Business is global.
Whatever industry you work in, you’re dealing with people in different time zones, on different schedules and with different priorities.
I guess you could rely on email. But we all know how easy it is for an email to slip through the cracks and never get seen.
For urgent messages and important meetings, you need something more practical. This is where online meeting tools come to the party.
Let’s take a look at ten of the best online meeting tools you could be using;
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Run by Cisco, businesses can choose from a number of plans designed to provide an ideal business-meeting venue. WebEx has a number of features available to all of their plans, including:
- Unlimited number of meetings
- Free range of mobile apps
- File sharing capabilities.
- Instant messaging services
MeetingBurner is a free online meeting platform for up to ten attendees. Unless you are holding particularly large meetings, you will never pay a penny.
Some benefits of MeetingBurner;
- It’s highly scalable.
- The paid version can take up to 1,000 attendees at any time
- Users get screen sharing and video streaming capabilities
- You can record your meetings
If you want the full 1,000 attendees, this will cost you $99.95 every month.
AnyMeeting’s platform is designed exclusively for small businesses.
With six people supported at a video conference at any one time and VoIP built-in, you can; communicate with your clients and agents across the globe and hold meetings over the phone, on the web, or through video.
If you ever want to get started with webinars, AnyMeeting can do that too.
AnyMeeting costs $18.00 for an ad-free plan, but if you are willing to deal with some ads, you can use everything free.
Sync.in makes this list for its innovative document-editing feature, which works in real-time. If you want to collaborate on plans at the point of contact this software option makes it easy.
Multiple people can edit the same document at the same time, whilst also communicating through speaking. Since everybody’s screens change automatically, it is just like working with someone in person.
Although all chat is real-time, the history is saved in case you need to look things over later on.
The premium version costs just $2 a month!
Organization in a business is crucial. Even with the right tools, actually getting people online at the same time can prove a problem.
Meetin.gs is a scheduling platform to arrange the process for all involved. It will find a suitable time for everyone you need at your meeting.
Here’s how it works:
- Send invitations.
- Distribute the agenda and any documents.
- Discuss it on the same page and organize a time based on this information.
It’s all free when using no more than six participants.
Vyew involves downloading no software because it takes place entirely online. This is perfect if you are on the go and accessing a shared computer.
You can use Vyew to communicate with your team using push-to-talk VoIP, online whiteboard tools and real-time desktop sharing.
It’s also free up to ten users. The premium account costs $19.95 a month and enables you to host a maximum of 150 people.
GoToMeeting allows you to hold any number of meetings with up to 25 people for the most basic option.
This option allows you to get the HDFaces video conferencing application, where you can view up to six different video streams at the same time. Plus the shared desktop functionality on one screen enables a fantastic level of collaboration.
GoToMeeting also allows you to record audio from your meeting and play it back later.
The only disadvantage is the cost, at $49 a month for the most basic plan. GoToMeeting is more designed for bigger companies that have a greater need for the features offered here.
Twiddla is one of my favorite solutions on this page because they make it so easy to brainstorm on a blank canvas. Unlike some other platforms, you can browse the web during meetings and show other people what you are looking at.
You don’t need any downloads and it’s compatible with every major firewall on the market today. Furthermore, it works with any browser.
If you want to try it out they offer a 30-day free trial before you have to look into their paid services.
FuzeBox offers a complete solution of collaboration tools. Let’s take a look at the features provided by this platform:
- The option to access 12 video conference streams in HD at the same time
- 125 participants, which should be more than enough for any company
- Automatic video and audio adjustments to prevent choppiness
- The ability to share content with attendees, including videos and documents.
If you want to test FuzeBox, they offer a 60-day free trial. The pro plan thereafter will set you back $8 a month.
Skype is probably the most well-known video conferencing platform in the world. In terms of business conferencing, it’s less able than other options on this list, simply because it’s geared towards personal use. You still get access to voice and video calls, along with a live chat option.
The biggest benefit of Skype is it’s reliability – and it’s free.
Wrapping it up
You may notice that many of these services offer similar features. While that’s true, there are always slight variations on offer. This is why it’s important to assess each service separately.
Many of these platforms are geared towards companies of a specific size. In other words, Skype is for the smallest of companies. On the other hand, a platform like FuzeBox would give more value for money to a larger company that needs all the extra features.
I recommend taking advantage of the free trials. That way you can discover how good a platform really is and whether it meets your expectations.
Guest Author: When she’s not exploring her passion for traveling at Findvietnam.com, Alesia Hsiao provides businesses with professionally-written articles that are engaging and compelling for JeffBullas.com, Business2Community, Business.com and Tech.co.
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