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  • Desmund Ullrich

Did GoToWebinar fall off after the COVID-19 Zoom hype?

Updated: Jun 29

Prior to this year, Zoom was a little known app used for remote teams who needed to collaborate.


Now, Zoom is being used for everything from daily conferences to virtual bar mitzvahs —but as it beats out competitors like Skype and GoToWebinar, there is no clear idea if Zoom is a new market leader or just gaining popularity out of convenience or necessity.

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Professionals who lived and worked online prior to the year 2020 would argue that the pandemic didn't change day-to-day business operations —like the switch from in-person to virtual meetings— but increased the pace of the inevitable changes that were already in motion.


There is no doubt that the effects of COVID-19 are far-reaching, but many businesses that were unprepared with virtual work tools have quickly adapted, making the necessary changes to stay alive and competitive.


Before COVID-19 around 1.5 million people are weekly active on Zoom, but it increased to more than 15 million in just a month of march. 

Online meeting platforms were used by businesses and educators to conduct video meetings since the invention of the webcam. Now it's more of a necessity than it is a privilege or service add-on.


Hands down, the pandemic increased the use of online meeting platforms and they became the only solution to continue basic communication.


Zoom is necessary but basic!


Zoom became a popular solution for video conferencing because of two simple features found with Zoom Basic; it's free and can be used without an account.


Unfortunately, this means that a basic account will provide limited functions and premium services will come at a premium price.


If you happen upon the various pricing and plans offered by Zoom, you will find that the free version provides everything you need for a personal meeting — up to 100 participants, group meetings for up to 40 minutes, and unlimited one-on-one meetings.


As you move up in tier from the Basic to the Pro or even the Business plans, you will find small add-ons like cloud recordings, social media streaming, and company branding. Zoom also provides options and plans for phone conferencing, chatrooms, and international meeting servers.



Even more impressive is the Zoom Webinar service which allows 100 interactive video panelists with 49 viewable on screen at one time, polling, whiteboarding, integration with CRM and marketing automation applications, live streaming to an unlimited audience on social media, PayPal integration, and more.


GoToWebinar is part of a full suite!


While Zoom and GoToWebinar are two platforms that provide meeting hosting services to millions of people, they are vastly different at scale.


During the infancy of the pandemic, GoToWebinar's active users increased much like Zoom, but due to its limited popularity among the educational sector, it couldn’t progress much further than its existing numbers.


On the Android platform, the Zoom app crossed 100 million downloads after the pandemic started, while the GoToWebinar app stood still at 10 million downloads for a number of months.


However, despite Zoom's boom in popularity many business influencers still rate GoToWebinar as the best Webinar platform going into 2021 —and with good reason.


GoToWebinar is part of a full suite of platforms provided by LogMein, Inc. which includes

GoToMeeting, GoToTraining, GoToConnect, GoToStage, OpenVoice, Grasshopper, and more.


GoToWebinar is also rated with better video and audio quality/reliability in comparison to Zoom and other competing platforms.


The LogMein platform also allows you to pick from Lite, Standard, Pro, and Enterprise plans, but it still feels lacking in some regards.


Cost and Features


One of the drawbacks of the GoToWebinar app is that it has no free version which led to the selection of the Zoom app containing the most important functions required by the educational sector. 


The Zoom app is designed to provide efficient video conferencing to all types of users, including education and business. This means that the Basic plan can fit most needs but premium plans come at a much more significant cost.


In comparison to GoToWebinar, Zoom Video Webinar begins at $400 per year per license for 100 attendees and can reach beyond $64,900 per year per license for 10,000 attendees and beyond — making it a viable option for virtual mega-events within reason.


The GoToWebinar app is specifically aimed at the Enterprise sector with a simple interface design and maximum features. While the platform only allows you to host up to 3,000 attendees, the pricing is much more flexible.



With Lite at $59.00 per month per organizer, Standard at $129, Pro at $249, and Enterprise at $399, GoToWebinar is much more cost-effective than Zoom.


Either way, for standard features like one-to-one meetings, you will find yourself subscribing to GoToMeeting or possibly utilizing Zoom's free features anyway.


It is also important to note that there are options to support up to 100K attendees when contacting the company's sales department for special accommodations.


Verdict


Both apps provide video conferencing, but the Zoom app is strategically designed to target individuals or small groups.


Based on statistics and features, the Zoom app is best for all type of customers hosting 100 attendees or less. There is also a substantial advantage for the students who can benefit from the free version without paying extra money for unnecessary add-ons.


Due to the differences in features for one-to-one meetings, even some businesses are also shifting to Zoom.


With time the popularity of the Zoom app is increasing at a faster rate when compared to the GoToWebinar app. Statistics show that the Zoom app worth more than the seven biggest airlines in the world.

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