Microsoft 365 is a popular platform for small businesses. It provides several work productivity apps in a single subscription, including the Office standards (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook).
With the move to the cloud, Microsoft has added even more value to the service with the cloud storage app OneDrive, collaboration app Teams, and more. Microsoft Teams alone has grown 475% during the pandemic, with the daily user count jumping from 20 million in November 2019 to 115 million by October 2020.
One question that’s common when a small business owner is deciding to subscribe to Microsoft 365 is, “Can I get what I need just using the Family subscription, or should I get Business?”
If you’re considering the full-featured Business Standard, then the savings getting the Family version can be about $67 per month if you have six users. But what you’d be giving up by not going with the Business version of Microsoft 365 could cost you more than that.
Reasons to Opt for the Business Plan of M365 for Your Company
When choosing the right tools for your small business, you’re going to find some distinct differences between home/family versions of an app and business versions. And while choosing the cheapest option might be tempting, you can end up giving up the apps and features that you need.
Here’s why you don’t want to use Microsoft 365 Family as a tool for running your business.
Email Server & Administration
To present a professional image, most businesses have a website and email addresses that use their domain name. One of the standard business expenses is hosting for employee email. To send mail on a company domain, you need to have your business email set up on a server.
M365 Family does not have this capability, but M365 for Business does. It includes Exchange for hosting email, and that capability can save you from having to pay to host your email elsewhere.
Features of the Business plans that include Exchange are:
- Email hosting with a 50GB mailbox
- Use of your own custom domain
- Business-class email can be used on mobile, desktops, and the web
- Includes calendar
- Email administration (custom scripts, restore deleted accounts, new user setup, etc.)
More Robust Version of Microsoft Teams
Microsoft Teams is one of the popular apps included in M365 Business subscriptions. And while there is a free version of Teams, it doesn’t have the same capabilities as the one you get with a subscription to a business plan.
There are several reasons to go with Business instead of the free Teams version, which you would have to get if you used Family (which doesn’t include Teams) The paid business version of Teams includes:
- 1TB per user of file storage with the paid Teams as compared to 2GB per user for the free version.
- Scheduled meetings are integrated with your Exchange calendar.
- Ability to record meetings
- Phone calls and audio conferencing
- Administrative tools that allow you to manage your Teams users & security
- Usage reporting
- 9% financially-backed SLA uptime
Having the ability to record meetings (among other features) could keep you from having to subscribe to another video meeting service.
SharePoint Sites for Easier Communications
One reason that Microsoft products continue to be so popular is that the company is always looking to the future of business and facilitating that journey for its customers.
SharePoint is a great example of this. It’s a platform that allows you to easily share information inside and outside your company through the use of web-based pages that can be created easily using a template.
This allows for information sharing within departments in a way that eliminates back and forth email and ensures everyone has access to the most updated information. It can also restrict access and file sharing to members of a group, making it a secure way to share information that’s accessible from anywhere.
Additional Apps That Save You Money
With Microsoft 365 Business, you gain several additional apps that can save you money by eliminating the need to subscribe to a 3rd party app for things like enabling customers to book appointments online or task management.
These apps don’t come with the Family plan, so you could be missing out on potential cost savings that make Business a better deal for your company.
Additional apps you get with a Business subscription include:
- Microsoft Bookings (Allow customers to easily schedule appointments)
- Microsoft Lists (Can be used for multiple shareable lists for things like task management, inventory, ticket tracking, and more)
- Microsoft Forms (create online forms, surveys, quizzes)
You Have Lower Priced Options
If you really want a business plan but simply aren’t ready to pay $12.50/user/month until your business gets a little bigger, you do have another option that will still give you the business email option, along with nearly all of the other perks.
Microsoft 365 Business Basic is $5.00/user/month. The main limitation is that you don’t get the desktop apps for the Office products (Word, Excel, PowerPoint), but can use the online web versions.
Get Microsoft 365 for Your Business Today!
C Solutions can help your Orlando area business get set up with the perfect Microsoft 365 Business plan for your needs.
Schedule a free consultation today! Call 407-536-8381 or reach us online.