For small businesses, webinars can be a fantastic tool for lead generation, education, or connecting with your audience. However, choosing the right webinar platform can be overwhelming.
We are going to simplify the process by explaining webinar basics, analyzing the features of twelve high-end webinar software providers, and helping you get started today.
- What Can I Expect From A Webinar Software?
- 12 Popular Webinar Software To Start Your Live Stream
- Livestorm: Audience Segmentation and Video Replays
- ClickMeeting: Custom Webinar Branding
- demio: Real-Time Audience Polls
- EverWebinar: Live Chat and Email Marketing Tools
- Zoho Meeting: Audience-End Engagement and CRM Platform
- Adobe Connect: Audience Polls and Landing Page Templates
- GoToWebinar: In-Depth Automation and Analytics
- WebinarJam: Mobile Webinars with Built-In Reminders
- BigMarker Webinars: Cloud-Based Webinars
- Zoom: Generous Free HD Webinar Plan
- WebEx: Enterprise-Grade Webinars with Automated Marketing
- GetResponse: Collaborative Audience Engagement
- How To Get A Webinar Up And Running Today
What Can I Expect From A Webinar Software?
Webinar software is a video conferencing tool that allows a presenter to broadcast audio, video, and sometimes screen shares with an audience. Most webinar software programs do not allow the audience to be seen, but they can often speak or type questions into a chatbox.
To find the best online webinar software, consider the different features you need, including whether you need a landing page, marketing services, or analytics.
The best webinar platform for you should be easy to use, affordable, fast, and provide the features you need to plan and launch a successful webinar.
12 Popular Webinar Software To Start Your Live Stream
To make a decision, you need to take a deep look at the pros and cons of each platform. This guide will make it simple to select the best webinar software by cutting through the noise and providing exactly the information you need to decide.
Livestorm is a browser-based webinar platform designed for customer training, online courses, and group meetings. Features include landing pages, video replays, advanced analytics, audience segmentation, and integration with CRM programs.
- Easy-to-use and no download required
- HIPPA-compliant streaming technology
- All data is encrypted
- Lower packages are limited to 8 participants
- Does not support more than 1000 attendees
- Email workflow features are limited
- No downloads required
- Poll and survey tools
- Robust analytics for post-webinar data
ClickMeeting is a web-based webinar solution that allows companies to run custom-branded webinars to educate and engage their audience. Features include the ability to create customized landing pages and waiting rooms, support for paid sessions, and an address book with insights for each customer.
- Supports paid webinars
- Easy and intuitive to use on the presenter side
- Add-ons make it easy to purchase additional resources you need
- Larger video files must be uploaded via the media manager
- Several reviews reported connection issues
- Challenging for attendees to navigate
- Allows for customized branding of your webinar
- Registration page with flexible design
- The waiting room can be customized with an agenda
demio is a webinar platform designed to help brands launch live events, on-demand, automated, and hybrid presentations. The platform also makes it easy to customize the webinar experience with your logo and brand colors.
- Free trial available
- Integrates with CRM and Zapier
- No software download required
- Limited metrics; for example, you can’t track poll answers
- No free plans
- Limited training options for users
- Automated triggers for following up with no shows
- Ability to run polls to engage the audience
- Supports mobile device log in
EverWebinar is a platform for creating automated evergreen webinars. You can connect with audiences on the go, instead of making them wait for the next live webinar. They offer detailed analytics and branding customization options as well.
- Very easy to set up webinars
- Advanced scheduling system
- Offers in-depth analytics
- Does not support live webinars
- Can get expensive compared to alternative options
- “Just in time” feature allows webinars to start in 15 minutes after a user has registered
- Live chat moderation feature to simulate a live event
- Integrates with top email marketing tools
Zoho Meeting is a web-based conferencing tool created by the Zoho CRM platform. While the features are limited, its integration with their CRM and workflow tools can make it a powerful addition for customers already using the platform.
- Supports both live and on-demand webinars
- 15-day free trial, and very affordable after that
- Integrates with Salesforce, Google ads, and more popular software
- Limited features, compared to other webinar platforms
- Limited to 250 participants (100 for meetings)
- Curbed customization options
- “Raise hand” feature increases audience engagement
- Ability to make attendees presenters
- Detailed analytical reports
Adobe Connect is a webinar tool from the makers of Photoshop. It allows users to collaborate through video, audio, screen sharing, polls, ice breakers, and Q&A sessions. It does have a bit of a learning curve for new users.
