With so many different project management solutions available, figuring out which ones offer client portals is tough. You know you want to keep your stakeholders aligned by giving them access to relevant project information but need to figure out which tool is best. I've got you! In this post I'll help make your choice easy, sharing my personal experiences using dozens of different tools with large teams and projects, with my picks of the best project management software with client portals.
What is project management software with client portals?
Project management software with client portals is software that combines project management functionalities with a dedicated portal for clients to log in and have access to relevant project information of your choosing. Features often include task management, document sharing, communication tools, and reporting capabilities within the project management component, coupled with a separate client portal where clients can view project progress, deliverables, and communicate with the project team.
Client portal software allows agencies to close the communication gap with clients. Instead of holding project update meetings or having back-and-forth email chains, portals give agencies a direct line to share and request files with clients, send invoices, and ask for feedback.
Project.co is a project management tool built for working with clients. The interface is clear and easy to use for people opening it for the first time. And it has powerful features for internal teams.
Project.co is as a hub for your work and when you invite clients it means all communication and assets for client projects can remain in one place. Every project in Project.co is modular. You can add tools to each project based on the job you want to get done, including; Discussion, Tasks, Payments, Time, Files, Notes & Embeds.
Project.co Standout Features & Integrations
Features include recurring tasks, sub-tasks, take payments on projects, real-time discussion, reply to discussion comments by email, record time on projects and tasks, custom fields to collect the data points you need, and embed hundreds of external tools and websites to make a central place for all assets.
Integrations include Stripe, Paypal & Zapier. Project.co also has a comprehensive embeds option allowing hundreds of embed types including Airtable, Figma, Frame.io, Google Docs, InVision, Loom, Miro & more.
Project.co Plans & Pricing:
Project.co has a free plan including 5 Creator users and unlimited Collaborators. You get 10 active projects and 1GB storage. The teams plan is $10/user/month (or $8/user/month paid annually) and gives you unlimited projects and 10GB storage per user. The Agency plan gives you full white labelling including branding, custom domain, and custom emails for $14/user/month (or $12/user/month paid annually).
ClickUp is a cloud-based project management and collaboration software with the ability to set up a client portal to share information and communicate directly with your clients. It's a flexible system for organizations of all sizes and industries, capable of facilitating task management and allocation, communications, project status monitoring, and team collaboration. It is an all-in-one platform that effectively combines all the functionalities of multiple workflow and organizational management systems into a unified solution.
Using ClickUp, you can communicate deadlines, progress update and more easily. You can create a client space in your system, with individual folders for each client you have. From there, you can use lists to track the different services you provide to each client. ClickUp includes tools to make folders or lists private, or viewable by certain users only. To share items with your clients, invite them to your folder as a Guest, or allow them to use the email task creation feature, which lets them email tasks that get added directly to your 'to do' list, including due dates, as needed.
Another helpful feature if you're managing lots of clients is the ability to create a client folder as a template. You can then re-use this folder quickly, whenever you have a new client sign up. This will save your teams a lot of time, rather than having to re-create your folder structure from scratch again and again.
ClickUp also integrates natively with many platforms, including Dropbox, GitHub, GitLab, HubSpot, Intercom, Loom, Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Teams, Slack, Zoom, and many others.
ClickUp is completely free for personal use. For small teams, pricing starts at $9/user/month with the Unlimited plan. An Enterprise option is also available for larger teams, with quote-based pricing. Interested parties can visit the vendor’s website for more details about the subscription plans and pricing.
Zoho Projects is a web-based project management software that helps teams organize and track project progress, and collaborate and communicate effectively. Its robust platform offers various features to help teams manage complex projects and streamline workflows. Users can create tasks, assign them to team members, set deadlines, and track progress in real-time. Tasks can be organized into different categories, such as milestones or subtasks, to provide a clear picture of the project's progress. The platform also allows users to set task dependencies and prioritize them to ensure critical tasks are completed on time.
Users can create secure client portals that will enable clients to view project progress, timelines, and other relevant information. Clients can also communicate with the project team through the portal, which can help streamline communication and ensure everyone is on the same page. You can also customize your client portal to fit their branding and style, including their logos, colors, and preferred fonts, creating a more cohesive and professional experience for your clients. The platform offers collaboration tools that enable team members to communicate effectively. Users can share files, comment on tasks, and hold discussions in real-time.
Other useful features include the ability to log the time spent on tasks, which is then used to generate accurate project reports and invoices. This feature enables managers to monitor team productivity and identify areas for improvement. In addition, their comprehensive reporting system also provides insights into project performance. Users can generate reports on various aspects of the project, including task progress, time tracking, and team performance. These reports can be customized to fit your specific needs and exported to various formats such as Excel, PDF, or CSV.
Zoho Projects integrates with other Zoho apps, commonly used apps by Google (Google Calendar, Drive, Sheets, etc.), and Microsoft (Calendar, Excel, Office 365, OneDrive, Teams, and SharePoint), and other third-party apps such as Basecamp, Jira, Slack, Zendesk, and Zapier.
