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Announcing availability of new Office 365 plans for small and midsized businesses

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It’s no secret that for small businesses, the right technology can mean the difference between merely surviving and fully thriving. Office 365 is transformational for businesses of all sizes, but levels the playing field for small and midsized businesses (SMBs) in particular because it makes enterprise-grade tools affordable and easy to set up and manage.

We are excited today to announce the availability of three new Office 365 plans designed to meet the needs of SMBs with up to approximately 250 employees. The new Office 365 plans, which we originally announced earlier this year, provide even more flexibility and value to SMBs.

The new Office 365 plans for SMBs are:

  • Office 365 Business: The full Office applications—Microsoft Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Publisher and OneDrive for Business cloud storage, which makes it easy to access, edit and share your documents across your Windows PC, Mac, iPad, Windows tablet and smartphone.
  • Office 365 Business Premium: Get everything from both the Office 365 Business and Business Essentials plans.

You can compare the features of the new SMB plans on Office.com to see which of them is right for your business.

Office 365 plans for small and midsized businesses

Visit Office.com to compare plan features.

Next steps for current Office 365 SMB customers

The new plans will replace our current plans for SMBs over time. If your business is currently on one of the previous SMB plans (Small Business, Small Business Premium or Midsize Business), you should visit your Message Center in the Office 365 admin center for more details on how the new plans impact you, or talk to your Office 365 provider. The current Office 365 Enterprise plans remain the same.

You can learn more about why cloud-based productivity and Office 365 are so transformational for SMBs over on the Official Microsoft Blog.

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17 comments
  1. I’m happy that Microsoft has chosen to give more diversity to their plans and pricing. Unfortunately, everyone can’t be pleased. And this time I fall under that category. Last year our company went through an evaluation process of 365 and Google Drive. We eventually chose 365 because of the easy transition and compatibility. Our organization has 20 office staff that require logins. That was too close to the 25 seat cap of the 365 Small Business Plan so we chose the more expensive Enterprise plan. Now the seat cap has been raised to 300 on the Small Business plans and we’re stuck paying more with Enterprise. Being unable to change from Small Business to Enterprise has left a rather unpleasant taste in our mouth for being some of the first to the table for Microsoft offerings.

    • @mkkev22: Thanks for your comment. It is possible for you to move between Enterprise plans and the new Business plans. Enabling the ability to combine and move between all Office 365 plans was one of the major goals of this update. For more information on switch plans, please call support and they can assist you.

  2. Why has Access been removed from the Business plans?

    • @gcyoung: In listening to our customers and reviewing usage data, we know which services and features customers value and use. By redesigning the SMB lineup, we have lowered the price so that the vast majority of customers will be receiving more value compared to the plan they have today. The price of Business Premium is ~17% lower than Midsize Business in most markets around the world.

      For customers using Midsize – they will move to Business Premium and take advantage of the more affordable plan. For users who need the advanced functionality (Access, InfoPath), those users should move to a combination of ‘Business Essentials + ProPlus’.

  3. Same problem here. Seems there is still no easy way to move from Enterprise to these new SB plans. We’re stuck paying too much just because we joined early when these plans were not available.

    • @ivanrob: see above response to ‘mkkev22’. It is possible to move between plans.

  4. I have the mid-size business plan, and if I understand this article correct;y, my plan will be morphed into this new small business plan. The problem is I will lose Access and InfoPath, and that is completely unacceptable to me. Dealing with the complexity and inflexibility of Microsoft’s various 365 subscription plans has been an absolutely nightmare, and so has been dealing with their support system over the subscriptions. I wish I could force Microsoft’s top management to go through the absolutely time-wasting misery to which I have been subjected.

    • @DrewCapuder: Business Premium is designed for business who were using Midsize Business previously, and provides most of the same functionality. By redesigning the SMB lineup, we have lowered the price so that the vast majority of customers will be receiving more value compared to the plan they have today. The price of Business Premium is ~17% lower than Midsize Business in most markets around the world.

      For customers using Midsize – they will move to Business Premium and take advantage of the more affordable plan. For users who need the advanced functionality (Access, InfoPath), those users should move to a combination of ‘Business Essentials + ProPlus’.

  5. What Msft needs to do is reallocate the resources wasted on tinkering with the marketing/product plans and make more progress fixing some of the glaring problems with the service. I guess it’s easier though to tweak the packaging every 3-6 months than actually get it to perform as advertised.
    Unfortunately it has the effect of making what is already a very confused and dysfunctional product even more so. If people can’t understand the differences between products in a line they’re far less likely to buy it.
    And it’s bordering on unethical to remove features like Access and InfoPath, which were part of the package many people signed up for. That reeks of “bait and switch”.

  6. My name is Yoshiki-Tojo , from Tokyo , Japan .

    I couldn’t understand this announcement .
    Access 2013 and Lync 2013 client was excluded from Office .
    I think that Micirsoft’s softsware strategy was changed .
    That is Access is not a strategic product for small companies ( under 300 users ).
    And , TV conference is not a starategic product for small companies ( under 300 users ) .
    This is very strange !!!!

    Moreover , PlanM and Business Premium price was equal .
    Contents were level down .
    So , this is a price-up actually .

    If someone has some comments , please let me knou it .
    Thanks .

    • Please note that only the advanced Lync 2013 version is removed. Lync 2013 Basic is still available and enables Lync Online Meetings, Lync to Lync voice calls, video conferences, and more. You can compare Lync clients here and decide which one meets your needs: http://technet.microsoft.com/library/gg398996.aspx

      • The fact that Lync Premium was removed was kept very quiet. You would expect companies of 300 to need multi party video and there is no way to upgrade Lync or add a separate subscription for this without moving everyone to Enterprise

        • @AL355 – we need to update the service description referenced by Andy, as they appear to be inaccurate. Multiparty video is part of Lync Basic. In fact, Lync Basic provides all the features of Lync Online available in the SMB plans. The features that were removed were advanced telephony support (e.g. PSTN connection) and archiving & compliance features. These are features of the Lync application were unusable, since they were not supported by Midsize Business, Small Business Premium or any of the new plans.

    • @ktojo – Thank you for your comment. The price of Business Premium is ~17% lower than Midsize Business in all markets around the world. In listening to our customers and reviewing usage data, we know which services and features customers value and use. By redesigning the SMB lineup, we have lowered the price so that the vast majority of customers will be receiving more value compared to the plan they have today.

      For customers using Midsize – they will move to Business Premium and take advantage of the more affordable plan. For users who need the advanced functionality (Access, InfoPath), those users should move to ‘Business Essentials + ProPlus’.

  7. I have noticed now that you can upgrade the Midsize Business to Enterprise.
    After a chat with the Partner Program, I am confused.
    They said it is possible now to mix various products into the Midsize Business.
    For example, I can now include Kiosk users with the M-Plan. Is this true?

    • Midsize Business cannot be mixed. What can be mixed is Business, Business Essentials, Business Premium, and Enterprise E1 – E4, K1, and the standalone services. The easiest thing for you to do would be to upgrade to E1, then add in the Business plans you need and reassign the licenses. Please call billing support and they can walk you through this process.

      • To add to Andy’s point – you will also be able to move from Midsize Business to Business Premium at renewal. We recommend using Midsize Business until your next renewal after Oct 1, 2015, at which point you can move simply to Business Premium. Then you can add Kiosk users, or any Enterprise or standalone plan as Andy references. Your Office 365 provider will be able to help you (if you have purchased through one of our many partners), or you can call Office 365 support.

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