In the last year, most of us have been part of more conference calls than we can remember. With virtual communication becoming a critical part of business, finding the best conference call service for your needs is important.
There are multiple conference call providers in the space. Whether you are looking for a budget-friendly option, international calling or easy setup, there’s a solution out there for you.
Here are the best conference call services currently on the market.
Table of Contents
- Top Conference Call Services
- How to Select the Right Conference Call Service
Top Conference Call Services
As you consider the various conference call services, keep your unique needs in mind. Each service will work best for a particular kind of customer.
Once you have a clear understanding of what you are looking for, you should be able to quickly identify the right option for you.
- Best for: Reliability
- Cost: $18.95 to $57.95 per month
Nextiva is an award-winning company with a reputation for providing customers with the tools they need for successful conference calls. The majority of Nextiva customers are satisfied with their experience.
This is because the provider offers carrier-grade service. This essentially means that its data centers are ready and able to handle a large call volume over an extended period of time.
Additionally, the physical data centers are protected against natural disasters. As a result, there is very little chance that Nextiva will not be able to facilitate your call.
The only disadvantage of Nextiva is that there is no free option. As a potential customer, this means that you cannot give the service a test drive before signing up.
- Clear conference calls
- Responsive customer service
- Various tiers to choose from
- Learning curve when adding new contacts
- Limited integration with other services
- Best for: No specialized equipment required
- Cost: Up to $59.99 per month
RingCentral offers conference call options that don’t require any new equipment installations. Instead, the cloud-based service allows you to make conference calls from any device with an internet connection.
What makes RingCentral stand out is its free version. You can host up to 100 participants in a video conference and have a 24-hour meeting duration without entering your credit card information.
Plus, you’ll have an unlimited ability to host meetings.
If you want to keep recordings of your calls, RingCentral provides cloud storage for a limited amount of data. While full functionality through RingCentral isn’t free, the free version offers a robust way to get started.
- Make calls with any internet connection
- No equipment installation
- Free version available
- Limited integration with other software
- Support team available but slow responses
- Best for: Integrations with other software
- Cost: $14 to $19 per month
GoToMeeting is a worthwhile option for anyone looking to host small meetings or large online events with hundreds of people.
The service offers a wide range of integrations with other software, including
- SlackMeeting launcher
- Office 365 Plugin
- Google Calendar Plugin
- Learning Management Systems
And more. If your team functions across multiple apps, GoToMeeting can be added in seamlessly.
Overall, the software is easy to use. There are no meeting time limits, and you’ll have a personal meeting room option to set up future conference calls.
The features of GoToMeeting are robust. However, it is laid out in a streamlined way to avoid a steep learning curve when you sign up.
- Useful features
- Easy to use
- Free trial
- Relatively high cost
- Mobile app offers limited features
- Best for: Webinar presentations
- Cost: $25 to $40 per month
ClickMeeting is primarily designed to support a webinar-style meeting. However, its extensive functionality can be easily transitioned into a conference call-style meeting.
If you host meetings that are designed to provide actionable insight to your team, ClickMeeting can help you convey your thoughts with ease.
Any team that is disbursed to multiple locations will appreciate the benefit of features designed to convey their thoughts effectively.
PayPal integration is one great feature the service offers, especially if you are selling access to the meeting to potential customers.
Beyond that, the software is designed to embed into your workflow easily thanks to its multiple integration options with other apps.
- Free 30-day trial
- Designed for webinar presentations
- Branded webinar options
- Complaints about customer service
- Costs can add up quickly
- Best for: Affordable service for small calls
- Cost: $12.99 to $29.99 per month
Phone.com provides an affordable service for those wanting a small-scale conference call solution. Although there is no free version, the Basic plan comes at a fair price.
You’ll receive the features you need to effectively run a conference call without paying costly fees. If you decide that you aren’t happy with Phone.com’s features, you can utilize their 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Supportive customer service
- Relatively affordable
- Money-back guarantee
- No voicemail transcription for Basic plan
- Overage charges apply for Basic plan
- Best for: Large video calls
- Cost: Up to $240 per year
Zoom has become an integral part of daily life for the thousands of employees who are now working from home.
When people needed a conference call service that was user-friendly and ready for video, many businesses turned to Zoom. For most, this choice has worked well.
The entirely cloud-based system allows you to jump onto Zoom without any new hardware. With a wide range of paid tiers, you can host up to hundreds of participants in an online gathering.
If you want to use Zoom for free, you can host up to 100 people in a room for 40 minutes at a time. While the 40-minute time limit can be restrictive, the perk of a free and reliable conference call service cannot be understated.
