Run Successful Virtual Meetings With One of These Top 3 Programs

virtual meetings

There are several benefits to hiring remote workers. Benefits include flexibility, wider access to global talent, reduced costs, and more.

Proximity, however, is not one of those benefits. Rather than calling everyone into a conference room for a quick meeting, you have to rely on technology to bring everyone on your team together…no matter where they are located.

Thankfully, there are a handful of smart virtual meeting tools that make communication so easy it doesn’t matter if your employees are in the next room over or halfway across the world.

This article will present everything you need to run successful virtual meetings including:

  • A list of top virtual meeting tools
  • Features and benefits of each tool
  • Tool ratings, as reported by Capterra and G2 Crowd
  • Pricing
  • And more!

Of course, different companies can benefit from different virtual meeting tools. By the end of this post, you’ll be ready to select a tool that fits with the objectives, goals, and needs of your organization.

 

 

1. Zoom

zoom meeting

Zoom brings together cloud video conferencing, group messaging, and online meetings, into one convenient platform. This solution provides top-notch video, audio, and screen-sharing experience across Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Blackberry, Zoom Rooms, and H.323/SIP room systems.

Zoom has been gaining speed recently as one of the most popular virtual meeting software programs. It is easy to use, makes collaboration easy, and offers several different viewing options.

 

Features

Wondering what you can do with Zoom? Wonder no longer. Here is a quick overview of the top features of Zoom:

  • Meetings – Easy to conduct online meetings, trainings, and technical support calls
  • Video webinar – Seamlessly conduct a marketing event or town hall meeting
  • Zoom rooms – Build collaborative conference rooms
  • Business IM – Use cross-platform messaging and file sharing
  • H.323/SIP Connector – Bring H.323/SIP video systems to the cloud
  • Developer Platform – Empower apps with video, voice and screen sharing
  • Follow-Up and Breakout Meetings – Can easily initiate meetings with select participants from the main conference interface
  • Screenshare – Able to share your desktop screen or an application with the rest of the conference
  • Recording – Conferences can be recorded for future use
  • Muting – Grant participants the ability to address the meeting and retract when desired
  • Meeting Initiation and Joining – Starting and joining conferences is streamlined
  • Scheduling – scheduling web meetings is streamlined, intuitive, and integrated into calendar and email software
  • And more!

 

Benefits

benefits of using zoom

Here are some top ways Zoom can benefit your remote teams:

  • One consistent enterprise experience for all use cases
  • Engineered & optimized to work reliably
  • Up to 500 video participants & 10,000 viewers
  • Easy-to-use, buy & scale
  • Affordable, straightforward pricing
  • Optimized for mobile use
  • And more!

 

Reviews

Zoom is one of the top-rated tools when it comes to verified customer user reviews. The G2 Crowd rating stands at a 4.5 out of 5 stars as well as does the Capterra reviews.

A top review from G2 Crowd says:

“I really enjoy the Zoom video conferencing software. It has been the most useful video conferencing software I have used. The best thing about the Zoom software is the simplicity of its use. I use it often with students and they are able to easily navigate the software with little training on my part. Other things that I enjoy is that participants can join conversation for free. The platform is easy for me to use as a moderator. It offers high quality audio and video. Screen sharing between both the presenter and guests is simple. Participants can instant message during conferences. Meetings are easily recordable. Users can also create recurring meetings and use the same link for future meetings.”

 

Pricing

Zoom starts free for the basic plan and can go up to $19.99/month per host for enterprise users.

Here is the pricing breakdown as shown in Zoom’s pricing page:

zoom pricing

 

 

2. Join.me

join.me meeting

Join.me is another smart way to connect with clients and collaborate with team members. Users of this software can easily share thoughts with video, audio, screen sharing, whiteboard trainings/meetings, participant bubbles, and more.

Join.me is a classic way for business leaders, clients, and remote workers to connect with each other in a reliable way. Let’s look at some of the features, benefits, reviews, and the pricing of join.me.

 

Features

Interested to know the top features of join.me? Here is a quick overview of its top features:

  • Audio Calls – Meetings facilitate high quality audio communication for all parties involved in the call.
  • Video Conferencing – Meetings facilitate high quality video conferencing for everyone in the conference
  • Scheduling – Scheduling web meetings is streamlined, intuitive, and integrated into the software.
  • Meeting initiation and joining – Starting and joining conferences is easy.
  • Personalized URL – Claim your own personalized URL.
  • Muting – Grant participants the ability to address the meeting and retract when desired.
  • Recording – All conferences can be recorded for future use.
  • Screenshare – Share your desktop screen or an application with the rest of the conference.
  • Follow-Up and Breakout Meetings – Can easily initiate meetings with select participants from the main conference interface.
  • Slideshow – Presenters can cue up a presentation or slideshow for display in the conference.
  • Annotation – Presenters or users can annotate a whiteboard or the presentation.
  • Chat – Conferences include a chat feature.
  • Polling – Presenters can poll the audience with a survey or let them respond with an electronic hand raise.
  • File Share – Allows users to share individual files/folders with users in the conference.
  • Mobile – Offers a mobile app or mobile optimized website to video conference from smartphones or tablets.
  • Security – User authentication and security measures like confidential attendee lists keep conferences private and secure.
  • Customize background – Make your background look however you want with easy customization.
  • And more!

 

Benefits

join.me benefits

Here are some ways join.me will benefit your remote teams:

  • One click screen sharing for ease of use
  • Scheduling integration with top calendars to make sure everyone gets proper updates
  • Productivity integrations to make meetings and working as easy as if everyone were in the same office
  • Full mobile optimization for use on the go
  • Affordable and straight forward pricing
  • High quality audio and video
  • Personal link so it’s easy to identify who the meeting is with
  • Easy to switch presenters
  • And more!

