Top 20 of 2020: Tech Companies That Helped Businesses Thrive This Year

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Learn about 20 software companies that have been the most valuable to small businesses trying to survive the unique challenges of 2020.

header image shows a woman gesturing at a number 20 graphic with a star rating behind it

I don’t have to tell you what a doozy this year has been. You already know that an unprecedented global pandemic has ravaged the economy and affected every single business in some way for the past twelve months.

But people and businesses have shown incredible resilience. Retailers transformed business models to account for the new normal of online ordering, delivery, and curbside pickup; offices made immediate adjustments to accommodate remote workforces for the first time in many of their histories; and consumers have adapted to these changes right along with the businesses they love.

Through it all, one thing has been blindingly obvious: We couldn’t have survived without technology.

In this report, we’ll take a look at twenty of the most valuable, most helpful software companies that made all the difference to business survival in 2020.

How we narrowed it down to 20 companies

Of course, there are more than twenty companies that had an impact this year, but we don’t have the time or space to list them all in this report.

Instead, this report highlights the best of the best products that serve cross-functional business needs in project management, customer service, communication and collaboration, HR, finance, and marketing—all key areas in which 2020 saw some of the biggest shifts across a variety of industries.

To qualify for inclusion, software vendors had to have products featured in at least two of the Top 20 reports we published for these categories in 2020. (Note: Top 20 reports rank vendors based on web search interest and customer ratings. The detailed methodology can be found here.)

We then selected the 20 vendors with the highest web search interest to indicate the most sought-after products of the year. Finally, we ranked the vendors on our list in order of their products’ average user ratings, from highest to lowest, collected at the time of publication, Dec. 11, 2020. Vendors included in our final list had a minimum average rating of 4.2 and at least 200 user reviews.

For each software provider on our list, we’ve included overall star ratings (based on user reviews at the time of publication) for each individual software product that ranked in Top 20 reports this year; these star ratings are based on a 1-5 scale.

Here are the software companies that we identified:

Slack

Slack is a conferencing and collaboration tool that’s been around for a while, but was especially well-situated to help users deal with the constraints of remote work. With features such as audio and video conferencing, real-time chat, and file sharing, Slack covers a lot of ground in bringing the office to the internet.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Slack 4.6 Collaboration

Remote Work

Google

It’s no surprise that Google landed on this list. The company has been known for years for its cutting-edge, user-friendly, interconnected products, and those same applications have been incredibly valuable to businesses as they adapted to the conditions of 2020.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Google Drive 4.8 Document Management

File Sharing

Remote Work

Google Forms 4.7 Forms Automation

Survey

Google Contacts 4.6 Contact Management
G Suite 4.7 Collaboration

Web Conferencing

Zoom

This video conferencing company had a banner year as it was called on to help individuals, medical providers, and companies stay connected after social distancing mandates were put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Zoom quickly compiled a list of resources to help new users learn how to use its products in a variety of ways, from staying in touch with family to conducting remote medical appointments via telemedicine.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Zoom Meetings & Chat 4.6 Remote Work

Web Conferencing

Monday

Monday.com is a resource management tool that helps companies execute projects from the planning stages through the final product. With collaboration, task, and project management features, this system has been a valuable asset to remote workforces this year.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
monday.com 4.6 Collaboration

Task Management

Workflow Management

Product Management

Forms Automation

Resource Management

Project Portfolio Management

Professional Services Automation

Project Management

Strategic Planning

Remote Work

Dropbox

Being able to share files securely and remotely became a really important thing this year, and Dropbox didn’t let users down. With collaboration features such as real-time editing and electronic signatures, Dropbox made sure users who rely on its product to work remotely didn’t miss a beat.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Dropbox Business 4.5 Document Management

File Sharing

Wave Apps

Cloud-based accounting software provider Wave Apps enables small-business users to remotely access their accounting information and business data, which has been a huge benefit this year. With additional features such as integrated invoicing, receipt scanning, and payment processing, it’s easy to see how this product has brought value to users.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Wave Accounting 4.4 Accounting

Accounts Receivable

Billing & Invoicing

Mailchimp

This year, businesses faced new and unexpected challenges when it came to reaching out to customers. Fortunately, marketing platforms like Mailchimp offer AI-powered outreach tools to send relevant emails and messages in order to engage customers.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Mailchimp 4.5 Email Marketing

Marketing Automation

Social Media Marketing

Campaign Management

Asana

As a remote work enablement tool, Asana wears a lot of hats—from collaborative applications to project, task, and workflow management. This product boasts an all-in-one platform to streamline the content creation process.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Asana 4.4 Collaboration

Product Management

Project Management

Project Portfolio Management

Resource Management

Strategic Planning

Task Management

Workflow Management

HotSchedules

Managing employee schedules became critical this year as companies worked to ensure employees could maintain at least six feet of distance when working in the same building, and HotSchedules made that easier for them. Multi-location scheduling and shift-swapping features round out this application to help employees stay in the loop and as safe as possible.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
HotSchedules 4.4 Employee Scheduling

