation in work relevant way. Participation rates are over 85%. Read more about Jostle
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The People Engagement® platform.
New kind of employee intranet that drives engagement & workplace culture. Achieves social participation in work relevant way. Participation rates are over 85%. Read more about Jostle
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Adeya   

1
Collaboration and communication tools for remote workplaces
Adeya is an on-premise and cloud-based communication software designed to help businesses securely collaborate on assignments and share content on a digital workplace. The platform allows users to communicate via encrypted one-to one or group calls, video conferencing, SMS, and instant messaging. Read more about Adeya
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Collaboration and communication tools for remote workplaces
Adeya is an on-premise and cloud-based communication software designed to help businesses securely collaborate on assignments and share content on a digital workplace. The platform allows users to communicate via encrypted one-to one or group calls, video conferencing, SMS, and instant messaging. Read more about Adeya
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Noodle   

29
All-In-One, Team Communication Platform
Noodle’s built-in Instant Messenger application allows employees to chat with each other. Read more about Noodle
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All-In-One, Team Communication Platform
Noodle’s built-in Instant Messenger application allows employees to chat with each other. Read more about Noodle
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Brosix   

67
94 pts
Secure instant messenger for teams and businesses
Secure instant messaging software for business communication providing a private team network with many control features. Read more about Brosix
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Brosix

94 pts
Secure instant messenger for teams and businesses
Secure instant messaging software for business communication providing a private team network with many control features. Read more about Brosix
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Blizz   

39
Freemium online meeting & collaboration software
Blizz by TeamViewer is an online, desktop & mobile meeting & collaboration software for remote or global teams, with screen-sharing, meeting recording & more. Read more about Blizz
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Freemium online meeting & collaboration software
Blizz by TeamViewer is an online, desktop & mobile meeting & collaboration software for remote or global teams, with screen-sharing, meeting recording & more. Read more about Blizz
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Communifire by Axero   

18
Intranet software and collaboration solutions.
Axero provides easy-to-use instant messaging and chat software that boosts productivity, unifies your people, and helps your company thrive. Increase productivity. Unite employees. Improve culture. Read more about Communifire by Axero
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Intranet software and collaboration solutions.
Axero provides easy-to-use instant messaging and chat software that boosts productivity, unifies your people, and helps your company thrive. Increase productivity. Unite employees. Improve culture. Read more about Communifire by Axero
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Flock   

261
93 pts
Communication and collaboration platform for teams
Flock is a collaborative messaging app for teams which enables users to discuss projects and find and share information and ideas effectively and efficiently. Read more about Flock
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Flock

93 pts
Communication and collaboration platform for teams
Flock is a collaborative messaging app for teams which enables users to discuss projects and find and share information and ideas effectively and efficiently. Read more about Flock
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FunctionFox   

133
Timesheets & Project Management Software
FunctionFox is an online project management and timesheet software designed for creative companies, such as advertising, graphic design, marketing, public relations, and multimedia firms. Users can monitor multiple jobs, assign tasks, manage remote workers, and keep projects on track and on budget. Read more about FunctionFox
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Timesheets & Project Management Software
FunctionFox is an online project management and timesheet software designed for creative companies, such as advertising, graphic design, marketing, public relations, and multimedia firms. Users can monitor multiple jobs, assign tasks, manage remote workers, and keep projects on track and on budget. Read more about FunctionFox
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Glip   

161
90 pts
Conversation platform for team collaboration & productivity
Glip is a cloud-based conversation platform designed for teams to plan, share, and organize work tasks. Text and video chat features facilitate communication between team members whilst file sharing and collaborative task management encourage efficiency and productivity within teams. Read more about Glip
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Glip

90 pts
Conversation platform for team collaboration & productivity
Glip is a cloud-based conversation platform designed for teams to plan, share, and organize work tasks. Text and video chat features facilitate communication between team members whilst file sharing and collaborative task management encourage efficiency and productivity within teams. Read more about Glip
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3CX   

219
Hosted PBX with CRM integration and mobile apps
3CX is a complete remote-enabled phone system which includes mobile apps for Android and iOS, as well as a web client for professional instant messages and chats, among other features. Read more about 3CX
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Hosted PBX with CRM integration and mobile apps
3CX is a complete remote-enabled phone system which includes mobile apps for Android and iOS, as well as a web client for professional instant messages and chats, among other features. Read more about 3CX
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Trillian   

46
95 pts
Instant messaging for healthcare systems of all sizes
Trillian is a cloud-based solution designed to help businesses in the healthcare sector manage processes for instant messaging to improve internal communication. Trillian lets users manage group chats, sorted by teams or department, & share information about patient status, staff rotations, & more. Read more about Trillian
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Instant messaging for healthcare systems of all sizes
Trillian is a cloud-based solution designed to help businesses in the healthcare sector manage processes for instant messaging to improve internal communication. Trillian lets users manage group chats, sorted by teams or department, & share information about patient status, staff rotations, & more. Read more about Trillian
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When I Work   

