G Suite Basic vs Business

G Suite Basic vs Business License Comparison

Are you, like many individuals, small business owners, or start-up companies, looking for a cost-effective and strong productivity plan? Google’s G Suite is one of the best productivity solutions available. Google’s productivity suite has a top-notch reputation and its pricing is competitive, which makes it an attractive option for many. The two most popular options for individuals and small businesses the Basic and Business licenses. Today I’ll compare G Suite Basic vs Business to help you choose the right option for you.

Choosing the Right G Suite Plan for You

If you have determined that G Suite is the route you want to take, then your next step is to determine which one of their plans is best for you and your business needs. 

There are three main plans offered within Google’s G Suite:

  • Basic ($6 per user a month),
  • Business ($12 per user a month), and
  • Enterprise ($25 per user a month). 

Each plan provides you with secure professional email, cloud storage, and more. 

However, G Suite Basic and Business are the two most appropriate options for individuals and for most small businesses. Personally, I think G Suite Business is the better value (especially if you have a team of 5 or more), but let’s look at a comparison of G Suite Basic vs Business so you can decide for yourself which makes more sense for you and your small business.

G Suite Basic vs Business License Comparison

G Suite Basic License
Price: $6 USD/User/Month
What is it? Professional office suite with 30GB storage
G Suite Business License
Price: $12 USD/User/Month
What is it? Enhanced office suite with unlimited storage and archiving
● Business email through Gmail
● Video and voice conferencing
● Shared calendars
● Documents, spreadsheets, and presentations
● 24/7 support by phone, email and online
● Security and administration controls
● 30GB cloud storage

● Business email through Gmail
● Video and voice conferencing
● Shared calendars
● Documents, spreadsheets, and presentations
● 24/7 support by phone email, and online
● Security and administration controls
● Unlimited cloud storage (or 1TB per user if fewer than 5 users)
● Smart search across G Suite and Cloud Search
● Archive and set retention policies for emails and chats
● eDiscovery for emails, chats, and files
● Audit reports to track user activity

If the unlimited cloud storage stood out for you in the side-by-side comparison between G Suite Basic and Business, then you noticed my favorite part. Cloud storage is expensive, and the fact that every team member has an unlimited secure cloud storage capacity with G Suite Business (when you buy 5 or more licenses) is huge.

In my view it makes G Suite the best deal on the market, but let’s look a little more closely at both plans:

G Suite Basic

Despite its label of Basic, the G Suite Basic plan has powerful tools and resources that make it a great option for individuals, solopreneurs, and small businesses.

G Suite Basic Features & Who It's Best For


Below are the features of the G Suite Basic plan.

  • Users benefit from 30GB of cloud storage (it’s important to point out that while all of your docs and sheets files don’t count toward this total, but your Gmail inbox does). 
  • Users can create email accounts with their own company domain.
  • Shared calendars in G Suite Basic allow users to use Google Calendar to set up critical dates and terms.
  • Hangouts Chats allows users to securely exchange messages with your team in real-time.
  • Hangouts Meet allows users to set up video and voice conferences with up to 100 participants per call at the same time.
  • Google Office Suite includes Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Forms which can be easily shared and managed in team drives.
  • Google Office Suite apps allow teams to work collaboratively in real-time.
  • Sites give users the ability to create simple websites, integrate their website with other Google apps, and Google Sites supports HTML and JavaScript.
  • Support is a critical feature of any office productivity suite, and G Suite Basic offers 24/7 support via phone, email, and online.
  • G Suite Alert Center allows users to view alerts, notifications, and important actions across G Suite.
  • Google support also provides strong security that allows users to manage user accounts, security settings, and everything users need to keep their accounts safe 

Who Should Consider the G Suite Basic Plan?

Below are a few examples of users that may be best to choose a G Suite Basic license:

  • Freelancers / Solopreneurs
  • Small business with fewer than 5 employees
  • A professional user who doesn’t have large storage needs

G Suite Business

Now let’s take a look at the features of the G Suite Business, which is designed to meet the needs of small to medium-sized companies. 

G Suite Business Features and Who It's Best For

G Suite Business gives you all of the features of the Basic plan and more. The Business plan is considered to be the best value because it offers unlimited storage when you have 5 or more active licenses.


