Monday, January 11, 2021

The Best Free and Paid Conference Call Services

Want to jump straight to the answer? The best conference call service for most people is definitely RingCentral or GoToMeeting.

Conference calls remain the best option for group communication over the phone.

They are the cheapest, most effective, and simplest way to get a group of people together.

And in the age of the global pandemic and the rise of remote work, they’re more important than ever.

No matter your budget, you’ll find the right solution on this list. I’ll show you the best conference call services on the market today, as well as my methodology for how to rank them.

The Best Conference Call Services

These 9 options are a clear cut above the rest:

But which is right for your business? I’ve reviewed each service in detail below to help you compare them.

1. RingCentral

  • Free up to 100 participants
  • Video, screen share, & messaging
  • VoIP phone service plans
  • Small to enterprise solutions
Get Started for Free

Ditch traditional business phone plans with RingCentral. They offer modern solutions for the modern office.

If you get their phone plan you also get video conferencing features included.

That’s because RingCentral offers more than conference calls. It’s also a VoIP phone service.


RingCentral Features

The free plan compares pretty well with the others on the list. While you’re capped at 40 minutes per meeting, you can still have up to 100 participants.

That’s great for scrappy startups or solo-ventures.

You can easily add-on larger meeting options to your plan if you upgrade to one of their several paid plans that start as low as $19.99/month.

The system offers nearly every calling, collaboration, and mobile feature businesses would want from a phone system. Since it is housed in the cloud, there is no equipment to install, and they take care of all the maintenance and upgrades.

RingCentral also has great enterprise solutions and you can save some money by bundling RingCentral Meetings with a VoIP business phone plan.

Click here to visit RingCentral and get started for free.

2. GoToMeeting

  • Free 14-day trial
  • HD video conferencing
  • No time limits for meetings
  • Mobile app and Slack integration
Get Started for Free

GoToMeeting is one of the best paid conference call services that I’ve seen.

They offer high-quality solutions for small business conference calls without a bunch of distracting features.

Unlike some of the other paid conference call solutions on the market, GoToMeeting does not have a basic free plan. However, you can still try it out at no cost with a 14-day trial.


GoToMeeting has three plans:

  • Professional — Starting at $12 per month
  • Business — Starting at $16 per month
  • Enterprise — Custom pricing

The Professional and Business plans can host conference calls with up to 150 and 250 participants, respectively. The Enterprise plan is for up to 3,000 participants.

All plans come with these basic features:

  • HD video conferencing
  • Screen sharing
  • Dial in conference lines
  • No limits on meetings
  • No time limits for meetings
  • Personal meeting rooms
  • Business messaging
  • Mobile app
  • Slack integration
  • Salesforce integration
  • 24/7 customer support

GoToMeeting also has unlimited recording capabilities and automatic transcriptions of your conference calls.

Overall, it’s a great choice for those of you who manage large remote teams.

Performance is where GoToMeeting stands out over the competition. Lots of free and paid conference call services out there fall short with audio quality. But GoToMeeting customers rave about the crystal clear sound and connection of their conference calls.

GoToMeeting does not have some of the more advanced features that we’ve seen from other providers. But personally, I like the simplicity. You don’t necessarily need too many bells and whistles to make effective conference calls. Plus, I think the price points for these plans provide a great value for the benefits. Click Here to Try GoToMeeting for Free.

3. Grasshopper

  • Choose from 4 different numbers
  • Intuitive mobile and desktop app
  • Call transfers and forwarding
  • Prices start at $26/month
Try 7-days for FREE

Grasshopper offers a full-service virtual phone system at competitive prices.

It’s also dead simple to set up. In just four steps, you’ll be able to select a number; get their app on desktop, iOS, or Android; and start texting and calling.

For your number, you have the choice between four different options:

  • Toll free. Numbers that are free for the caller.
  • Vanity. Numbers you choose that are unique to your business.
  • Local. Numbers that are specific to your 3-digit area code.
  • Port your current number. Transfer your current phone number to Grasshopper.

They also come with a great app that helps you manage your texts and calls for your business. That means you can make and receive calls related to your business on the same phone you use for personal use.  If mobile isn’t your cup of tea, their desktop app allows you to do the same right from the comfort of your computer.

Some other great features:

  • 24/7 customer support (US based)
  • No additional devices required
  • Voicemail transcriptions
  • Virtual Fax
  • VoIP/Wi-Fir calling
  • Reporting
  • Voicemail
  • Call forwarding
  • Call transfers
  • Extensions
  • Simultaneous call handling

Prices start at $26/month when billed annually and comes with one phone number and three extensions. If you’re still on the fence, they offer a seven-day free trial with no credit card required.

