Motion and ClickUp are relatively new yet well-established project management tools. But they are so much more than that.
Both productivity tools offer advanced AI functions, but they have completely different perspectives on why and how they leverage artificial intelligence and how they approach work and productivity.
In this Motion vs ClickUp comparison, I am going to show you the origins & philosophies, key features, AI capabilities, pros, cons, pricing, and much more until we arrive at the verdict.
Below, I’ve created a high-level overview of Motion vs ClickUp for you. At the end of this post, I’ll expand my thoughts and let you decide which is the right tool for you.
Let’s get started.
|What is Motion and ClickUp?||Motion is an AI-powered productivity app, which can replace your calendar, project management tool, and meeting scheduler.||ClickUp is an all-in-one collaboration and project management tool with advanced functions.|
|What is Motion and ClickUp in one word?||Intelligent calendar & to-do list||The truly all-in-one platform|
|Mission||Intelligently plan your day||Save one day every week|
|Best for||Individuals and teams with busy schedules, lots of meetings, and people with ADHD||Large teams and organizations with complex workflows|
|Pricing||$12/mo-$19/mo per user||$0/mo-$12/mo per user|
|Platform||Mac, Windows, Web, iOS, Android||Mac, Windows, Linux, Web, iOS, Android, Apple Watch|
|Anatomy||3-level hierarchy: Workspaces, Projects, Tasks & Events||7-level hierarchy: Workspaces, Spaces, Folders, Lists, Tasks, Subtasks, Nested subtasks|
|Key features||It’s a draw||It’s a draw|
|Automation and AI capabilities||Winner|
|Pros||– Forces you to time-block|
– AI-powered auto-scheduling capabilities
– Powerful and quick scheduling functions
– Brings scheduling, calendars, and project management under one roof
– Great integrations
|– Brings project management and note-taking together|
– Highly customizable
– Diverse functionality
– Seamless integrations
– Friendly price
|Cons||– Forces you to time-block |
– Compromised task management functionality
– Bit pricy
– No in-app automation capabilities other than auto-scheduling
– No group polling feature
|– High learning curve|
– Too complex anatomy and settings
– Not-so-good for quick capture and GTD task management
– Compromised mind mapping functionality
– Lacks a meeting scheduler
Motion vs ClickUp: Overview
What is Motion?
Motion is an AI-powered productivity app which brings together calendar management, project management, and meeting scheduling.
The main idea behind Motion is that you should stop creating to-do lists, manually scheduling tasks, arranging meetings, and missing your deadlines. You should focus on high-priority tasks instead. And Motion helps you do exactly that.
Motion will plan your day automatically based on your priorities, upcoming deadlines, and available time slots on your calendar. The best thing is that it will automatically reschedule unfinished tasks, which saves you so much time.
Motion also supports team collaboration by automatically planning and prioritizing tasks for each team member.
You can read my full Motion app review here.
What is ClickUp?
ClickUp is one of the few productivity tools that not only claims it’s an all-in-one tool, but indeed it is. ClickUp helps you manage your tasks and projects, set your goals, measure your progress towards those targets, bring your tasks and notes under one roof, and brainstorm & collaborate, all within a single platform and for a reasonable price.
ClickUp can replace many of your productivity tools and connect the rest. With over 40 native integrations, 1000+ integrations via Zapier, powerful in-app automation, and AI capabilities, you can rest assured that ClickUp gets you covered.
And the best thing is that you can create your custom dashboards to centralize your workflow.
Let’s jump into the detailed comparison.
Motion vs ClickUp: Detailed Comparison
History & mission (Please don’t skip this)
Harry Qi founded Motion in 2019 with the mission to help people (especially those who live with ADHD) plan their days automatically and save two hours every day. They claim that the to-do list is dead; Motion automatically creates one for you.
We help professionals make time for their highest-priority tasks, reduce the stress of being overwhelmed by meetings, and make sure deadlines are never missed.
Since its foundation, Motion has been on a growing path with 40k users worldwide. It was named the fastest-growing product in 2022 by Amplitude’s Product Report. They work as a small team with a transparent working culture.
Motion can replace your calendar, project management tool, and meeting scheduler. They use artificial intelligence to automatically plan your day, prioritize your most important tasks, and reschedule old tasks.
ClickUp was founded in 2017. They are one of the most visible project management tools out there thanks to their strong (and clever) marketing and powerful functionality. Their mission is to save one day every week by providing a fully customizable workspace.
There’s just too many tools to keep track of, too many things in entirely separate ecosystems.
