With the caveat that I haven't extensively used Monday.com, and so can only deeply compare Airtable and Smartsheet from personal experience:
Airtable's a database that works a bit more like a spreadsheet. Smartsheet's a spreadsheet with some database features added on.
I used Smartsheet for some projects where we wanted easier ways to sort spreadsheet data, and basically ended up using it as a nicer Pivot Table. It just didn't feel differentiated enough from a spreadsheet to make us want to switch.
Airtable gave much of that same power, but in a way that let us build what feel like custom apps for each task we needed—that, and its filtered views both made it something our team enjoyed using. You can build something incredibly detailed in Airtable without much work, and that plus the design makes it worth taking the extra time to learn something new. And for that incentive of learning something new, sometimes a nice design is as much incentive as anything. Also, mobile: I haven't used Smartsheet's mobile apps, but Airtable's mobile apps are lightyears ahead of using a spreadsheet on mobile, and I would imagine are a key selling point for teams just starting out picking between the two.
I had to decide either to go for Monday or Airtable around 6 months ago. We started a new venture/project and the platforms both looked attractive enough to consider.
My first question was to list down all the tasks I wanted the software to manage for me.
I then made another list of things I didn't want the software to do.
I also made a third list of other requirements that I considerd important.
Based on the lists - I compared the capabilities of the 2 platforms and made the decisions:) My example thoughts as of then were smth like this:
1.What I want the software to manage for me
-Act as the core relational database
-Act as the admin interface for a database so that I don't need to build a UI separately
-Act as the main workspace/dashboard for the business operator
2.Things that are not that important for me on the product
-I will not be using the product for team management
-I will not be using the tool for project management / general task management
-I will be using the product only internally
3.Other things that are important to me
-Cost of using for the first 6 months
-Minimizing costom development costs for the first 6 months
-Nr of built in automations
-Different connection options via Zapier (or other)
-Cost / effort of replacing the system in 6-12 months
-Ability to manage user roles on several levels
Based on my input parameters, team requirements and business I decided to go for Airtable;) And so far I'm happy with that and the business keeps getting traction.
Good luck with making the decision! I think Monday and Airtable at least are both rather complex and feature rich already so there is a high chance you end up with either of them ;)
I use a combination of features, design, pricing, and versatility.
I opted for Airtable, and I love it. I use Airtable for my personal projects, and I plan to use it for professional purposes. I think Airtable is relatively easy to use, with an excellent design. Airtable offers a lot of apps, integrations, automation, and scripts, with more to come. However, pricing seems to be a problem: add more people to the team, and costs will scale quickly.
I was trying Smartsheet, and I didn’t like the design: it’s not very intuitive. It reminds me of ClickUp: a powerful tool but very confusing. Smartsheet seems to focus on the corporate market; Airtable seems more friendly for personal/individual use. The number of additional features is not so significant right now.
I never tried Monday.com before, so I can’t say how friendly the platform is. The number of apps offered is really, really impressive; pricing, for a small team, is more attractive than Airtable’s price, and the design is excellent.
If I were to compare them, I’d say Airtable and Monday.com are more polished, versatile, and with a great number of integration and additional apps.
I think you should try them all and see which one is best for your needs.
I have tried them all LITERALLY all of them. I end up back at Monday.com. Main reason is I am visual and it is very visual....honestly too many colors but overall just so much easier to use and read. It is very flexible. Airtable is great, I know lots of folks use it, but it seemed too much Excel 3.0 to me. Monday was kind of a new paradigm in that I could set it up different for each task. I use it for CRM (light weight) Project Management and my own weekly To-Do lists. Import and Export on Monday has gotten better but is not what I would call easy. They do this on purpose IMHO to get you to authorize more users...CHA CHING ! Yes the do try to get as many users as possible on. their platform. Overall I recommend Monday.com
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