4. ClickMeeting

  • Webinar solution with great conference calls
  • Highly collaborative and engaging
  • Good for on-boarding and training
  • Prices start at $25/month
Try 30-days for FREE

ClickMeeting comes from GetResponse, the email marketing solutions provider. However, with ClickMeeting, they offer a great webinar solution that gives you a great way to conduct conference calls as well.

You’ll have a full-service solution for online meetings via conference rooms as well as webinars. So not only will you have a way to meet and collaborate with your team, you’ll also have a lead generation engine with webinars.

Their collaboration software is really great for teams and distributed companies. As such, it should stand out to any remote workers out there.

How to record a webinar | Webinar recording with ClickMeeting

When it comes to conference calls, their robust set of presenting and agenda tools allows you to conduct highly engaging, fruitful meetings with your team, clients, customers, and more. It’s a perfect way to let your team walk away with actionable insights as well as easily on-boarding and training new employees.

Since it is more of a webinar tool, it does come with more features geared towards sharing insights. As such, if you’re looking for a pure conference call tool, you might want to look elsewhere. However, this is still a fantastic tool if you’re looking for a great conference call solution that’s multifaceted and flexible when it comes to your use.

The customization they offer really facilitates viewer interaction with the material a presenter is discussing. Overall, I’d say it’s great for agencies, teachers and other education professionals.

Their webinar solution also integrates with PayPal, allowing customers to purchase access to your webinars easily and securely.

If you need a highly-customizable webinar and collaboration tool, and also need something that goes beyond conference calling, this is the service for you.

Pricing starts at $25 per month and is billed annually. However, it does come with a free 30-day trial to test it out.

5. BlueJeans

  • Plans starting at $12.49/month
  • Powered by Dolby Voice audio
  • Recording & cloud storage
  • Used by Linkedin and Facebook

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BlueJeans specializes in video conference calls. They deliver stellar audio quality as well. This solution makes it easy for team communication from any device.

Companies like Linkedin, Facebook, and Zillow rely on BlueJeans for conference calls. So it’s definitely a service that you can trust.

One of the reasons why BlueJeans has such exceptional audio quality is because it’s powered by Dolby Voice. The solution is designed to suppress background noises while giving each participant’s voice a distinct location, which makes it sound as though everyone is in the same room.

Loud talkers, soft-spoken participants, and simultaneous talking can still be heard, unmuffled. This definitely gives BlueJeans an edge over its competitors.


For small businesses and individuals, BlueJeans has a plan starting at $12.49 per month, which can host meetings with up to 50 participants.

They also offer an upgraded plan for $16.65 per month with conferencing capabilities for up to 75 participants. This option comes with recording features and cloud storage, which is what I would recommend.

If you need more, you can contact BlueJeans for a custom solution and plan. Although the participant limit is 150 people. This is definitely less than some of the other enterprise-level solutions we’ve seen. Although the pricing will be a bit more appealing.

6. UberConference

  • Free for up to 10 participants
  • Upgrade for $15/mo
  • Custom numbers & hold music
  • Analytics & team management

>> Compare Quotes

If you’re looking for a simple and easy-to-use conference call service, UberConference is a solid option.

Their free plan includes quality conference calls for smaller groups (10 participants or less). You can also make an unlimited number of calls per year with this plan. It includes a bunch of great tools, benefits, and features such as:

  • Call recording
  • Screen sharing
  • HD audio quality
  • HD video
  • Mobile app access.

Uber Conference

The maximum duration of a free call is 45 minutes.

If you’re a larger org (or if you’d just like more flexibility with your calls), you’ll want the upgraded plan which is $15 per month (billed annually). Calls made on this plan can be up to 5 hours long. The paid plan has additional benefits like:

  • Custom call-in numbers
  • Call analytics
  • International access for 50+ countries
  • Add guest dial outs
  • Custom hold music
  • Voice intelligence
  • Team management portal

You can also add a toll-free number to your plan for an additional $30 per month (billed annually).

The mobile app is one of the top features of UberConference. The fact that it comes standard with the free plan is a huge bonus. I like the app because it gives you access to all of the features from a mobile device, making it easy to start or join a conference call on the go. You don’t need to be tied to a desk or office to participate.

Getting started with UberConference is very straightforward. You’ll be able to start making calls immediately after signing up. If you need some assistance, you’ll find that the knowledge base and customer support provided is extremely helpful.