- Clarity of sound
- Easy to set up a room
- Screen sharing makes life easier
- Complaints of connection issues
- Time limits on free meetings
7. Google Hangouts
- Best for: Easy setup
- Cost: Free
Google Hangouts is an option for free conference calls. Although many people have a Google account, not everyone realizes that they can take advantage of Google Hangouts.
This feature is extremely easy to use and offers the opportunity to connect easily with others.
In most cases, people tend to use Google Hangouts for one-on-one meetings. But it is possible to have up to 25 people on a Google Hangout.
The downside is that many have experienced video quality issues when too many people are on the call.
All in all, Google Hangouts is a solid option for anyone who is looking for free video conferencing.
- Mobile video conferencing works well
- Lack of security
- No integration with non-Google tools
- Best for: Choosing how much you want to pay
- Cost: Free or whatever you’d like to pay
FreeConferenceCall.com offers the unique “Pay What You Can” model for pricing. You can choose to pay nothing for relatively comprehensive audio and video conference calls.
Alternately, you can choose to pay something to show your appreciation for the service.
You can host calls with up to 1,000 participants without paying a fee. The company also allows limited integration with Microsoft Outlook and Google Calendar.
Although there is a mobile app for users, there seem to be complaints about limited functionality. That said, it is still a great option if you want a free service that provides a wide range of call hosting services.
- Free or choose your own pricing
- Easy setup
- Complaints of extensive email blasts
- Limited ‘extra’ features
- Best for: Customization
- Cost: Free
Skype is a well-known player in the conference call space. Not only is Skype popular, but it is also free to use.
Beyond simple voice and audio conference call options, Skype has several other features that you can use to integrate the service into your organization.
For example, many people tout the instant messaging options available through Skype as highly relevant and useful for effective team communication.
- Works with slow internet
- Security features in place
- Compatible with many software solutions
- No breakout room option
- Some users report tech issues
10. Vast Conference
- Best for: International access
- Cost: $11.99+ per month
With Vast Conference, you can easily set up a conference call at any time. The service provides both audio conferencing as well as video conference calling, along with other useful services.
For companies with clients in other countries, Vast Conference offers international access with local and global dial-in conferencing phone numbers for over 70 countries.
You can start a meeting instantly or schedule calls in advance. Participants can access the call with just one click, and you can get unlimited calls and meetings regardless of your subscription level.
- No install needed
- 24/7 customer service
- Webcasting and webinar services available
- Extra charges per minute for dial-in callers
- Limited integration options
How to Select the Right Conference Call Service
As you explore conference call services, there are several factors to keep in mind. Consider these factors before moving forward with any particular provider to make sure you get the right service from the start.
Here’s what you should evaluate before selecting a service.
Number of Callers
The number of callers that a provider can support is one of the most important things to consider. Take some time to determine how many people will need to be on your calls.
Even though you can find many free options, some free plans limit the number of participants per call. On the other end of the spectrum, you can find paid services that allow up to 1,000 callers.
It’s always a good idea to err on the side of caution. Finding a service that can easily accommodate more than your intended group size can be wise.
Although a conference call can be audio-only, many people are interested in video options. With that, you should think about whether or not you need video options.
Luckily, several conference call services offer specialized video options. You should narrow your search to those options if you are interested in video calls.
An obvious issue when choosing a conference call service is the call quality. You don’t want to run into trouble understanding the person who is speaking on the other end of the line.
Beyond the available bandwidth and promised call quality, there are several features that can improve the overall sound quality on the call. These include mute buttons, echo prevention and voice cancellation.
Each of these features is available through certain video conferencing platforms. If you decide that any particular feature is important to you, take the time to make sure the service you are considering provides it.
If you want to record a conference call to refer back to later, take note that not all services provide this feature. Even if a service allows you to record the conversation, the storage options can vary.
Although most conference call services offer some type of recording option, take a minute to make sure that the storage is appropriate for your needs.
Additionally, consider looking for a service that offers automatic transcription of your calls. A transcript of a call can be helpful since you’ll be able to search for the words instead of skipping through the video.
Scheduling and Setup
A streamlined scheduling and setup process can make your pre-meeting activities more manageable. In a best-case scenario, the conference call service you choose will integrate with your preferred calendar app.
The setup for a meeting should be as simple as sending a link to the participants. If it’s more complicated, then it may not be the right service for you.
As the world moves online, security is becoming increasingly important. Consequently, it is a good idea to ensure that the conference call service you choose can protect the information of you and your participants.
The levels of security will vary based on the platform. Take some time to consider what level of security you want.
Once you know what security features you are interested in, you can narrow your search for the right provider.
Finding a great conference call service is crucial if you are looking for tools to grow your small business.
When choosing a conference call service, there are many useful options available. Make sure to evaluate the pros and cons of each service so you find the service that meets your needs.