ClickUp claims that it’s an app that replaces them all. While I like the idea of all-on-one productivity tools, they always come with lots of compromises. ClickUp isn’t an exception, however, it’s one of the strongest (if not the strongest) candidates in the landscape of all-in-one tools.
With its uber-impressive feature set, loyal customers, cutting-edge marketing, and productivity blog, ClickUp is one of the fastest-growing productivity software.
To get started with ClickUp or Motion, you need to understand their anatomy.
To understand Motion’s anatomy, you need to familiarize yourself with Motion tasks and events:
- Free tasks: Free tasks have remote deadlines. The AI can automatically reschedule them to leave room for more important tasks.
- Busy tasks: A Motion task becomes busy when there is not much room left until the deadline. In this case, the Motion AI will prompt you to get your busy task done.
- Fixed task: Fixed tasks are cemented on your calendar, however, they can be rescheduled.
- Free events: Free events can be rescheduled by the AI to make room for a busy event.
- Busy events: Busy events cannot be auto-scheduled as they are critical to not miss.
Now that you understand Motion’s philosophy of time management, we can look at the anatomy:
- Workspaces: You can create multiple Workspaces for your team or yourself. Workspaces can be private or shared. My Tasks is your personalized workspace where you can see all your tasks from different workspaces.
- Projects: Projects are related tasks to accomplish an outcome or goal. You can view your projects in a list view and a Kanban view. Your projects will host your tasks.
- Tasks and events: Tasks can have multiple parameters like deadlines, durations, blockers, assignees, and priorities. There are no subtasks in Motion, however, you can create checklists and task dependencies. You can also create calendar events in Motion or display events from your Google Calendar or Outlook Calendar. Just as with tasks, events can be free or busy as discussed above.
Let’s jump into ClickUp’s anatomy.
ClickUp has a bit of a complicated hierarchy:
- Workspaces: A ClickUp Workspace is on the highest level of hierarchy. You can create and join multiple Workspaces. ClickUp recommends having one Workspace per organization. You may want to create separate Workspaces for personal and business stuff.
- Spaces: ClickUp is centered around Spaces. Spaces are high-level containers of folders and task lists. You can have multiple containers in a ClickUp Workspace. You can share your Spaces individually with team members. Think of Spaces as areas of responsibility or as departments.
- Folders: Folders are the essential building blocks of ClickUp Spaces. Folders can have different views and may contain docs, mind maps, forms, and more. Think of Folders as traditional folders on your computer.
- Lists: Lists contain tasks, and they can have different views. Think of a list as a to-do list.
- Tasks: Tasks live in lists and may contain additional parameters like subtasks, attachments, due dates, and comments.
- Subtasks: ClickUp tasks can contain subtasks that can further contain attachments, checklists, due dates, and comments. Subtasks cannot contain more subtasks embedded, however, there is a workaround…
- Nested subtasks: Nested subtasks are a hidden feature in ClickUp. You must enable this feature under ClickApps. You can then enable multiple levels of nested subtasks here, but probably you won’t need them.
Let’s continue our Motion vs ClickUp battle with a key thing: user-friendliness.
While Motion offers a dark and a light theme as well as basic shortcuts, we have far less room for customization than in ClickUp, which can be a good thing for minimalist folks.
I find the Motion app easy to navigate thanks to the user-friendly interface. The user experience across platforms (Web app, desktop app) is coherent.
What I find a bit challenging is the taxonomy Motion is using for tasks and events. You need to play around a while until you get the concept of free vs busy vs fixed tasks and events in Motion.
As Motion is built around AI to auto-schedule your tasks and plan your day, you must familiarize yourself with those terms to get the most out of this productivity app.
If you look at ClickUp’s anatomy or dig deeper into settings, you can quickly feel intimidated. ClickUp has a steep learning curve and while they’re providing templates and awesome resources, you cannot master this project management tool without a significant investment of your time.
That doesn’t mean, however, that ClickUp is not user-friendly. And the diverse portfolio of functions will compensate for your efforts over time.
While ClickUp has a clean user interface, I find it a bit challenging to navigate this project management platform.
The mind map feature is one of the innovations that makes ClickUp an excellent all-in-one productivity tool. And while the mind map is easy to create and navigate, I find it annoying that hitting enter will create a new node every time.
ClickUp offers multiple themes and layout sizes to accommodate different needs. It also supports keyboard shortcuts to speed up your work. My favorite is “t” which is for creating a new task. ClickUp also supports slash commands in the editor as well as in the task panel, which is a cutting-edge feature.
Motion nicely blends your calendar, project manager, and meeting scheduler.
