Best Reference Management Software

Reference management software aids students, research-oriented professionals, and anyone else sourcing others’ material with citing accurately and efficiently. These tools can be for one-time use, where users submit information and receive a full citation, or can act as a secure source repository for long-term projects. Reference management software can serve for more than academic purposes; business presentations or reports can all benefit from being adequately cited. The tool can connect large teams through cloud servers, providing full companies access to trusted resources and articles. Often, reference management tools can integrate with file storage and sharing or document creation tools, or with part of an internet browser. This allows users to save resources as they’re found in the moment instead of struggling to locate them later on. Common features of reference management software include advanced searching, reference libraries, and version history.

To qualify for inclusion in the Reference Management category, a product must:

  • Provide multiple options for citation format
  • Generate citations for various material such as books, websites, journals, etc.
  • Provide features that organize research and source information

Reference Management Software Grid® Overview

The best Reference Management Software products are determined by customer satisfaction (based on user reviews) and scale (based on market share, vendor size, and social impact) and placed into four categories on the Grid®:
  • Products in the Leader quadrant are rated highly by G2 Crowd users and have substantial Market Presence scores. Leaders include: Mendeley, EndNote, RefWorks, and EasyBib.com
  • High Performers are highly rated by their users, but have not yet achieved the market share and scale of the Leaders. High Performers include: JabRef, Sorc'd, and Zotero
  • Contenders have significant Market Presence and resources, but have received below average user Satisfaction ratings or have not yet received a sufficient number of reviews to validate the solution.
  • Niche solutions do not have the Market Presence of the Leaders. They may have been rated positively on customer Satisfaction, but have not yet received enough reviews to validate them. Niche products include: Citavi, Papers, and ReadCube
G2 Crowd Grid® for Reference Management
Leaders
High Performers
Contenders
Niche
Mendeley
Citavi
Endnote
Jabref
Papers
Readcube
Refworks
Easybib com
Sorc d
Zotero
Market Presence
Satisfaction
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