14 Best Web Video Conferencing Software for Small Business (Free + Paid)
Having good video conferencing software is an important need that many small businesses fail to consider.
Remote work is increasing and is predicted to continue to increase. According to a study from FlexJobs, many hiring managers predict that more than 33% of their employees will be working remotely within the next decade.
With workers located in different places, and sometimes even in different countries, how can your small business make sure that everyone is communicating? With a geographically diverse team, getting everyone together in the same room for a traditional meeting is impractical (and expensive).
Holding a web meeting solves the communication problem. With online meeting software, you can schedule regular meetings for your team to get together through the internet to share information and ask questions. With the right web conferencing software, you can even hold training sessions.
Getting live video conferencing software can be a major decision for your small business, but it’s an important one since it can help your team stay connected. In this post, you’ll learn what you need to know to choose the web conferencing software for your needs. First, I’ll explain what web video conferencing software is. Then, we’ll explore some conferences software features that business owners often look for. Finally, I’ll list 14 of the best video conferencing software tools for small businesses.
What Is Web Video Conferencing Software?
Web video conferencing software allows you to hold a variety of types of online meetings regardless of where meeting participants are located. The online meeting software makes use of the Internet, so anyone with a connection can take part. A live web conference may include a video element where participants can see each other using their webcams. Or, the meeting may be audio only. Sometimes the online meeting is also available by phone, which makes it even easier for all team members to attend.
Web video conferencing software can be used to conduct various types of meetings including:
traditional staff meetings
To conduct a successful web meeting, your business will need good web conferencing software.
Core Web Conferencing Software Features
As you select your video conferencing software, you’ll want to pay close attention to what the software can do. To get the most from your web meeting tool, make sure to select a package that has features that you need. Some common features that small businesses often need include:
Meeting Initiation. This is the capability to start a meeting as opposed to just being a meeting participant. This is very important if you’ll be hosting the video conferences yourself.
Screen Share. If you want meeting participants to be able to look at what’s displaying on your computer during the web conference, you’ll need this feature.
Recording. The ability to be able to record your live web conference can be useful for members who can’t make your meeting. It can also serve as a record of what took place.
Audio.If some of your team members don’t have a webcam, you’ll want them to at least be able to take part through audio.
Slideshow. A slideshow can be a great way to organize the information you present during your web meeting. Consider using a slideshow template for a more professional presentations (see section below).
Private Chat.Private chat is the ability for several team members to communicate privately during the main meeting. This can be useful for answering questions.
Video Conferencing. This feature allows meeting participants to enable their webcams so that they can see each other during the meeting.
Technical Support. If this is your first time hosting a live video conference via the web, make sure the package that you select has good technical support available to help you overcome any hurdles.
Cost. Last, but not least, you’ll want to choose video web conferencing software that fits in your budget. The list below includes web meeting tools for a variety of budget needs including free software.
While you may not need all of these capabilities in your conferencing software, chances are that your business will need at least some of them. Be sure to pick a tool that offers what you need (and don’t forget to consider your future needs).
Use a Slideshow Template for Your Video Conference
Here’s a peek at some of our best-selling slideshow templates on Envato Elements:
Now that we’ve explored what web video conferencing software is and discussed features that businesses often need, it’s time to look at some of the best video conferencing software tools available for small businesses.
Best Web Video Conferencing Software Tools
Here are fourteen of the best web video conferencing tools for small businesses:
You may think of Skype as a convenient way to make long-distance calls using your computer, but the Skype for Business product allows you to use Skype to run video conference meetings. With Skype for Business, your web meeting can include up to 250 people (with a Microsoft Office 365 subscription). Use the tool to share your desktop and collaborate online in real-time. You can also record your meetings.
To learn more about Skype, study the following tutorial:
Hangouts Meet is a more business-friendly tool than classic Google Hangouts. To use this meeting software, however, you’ll need a G Suite Account. Meet by Google Hangouts allows you to hold live video conferences. The number of people you can host for your video conference varies. If you’ve got G Suite Enterprise, you can host up to 50 people. But with G Suite Basic and Business, you can only host 25.
