Which Office 365 License is right for you?

By Adam Miller

When planning your business’ Microsoft Office 365 migration, the sheer number of options seems daunting. Thankfully, we’ve put together a helpful guide to help you determine which Office 365 License is best for your business!

Want the basics? Use Business Essentials

If you want basic email and some web storage, but not offline apps, Office Business Essentials is a good starting point. It provides you with 50GB of hosted Exchange Email and the ability to open and perform basic operations on files made in the Office 365 suite. If you will be regularly creating or editing complex documents in any Office app, however, you’re going to want offline installs of applications like Word, PowerPoint, and Excel.

Want email, cloud storage and office apps? Use Business Premium

If you have fewer than 300 employees, Business Premium, which comes with office apps, exchange email and cloud storage, is the best all-around business productivity solution. In addition to cloud storage, you’ll also get SharePoint, Microsoft’s unique internal collaboration and document management system. SharePoint sites are highly customizable and allow can host internal web applications. Coming in at 18.20 per user monthly, you can also subscribe annually for a 16% discount. For businesses with less than 300 employees, this is usually the best option.

Have more than 300 employees? Use an Enterprise plan.

Business plans only support 300 users. If your business has grown to be larger than this, you’ll need an Enterprise Plan. There are three enterprise plans available:

  • E1: Enterprise Basics:
    This license is cheaper than Business Premium but lacks offline apps. This plan is comparable to Business Essentials for larger companies. You’ll get SharePoint, online email and storage, for less than Business Premium.
  • E3: Mid-range for Medium and Large Businesses:
    With E3, you get the offline installations of Office 365 apps and everything in E3. Additionally, you get some features that will become more useful as your business grows: Digital Rights Management, document level encryption, and email archiving for legal compliance.
  • E5: The Premium Option:
    This is the highest-end plan available from Microsoft. In addition to everything available in E3, you’ll also get PowerBI Pro, Microsoft’s data analytics suite; and Skype PBX, which integrates Skype and Office 365 directly into your business’ telephone system.

If you have less than 300 employees and are trying to choose between a business and enterprise plan, it’s best to start with the business plan and consider upgrading later: Enterprise plans come with an annual commitment, meaning that if you find you aren’t using the extra enterprise features, you’re locked in for a year.


Office 365 Business Essentials$6.10$7.30
Office 365 Business Plan$10.50$12.60
Office 365 Business Premium$15.50$18.20
Office Enterprise E1$9.70Annual Commitment Only
Office Enterprise E3$25.30Annual Commitment Only
Office Enterprise E5$44.20Annual Commitment Only

Use this form to determine which office product is best for you: 

Still not sure which Office 365 license you need? PropelU can help. Contact us to start a project!

Want a quote for a 365 Migration? Get one here.

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