Zoho Projects costs from $5/user/month for tracking unlimited projects. A freemium plan with limited features, as well as a 10-day free trial, are also available.
Celoxis has a refreshing one-price-fits-all approach to project management software whereby their cloud-based or on-premise plan encompass all of their offerings without having to wade through a slew of confusing pricing packages. With this, you will have access to client portals at no additional cost, which helps with filtering, reporting, charting, and sharing your data.
You can easily give your clients access so that they can login to view reports shared with them, engage in online discussions, share files and even participate in business workflows like bug tracking, change requests, and item approvals. You can share reports and dashboards with clients that can include tabular, pie charts, bar charts and many other views of reports. To share it with a client, select the client in the 'visible to clients field' in the add/edit report form. If you pick the 'all' option, the report will be shared with all clients. Easy as that. You can also control which project tabs are visible to clients in a similar way.
Every client account can be configured to have the following privileges: 1) Allow client to view task information, excluding financial information. This determines whether clients can view task details. Financial fields (including custom fields) are never shown to the clients. 2) Allow client to view details of progress update on tasks. This determines whether clients can view updates and comments on the task. 3) Allow client to do progress update on tasks. This determines whether clients can add comments on a task.
One thing to note: If you share reports with your client, then the above privileges override the data shared in reports. For example, if you share a task list report to a client that does not have the 'allow client to view task information, excluding financial information' privilege, then that client will see an empty report.
Celoxis integrates with over 400 third-party apps like Google Drive, MS Excel, JIRA, QuickBooks Online, Salesforce, Evernote, Slack, Zendesk, G Suite, Trello, Harvest, MailChimp, and more through a paid account with Zapier.
Celoxis costs from $25/user/month with a 5 user minimum and offers a free 30-day trial.
Clients can log on through the portal and look at any files, documents or emails you upload for them. You can also ask them to approve files or give feedback on a document and, when they do, you’ll get an email notification.
One of Accello's client portal's handy features is that it links up with billing, invoicing, and payments. When clients pay an invoice or fulfill a subscription payment, everything is tracked, and billing history is kept. If your client ever wants to retrieve any of this information (like what credit card they have on file), all they have to do is log in.
Accello’s client portal should also fit easily into your existing tech stack as it integrates with over 20 tools, including Gsuite, Xero, Quickbooks, Slack, Typeform, Hubspot, and Airtable.
Accello’s Projects Plan starts at $39/user/month and gives you client portal access.
However, it does more than bundle all your client communication into one place. You can also automate responses to save your team time using templates and canned responses. If your team gets asked lots of common questions, you can use pre-populated responses to answer them quickly—and automatically.
Each question is also timestamped, so you can see when it landed in the portal and when a team member last answered it. If a question is resolved, its status flips to 'solved' so you can file it away.
Another cool feature of Teamwork’s client portal is its branding features. You can upload your entire stylesheet using the .css file upload feature, add your company favicon, and even use a custom URL.
Teamwork’s paid plans start at $10/user/month.
The year 2000 called, and it wants its interface design back.
But what it lacks in a clean, modern interface, it more than makes up for in its security chops. The tool's 'data rooms' are set up with security measures like role-based permissions, session timeouts, audit trails, and two-factor authentication.
Long story short—you don't have to worry about prying eyes in your client files because it's a very secure portal.
When you add files to the portal, you can share them with a client and set permissions (like viewer, collaborator, or administrator), which is perfect for feedback, approval, and task management. The inbuilt watermark tool can automatically mark any documents and protect them with your logo, and you can change up the portal's colors and branding to suit your own.
Here’s the only sticking point about OneHub—its integration list is short. Very short. It only mentions that Microsoft Office and Gsuite tools are on the list, so keep that in mind when deciding if this is the right portal for you and your team.
OneHub’s Standard Plan starts at $15/user/month, but doesn’t include white-labelling or two-factor authentication.
You can tag projects to make them instantly recognizable, label tasks for internal use only, and add timelines to everything your team is working on.
What’s cool about the EasyProject client portal is it doubles as a project management tool. You can add an estimated timeframe to see how long you are spending on each task and even set deadlines for deliverables. It even has a time tracking feature, so you can track everything in real-time.
This is particularly useful when you are charging clients per hour or have them on a retainer, as they can log into the portal and see how your team is using their time and makes it easier to justify billing when invoice time comes around.
You can also assign feedback and approval tasks to clients to make sure they sign off on anything before you move forward.
If you want feedback on a draft, just tag the client and ask them to add their thoughts. When they’re done, EasyProjects will automatically notify you so you can jump in and see what the client has added to the document. The whole process makes client projects more collaborative.
The plus side is that all of your client files are kept securely in one place. They can be accessed by everyone on your team instead of getting lost in an email thread.
EasyProjects also integrates with a bunch of tools, including Salesforce, Adobe, Office 365 Outlook, MS Project, Zendesk, JIRA, and InvoiceBerry. If you need more, EasyProjects has a RESTful API to hook up any other apps in your tech stack.