To learn more about Google Hangouts, study the following tutorials:
With this live video conferencing software you’ll enjoy many features including screen sharing, cloud recording, personal meeting rooms, and more. The number of people you can include in your web meeting depending on the level of package your purchase. With the starter level, you can include 50 participants. At the enterprise level you can have up to 1000 meeting participants. A free trial is available.
This web conferencing software is designed specifically for online meetings. It includes a toll-free option to make your meetings more accessible. You can also set up a personal meeting room with your own URL. Share your desktop in real-time, so your attendees can see exactly what you’re talking about. Record your meeting and store it in the cloud. You can also download a free trial version of this video conferencing software.
This popular online meeting software is a great choice for small businesses since the most basic level is free. At the most basic level, you can host up to 100 meeting participants for up to 40 minutes. You can also use screen sharing to collaborate. And there are breakout rooms for private discussions. To get more features, such as unlimited meeting duration or more participants, choose one of their premium plans.
This relatively new online meeting software also has a lot to offer for very small businesses. It’s free for individual users (with limited features). For example, at the free level you can have up to three meeting attendees. There are three levels of premium plans that offer additional features. The Business level plan, for example, let’s you host up to 250 in your meeting and includes recording capabilities.
include unlimited video and audio meetings as well as screen sharing. At the most basic level, you’re limited to four people per meeting. At the most advanced level, include up to 200 people in your meeting. Also nice is that fact that you can get a free trial of any level of service—even the most basic.
ClickMeeting is a feature-rich web meeting tool that not only lets you hold online meetings, but also lets you run webinars. Your meetings can accommodate up to 25 participants, but if you host a webinar you can include more people (based on your plan level). This tool also lets you share screens for collaboration. Plus, record your meetings for those who couldn’t attend.
While you may think of Adobe as having great design tools, they also offer online meeting capability through Adobe Connect. You’ll meet in an online meeting room with a custom URL that’s always available. You can record your meetings and even republish them. Plus there are add-ons (pods) that allow you to do more. Use the Video pod to share a webcam feed, for example. A free trial is available.
Use your Webcam to talk to your meeting participants through a video feed. You can share all or part of your screen to help illustrate your points. Plus, you can record screen shares and the audio part of your meetings. This web conferencing software is compatible with both Google and Zoho calendars. Set up automated email reminders to maximize meeting attendance.
Here’s another well-known company with online meeting software you may not be aware of. Set up secure web meetings with pay-as-you-go pricing. You can even use Amazon’s Alexa to start your meeting. It’s also easy to share screen content using Amazon Chime. Make a recording of your online meeting and store in in the cloud for later reference. Add meetings to the MS Outlook calendar.
HighFive offers a unique integration of a hardware and software platform for all your online meeting needs. This can be a lot for a small business, but if your business is growing fast and you hold a lot of meetings. This can be a good choice. The software includes many of the video conferencing software options you would expect such as screen sharing and the ability to schedule meetings from your calendar.
This online meeting software offers two plans. One plan allows you to hold a meeting of up to 10 people, the other allows you to host up to 30. All levels include screensharing, chat, and the ability to send email meeting invitations and reminders. With the larger plan you can also have a toll-free number for your meeting as well as the ability to create a meeting recording.
If you mostly host small web meetings and you’re looking for free web conferencing software, this option may be for you. The free version of UberConference allows you to have up to ten meeting participants. Each meeting participant will need a PIN to access the meeting. The free level even includes screen sharing and the ability to record a call. For now, the tool is limited to audio conferencing, though.
Here’s another price-conscious online meeting software tool for a small business owner. This one has a plan for single individuals that allows you to meet with up to 50 people a month with an unlimited meeting duration. You can use Outlook, Office 365, or Google calendar to schedule the meetings. Plus, you can share your desktop and even stream your meeting to Facebook Live.
Learn More About Web Meetings
As you begin to hold more and more web meetings, you’ll want to learn how work with team members through video conferencing tools. The following tutorials are specific to webinars, but many of the same principles apply:
We’ve just explored 14 of the best video conferencing software tools for small businesses. You’ve also learned about some of the most popular web conferencing software features. If you’re looking video conferencing software, there’s no reason to hesitate—even if you’re a small business. Go ahead and use this information to choose the right meeting software for your needs.