Workforce Management

Paycom

Onboarding new employees in entirely remote offices has been another unique challenge faced by companies this year, but with workforce management products like Paycom, the process is simplified. From electronic forms and orientation through sick leave and timesheet tracking, this product accomplishes a ton of HR tasks all in one platform.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Paycom 4.4 Onboarding

Time Clock

Workforce Management

HR

Intuit

As small businesses have struggled to stay profitable this year, many found that using accounting and bookkeeping systems like Intuit’s QuickBooks offerings made it a lot easier to manage finances and keep track of costs.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
QuickBooks 4.5 Accounting
QuickBooks Online 4.3 Accounting

Accounts Payable

Accounts Receivable

Billing & Invoicing

QuickBooks Desktop Pro 4.3 Accounting

Accounts Payable

Accounts Receivable

QuickBooks Enterprise 4.5 Accounting

Accounts Receivable

QuickBooks Premier 4.4 Budgeting

Atlassian

Atlassian offers a wide arrangement of products designed to help users manage projects from beginning to end, from collaborating and ideating all the way through to security and user management.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Trello 4.5 Collaboration

Product Management

Remote Work

Strategic Planning

Task Management

Confluence 4.4 Collaboration

Knowledge Management

JIRA 4.4 Project Management

Product Management

Resource Management

Task Management

Workflow Management

JIRA Service Desk 4.4 Help Desk

Knowledge Management

Box

As a content-sharing and collaboration application, Box relies on features such as discussion boards, real-time editing, version control, and workflow management to ensure users can quickly and easily create, edit, manage, and produce content on their schedules.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Box 4.3 Collaboration

Document Management

File Sharing

Task Management

ADP

As an all-inclusive human capital management system, ADP’s Workforce Now makes it simple to manage offices with 50 or more employees by integrating HR, payroll, benefits, talent management, time and labor management, compliance tracking, and analytics into one platform.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
ADP Workforce Now 4.4 Workforce Management

Performance Appraisal

HR

Applicant Tracking

ADP TotalSource 4.3 HR

LogMeIn

With the transition to remote work for many companies across the country this year, web conferencing and VoIP platforms like LogMeIn have been instrumental in keeping teams on the same page and facilitating collaboration.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
GoToMeeting 4.5 Web Conferencing

Remote Work

VoIP

Grasshopper 4.5 Telephony

VoIP

Join.Me 4.3 Web Conferencing

Remote Work

VoIP

GoToConnect 4.5 Telephony

Call Center

Bold360 4.4 Live Chat

Xero

Another online accounting system on our list with a strong focus on small business, Xero allows users to remotely access their accounts via computer or mobile device. This product also features real-time updates for financial data and cash flow as well as integrations with over 600 third-party applications.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Xero 4.3 Accounting

Accounts Payable

Accounts Receivable

Billing & Invoicing

Budgeting

Facebook

Workplace from Facebook has proven to be a useful collaborative tool because it utilizes applications and functionality that most users are already familiar with from personal experience, including chat, video conferencing, and groups.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Workplace by Facebook 4.4 Collaboration

Web Conferencing

Microsoft

Here’s another software juggernaut that nobody’s surprised to see on this list. Microsoft made one of the most robust showings in our Top 20 rankings for this year, with products featuring in 16 different categories.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Skype for Business 4.4 Web Conferencing
Microsoft Teams 4.4 Collaboration
OneDrive 4.4 Document Management

File Sharing

Microsoft Project 4.3 Project Management

Project Portfolio Management

Microsoft Dynamics 365 4.3 Budgeting

Business Management

Contact Management

Customer Relationship Management

Customer Service

Help Desk

Microsoft Dynamics GP 3.8 Budgeting
SharePoint 4.2 Document Management

Knowledge Management

Bookings 4.3 Appointment Scheduling

Paylocity

Paylocity’s web-based payroll and human capital management platforms have helped many companies better manage administrative tasks such as time and attendance tracking, making hiring and onboarding during this unprecedented year that much easier.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Paylocity 4.2 Onboarding

Workforce Management

Salesforce

Salesforce’s CRM (customer relationship management) and marketing tools have long been trusted and widely adopted by businesses small and large. The various Salesforce products help businesses manage relationships with customers throughout the funnel.

Products Ranked on Top 20 Overall Star Rating Recognized in These Top 20 Categories
Salesforce 4.4 Contact Management

Customer Relationship Management

Pardot 4.1 Email Marketing

Marketing Automation

Salesforce Marketing Cloud 4.1 Campaign Management
Salesforce Service Cloud 4.4 Help Desk

Knowledge Management

Learn more about Capterra’s Top 20 reports

Capterra Top 20 reports rank the top products in hundreds of software markets based on user reviews and popularity. We use exclusive data and reviews from real users to create a convenient overview, allowing readers to quickly compare products and narrow down their options.

It’s important to note that our reports use a snapshot of review data from a defined time frame (in this case, as of November 17, 2020) and are not updated after publication. Reports should therefore be used along with the detailed and current information available on each product’s profile page for the most up-to-date view of the data.

You can learn more about our Top 20 reports by reading our methodology or check out our list of published and upcoming reports here.

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