Microsoft Family vs Business: Learn the Advantages of Getting the Business Plan

Microsoft Family vs Business: Learn the Advantages of Getting the Business Plan

You’re a small business owner and you’ve decided that you really need to have the cloud connectivity of Microsoft 365. So, you look over all the subscription plans and wonder if you can get out paying a little less by going with the subscription meant for families instead of businesses.

It’s understandable to want to get the best deal possible for the office tools you need, but you could actually be hurting yourself in the long run by going for a subscription that’s not designed for a business user.

While it’s true that you get Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Excel in both the Family and Business Plans for Microsoft 365. And if you only have six employees that Family subscription can seem tempting and like a great deal.

But you could end up paying more by having to purchase services from third parties, which you could get by subscribing to the M365 Business plan.

We’ll go over both plans below and explain the benefits of a Business subscription if you’re using M365 for your company.

M365 Plan Comparison: Business vs Family


Let’s take a look at the applications that you get with each type of subscription first. While you get the core Office programs with both, there are going to be some business-related apps you only get with a Business plan.

Microsoft 365 Family includes:

  • Office apps (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook)
  • OneDrive
  • Skype
  • OneNote

If you want to use MS Teams when you have the Family plan, you can, but you have to use the free version. The free version has less storage space, no meeting recording, no audio calls, and no configurable user settings and policies.

Microsoft 365 Business Standard includes:

  • Office apps (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook)
  • OneDrive
  • Skype
  • OneNote
  • Teams (full-featured)
  • Exchange
  • SharePoint
  • Microsoft Lists
  • Microsoft Bookings


Let’s look at pricing next because this is what drives the decision for many small business owners. The Family and Personal plans can be purchased monthly or annually. The Business subscriptions must be purchased annually.

  • Microsoft Family: $99.99/year or $9.99/month for up to 6 people.
  • Microsoft Business Standard: $12.50/user/month

You do have a few other options to choose from as well. These include three more Business plan options (we won’t get into the Enterprise plans here) and one more non-business option.

  • Microsoft 365 Personal: $69.99/year or $6.99/month for 1 person
  • Microsoft 365 Business Basic: $5.00/user/month (desktop versions of Office not included)
  • Microsoft 365 Apps: $8.25/user/month (business email and Teams not included)
  • Microsoft 365 Business Premium: $20.00/user/month (additional security & mobile device manager)

Why the Business Plan is the Best Deal for a Company

Business Email

Business email that matches your website domain is important for any company. If you’re using @yahoo or @gmail addresses to conduct business, people are going to think twice before working with you.

If you try to save money by using Microsoft Family, you do not get Exchange, a tool that gives you the ability to host your business email in Microsoft 365. This means you’ll be paying a hosting company and having to have someone administer your company email accounts.

With a Business subscription, you can streamline the process and could end up spending less overall by not having to pay for separate email hosting. You can simply attach your domain to Exchange and use that as your cloud email server.

Savings from Additional Apps: Bookings & Lists

Because the Microsoft 365 Business plans are designed for company productivity, you have several additional tools that can save you time and money.

Two of these are Microsoft Bookings and Microsoft Lists. We’ll go over the value of each below.

Microsoft Bookings:

If your business makes appointments for any reason, then you’ll find bookings a very helpful tool. It allows customers to make appointments with your business through an online link.

This app can be helpful for things like medical offices or companies that make demo appointments to show off their software. The price of purchasing a separate appointment booking app can range from $8.00 to $15.00 per user per month (or more). You save that by getting this capability along with your M365 Business subscription.

Microsoft Lists:

Microsoft Lists can be converted into several different types of helpful apps. It’s an online collaborative list management tool that streamlines spreadsheet processes.

Potential activities you can handle more efficiently using Lists include:

  • Ticket tracking
  • Asset management
  • Front desk sign-in
  • Customer support tracking
  • Project management

SharePoint & Teams

When SharePoint and Teams are used together (both apps come with most of the Business plans in M365), you have a powerful way to share and secure data.

You can make files accessible only by a particular department or group, create your own company intranet, and facilitate a remote team by giving them a virtual office where they can securely reach anyone else in the company.

This type of capability pays you back in productivity, efficiency, and improved data security.

Need Help With Microsoft 365 Customisation & Support?

GKM2 is a Microsoft Silver Cloud Partner and can help your Sydney area business fully harness the power of Microsoft 365 to save money, do more in less time, and improve efficiency.

Contact us today to learn more. Call +61 2 9161 7171 or reach out online.