G Suite Review: Should You Upgrade from the Free Google Apps?

g suite review

If you’re looking for a thorough G Suite Review, you’re in the right place.

There are very few tools out there capable of:

  • Doing invoicing
  • Sending proposals
  • Collaborating simultaneously on projects with team members across countries
  • Making phone calls
  • Tracking productivity (of yourself and your team)
  • Creating a highly functional business email
  • Store unlimited amounts of files and data in the cloud
  • Creating slideshows and presentations
  • Tracking cashflow, making profit and loss statements, and making budgets
  • Creating and sending contracts
  • Managing the sales funnel and contacts
  • Managing client projects
  • Capable of being a full CRM
  • and can even be used for planning, goal-setting, and appointment booking

Do you know any list of tools that spans all of these capabilities and more? Do you know any tools that does all these tasks well?

Like I said, I don’t know very many, but it’s why I’m very excited to write this review of G Suite. As an entrepreneur, there are many products and services vying for your attention and money, and if you decide to buy them all, they can add up very quickly! Before you know it, your expenses could be much more than your income, and even your lifetime customer value–that’s a recipe for business failure!

Once you’ve overcommitted yourself, and agreed to pay vendors for subscriptions, apps, services, products, and other things, it’s hard to recover a company that’s bleeding financially! It’s best to do your research and choose your vendors carefully. When you can find one multi-functional tool that can cut many expenses, is easy to use, and is affordable, you should jump on it–that’s what many people like about G Suite!

In this G Suite review, I’ll give you:

  • What it is
  • How it works
  • Pros and Cons
  • The Free Version vs. The Paid Version
  • G Suite vs. Microsoft Office 365
  • What it does well and what it does not
  • What others are saying (good and bad)
  • My Recommendation
  • And, Alternatives (in case you want to do some comparison shopping)

If you decide at any point you want to skip the remainder of the review and TRY G SUITE OUT FOR YOURSELF, you can CLICK HERE TO CREATE YOUR G SUITE ACCOUNT.

What is G Suite? An Overview

A few years back, all your hard work on one personal computer was local. If you wanted access to it, you’d have to log onto one specific computer, and if that computer crashed, it was horrifying!

I remember the progress of the word processors like the Microsoft suite. At one time, there was no autosave, so if your computer shut down in the middle of a paper you were writing, the document would be gone! I’m glad those days are gone.

Now, we have highly functional tools and apps like G Suite.

g suite review

G Suite is a brand of cloud computing, productivity, and collaboration tools developed by Google, and first launched in August 2006. Google has been a trailblazer paving the way for a new way of working. Now, it’s easier than ever to collborate with people from separate locations–even globally!  Their suite of tools works seamlessly to help team mates in two separate location to work on the same projects, set appointments, meet thru video, hold conferences, and even make calls.

In 2006, when Google began working on all of this, they were a much smaller company than they are today and had just started getting major traction with their search engine, then they started tapping into other major markets where Microsoft had majority market share, and today, their a force to be reckoned with!

Google apps include:

  • Google Docs
  • Google Sheets
  • Google Forms
  • Hangouts
  • Drive
  • Calendar
  • Cloud Search
  • Sites
  • Slides
  • Appmaker
  • Keep
  • Jamboard
  • and a Control Function where businesses can manage permissions of employees within their organization

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE G SUITE APPS HERE

How Does G Suite Work?

Google has a motto, “One account. All of Google” because once you’ve set up your first Google account, you’ll have access to everything. You’ll have an email address and access to all of the G Suite apps. There are many functions you can perform using the Google apps (many I’ve listed above), so whenever you need a new blank file, a new spreadsheet, or a new presentation, you’d simply go to your Google Drive and “Create new”, then select what you’d like to create.

g suite review

Free Version vs. Paid Version

Since you have access to all of the apps for free, you’re probably wondering, “Why would I pay for something, I could access for free?”, so let me explain.

While you get access to all of the apps, there are some differences that may matter to you at some point like…

Email

425 million people choose Gmail for their email services. A portion of those 425 million people are business owners who are using the free version of GSuite.

