The 15 Best Excel Alternatives in 2024

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Plenty of people need some form of spreadsheet technology to complete work or academic tasks that involve data or statistical analysis. Though Microsoft Excel is one of the most popular options for this purpose, it’s not always the best spreadsheet solution. For some, the price makes Excel inaccessible, and for others, the robust features don’t make up for the relatively steep learning curve required to use them. 

Fortunately, a wide array of Excel alternatives exist, and we’re going to cover 15 of them in this article, most of which are cheaper alternatives to Excel’s price tag. Keep reading to discover a comprehensive range of Microsoft Excel alternatives.

What is Microsoft Excel?

Microsoft Excel is considered the gold standard of spreadsheet programs due to its robust features and usability on different devices. It’s one of the most popular spreadsheet programs in the industry and as such, it’s packed with useful features. However, organizing and analyzing data can be done using many other options, so if you’re struggling to overcome the complexity of Excel formulas and tools, you’re in luck. 

Key Factors to Consider When Choosing Excel Alternatives

When it comes to choosing an Excel alternative, there are several things users need to consider. For one, the features included play an important role in the overall success of using the program. You’ll want to determine whether you need advanced features or simpler features. In addition, it’s important to choose a program with a user interface you’ll be able to master easily. The speed at which these tools can analyze your datasets also matters, and finally, you’ll need to determine how much you can afford to invest in the essential tools you need (fortunately, some of the options on this list are free).

Top 15 Microsoft Word Alternatives

1. Kdan Table

Source: Kdan Table

Kdan Table is a program featured in Kdan’s Office suite. It includes all of the advanced features that most spreadsheet programs do, but with enhanced UI, these powerful tools are easier than ever to use.

Key Features:

  • Intuitive Interface
  • Ability to create professional reports and table
  • Ruler tool to adjust margins and spacing 
  • Real-time print preview 
  • Adjustable formula bar for complex formula input
  • Shortcut tools to swap data for more efficient organization
  • Highly compatible with Microsoft Office and other office software. With adherence to the industry-standard OOXML (Open Office XML) specification, Kdan Office ensures smooth compatibility, empowering teams to work together efficiently.

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2. Google Sheets

Source: Google Sheet

Google Sheets is Google’s answer to spreadsheet programs. It’s part of the Google Drive suite of programs, each of which utilize Cloud storage technology.

Key Features:

  • User-friendly Interface
  • Cloud-based spreadsheet software for easy collaboration
  • Collaborative features, such as real-time editing, commenting, and suggesting
  • Easy integration with other Google products and third-party applications

Potential Setbacks:

  • Despite comprehensive data analysis capabilities, the program lags when handling large datasets
  • Limited features compared to Excel

3. Zoho Sheet

Source: Zoho Sheet

Zoho Sheet is a spreadsheet application that internet users can employ to create and share spreadsheets in real time, making it an excellent collaboration tool. This application makes it easy to collect, organize, share, and analyze data with everyone on your team.

Key Features:

  • Zia- the built-in AI tool and data personalization aid
  • Supports 24 languages
  • Real-time collaboration features (commenting and editing)
  • supports more than 350 predefined functions

Potential Setbacks:

  • Incapable of connecting data across multiple spreadsheets

4. LibreOffice Calc

Source: LibreOffice Calc

LibreOffice Calc is a free spreadsheet program that’s both user-friendly and intuitive. Despite being free to use, this application comes with an array of advanced data management functions. In addition, the built-in tutorials and guides help familiarize users with the various elements of the software.

Key Features:

  • Open source software
  • Cross-platform support for various operating systems
  • Compatible with MS file formats
  • Cross-platform desktop applications available for Windows, macOS, and Linux.

Potential Setbacks: 

  • Limited abilities in macro reading

5. WPS Office Spreadsheets

Source: WPS Office Spreadsheets

Like some of the other options on this list, WPS Spreadsheet is a free tool that makes data analysis accessible to any user. It comes with a free, easy-to-use range of templates for managing budgets, analyzing finances, and much more.

Key Features:

  • Compatibility with common file formats such as .xls, .xlsx, .xlsm, .xlt, and .csv
  • Users can edit Excel files on mobile devices, computers, or web pages
  • Various templates available for chart management, budget tracking, and personal or business financial analysis

Potential Setbacks:

  • May lag when handling large datasets
  • No auto spell-check integration

6. Apple Numbers

Source: Apple Numbers

Apple Numbers is the Apple brand’s spreadsheet application for Mac and iOS devices. It’s a relatively straightforward spreadsheet tool for simple to intermediate spreadsheet functionality.