You might experience some static or audio quality issues with this service. But overall, I don’t think it’s enough of an issue to turn you away. The quality is still better than other free conference call services on the market.

7. Zoom

  • Free up to 100 participants
  • Pro plan starts at $14.99 mo
  • HD video conferences
  • Cloud recording features

>> Compare Quotes

Zoom shot up in popularity recently — and for good reason. Aside from the global pandemic forcing companies to choose a new video conferencing option, Zoom also rose in popularity due to their reliability, user-friendliness and their cheap price tag.

This cloud-based system offers a wide range of free and paid options to accommodate both individuals and businesses of all sizes.


Here’s a quick overview of the plans and pricing:

Zoom Basic

  • Free
  • Up to 100 participants
  • 40 minute duration limit
  • HD video conferences
  • Web conferences
  • Group collaboration features

Zoom Pro

  • Starting at $14.99 per month
  • Up to 100 participants
  • 24 hour duration limit
  • Cloud recording
  • Admin control features
  • Reporting tools

Zoom Business

  • $19.99 per month per host (minimum of 10 hosts)
  • Up to 300 participants
  • Dedicated phone support
  • Cloud recording transcription
  • Company branding
  • Custom emails

Zoom Enterprise

  • Starting at $19.99 per month per host (minimum of 50 hosts)
  • Up to 1,000 participants
  • Unlimited cloud storage
  • Dedicated customer support manager
  • Executive business reviews

Zoom Basic and Zoom Pro will likely be the best options for the majority of you. Those are the best conference call services for startups and smaller teams. You could always upgrade to Zoom Business as your company scales.

Zoom stands out amongst its competitors for video conferencing and cloud conferencing rooms. You’ll definitely want to lean toward this service if you plan to make professional video presentations via conference calls.

While it’s not for everyone, Zoom Enterprise is a top solution for those of you who fall into that category. Big companies like Uber, Zendesk, Ticketmaster, GoDaddy, and Pandora are just a handful of brands that rely on Zoom for conference calling solutions.

Zoom has an extensive knowledge base as well as 24/7 phone support and live training with some of the plans. But the audio quality can be a bit unstable at times.

8. Google Hangouts

  • Free with your Gmail account
  • Conference with up to 25 people
  • Google Calendar integration
  • Best used with a G Suite account

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Google Hangouts offers the kind of reliable, top-quality service you expect from a Google product.

It’s free to use, and a great option for anyone with a Gmail account (which is basically everyone).

When you navigate to Google Hangouts, it automatically connects with your Gmail account and contacts. It has Google Calendar integration as well, which makes it easy to schedule meetings with other users.

To set up a conference call, just use your browser, chrome extension, or mobile app.

This service is usually used for one-on-one meetings, but can be a viable option for smaller conference calls of up to 25 people. Google Hangouts makes it easy for you to share your screen and facilitate video conference calls as well.

To get the most out of Google Hangouts, you need to have a G Suite account, which starts at $6 per month. You might already be using G Suite, and if you’re not, you should start.

While Google Hangouts is simple, straightforward, and easy to use, it definitely has a few drawbacks that you should keep in mind.

For starters, there is no customer support if you’re using it for free. So if you have a problem or question, you’ll need to browse through user forums instead. There is no recording feature either, which seems to be standard with most of the other conference call services out there.

Personally, I use Google Hangouts at least once or twice per month. Although most of those meetings are just with a handful of people. Audio quality issues are common as well. But overall, it’s quick, easy, and free to make conference calls with this service.

9. Webex

  • Free up to 50 participants
  • Paid plans start at $13.50/mo
  • High-quality audio & video
  • Cloud storage options

>> Compare Quotes

Webex is a Cisco product, so you know that the technology used to power this solution is reputable and high-quality. This is one of the best business conference call services to consider for both audio and video calling.

Here’s an overview of the four different plans offered by Webex:

Webex Free

  • Free
  • Up to 50 participants
  • 40 minute limit on conference calls
  • 1 GB of cloud storage

Webex Starter

  • Starting at $13.50 per month
  • Up to 50 participants
  • No meeting limits
  • 5 GB of cloud storage

Webex Plus

  • Starting at $17.95 per month
  • Up to 100 participants
  • No meeting limits
  • 5 GB of cloud storage
  • Assign alternate hosts
  • 24/7 customer support

Webex Business

  • Starting at $26.95 per month
  • Up to 200 participants
  • 10 GB of cloud storage
  • Custom branding features

The free plan is fine, but it’s pretty limited. All of the paid plans come with more advanced features like transcription recording, call-in audio, file sharing, and administrative features.