Key features include:
- Auto-schedule your day: The Motion AI will plan your day based on your schedule, priorities, and upcoming deadlines. Motion will reschedule unfinished tasks automatically and move less important or less pressing tasks for later.
- Manage your projects: You can manage your projects in a list view and on a Kanban board. You’ll find most of the typical parameters that you expect from a task manager app like due dates, assignees, statuses, etc.
- Use Motion as your main calendar: Connect Motion with your calendar, time-block your tasks, and let Motion plan your day.
- Schedule meetings with one link: Schedule your meetings with ease by sharing your availability or preferred times with invitees via your customizable booking page. Replace Calendly and send automatic reminders, customize your messages, and run your meetings with a single click from your Motion calendar.
ClickUp is more of an all-in-one productivity app than Motion. It comes with an impressive set of features:
- Brainstorm and outline your projects with mind maps: Use basic mind maps to quickly generate ideas, visually outline your projects, and create tasks.
- Manage your tasks and projects with 7+ views: Leverage lists, boards, mind maps, timelines, calendars, and more to display and manage your tasks.
- Bring together your projects and notes: ClickUp Docs lets you complement your projects with notes, attachments, and so much more. Use the slash commands to format text and bring up blocks quickly or use the AI to summarize and augment your writing.
- Automate your workflow with ClickUp Automation: You’ll find 100+ automation templates in ClickUp, plus you can build your own custom automations to eliminate repetitive and routine tasks.
- Get rid of email once and for all: Forward emails to and send emails from ClickUp, automate your emails with custom variables and conditions, or even better, communicate via ClickUp tasks.
- Create your personal dashboard: You can create customized dashboards to oversee projects, track your progress, and visualize your workflow. Use widgets to build your own dashboard.
- Use ClickUp for whiteboarding: Create whiteboards, collaborate with your team in real time, and create tasks from your canvas.
Winner: While ClickUp offers way more features than Motion, the latter can bring the same profound productivity experience by leveraging daily planning and the meeting scheduler.
It’s a draw.
Automation and AI-capabilities
Motion is built around AI from day one. It will plan your day by considering your priorities, available time in your calendar, and upcoming deadlines. Not only that, but Motion will reschedule unfinished tasks automatically so that you can avoid the time-intensive process of manual work.
It’s important to note, however, that you can’t use Motion for improving your writing or summarizing things you would normally do with Notion AI or ClickUp AI. This is a hundred percent legitimate if we think of Motion’s philosophy. The power of this productivity tool lies in its capability to automatically plan your day, focus your efforts, never miss an important deadline, and weed out subordinary tasks.
Motion currently integrates with Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, Google Calendar, Gmail, and Microsoft Outlook 365. More integrations are on the roadmap. Till then, you can connect your Motion account with hundreds of third-party apps via Zapier or use the API to build your own custom integrations.
Besides auto-scheduling and task dependencies, Motion doesn’t leave much room for automation within the app. If you want more, you can connect your Motion account with other productivity tools.
No matter how fancy automations you run, if you can’t manage your time and attention properly, you won’t be productive. And this is where Motion excels and finds its niche.
ClickUp recently introduced ClickUp AI, which is available as an add-on for every paid plan for $5 per user per month. (This is a comparable price to Notion AI, which charges $8 per user per month.)
ClickUp AI brings an array of features to the table. You can use it not only for writing and summarizing in Docs, but you can leverage AI in task descriptions, comments, emails, inboxes, and chats. The support team adds new prompts regularly to provide a tested template for every work situation. And the best thing is that you can access the AI tool with slash commands.
Compared to Motion, however, ClickUp AI cannot plan your day and reschedule overdue tasks. It can, however, generate action items from a Doc, create project timelines for your team, and generate subtasks (next steps) from task descriptions and comments.
ClickUp excels at integrations: currently, there are 40+ apps in the library. ClickUp has native integrations with Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Slack, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, HubSpot, Google Calendar, Outlook, Calendly, and so much more. With the public API or Zapier, you can push the limit even further.
Automations are at the heart of ClickUp. You can create all kinds of automations to automate routine tasks.
Before you can use automations, you should enable this feature under the workspace settings.
Automations work with Triggers, Conditions, and Actions. You can set up a Trigger to initiate an automation that would result in a single Action or multiple Actions if the Conditions are met.
Actions can include adding a comment to a task, applying a template, archiving a task, changing due dates, priorities, assignees, statuses, tags, and much more.
Importantly, your plan determines how many automations and Actions you can run in your workspace. It can become a bottleneck if you are using automations heavily.
There are templates you can choose from, or you can build up your own automations. You can even combine ClickUp automations with selected integrations like email or Calendly to supercharge your workflow.