Key Features:

  • Seamless integration within the Apple ecosystem
  • Allows embedding online videos (YouTube, Vimeo)
  • Real-time collaboration available
  • Great for touchscreen devices, such as iPad

Potential Setbacks: 

  • Lacks support for advanced formulas and equations
  • Limited features

7. Apache OpenOffice Calc

Source: Apache OpenOffice Calc

Apache OpenOffice Calc is a free, open-source spreadsheet program that, despite having no cost requirements, serves as a strong data analysis tool for users who’ve mastered the interface.

Key Features:

  • Downloadable spreadsheet for offline work
  • Ability for users to export documents in various formats, including ​​.pdf, .odt, .doc, and .html
  • Available on Windows, Mac OSX, and Linux

Potential Setbacks:

  • Users have to rely on a community forum for technical support
  • Interface is not as user-friendly

8. Gnumeric

Source: Gnumeric

Like several options on this list, Gnumeric is a free, open-source spreadsheet tool that any user can utilize in order to organize and analyze data.

Key Features:

  • Spreadsheet software with a focus on data analysis
  • Advanced formula functions and statistical tools
  • Can import almost any file format, including Microsoft Office Excel formats, Lotus 1-2-3, HTML, and more

Potential Setbacks:

  • Lacks pivot tables to summarize spreadsheet data
  • Interface is not as appealing as other options

9. Quip

Source: Quip

Quip is a Cloud-based spreadsheet tool, and unlike many of the other options we’ve covered, this one is more of an integration option, as it can operate seamlessly with various other platforms in order to make spreadsheet features more accessible.

Key Features:

  • Collaborative approach to spreadsheets and team communication
  • Real-time communication features (editing and commenting) for seamless collaboration
  • Integrates with Slack and Salesforce

Potential Setbacks:

  • Limited formatting option

10. Smartsheet

Source: Smartsheet

Smartsheet is an enterprise work management platform that offers users various collaborative spreadsheet options. It’s ideal for many business or academic-related data management processes.

Key Features:

  • Project management and collaboration platform with spreadsheet capabilities
  • Provide multiple views like grid view, calendar view, Gantt view, and more
  • Pre-built templates available to use
  • Task tracking and progress visualization

Potential Setbacks:

  • May not be suitable for complex data analysis

11. Airtable

Source: Airtable

Airtable is technically an application development platform but it features spreadsheet tools and online collaboration options. It’s a decent option for relatively simple data management and analysis tasks.

Key Features:

  • Available on web, desktop, and mobile apps
  • Unique combination of spreadsheet and database functionalities
  • Integration with other apps for enhanced workflow automation

Potential Setbacks:

  • Restricted conditional formatting and lacks support for advanced Excel formulas.

12. ClickUp

Source: ClickUp

ClickUp is a productivity and project management tool with spreadsheet features that are definitely worth checking out. The platform offers an array of data management functions that users can take advantage of.

Key Features:

  • Great for data visualization capabilities
  • Task tracking and team collaboration
  • All changes to task statuses are automatically reflected in real-time updates
  • Offline editing available

Potential Setbacks:

  • May have a sharp learning curve
  • Not available on mobile

13. Microsoft Office Excel Online

Source: Microsoft Office Excel Online

Microsoft Office Excel Online isn’t technically an alternative to using Microsoft Excel, as these programs are basically one and the same. However, this Cloud-based version gives users the ability to use Excel features online rather than through the Microsoft suite of applications.

Key Features:

  • Support many file formats, including .docm, .docx, .pptm, .pptx, .xlsm, and .xlsx
  • Extensive range of functions and formulas, which enable users to perform complex calculations and data analysis easily
  • Macros to automate regular tasks

Potential Setbacks:

  • Requires internet connectivity

14. Tableau

Source: Tableau

Tableau is a visual analytics platform that aims to make data analysis and organization easy and accessible. It’s a popular option for businesses and professionals in the technology sector.

Key Features:

  • Advanced features for data analysis
  • Great for visualizing complex projects involving data 
  • Able to create interactive and embedded dashboards, charts, and reports

Potential Setbacks:

  • Steep learning curve for advanced features

15. Scoro

Source: Scoro

Scoro is designed to be an all-in-one business management solution, which includes a robust spreadsheet tool. Due to the number of features and functions available through Scoro, it’s become a popular tool in the data management space.

Key Features:

  • Real-time Gantt charts
  • All-in-one business management software with comprehensive features
  • Financial management features, including invoicing, billing, powerful analytics, and expense tracking
  • Customizable dashboards for real-time insights and data visualization
  • Team collaboration

Potential Setbacks:

  • Limited third-party integrations compared to more established spreadsheet software

Select the Excel Alternative and Maximize Your Data Potential

In this article, we’ve covered a wide range of Excel alternatives that will prove to be a better option for plenty of users. Many options are free to use, while others offer features that Excel doesn’t have. Research your options carefully in order to make the most ideal choice. 

Try Kdan Table while you’re looking for a Microsoft Excel alternative. We’re sure that with all the features available and the ease of use, you can work your data more efficiently than ever! 

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