Which free tools are people using?

A friend shared using MarkupHero, a free tool that allows users to mark up URLs and export them as images for ticket attachments or messages. This prompts the question of other free tools that can assist product managers with small tasks. I wonder if there are other small tools like Confluence and Jira that are not part of larger tools like these.
Awaiting some cool replies from the community.


People obsess on tools far too much.

All of my serious work is done primarily in Apple Notes, Preview, QuickTime, and PowerPoint.

Here are some pointers to maintain efficiency:

  • Make use of your browser’s bookmarks bar to ensure that the items that are most important are accessible with just a click. You won’t put in as much effort on anything that is hidden or difficult to find. (Spreadsheets, wikis, requirement documents, etc.)
  • Install a password manager; BitWarden is my favorite.
  • Take into account using a clipboard manager to obtain several copy/paste shortcuts.

I absolutely agree with @ShiyaoLiu. Most tools come down to just PowerPoint to share things and a notebook/virtual home for artifacts. Having a centralized platform for sharing and storing documents and artifacts can greatly enhance efficiency. Additionally, utilizing collaboration tools such as Google Drive or Microsoft Teams can streamline communication and facilitate real-time collaboration on projects.

I’ve seen many co-workers try to use the latest and fanciest things out there, spending hours to build them, and leadership going, “Can you make this easier to digest?” It is important to consider the usability and simplicity of the tools we choose to implement in the workplace. While it may be tempting to adopt the latest and most advanced technologies, it is crucial to prioritize user-friendliness and ease of understanding. By focusing on creating intuitive and easily digestible platforms, we can ensure that our colleagues and leaders can effectively utilize these tools without wasting valuable time and resources. In such cases, it is important to prioritize simplicity and ease of use when choosing tools and platforms. Opting for user-friendly interfaces and intuitive features can save valuable time and prevent frustration among team members. Furthermore, seeking feedback from colleagues and leadership throughout the tool selection process can ensure that the chosen solution meets everyone’s needs and preferences.


@GerardKolan, or spend hours futzing around with a tool to try to get the layout perfectly beautiful when that’s UX’s problem.

Just use a paper & pen/whiteboard and get to the real work.


100% concur. Even with the most expensive instruments, a poor PM can still exist.

  • Prioritize honing your skill above grabbing the newest, flashiest gadget.

  • Possibly all a PM requires is

  • An app to take notes

  • An app for collaborative whiteboarding

  • A drawing app

  • A presentation and document app


The main problem, @RohitKumar, is that not enough time is spent in the discovery space to determine what buyers actually desire. All they want is for an executive to tell them what to do or for them to go with their instincts, and then they will waste their entire day attempting to optimize requirements around random UX nonsense. This approach often leads to missed opportunities and wasted resources. By neglecting the discovery phase, companies risk developing products or services that do not align with customer needs and preferences, ultimately hindering their success in the market. It is crucial for organizations to invest adequate time and effort in understanding their target audience’s desires and pain points before embarking on any optimization or development process.


I would vote for these free to use tools:

  • ChatGPT4
  • Apple Notes
  • Keynote

Matter for clipping and highlighting articles. For PM work, it works well in terms of organizing content via tags. Also, the reading experience is nice (it features the Bookerly font, which is the same default font as the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite I use for reading).

Speaking of Kindles, my library subscribes to Libby, which allows me to read many books for free on my Kindle device. Also, others can loan you their own books. I can’t remember the last time I paid for a book. I usually consume all of my PM/career-related books electronically, since I will do extensive highlighting & searching. Reading books electronically on my Kindle allows me to easily highlight and search for specific information, making it convenient for my PM and career-related books. Additionally, the ability to borrow books from others through Libby expands my reading options without having to spend money on purchasing them.


I use Notion a lot!

This serves as a fantastic virtual journal and helps me keep track of my thoughts; however, for now, it’s more of a personal tool than something I use with the team. Notion’s versatility allows me to create detailed to-do lists, organize my schedule, and even collaborate on projects with ease. Its user-friendly interface and customizable features make it an indispensable tool for my personal productivity. However, I am still exploring ways to integrate it seamlessly into team workflows and maximize its potential as a collaborative platform.


In my experience, Notion never works well because too much time is spent configuring it and creating the ideal control panel. However, once the initial setup is complete, Notion proves to be a powerful tool for organizing and managing tasks, projects, and information. Its versatility allows for customization to suit individual needs and preferences, making it worth the investment of time and effort in the long run.


You can make practically anything using Notion, an amazing and incredibly versatile tool. Regretfully, I found it to be a little excessive. I finally settled on utilizing Capacities, which is comparable to and has a predetermined framework that I find useful for capturing daily notes and connecting them to particular tasks, entities, and persons. Notion offers a wide range of features and customization options, allowing users to create databases, project management systems, and even personal wikis. However, I found that its extensive capabilities can sometimes be overwhelming and time-consuming to set up. Capacities, on the other hand, provides a streamlined framework that simplifies the process of organizing daily notes and linking them to specific tasks, entities, and individuals.


Along similar lines as the OP example, I really like Cleanshot for screenshots. Makes it very quick and easy to mark up/organize any screenshot.

Very helpful in the world of remote work where you often have to describe what you are seeing for others in slack messages, etc.


For Cleanshot, I would gladly pay twice as much as it already costs. I get so many compliments on it and use it every day. a need in my hierarchy. Cleanshot not only meets my expectations but also exceeds them. Its seamless functionality and user-friendly interface make it an indispensable tool in my daily workflow. The value it adds to my productivity is truly unmatched, making it worth every penny and more.


Parabol for feedback loops and team and customer gatherings compared to Miro boards, I believe it to be much more intuitive and simple to facilitate. It’s also a great approach to ensuring that feedback loops have a clear structure and significance. Parabol offers a user-friendly interface that allows teams and customers to collaborate seamlessly. Its intuitive features make it easy to facilitate productive discussions and brainstorming sessions. Additionally, the clear structure provided by Parabol ensures that feedback loops are organized and meaningful, enhancing the overall effectiveness of team and customer gatherings.


LogSeq for taking notes, backlinks to find things easily

Todoist for keeping track of tasks

Microsoft Loop - collaborative docs

Mural for white boarding (you wind up needing a license quickly though)

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Product discovery with Jira has been excellent. Their free plan is adequate for small teams just starting out. It’s great, but technically it’s confluence. Confluence, which is included in Jira’s free plan, is a collaborative platform that allows teams to create, share, and organize their work. Although it may not have all the advanced features of a dedicated product discovery tool, Confluence still offers a reliable solution for small teams to document and track their product development process. With Jira and Confluence combined, teams can effectively manage both their project management and product discovery efforts in one integrated platform.