 

Reviews

Join.me is one of the top-rated tools when it comes to verified customer user reviews. The G2 Crowd rating stands at a 4.1 out of 5 with most participants being especially impressed with the screen share feature. The Capterra rating is 4.5 out of 5.

One top G2 Crowd review from a validated user sums up the benefits of join.me well:

“Allows me to share my screen with multiple people, record your screen and share calls, integrate meetings into my Gmail calendar invites, has very good video quality. The person on the other end doesn’t seem to have much of a lag, if any at all. Easy of use for the end user, well-designed web page. Simple, quick download for quick remote connections to workstations.”

 

Pricing

Join.me’s Lite plan is at $10/month. This allows you up to 5 participants per meeting. Business plan is at $30.

Here is the pricing comparison as shown on the company website:

join.me pricing

 

 

3. GoToMeeting by LogMeIn

gotomeeting by logmein

GoToMeeting by LogMeIn makes it easier for people to interact with each other, no matter where they are located in the world. This program is one of the world’s top SaaS companies and supports two million daily users, 200 million customer engagements, and five billion voice minutes per year.

GoToMeeting by LogMeIn makes it possible for remote workers to connect with organizations. It provides flexibility, efficiency, and reliability. Their products are used by professionals and leveraged by small to medium-sized businesses the world.

 

Features

One of the best ways to determine if GoToMeeting is the right video conferencing system for you is to check out their features. Here is a quick overview of their top features:

  • Business Messaging – Chat with people both inside and outside your company and then instantly transition into a full meeting
  • One-Click Meetings – Launch meetings quickly from popular apps that you already use, including email, CRM and messaging tools
  • Smart Meeting Assistant – Easily search through and share automatic transcripts of your recorded meetings
  • Call Me – Join the meeting by simply answering a call – no codes or PINs needed
  • Built-In Audio – Choose between VoIP and toll-based options at no extra charge
  • Toll-Free Option – OpenVoice makes setting up toll-free conferencing easy and manageable.
  • Personal Meeting Room – Every customer receives a personal meeting room with custom URL – your new base of operations
  • GoToMeeting InRoom Link – Bring GoToMeeting into the conference room with built-in support for Lifesize, Cisco and Polycom devices.
  • GoToConference – Great for rooms of up to 10 people, this bundle comes with both hardware and software out of the box
  • Desktop/Application Sharing – Broadcast a real-time view of your desktop or of a specific application
  • Cloud Recording – Record and store your meetings online for easy review and sharing
  • Drawing Tools – Direct attention using drawing tools while sharing your screen
  • Conference Room Solutions – GoToMeeting has what you need to connect and to collaborate

 

Benefits

benefits of gotomeeting

Now that you know the top features of this program, you may be interested in the extra benefits. These benefits may give you insight into why you may want to select this as your primary method for communicating with remote employees and clients.

  • Support team on hand to answer questions
  • Enter into a meeting in just seconds so you don’t have to wait around
  • Fully optimized for mobile use
  • Excellent audio options to suit your preferences
  • Company innovates and introduces new features
  • Free 14-day trial to give the software a whirl before fully committing
  • Additional product offerings for optimal business use
  • Integration with other top professional apps
  • Easy to switch presenters
  • GoToMeeting community for open discussion
  • And more!

 

Reviews

G2 Crowd rates this software a 4.2 out of 5 with the most popular feature being the “muting” feature. However, most top features are rated at least 83% or higher. Capterra rates GoToMeeting a 4.5 out of 5, and this number is currently based on 2,104 user reviews.

A recent Capterra review sums up the positive benefits of GoToMeeting:

“I love GoToMeeting (GTM)! I teach online and hold live chats sometimes 3 nights a week. I have to sometimes use another program, and at times when it doesn’t work I have quickly jumped on GTM and it ‘saves the day” every time! I love the new TRANSCRIPTION feature too! And so do my students. Granted it isn’t perfect, but what speech-to-text feature is? I make sure to use GTM and introduce it to my students at least once per course. The following week I will switch back to the other program, and then I let my students vote on which program they’d prefer to use the following week – GTM wins every time! I have used other online VOI chat tools, but they seem to keep changing?! They “think” they’re making improvements, but take away such a valuable feature as being able to share the moderator’s entire screen?! Why?! Either that or their newer version cannot “handle” sharing the entire screen and errors out showing the same screen over and over again in a trail of overlapping screens that run off into infinity. GTM is just easier to use! Inviting attendees is even easy – just set up a future meeting and the email invitation is created for you! Easy peasy! I just took a another look at it again and played around with resizing and moving the feature windows and I even found something else about it that I didn’t know before…so now I love it even more!”

 

Pricing

GoToMeeting’s Starter Plan is billed at $18/month for 10 participants. The Plus Plan, gets you up to 250 participants for $47/month.

Here is the pricing comparison as shown on the company website:

gotomeeting pricing plan

 

 

Wrap Up

When it comes to finding a software to host virtual meetings, you have several options. However, if you select one of the 3 programs listed above (Zoom, join.me or GoToMeeting), you can’t really go wrong.

Of course, each product has different features and benefits. What you end up selecting will depend on your company size, your needs, and the primary reasons you conduct meetings.

 


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Greg Digneo

Greg Digneo

Greg Digneo writes for TimeDoctor.com, a time monitoring and productivity monitoring software designed for tracking hours and productivity of remote teams. If you would like to see where you and your team are spending your time during work, then try Time Doctor FREE for 14 days.

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