Let’s take a closer look at the features of the G Suite Business plan. With G Suite Business you’ll have everything included in the G Suite Basic licens and you’ll also enjoy:

  • Users benefit from unlimited cloud storage in Google Drive (if fewer than 5 users, each user will have 1 TB).
  • Hangouts Meet allows users to set up video and voice conferences with up to 150 participants per call at the same time (compared to 100 users on the Basic plan).
  • Cloud Search, Smart Search, and eDiscovery all make finding the files, data, and documents you need easy, leveraging the power of Google’s search algorithms internally for your organizational data.
  • Google Vault allows you to set data retention policies for chat, email and all company communication. This is important for larger companies who want to retain access to that communication for legal reasons.
  • The ability to audit reports to track and monitor user activity. This allows you to provide customized training and resources to your team to ensure they’re fully leveraging the power of G Suite’s tools to improve their productivity.

Who Should Consider the G Suite Business Plan?

Below are a few examples of users that may benefit from the G Suite Business plan:

  • A team that needs more than 30 GB of storage per user.
  • Growing small to medium-sized businesses who want an office productivity suite that will grow with them.
  • Data-heavy businesses who want to leverage the power of cloud search and eDiscovery.
  • Business users who need the email and message archiving and data retention feature.

G Suite Basic and G Suite Business File Storage

Now let’s take a look at the two key differences between the G Suite Basic vs Business plan. Two big differences stand out when comparing the two plans. These two key feature differences are storage and search capabilities.

One of the major differences between G Suite Basic vs Business is the amount of cloud storage. Users need to take the size of their team and the number of user licenses they need into consideration when determining which plan works best for them. With the G Suite Basic plan, users have 30GB of cloud storage. The G Suite Business plan has unlimited cloud storage (or 1TB per user if fewer than 5 users). 

G Suite Business vs Basic

If your business or team needs to utilize large amounts of storage, then buying 5 or more G Suite Business licenses is the way to go. This will give you much more bang for your buck with each team member getting unlimited storage for only $12 per user, per month. You won’t find this type of storage value anywhere else. 

It is important to recognize that the 30GB of cloud storage limit in the G Suite Basic plan does not include Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Slides, etc.  However, your inbox, image and video files, etc. do count towards your 30 GB storage limit with the G Suite Basic Plan.  If you do high volumes of photo and video editing then you will want to consider the G Suite Business Plan.

G Suite Basic vs Business Search and eDiscovery

One of the key differences between G Suite Business vs Basic is the search, eDiscovery, and auditing features that are available.

These features are included in the $12 per user, per month G Suite Business plan.

Smart Search and Cloud Search (and why you’d want them)

Smart search and Cloud Search provide businesses with the opportunity to securely retain and search email and chat records while making the team more efficient.

For example, if you type the words “fiscal report,” then the results that come up can come from Gmail, Drive, Docs, or Slides.

Any information stored in any place on G Suite can be found when needed with Cloud Search, and Google’s internal algorithm learns how your team searches for the files they want, and prioritizes those in future internal file and document searches. (Google is pretty good at search)

The Value of Google Vault

Another feature that comes with G Suite Business is Google Vault. Google Vault centers on data retention and eDiscovery.

Google characterizes Vault as a way of “keeping track of what matters” and “retaining, searching, and exporting your organization’s data from select apps.”

Compare G Suite Basic to G Suite Business

Vault allows businesses to protect their data, set retention rules, and hold on to certain data. Businesses can also retrieve information from any account in G Suite, even suspended accounts. This is a smart way to gather information related to legal matters and investigations if needed. This feature also prevents data loss from employee turnover. You won’t waste time re-creating projects an employee was working on if they suddenly leave or have a medical emergency.

Audit reports to track user activity can be obtained using Vault. The vigorous activity tracker allows you to see searches, content views, exports, and more across your organization. Not only is this a good way to ensure your team’s productivity, it also will give you a chance to monitor app usage and look for opportunities to help your team fully leverage G Suite’s apps by providing them with training when it seems they are avoiding certain apps.

In Review: G Suite Basic vs Business

After the comparison of the G Suite Basic vs Business, hopefully you can make the best decision for your business needs.

To find your best fit, be sure to take into consideration the things you need, such as the amount of storage needed, the size of your team, and your business goals.

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