811
Staff scheduling, time tracking, communication & attendance
When I Work is the easiest way for businesses to schedule and communicate with your hourly employees. Put the schedule and time clock in everyone's pocket. Schedule on-the-go with free apps for iPhone and Android. Save yourself time and money and improve accountability. Read more about When I Work Free for up to 75 employees.
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Staff scheduling, time tracking, communication & attendance
When I Work is the easiest way for businesses to schedule and communicate with your hourly employees. Put the schedule and time clock in everyone's pocket. Schedule on-the-go with free apps for iPhone and Android. Save yourself time and money and improve accountability. Read more about When I Work Free for up to 75 employees.
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Outpost   

10
Email and collaboration management solution
Outpost helps businesses organize emails, collaborate on tasks, respond to customer queries, and track messages through a shared inbox. The internal notes functionality lets users view emails, add notes or comments, and securely share information with members. Read more about Outpost
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Email and collaboration management solution
Outpost helps businesses organize emails, collaborate on tasks, respond to customer queries, and track messages through a shared inbox. The internal notes functionality lets users view emails, add notes or comments, and securely share information with members. Read more about Outpost
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VidyoCloud   

0
Web conferencing platform for chat and video communication
VidyoCloud is a web conferencing platform that helps corporate businesses, educational institutions, and healthcare organizations conduct virtual meetings and facilitate team communication through audio or video calls. Customers can record video conferences or meetings for future reference. Read more about VidyoCloud
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Web conferencing platform for chat and video communication
VidyoCloud is a web conferencing platform that helps corporate businesses, educational institutions, and healthcare organizations conduct virtual meetings and facilitate team communication through audio or video calls. Customers can record video conferences or meetings for future reference. Read more about VidyoCloud
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ConnectWise Control   

1,629
Remote meeting platform for resolving customers' queries
ConnectWise Control is a help desk solution that allows businesses to detect and resolve customer queries through remote monitoring capabilities. Agents can prevent potential cyberthreats & protect data via features such as AES-256 encryption and two-factor authentication. Read more about ConnectWise Control
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Remote meeting platform for resolving customers' queries
ConnectWise Control is a help desk solution that allows businesses to detect and resolve customer queries through remote monitoring capabilities. Agents can prevent potential cyberthreats & protect data via features such as AES-256 encryption and two-factor authentication. Read more about ConnectWise Control
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Instant Messaging & Chat Software Buyers Guide

When it comes to collaborating on business-related tasks or projects, efficient communication is a necessity. Instant messaging & chat software connects coworkers in real time and prevents miscommunications by allowing them to share ideas, send progress updates, and discuss details conveniently.  

We created this buyers guide to help you select the instant messaging (IM) & chat software that’s right for your business. Here’s what we’ll cover:

What is instant messaging & chat software?

IM & chat software allows two or more people to communicate in real time over the internet. Along with text chat, several applications also support file sharing, voice calls, video chat, and screen sharing. 

While stand-alone IM & chat applications do exist, they are also often a part of team communication systems. 

What are the deployment options for instant messaging & chat software?

There are two deployment options for IM & chat software. We’ve listed the characteristics of each option below:

Cloud-based deployment: Cloud-based software (also known as SaaS) is hosted by the vendor on their own or third-party servers; you access the system from a web browser or mobile app. This kind of deployment is usually charged on monthly or annual subscriptions. Some vendors also factor in the number of monthly users when calculating the subscription fee.

On-premise deployment: In this deployment model, you host the software on your own servers and network. This model is often more expensive upfront due to a one-time licensing fee and the cost of the necessary hardware. You’ll also have to pay for maintenance, upgrades, support, and data storage. 

Key questions to ask a vendor before you buy:

  • Do you offer support for on-premise deployments?

  • What is the total cost of ownership (TCO) including one-time expenses such as setup fees and data migration?

  • Is your system multi-lingual?

What are some common features of instant messaging & chat software?

After understanding the deployment options available to you, start building your shortlist based on the features you need most. Common features of IM & chat software include:

Chat: Communicate with one or more users simultaneously via a chat server. 

Picture1

Chatting with Flock

Mobile integration: Receive messages and alerts on your smartphone via native mobile apps. 

Picture2

Communicating with coworkers via the Zoho Cliq mobile app

Third-party integrations: Connect the tool with other systems to facilitate data exchange.

Picture3

Alerts and previews of information from third-party applications in Slack 

Video chat: Connect with coworkers face-to-face from anywhere via the internet. 

Picture4

Coworkers connect with video chat using GoToMeeting

File sharing: Allow users to share files among themselves through the application.

Picture5

A catalog of shared files in Microsoft Teams

Notifications: Allow users to control how and when they’re alerted of new messages, cutting down on miscommunications and distractions. 

Picture6

Managing notifications in Beekeeper

Key questions to ask a vendor before you buy: IM & chat software features are not limited to the ones listed above. Ask vendors about additional functionalities that would benefit your business:

  • Can your system integrate with third-party applications?

  • How many users does your system support?

  • What data security measures do you have in place?

  • Does your system offer collaboration features like screen sharing or calendar management?

  • Can your system support multiple languages?

  • Does your system allow for the setup of an internal help desk?

Back to instant messaging & chat software directory 

Note: The applications selected in this article are examples to show a feature in context, and are not intended as endorsements or recommendations, obtained from sources believed to be reliable at the time of publication.

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