With the free version of the Google apps, you get a Gmail account that ends in @gmail.com. Notice, most legitimate companies don’t use an @gmail account because it’s a part of your brand. It affects how others perceive your company: whether you’re doing well or not, and whether they should do business with you, or someone who looks more professional. With the paid email account, you get an email address that ends in @yourdomain.com. Having an email that ends in @yourdomain.com looks more professional, so many companies choose to get their email accounts thru G Suite.

There are other options to get a professional email account like thru your web hosting company. My web hosting company offers unlimited free email accounts included with the hosting, but my preference is still the G Suite email account because of the functionality and add-ons. There are add-ons for email tracking, automating responses, follow up reminders, and so many more things that other email services don’t compare to.

Guaranteed Uptime

While I haven’t heard many complaints about downtime on any of the apps, Google guarantees 99.9% uptime for their paid customers. Downtime means work stoppage and time wasted costs, so this guarantee matters.

Cloud Storage

You get 15GB of storage with the free version. While the amount of free storage you get with Google is very generous, if you’re a growing business, you’re constantly creating things: proposals, documents, spreadsheets, presentations, audio files, etc. Once you’re in operation for a little while, you’ll find it doesn’t take very long before you’ve utilized all of the free storage. Then, you have a few options: get a hard drive to download your files onto or get more storage space.

Since I’m not a big fan of clutter (and you may not be either), you might prefer the cloud storage over the hard drive. It’s typically a better price and it’s a great value to have your files everywhere you go rather than a local piece of hardware. With the basic G Suite package, you’ll get 30GB of storage–that’s double the free version. In the larger business and enterprise packages, you get unlimited cloud storage.

24/7 Support

With the free version, you can access all of the apps and use them, but if you have any problems, you can’t pick up the phone, send over a message, or chat with Google. For $5/mo you have 24/7 access to Google to answer any of your questions and navigate any of your problems using the apps.

No Ads

In the free Gmail account, you have ads being matched to keywords in your emails, and it can be distracting. If you’re really trying to work, you don’t want the distractions of ads flashing. Added to that, some companies are ultra concerned about their privacy, and you may be one of them. While the ad pairing is automated, to some extent, a third party has access to your emails in order to pair the keywords and match the ads. The paid version gives more privacy and fewer distractions.

Google Apps MarketPlace

Gmail has SO MANY NICE ADDONS! There are add-ons for sorting emails, for appointment booking, for tracking email opens, and so many nice options. With the paid version, you can easily integrate the addons with simple clicks. With the free version, you have to go to the addon website and sign up, so your information doesn’t automatically sync. As a result, adding productivity add-ons into your email account is less efficient.

Microsoft Outlook Sync

While Gmail is a huge percentage of the market share for email services, there are still quite a few people who prefer Microsoft, and some of them may work in your company. The free version of Gmail doesn’t sync with Microsoft whereas the paid version enables those Outlook users to sync their email with Outlook so they can use their preferred email service.

G Suite vs. Microsoft Office 365

g suite review

Most people wouldn’t argue that email services offered by web hosting companies can’t compare to Microsoft Outlook or G Suite, but once you’ve passed that conversation, it’s a little more difficult to decide which is better between G Suite and Microsoft 365. Many people have used Microsoft for years so it’s hard to make the switch, but do you have to?

Colleges, universities, and government agencies are using Microsoft and some of them require you to submit Micorosft Word documents to them, so how does Google compare? Are they compatible? Should you use one or the other, or can you use both? Let’s talk about it…

Do You Have to Switch?

No. You don’t have to switch from Microsoft to Google. This is a choice. You want to choose the one that serves your business best, and only one will do that.

Pricing

While the pricing for Microsoft and G Suite is very comparable, the breakdown is like this:

Microsoft:

  • Business Essentials – $6 per month per user
  • Business – $10 per month per user
  • Business Premium – $15 per month per user

Google:

  • Basic – $5 per user per month with 30 GB cloud storage.
  • Business – $10 per user per month with unlimited cloud storage.
  • Enterprise – $29 per user per month with unlimited storage.

Do they Operate the Same?

They both operate very similarly, however, Microsoft has fewer features on their cloud version than their desktop version. Google has built all of its features into its cloud version, and it’s much easier to do real-time collaboration.

Are they Compatible?