To get the best customer support, you’ll need to upgrade to the Webex Plus plan.

Overall, Webex is a great choice for small, medium, and large businesses with remote employees. I really like the way that video conferencing is displayed in a grid view as well, so you can see everyone on a large call in one view.

With the top-tier plan maxing out at 200 participants, Webex doesn’t really have an enterprise-level option. Although that shouldn’t be a major concern for most of you. Plans with up to 50 or 100 participants should be more than enough to meet your needs.

How to Find the Best Conference Call Services For You

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To narrow down your choices, you need to know what to look for when you’re evaluating a potential service. This is the methodology that I used when I was researching the solutions in this guide.

Number of Participants

The first thing you need to look at is the maximum number of participants you can have for a plan. These limits are the most important numbers when it comes to which plan you ultimately choose.

Some free plans will limit you to just 10 participants and 40 minutes per conference call. While other paid options give you up to 1,000 participants with no limits on call duration.

Pick a service based on what you need. If you have a small business with just a handful of remote employees, you probably don’t need to pay for a conference call service with a limit of 250 participants.

I’d definitely recommend finding an option with unlimited call durations. It won’t be effective or productive if you’re forced to cut meetings short based on these limitations.

Video Conferencing

Businesses are turning to video conferencing now more than ever. In the wake of the global pandemic, it’s been an indispensable tool for schools, businesses, families, friends, and more.

That’s why you should put a premium on a conferencing service that includes video. Not just that, but they also need to include tools that help enhance your experience.

This might include collaboration tools such as screen sharing and audio sharing, text chats for collaborative communication, and whiteboard tools like the ability to write on the screen.

Certain conference call services specialize in video calls. So if you’re planning to use video for the majority of your calls, look for an option that specializes in this area.

Call Quality

The importance of call quality and optimal bandwidth cannot be overstated. That’s why it’s crucial to see what features the video conference platform offers to enhance the quality of a call.

Some tools and features to keep an eye out for:

  • On-demand mute buttons for both the participant and the host. This gives everyone more call experience over their sound and can avoid any unwanted, distracting noise.
  • Voice cancellation. Some video conferencing services cut out certain voices if they overlap with one another (e.g. Zoom) while others allow you to hear everyone talking at once (though you might not understand them in the cacophony).
  • Echo prevention. The audio when in an echo-y room can be difficult to listen to. Some services are able to limit the amount of echo through their services.

The only way to really know how good the call quality will be is to test it out. So definitely take advantage of any free trials offered by a provider. Use it as much as possible to see if you’re happy with the results.

Call Recording

The ability to record your conference calls is another big advantage. Not every free service comes with this option.

There are different levels of call recording capability. Some services will record the call and then force you to store it locally on whatever device you’re using. Others have cloud storage options based on your plan.

Make sure you understand any storage limits before you sign up for a plan. Otherwise, you might be forced to upgrade when you run out of space.

It’s also worth noting that some call recording plans also come with transcription services. This will make it easier for you to go back and find certain points within a call without having to search through the audio.

If you’re going to take advantage of video calling features, see if the service records the videos or if the recording is just limited to audio calls only.

The ability to share the recorded calls later is also crucial. See what file type the recorded calls are downloaded under. Make sure they’re easily shared with others.

Account and Call Setup

A conference call service is useless if it’s difficult to use. I rank ease of use based on two factors.

  1. Setting up an account.
  2. Starting a new conference call.

Signing up for some conference calling services can be completed in a matter of seconds. For example, if you’re a G Suite user, all you need to do is navigate to Google Hangouts to use it.

If you need a custom solution or enterprise-level plan, setup will be a bit more complex. In most cases, you’ll have to reach out to a sales agent, which can be a pain and kind of time-consuming.

Once you’re all signed up, regardless of the service, starting a new conference call needs to be extremely easy. How do you add users to the call? Is there a call-in service? Do you need to schedule the meeting in advance? Is operator-assistance available? These are all factors that need to be taken into consideration.


At some point or another, every business will need to make a conference call. So finding the best conference call service needs to be a priority for everyone.

There’s a mix of free and paid options on this list. Overall, there’s something for everyone.

Whether you’re an individual, startup business, large company, or enterprise, you’ll find a high-quality conference calling solution in any of the tools you’ve seen in this guide.

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from Quick Sprout