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Bonsai vs Dubsado – Comparison

Last updated on February 8, 2024

Managing multiple tasks like scheduling, invoicing, contracts, and client data demands a lot of time, effort, and exceptional organizational skills. When you add on top of that keeping your clients engaged and creating content, the day-to-day tasks of a coaching business can be overwhelming. That’s where special software tools like Bonsai and Dubsado can help.

This Bonsai vs Dubsado comparison will focus on their features, prices, strengths, weaknesses, and how these programs can benefit your business. We’ll also share some great alternatives if you’d like to cast a wider net in your search before making a decision. 

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Bonsai vs Dubsado: An Overview

Bonsai is a complete management tool that aims to streamline your workflow and let you focus on clients. It handles scheduling, CRM, course creation, payments, and financial management features. Check out our detailed review to learn more about Bonsai.

Dubsado delivers “an entire suite of business tools at your fingertips.” It is a freelancer-oriented CRM tool that can meet the needs of professionals across various industries. With the help of automation and management features like scheduling, client portals, invoicing, and automated lead onboarding, you can simplify the entire back end of your business.

Pricing & Free Trial

We’ll break down the cost and pricing structures of both platforms so you can assess which one aligns with your budget. 

Pricing Plan

Bonsai has three pricing levels. The Starter plan costs $21/month with the annual subscription and encompasses unlimited clients and projects, scheduling, templates, payments, client CRM, time tracking, and more. The next tier is the Professional plan at $32/month with added functionalities like workflow automation, more integrations, and a branded client portal. Lastly, there’s the Business plan at $66/month with advanced features such as subcontractor management, hiring agreement templates, and talent pool. For a $10/month add-on, you can get a Team Seat and Tax Assistant features.

Dubsado provides a choice between the Starter plan at $20/month (or $200/year) with fewer features and the Premier plan at $40/month (or $400/year). The basic plan includes unlimited projects and clients, invoicing and payment plans, and form and email templates. To access features like scheduling, automated workflows, and Zapier integration, you’ll need to upgrade to the more expensive plan. There are additional add-ons for managing extra brands ($10/month/brand) and adding more than 3 users (starting at $25/month for up to 10 users).

Free Trial

Bonsai lets you start with a free account with full access to your chosen plan for 7 days. 

Dubsado doesn’t have a time limit on the free trial. You can manage up to 3 clients at no cost without paying any fees.


Now, we’ll explore these software’s specific features and benefits to help you choose between Bonsai and Dubsado based on your needs.

Bonsai Features

  • CRM
  • Scheduling
  • Automation
  • Client portal
  • Communication
  • Creating session packages
  • Contracts
  • Invoicing
  • Payments
  • Financial management
  • Client intake forms
  • Session notes
  • Time tracking
  • Collaboration tools
  • Prebuilt and customizable templates
  • Mobile app
  • Integrations with Zapier, Gmail, Google Calendar, Calendly, QuickBooks, etc.

Financial management tools are a great addition to Bonsai’s set of features since you won’t need to invest in another software for these tasks. Bonsai will centralize tracking expenses and profits, identify tax write-offs, automate budgeting, and receive quarterly and annual tax reminders, among other things. 

Bonsai is a coach-specific software, and therefore it offers a library of editable life coaching templates. You’ll get access to diverse forms for coaching, like life coaching invoices, client contracts, session templates, and more. Simply select the form you need and personalize it to suit your preferences.

With Bonsai, you have the ability to create custom coaching packages that will align with your coaching services. You can charge per session, accept upfront payments for coaching programs, or set up coaching retainers, depending on your offerings. 

Dubsado Features

  • Scheduling
  • Automation
  • Client portal
  • Form templates
  • Contracts
  • Invoicing
  • Lead management
  • Customization (forms, templates, and more)
  • Integrations with calendar apps, video conferencing apps, email providers, Quickbooks, Xero, Zapier, and Cloudspot

Dubsado’s automation functionality will ease your workload by automating confirmation emails, payment reminders, email reminders, and recurring payments.

One handy feature for coaching professionals is the client portal, where clients can independently fill out forms, access documents and contracts, and pay invoices.

The client acquisition feature is designed to help turn potential leads or interested parties into paying clients. It makes getting new clients easier by using an automated system that guides potential customers through the lead capture process.

Bonsai vs Dubsado – How Are They Different?

Bonsai and Dubsado have comprehensive lists of features, but certain differences could impact your choice.

Coaching-Specific Features

Dubsado caters to the needs of various professionals, so it doesn’t fulfill the specific requirements of coaches as well as Bonsai. Bonsai is well equipped with features for coaching professionals like group coaching, multi-session package booking, subscription billing, digital downloads, and a custom shop page for showcasing the services.

Coaching Templates

Bonsai’s coaching templates can save you a lot of time. In addition to being tailored for coaching, you can even find templates for specific niches, such as business coaching or executive coaching. Dubsado also has editable templates, but they are generic. 

Financial Management

With Bonsai, you can reduce your costs for financial management software since these tools are included. The same can’t be said for Dubsado since this platform only supports invoicing. 

Set-Up Process

Dubsado can be challenging to set up. It demands a lot of time and effort to get a full grasp of the software, and some users even hire a specialist for help. On the other hand, Bonsai has a straightforward setup, so you can start without these complexities and have it up and running in no time.

Customer Support

Bonsai has a 4.5 rating for customer service on Capterra. The users mostly describe the service as top-notch, although a few users reported issues with incomplete responses. You can contact their representatives via email or in-app chat 7 days a week.

Dubsado has a 4.5 rating for customer service on Capterra. The reviews are predominantly positive, but some users weren’t completely satisfied due to generic solutions. You can reach out via email, live chat, or schedule a call. Chat hours are Monday to Friday from 4 a.m. to 12 a.m., and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends.

Conclusion – Bonsai or Dubsado?

Bonsai emerges as the winner in this comparison due to its comprehensive features tailored for coaches. There might be a slight price difference when comparing it to Dubsado, but it’s justified by the numerous features included at that price.

While Dubsado is a good option for scheduling, automation, and billing needs, Bonsai’s features are more robust and all-encompassing. Bonsai reduces the need for multiple tools and cuts down the costs. It covers everything a coach might need, from group coaching and client management to client portal and financial management.

Alternatives to Bonsai and Dubsado

For those who want to keep their options open and look into other all-in-one business management software, we suggest checking out popular platforms such as Paperbell, Practice, Honeybook, CoachVantage, and Simplero. These tools combine scheduling, automation, package creation, and various other features to ease the stress of daily tasks. 

You can also review our full list of the best coaching management software or refer to our articles on Bonsai and Dubsado alternatives to learn more about what top coaching tools have to offer.

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