Video Conferencing Solutions for Small Business

Video (or “web”) conferencing has become an essential tool for both individuals and businesses. While this technology has been around for quite a long time, the COVID-19 pandemic pushed companies of almost all types to use it on a regular basis. Even now, with so many companies continuing to offer work-from-home arrangements, and many others looking to limit travel and in-person meetings, it is unlikely that demand for web conferencing will fall anytime soon.

There are quite a few different video conferencing solutions available for small and mid-sized businesses. Choosing the right one can be a challenge. If you want to weigh your options in this competitive landscape, you might want to consider the ones that GSDSolutions has found to be most popular among its clients.

Zoom Web Conferencing

Zoom made a name for itself during the pandemic, and the name Zoom has become synonymous with video conferencing. The platform is extremely easy to use and offers many great features that most businesses will love, even at the free level. This very likely accounts for the broad adoption it’s enjoyed over a short period of time by individuals and businesses alike.

You can start with the free version of Zoom, which allows calls of up to 40 minutes, or subscribe to one of their premium packages to get unlimited call length and other enhancements. The free plan allows for calls with up to 100 people, bumping up to 300 people with the two highest subscription levels. These higher levels also come with other useful features, such as document sharing and cloud-based storage of any meetings and videos you may want to record.

Zoom is an excellent web conferencing service and provides a great set of useful features, even with the free option.  However, many companies prefer to use a system that is already integrated seamlessly with other apps like Microsoft Teams and Google Meet. Zoom supports the integration of many apps, and the number keeps growing, but you need to add those yourself. Zoom is an excellent option if you need a stand-alone web conferencing service that most people will be comfortable with.

Microsoft Teams

The Microsoft Teams platform has exploded in popularity over the last few years, and part of that growth is thanks to its excellent web conferencing tools. Companies of all sizes love the Teams platform because it brings a lot of functionality together into one application. This web conferencing service is included with the popular Microsoft 365 service as well, so you can start using it right away without an extra bill at the end of the month if you already use Microsoft 365.

The biggest drawback to using Microsoft Teams for web conferencing is for companies that don’t already use the Microsoft 365 platform. While a free version of Teams supports some web conferencing functionalities, it is somewhat limited. Companies that don’t already use many Microsoft products will likely want to opt for another solution.

Google Meet

Google Meet can be accessed and used through your regular Google account (whether it’s a standard Gmail account or a business account). This is convenient in many cases since it allows you to keep various services combined in one account. In addition, Google Meet is fully integrated with other Google Apps, making it easy to share files, send out invites, and much more. This platform also supports automatic captioning, which is often a premium feature on other solutions.

On the downside, Google Meet is more limited in terms of its on-screen sharing features and only allows up to 16 call participants to display video at once. In addition, those who aren’t used to using the Google suite of applications may find this platform a little challenging to get used to.

Get Help Choosing the Right Web Conferencing Tools for Your Business

It can be difficult to evaluate and choose any tool for your business, including web conferencing. However, web conferencing solutions and other features like Microsoft Teams or Zoom Rooms are becoming “must-haves” for many companies. At GSDSolutions, one of the many services we provide is evaluating and recommending applications to our clients, including web conferencing apps. As your managed IT services provider, we will work closely with you to determine your needs and recommend the right solutions. We are a leading Bay Area IT support provider and can help you with all your IT needs.

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