Google has made features like “Download as a Microsoft Word Document” that make it where recipients won’t know which word processor you used. You can use Google apps to create your documents and seamlessly download them to send them to the end user. If you receive a document that was created in Microsoft, Google has the functionality where you can take a Microsoft document and “Edit in Google”.

On the contrary, if you use Microsoft, you can’t switch it to become a Google document within their platform. Google has many more integrations for Microsoft users than Microsoft has for Google users.

What are the Differences?

The major differences are the layout. Google has a simpler interface. Google also has a marketplace of Google Docs add-ons that add customized functionality for the end user.

Microsoft has a similar interface to their offline version, but it’s on the cloud. The features most Microsoft users have always loved are there, but a few are missing.

Collaboration

Google apps were built so that teammates across the globe could edit and collaborate on projects in real time, and their apps perform this task well. It’s a major reason why so many people have adopted the Google apps because it’s so easy to share them and they are easy to work on. Microsoft is working to build this functionality, but they’re definitely behind on this. – Google wins.

Storage

Microsoft offers 1TB of storage for all plans which makes it “cheaper” for their basic plan, but Google offers unlimited storage for the Business and Enterprise plans so it’s a lower cost in the long run. – Google wins.

Calling

Google offers free local calling using Google voice and Google Hangouts, whereas, Microsoft requires you to buy Skype credits for local calls. – Google Wins.

Integrations

Google apps integrate with many major SaaS apps. How often do you see “save this date to your Google calendar?”. Google has a massive amount of integrations with CRM software, budgeting software, sales software, and most of the popular plugins, apps, and software services that are used. Microsoft doesn’t compare in this arena. – Google wins.

How Do I Get Started with G Suite?

GSuite makes it very easy to get started. You simply CREATE YOUR G SUITE ACCOUNT HERE. You’ll be prompted to give some basic information about your business, and you’ll be given a 14-day free trial of the G Suite services.

Who is G Suite For?

  • GSuite is for all businesses who rely on the computer to operate
  • Who use a word processing application to create documents, spreadsheets, forms, and slides
  • Who want to look professional
  • And, who need space to store their documents on the cloud.

G Suite Tools & Training

GSuite has loads of tutorials and possibly the biggest knowledge base. Added to the tutorials that Google has created, there are courses on specific uses of G Suite on Udemy, at Wealthy Affiliate, and other places.

G Suite Support

GSuite offers 24/7 support by email, phone and chat, a forum, a knowledge base, and lots of tutorial videos.

What Does G Suite Do Well

  • They offer a suite of tools that enable productivity and collaboration
  • They integrate with a lot of the leading software
  • They have several add-ons that enable you to customize your experience
  • They let you collaborate in real-time
  • They’re priced affordably
  • They’re consistently making updates
  • The software is very versatile and can be used to satisfy many components of business organization

What Doesn’t G Suite Do Well

  • They don’t have lots of CRM functions in comparison with Microsoft Project or others (but Microsoft Project isn’t included in Office 365, so this isn’t really a quam against G Suite)

G Suite Review Roundup

Common Positive Feedback

  • The apps work great
  • It helps companies coordinate better
  • The apps are very useful
  • Many reviewers compare Google apps to Microsoft and say they’re a clear winner
  • They love the functionality of the email accounts
  • It improves their professionalism

Common Negative Feedback

  • Some users mentioned they wish Google had a project management app like Microsoft Project –that would be GREAT (in my opinion)
  • It’s difficult to get diehard Microsoft users to cross over to using Google (even with the integrations)

Most Helpful Positive G Suite Review

 

“G Suite – super convenient way to manage your business”

 

What do you like best?

I love how intuitive G Suite is. Everything just makes sense. From Gmail to Google Drive to Calendar, everything is just so easy to use and is so simple. It is definitely the most user-friendly set of business management apps that I have ever used.

What do you dislike?

The one thing I do not like is that there is no project management tool. A Google software similar to the Microsoft Project application would be amazing. Project planning is a huge part of an engineering company, and that addition would make G Suite absolutely perfect for any company doing research and development.

