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Top 4 Reasons to Get GMAIL, Docs, Drive and Calendar For Small Businesses

By Terry M. Lee | stage 1

Sep 12

As soon as you buy a domain name, one of your first steps is to set up email but what business solution should you choose? Some domain registrars and web hosting companies offer basic email but that is great if that is all you want versus E-mail and a suite of business tools.

Popular 3 E-mail business solutions are Microsoft, Google, and Zoho.  You may not be familiar with Zoho but like Microsoft Office 365 and Google G Suite, Zoho offers a cloud-based solution for e-mail and collaborative business tools.  The business solutions offer Web-based E-mail, a document or word processor, spreadsheet program, presentation program, a virtual drive to save and share information as well as additional tools.

The following items were considered when evaluating Business E-mail solutions and tools:

  • Ease of Use/Setup
  • Integration
  • Features
  • Cost

Can you imagine that you would like to track whether a business email was opened such as ActiveCampaign or MailChimp? Imagine that a visitor purchases one of your products from your website. Next, a trigger or action automatically adds their contact information to a spreadsheet and from there, an email is sent to your support staff who telephones the new customer to thank them for becoming a customer. Now that’s an awesome way to welcome a customer!

Choosing an email provider and the supporting suite products is important. So, do not think small nor minimize its’ importance. It is for this reason that Google’s G Suite (formerly Google Apps) for Business is an awesome, cost-effective solution that will grow with your business.

Reason #1 – Ease of Use/Setup

Even though all 3 contenders are a cloud-based solution, there is a setup/configuration portion to establish accounts and your domain email.

Office 365

If you enjoy banging your head against the wall, then you may enjoy the Office 365 process.  We all know that Microsoft is a huge company but the licensing options and setup can be painful.

G Suite

Like Microsoft, Google is a huge company but it has mastered simplicity when it comes to the interface options for customers.  A wizard walks through the setup with plenty of videos and screenshots that make it easy for a novice.

 

Zoho

Similar to G Suite, setting up Zoho is pretty easy too.  Zoho also provides video tutorials to assist with setup, migration and other configurations.

Reason #2 – Integration

All 3 considerations integrate with popular 3rd party tools such as Evernote, Dropbox, Hubspot, Slack and more.  Of them, Google edges out because it is almost impossible to find a tool that does NOT integrate with G Suite.

However, native or built-in integrations maybe missing but fortunately, Zapier is a company that works to solve this issue. Zapier creates “zaps” or small programs to provide integrations where a native integration may not exist. With over 750+ zaps as seen in the sample below, it would be challenging to find an integration that was not supported for major 3rd party applications.

Zapier example with Gsuite

Reason #3 – Features

Whether you are a diehard Windows or Mac user, you may eventually have a team of people that use a different computer system than you. Having a solution that works on Windows, Mac and mobile devices is key to easy collaboration as well as access from anywhere or from any device.

All 3 options are cloud-based solutions, which means that a web-browser can be used to access E-mail as well as use the suite of tools.  As such, the following chart shows the name of their primary services although additional services are available.

In this comparison, the services are pretty even and it is a matter of preference.

MSOffice 365 vs Zoho vs Google

In this comparison, the services are pretty even and it is a matter of preference.

Reason #4 – COST

All businesses want to be profitable and keep costs to a minimum. As a startup, choosing a solution that is cost effective and does not break the bank is important.

Office 365

Office 365 is the most expensive option at $12.50/month per user although they do offer an Essentials version for $6/month per user.  Unfortunately, the latter version does not include any Office Suite apps nor your own domain name so, why bother?

Zoho

Next, Zoho offers 10 email accounts for free! Say what? Yes, they follow a freemium model. Free to get started with enticements to upgrade to a paid account. Plans, as of this writing, start at $2/month paid annually or $3/month paid monthly.

G Suite

Google’s G Suite formerly known as Google Apps is not free although it has a trial. It costs $5/month for 1 email address (prior to any discounts).

Summary

As the title of the article suggests, I chose Google's G Suite for my business based upon costs, integration, and ease of use.  I have used Zoho in the past and although I liked it, I often ran into some limitation down the road with integration that I did not with Google.

If you're interested, check out this link. I can also send you a coupon that saves you 20% off per user for the first year, so just let me know and I'll provide details.

After your trial, you can request a code here. Since Google provides the code in blocks, the entire process may take up to 24-hours but it is worth it.  Why pay more?