My favorite one is email automation. With this feature, you can automatically send emails from ClickUp with different variables and conditions. To use this feature, you must enable Email Automations and connect with one of your email clients.
Motion has a simple pricing model. It offers a 7-day fully functional free trial. After the trial ends, you must upgrade either to the Individual Plan for $19 per user per month or the Team Plan for $12 per user per month. You can save on a Team Plan and annual billing is more affordable. Otherwise, these plans come with the same feature set.
ClickUp has a free version, but sooner or later you may want to upgrade to a paid plan. ClickUp charges $7 for their Unlimited Plan, which is more than enough. The third tier offers advanced automations, advanced time tracking, advanced dashboards, and workload management.
From a budgetary perspective, ClickUp is more affordable, especially if we consider functionality. Motion, however, comes with unique features for saving your day.
|Motion Individual||Motion Team||ClickUp Free||ClickUp Unlimited||ClickUp Business|
|Price (per user per month; billed annually)||$19||$12||Free||$7||$12|
|AI pricing||Included in price||Included in price||Add-on for $5/mo (per user)||Add-on for $5/mo (per user)||Add-on for $5/mo (per user)|
|Number of tasks||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Gantt charts||No||No||Yes (limited)||Yes||Yes|
|Create task from email||No||No||Yes (limited)||Yes||Yes|
Now, I’ll end this Motion vs ClickUp battle with my verdict.
Motion vs ClickUp: the verdict
After all those data and head-to-head comparisons, all you want to know is what project management tool is best for you. While Motion and ClickUp both promise to save one day a week, they approach productivity from a different perspective.
Motion proposes an anti-to-do list approach: instead of manually creating and constantly battling with your to-do list, Motion auto-schedules your day and reschedules unfinished items from your task list. This not only will save you a lot of time, but it also targets (and motivates) you toward your goals and most important tasks, plus you can say goodbye to missed deadlines.
Motion can be especially helpful for individuals living with ADHD or those struggling with a busy schedule.
The second main benefit is the meeting scheduler which has a comparable feature set of professional schedulers like Calendly. The good thing here is that you can create booking pages, customized messages, and automatic reminders, plus you can run meetings right from the Motion app with a few clicks.
ClickUp solves the productivity trap by bringing all your tools into a single place by either replacing them (project management software, whiteboarding app, note-taking app, mind mapping app, etc.) or connecting them to ClickUp.
This way, you can build a centralized workspace and can automate your workflow with in-app automations, AI features, and integrations. The added benefit is that you can create highly customizable (and visually pleasing) dashboards, where you can track your progress, collaborate with your team, or just the do work.
Overall, I recommend Motion for personal use and small teams: if you are struggling with a busy schedule with lots of meetings and find it hard to allocate time for deep work, give it a try to Motion.
If you are a business owner and/or work in a large team and you feel you are using too many tools, create your first ClickUp workspace and begin to centralize your work. Over time, you can bring more and more workflows into ClickUp and create highly functional dashboards.
To put an end to this Motion vs ClickUp comparison, I’ve made a list of the pros and cons for you.
What I like and dislike about Motion
What I like and dislike about ClickUp
Motion vs ClickUp: FAQ
1. What is the key difference between ClickUp and Motion?
If I had to summarize ClickUp and Motion in a single sentence, I would say that ClickUp is an all-in-one collaboration and project management platform with strong reporting functions, while Motion is an intelligent planner to help you focus on what matters most. So, the key difference stems from their approach to productivity. ClickUp approaches it from a “replacement” perspective, while Motion proposes an “anti-to-do list” approach.
2. Do Motion and ClickUp have a free plan?
Motion has a 7-day free trial, which offers a fully functional app. When the free trial ends, you must switch to a paid plan. ClickUp has a free version, which offers unlimited tasks, 100 MB storage, Docs, whiteboards, and a few project views (Kanban board, calendar view).
3. Which one is more affordable: Motion or ClickUp?
If we consider price only or price per feature, then ClickUp is the best choice. It has a free plan and even their Unlimited Plan costs $7 per month (per member), which can be complemented with ClickUp AI for $5 per month (per member). Motion charges $12 per month (per member) for teams and $19 per month for single use. While Motion comes with fewer functions and automation capabilities, it can help you plan your perfect day and automatically reschedule tasks as well as schedule and run meetings quickly.
4. Can I use ClickUp for personal projects, or is it primarily for businesses?
There is no reason why you shouldn’t use ClickUp for personal tasks. However, ClickUp works best for business owners and large teams with complex projects and workflows. ClickUp excels at planning, managing, and tracking complex goals and projects. I recommend Motion for personal use.