Recommendations to others considering the product

If you are looking for an all-around excellent set of business productivity tools with very few flaws, look no further than the G Suite. I would recommend them to anyone no matter how large or small their business is.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

G Suite helps us be really productive. We store all kinds of files and things on Google Drive. We use our work Gmail accounts to communicate with suppliers and customers. Google Hangouts is a huge help when it comes to inter-department communication and talking with someone at NoMo Diagnostics, Inc. Google Calendar helps us to schedule meetings because we all have shared our calendars with each other. when someone is looking to schedule a meeting, we are able to easily look at the calendars of the necessary personnel, and schedule something that works for everyone. G Suite really is an amazing productivity tool.

Overall 5-star rating, Tyler G., G2Crowd reviewer

Most Helpful Negative G Suite Review

My users who insist “it doesn’t look like outlook” are the hardest to win over… I appreciate Google’s efforts to support “G Suite sync for Outlook” but this has always felt like a band-aid solution to keep a handful of old school users in the system… Not necessarily Google’s fault though

4-star overall rating, Nicolas P., G2Crowd reviewer (51-200 employees)

G Suite Price

g suite review

My Final Opinion of G Suite

Overall, G Suite is one of my top recommended tools for business. It helps you look professional, it helps you collaborate more efficiently, and you can use it for a broad array of functions (rather than subscribing for hundreds of other solutions). I personally use GSuite almost hourly (and sometimes more frequent than that), and I know many others who are seeing the same benefits. I recommend you give it a try. To create your 14-DAY FREE TRIAL ACCOUNT, CLICK HERE.

Top Alternatives

Microsoft Office 365 – Many people who are more accustom to Microsoft because of their longstanding reputation and software, prefer the Office365 Suite.

VERDICT: Highly Recommend

——————————————————-

G Suite

9.9

Reliability

9.9/10

Pricing

10.0/10

User Friendly

9.9/10

Support

9.9/10

Features

9.8/10

Pros

  • Affordably priced (starting at $5/mo)
  • Get an @yourbusiness.com email address with more functionality than web hosting email services
  • 30GB+ of Cloud Storage
  • Real-Time Collaboration on Documents
  • Lots of integrations

Cons

  • Can be a hard transition for diehard Microsoft users (even with the integrations and comparable interface)
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6 thoughts on “G Suite Review: Should You Upgrade from the Free Google Apps?”

  1. I just had to switch a school account to Microsoft 365 and it was difficult to navigate. Once, I had a chance to see what it had to offer, I liked it. I have not ever used G Suite. I will have to look more into it. Can you elaborate a little bit more into their layouts and their differences? And the add-ons can be customized for each user or is it similar to the templates in Microsoft?

    1. I had the same thing happen at my University where I had to register for an outlook email. To answer your question about the add-ons, there are lots of software add-ons that you can add onto your Gmail account.

       There’s like email tracking add-ons, mail sorting add-ons, and so on. You could have one set of add-ons while others on your team have completely different ones. Maybe a teammate of yours is more concerned about security, so they could have add-ons more suited for that. 

      Regarding the layout, I was just referring to the appearance of the interface. G Suite doesn’t have the ribbons where you’re trying to find tools you need. G Suite is a much more simple interface design.

      Hopefully this helps.

  2. Wow. I never knew about this.

    So I could get all this features in one using G suite.

    With this tool I would surely move my business further. For the fact that it has features like highly functional business email and allows you to track the productivity of your team and yourself what more could I ask for.

    This is what I would be using from now so as to keep all my files in one place.

    Thanks a lot for this post.

  3. Wow! I’ve been using Google apps for many years, but I didn’t know about Voice. Unfortunately, I tried to download the Voice app only to be told that it was not available in my country and to try Hangouts. 

    I’m on an off-shore island in the British Isles. Though we’re not part of the UK, we are part of the UK dialling code [0044]. Perhaps, Google is confused. I’m sure from what I have read that Voice is available in the UK.  

    Oh well, I’ll have to continue to use my Skype. I don’t buy credits; I subscribe to the Global package at a fixed fee, which allows me to call most countries for no extra charge including video calls, and to cell-phones in some countries. This is great as it enables me to keep in contact with family in Spain, Australia and Thailand. 

    1. Thanks so much Paul for adding those details about your area! I guess that Microsoft app works best for you in that instance. 

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