EasyProjects' Team plan starts at $24/user/month, but you must contact them directly to get Enterprise pricing.
Coordinate is a collaborative project management software purpose-built for running client projects. It helps you seamlessly execute client-facing projects collaboratively with your clients. How?
Externally, clients can access a white-labeled portal without needing to create an account or learn any software. In this portal, they can see the tasks that are assigned to them, and have the option to view the entire plan.
Internally, customizable and reusable templates help you operationalize your best practices, and deploy new projects with a click. Structured tasks, role-based assignments, relative dates, and automated notifications keep everyone aligned, maintain project velocity, and ensure nothing falls through the cracks. Threaded chats and secure file sharing maintain organization without effort and eliminate the need for emails and Slack.
Finally, dashboards with custom fields can match internal workflows to track key metrics across your entire project portfolio, letting you easily monitor the status of each project, measure expenditures or ROI, and achieve scale.
Coordinate integrates into all the other systems you use — such as for CRM or development tracking — via Zapier and a Webhook+REST API, in order to streamline your workflows and prevent double data entry.
Coordinate offers a free forever plan to get you started. Advanced plans start at $35 per user per month.
I'm (kind of) cheating by putting this tool on the list, but the truth is Client Portal for WordPress isn't really a Project Management Software at all.
The portal itself is a web-based tool that lives inside your WordPress site but acts like a wiki. Instead of sending clients to a separate portal, you embed the client portal onto your website and add/remove “modules” when you need to, and clients can access them at any time.
If they want to submit a ticket, view an invoice, or download a file you’ve just uploaded for them—they just log in.
It’s also perfect for switching your business hours off. Inside the portal, you can adjust your availability hours, so all your clients know when you'll be responsive. Perfect for stopping those weekend calls or out-of-hours texts.
A single-site license costs $199/year.
Get the PM Software Buyer's Guide
- Service Provider Pro
Best client portal software to manage orders, invoices & subscriptions
- Workflow Max by XERO
A portal that keeps detailed records of payments, notes, and client information
Manage client relationships, showcase project plans, tag clients to get feedback easily
For teams who need sales, service and collaboration rolled into one tool
For teams with large customer bases who deal with lots of support tickets
Powerful collaboration tool for teams of all sizes
A client portal for simple troubleshoot ticketing and task prioritizing
Best for project, client, and resource management in one place
- ProProfs Project
With Gantt and Kanban charts, this one is perfect for creative and IT agencies
- Client Hub
For accounts who are searching for a platform that combines secure file sharing and storage
Best suited for industries like finance, real estate, and law
- Nimbus Portal Solutions
Well suited to businesses who sign a lot of documents and want to start managing their paperwork in the cloud
A mid-market software with a client portal that’s best suited for professional service firms
- Houzz Pro
Best for the renovation and home remodeling industry
A tool built around data visualization, this one is geared towards Government organizations, market research firms, and NGOs
Perfect for companies who need a completely customized, white-label portal to fit in with their workflow
The hint is in the name: perfect for agile teams who want a portal they can use to be more collaborative, sign contracts, and handle billing
A portal for mortgage and financial advisers to send and receive important documents securely
How I Picked The Best Client Portal Project Management Software
What do I look for when I select the best project management software with client portals? I’ve already covered the best project management software, but in this article, I’m looking specifically at the best project management software with client portals and how each tool stacks up. Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria:
User Interface (UI)
Does the tool provide a client-facing dashboard? The user interface will help clients navigate appropriately and get to your information quickly. Remember these portals can be used for approvals, feedback, proofing, file exchange, and other activities.
Is the tool easy to learn and master? Does it come with adequate training resources and learning materials?
I look at pre-built integrations and other ways in which these tools can expand their reach and capabilities. Therefore, I talk about tools that they connect to, integrations through third-party providers like Zapier and Workato. Finally, I discuss the APIs available to build custom integrations with your tech stack.
Is it affordable? Does the price tag match the features, capabilities, and use case? Is pricing clear and upfront? Are the plans flexible if your needs change?
Client Portal Project Management Key Features
Here are some of the key features you should be looking for when selecting a tool for client portal project management.
- Collaboration - Can you share files and documents with clients inside the portal?
- Branding- Does it have white labeling, so you add custom branding and/or watermarking features?
- Productivity - Does it allow you to build workflows around content-related procedures?
- Security - Can you remotely and securely store data so it can be accessed by clients anywhere? Do tools like encryption secure client files?
What Do You Think About These Project Management Software Tools with Client Portals?
Finding the right client portal can take time.
I want to know, have you tried out any of the 20 client portals I’ve mentioned? If you have, what did you think? And did I miss any out?
If you’re already using a portal on the list but thinking of switching up, what’s pushing you to make the change? Is the tool you are using a freemium product or a paid subscription? Did it have all the features you were expecting from a client portal? If you need other features from your PM software, start with this list here.
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