There are many reasons why you should be video conferencing, and one of the main ones is the fact that it could save your company money. This because it lets people meet and see each other, but without the usual costs such as those for transportation and meeting rooms, just to name a few. But if you’re not careful, video conferencing can also get expensive, with services that charge per meeting and that use a phone connection instead of VoIP in order to allow people to communicate. To help you save money on video conferencing, I compiled a list of top tips that will make it easy to see which conferencing tools will be the most cost effective for you and your business.
1. Choose a web meeting tool that has an all-you-can-meet plan - If you’re going to meet often, your best option is to insist on a tool that will let you hold as many meetings as you want for one flat fee per month or year. Paying per meeting or per hour of meeting can get really expensive, especially since video conferences can easily go much longer than expected sometimes. The best video conferencing tools all let you meet as much as you want for a flat fee, and there are even free web conferencing tools that you can choose from. A pay-per-meeting option is only valuable if you know you won’t be meeting online often, and paying for a subscription would be wasteful.
2. Use VoIP - By communicating via VoIP, there are no additional phone costs for the meeting, as all of the voice is transferred through the Internet. This means that you can talk to anyone, from anywhere in the world for the single flat fee charged by your video conferencing provider, with no additional bills whatsoever. If you still want to offer the phone option for your web conferencing participants, make sure that the phone numbers given by your video conferencing provider will bill your participants directly, meaning that you won’t have to pay for other people’s voice connection to the conference.
3. Consider using a free video conferencing tool - While free tools usually don’t have many of the advanced capabilities of subscription tools, they still get the job done. If you don’t need to use more advanced features such as collaboration capabilities, or if you don’t need to brand your meeting room, free tools could save you a lot of money when it comes to meeting online. They are usually ad-supported, but the ads are not intrusive so won’t get in the way of your meeting.
4. Invite only those who are necessary to the meeting - Most video conferencing tools have plans based on the number of participants you want to invite to your meetings. This means that the more people you want to invite to your meetings, the more expensive your plan will be. To save money on video conferencing, you should invite only those people who are truly essential to your meeting, keeping the number of attendees down. By carefully choosing who you want to invite to your meetings, you can opt for an inexpensive plan, keeping your web conferencing costs down.
5. Don’t pay for more features than you need - Sure, 1000 minutes of video storage sounds great, but will you really need it? If the answer is no, then don’t be tempted to upgrade your video conferencing plan just so you can get extras that are not essential to you. If you don’t think you’ll need to store video or want to see your conference participants in HD, choose a more cost-effective plan that doesn’t include all the bells and whistles, but that will still do exactly what you need it to. This means that before choosing a video conferencing tool, you should have a good idea of what it is that you’ll be using it for, and what essential features will help you to make the most of your conferences.
6. Shop around - Find out about all the main video conferencing tools available, and compare their prices and features. Don't be afraid to test them before you make a decision - remember that most tools have a free trial that will let you test the tool without having to make a commitment. This means that you can make an informed decision on what is the best video conferencing tool for your team, ultimately purchasing the one that will best fit your business' needs.