- Does not require Flash (though it does support it)
- Ability to control access to URL or registered users
- Plenty of ways to customize through webinar templates
- Limit of 25 participants for the lower tier plans
- Expensive, plans start at $135 per month
- Requires third-party dial-in service for audio
- Persistent rooms, which allows you to reuse content
- A plethora of engagement features including polls
- Templates for email and landing pages make set up easy
One of the most well-known webinar platforms, GoToWebinar is trusted by more than 50,000 presenters. It allows you to plan, launch, and promote webinars using audio or visual presentations. This platform is ideal for marketing, training, and internal communication.
- Free 30-day trial
- Automates reminder and sign in emails
- Allows multiple co-hosts
- The basic plan is very limited in features
- The presenter control panel is dated
- Must download the app for mobile access
- Automatic invites and follow-up emails
- Polls and engagement-boosting features
- Attendee and performance data analytics
WebinarJam is a flexible webinar software program designed to help business and online marketers connect with their audiences. Features include the ability to send offers, automate emails, and access data and insights on registration and other metrics to gauge performance.
- Free 14-day trial
- Automatically records sessions
- Uncluttered interface
- Limited analytics to track attendees through the funnel
- Lengthy set-up process
- Limit of 6 co-presenters
- Interactive features, such as polls and surveys
- Mobile device support
- Automated email and SMS reminders
- No cap on attendees
BigMarker is a cloud-based webinar hosting and automation platform designed to help businesses grow through webinars and videos. Features include a no-download platform, tons of automation tools, and the ability to reach up to 10,000 attendees.
- 24/7 support
- Free trial available
- Easy in-chat file sharing
- No A/B testing for landing pages
- No mobile access
- Screen sharing
- Social media promotion tools
- Polls and voting for engagement
Zoom is a meeting and webinar hosting platform with a focus on clear audio and flawless video. Their webinar offering allows small businesses to reach 100 interactive video participants and more than 10,000 attendees total. Set up is designed to be simple and registration management tools are flexible.
- Free for up to 100 participants for 40 minutes per webinar
- Affordable plans start at $14.99
- Full-featured hosting controls, including mute, and polls
- Limited collaboration tools; no calendar, PM, or task management tools
- No mobile access
- Add-on features can make plans pricier than other options
- Event assistance available for large events
- Reports for registrants, attendees, polling, engagement, and Q&A
- HD video and audio capabilities
WebEx is an enterprise-level video conferencing and webinar platform owned by tech giant Cisco. Features include online meetings, team collaboration tools, integration with CRM and other tools, interactive features like screen sharing, chat, and polling.
- Free for up to 50 participants/40 minute presentations
- Dial-in option
- Start-to-finish event planning, including email, followups,
- Add on features can quickly accumulate up in price
- Steeper learning curve than alternative options
- Host events for up to 3,000 attendees
- Robust registration and follow up analytics
- Automated email management
GetResponse is a well-known email marketing tool that now offers a webinar feature designed to work hand-in-hand with their current offerings to increase conversions and engagement rates.
- Does not require plug-in download
- Integrates seamlessly with their email marketing tools
- Easy-to-use interface
- Must additionally purchase their email tool
- Limited features compared to other specialist webinar software
- Lack of automation features
- Powerful chat feature to boost engagement
- Real-time live stream to Facebook or YouTube
- Interactive whiteboard for collaboration
How To Get A Webinar Up And Running Today
Ready to get started? Once you have chosen the best webinar software for your business from the list above, it is time to get going.
Here are your next steps for hosting your very first webinar:
- Sign up for the webinar platform of your choice.
- Choose a date for the webinar and begin crafting the landing page.
- Write your presentation and create slides.
- Create a promotion schedule. Be sure promote on social and to your email list.
- Do a dry run to make sure you are comfortable using the platform before your live event.
- Host your webinar.
- Follow up with participants.
After your webinar is over, be sure to take a look at your webinar’s stats. You will want to pay attention to how many people register but don’t show up and how many people stay for the entire presentation.
Be sure to contact participants after your event to take advantage of the new leads you generated. If possible, set up a marketing automation email drip campaign to warm up these potential new customers or cross sell to existing customers.
Pay special attention to how your analytics change over time. Large increases or decreases might indicate issues with your webinar platform, your email followup, or even issues with your presentation itself.