The ongoing global pandemic accelerated the popularity and use of video conferencing and webinars.
This was of course followed by the emergence of more video conferencing platforms. Two of the most widely used applications today are Zoom and GoToWebinar.
How do you know which to use when? Is one better than the other?
We’ll help you decide. In this guide, we compare Zoom vs GoToWebinar.
Excited to look at these platforms in detail? Let’s get started.
What Is Zoom?
Founded in 2011 and developed by Zoom Video Communications, Zoom is a cloud-based video conferencing app. At present, Zoom offers eight products that include:
- Zoom Events
- Zoom Marketplace
- Zoom Meetings
- Zoom Video Webinars
- Zoom Chat
- Zoom Phone System
- Zoom Developer Platform
- Rooms and Workspaces
The product we’ll be reviewing today is Zoom Video Webinar.
Zoom Video Webinar allows up to 100 video panelists to present or share video and audio data with up to 50,000 view-only attendees. Hosts can stream webinars across several social media channels with the help of integration services.
Here are some of the features included with all Zoom webinar hosting subscription plans:
- Registration options
- Raise hand
- Exportable registrant and attendee lists
- CRM and marketing automation integrations
- Paid registration
- MP4/M4A recording and cloud recording with video trimming and reporting options
- Detailed audience engagement and webinar analytics reports
How to Use the Zoom Video Webinar?
As the host, you can start by purchasing a license to host the webinar. The next step involves planning and setting up your event.
To schedule a Zoom webinar, you need to download Zoom on your mobile device or on your desktop. Once you’ve scheduled the webinar, you can go ahead and customize registration.
Accessing the webinars is fuss-free and only requires clicking on the invite link generated.
- Virtual backgrounds
- Free version
- Link share option
- Quality audio
- Background noise suppression
- No free trial option
- Needs to be downloaded and installed
What Is GoToWebinar?
Developed by parent company LogMeIn, GoToWebinar is a popular webinar solution. LogMeIn was founded in 2003 and offers a wide range of products including:
Together, these products cater to many organizational setups from meetings to presentations.
Out of all these services, GoToWebinar is LogMeIn’s answer to users looking for a reliable webinar hosting solution. It is accessible through desktop, tablets, and mobile phones.
Let’s see what features GoToWebinar provides its clients:
- Unlimited cloud storage with free and paid plans
- Multi-presenter options
- Clean easy to navigate interface
- Real-time data of attendees
- Raise hand
- Polls and surveys
- Software doesn’t need to be installed locally since it is available as a service
- Annotate parts of your presentation
- Use the platform to co-present a webinar session
- Get event analytics, attendee reports, and source tracking metrics
How to Use GoToWebinar?
Setting up a webinar is simple. All you need to do is plan and set up your webinar. You can host live or pre-recorded webinars seamlessly with their automated processes and integrations.
To attend a GoToWebinar, attendees are required to download the application on their mobile phones or desktops. If the webinar is in webcast mode, up to 10,000 users can attend through their browsers. However, attending with a browser offers attendees limited audio-only features.
Like Zoom, GoToWebinar also gives you the option to customize your registrations and automate the communication and payment processes.
GoToWebinar allows you to host up to 3,000 attendees, comparatively smaller than Zoom’s 10,000 attendee limit.
Unlike Zoom, GoToWebinar does not support private or group chatting for users logged into the webinar.
The unique feature that GoToWebinar offers is the GoToStage. GoToStage is a platform that allows you to promote your webinar event for free. It can be integrated with Slack, Google, Microsoft Teams, and more so collaboration becomes easier.
- Reach a large number of people seamlessly
- 30-day free trial option
- No digital background feature
- Attendance through browsers only includes audio feature
- No free version
- Navigation can be confusing to use for first-time users
- Encounters technical issues
- Requires a strong internet connection
- Doesn’t have an email automation feature
Similarities Between Zoom vs GoToWebinar
Zoom and GoToWebinar have their differences but they also have similarities:
- Both allow you to customize emails and registration pages
- Both have a screen-sharing feature
- Both have interactive features
- They offer in-webinar security controls such as mute, chat, block, etc.
- Both allow you to record webinars
- Detailed post-webinar analytics and reports
- Integration of payment collection systems
Video Quality: Zoom vs GoToWebinar
Zoom Video Webinars allow you to share HD quality videos of 720p or 1080p by enabling HD video for your webinar.
You can also add immersive virtual backgrounds, adjust for low light, and add noise controls to your webinars.
Need more features?
Zoom offers soft focus touch-ups, video filters, frames, and studio effects. If you have preferred settings, you don’t need to configure them for every webinar or meeting either. Zoom allows you to save your settings for future use.
With GoToWebinar, your attendees can enjoy HD video quality with a maximum resolution of 1920p x 960p — the highest among video conference service providers.
However, the only features we found that enhanced video quality were the facial recognition and red light detection features.
Security: Zoom vs GoToWebinar
Zoom incorporates the AES 256-bit encryption to protect users’ login information and webinar data.
Zoom allows users some security functions and controls to use during the webinar hosting. These are:
- Lock webinar to block any new participants from joining
- Allow panelists to share their screens
- Allow panelists to play videos during webinars
- Allow participants to unmute themselves
- Allow participants to use the raise hand function
- Remove participants from meetings
- Report participants and take screenshots for evidence
- Encrypt real-time media content using the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES)
- Use end-to-end encryption to secure messages shared between participants
- Enable authentication/passcode-protected meetings
GoToWebinar does not store unencrypted information on their system. All the information is secured with end-to-end Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and 128-bit AES.
Here’s a list of security features that you have access to with GoToWebinar:
- Ability to lock meetings
- Mute and unmute one or more attendees
- Block an attendee during the webinar session
- Block uninvited attendees
- Disallow chats among certain attendees
- Disconnect attendees
- Enable or disable screen sharing
- Assign passcodes or authentication IDs
Pricing: Zoom vs GoToWebinar
Zoom Webinar offers users 6 subscription plans based on the number of attendees.
- $79 per month per license for up to 500 attendees
- $340 per month per license for up to 1,000 attendees
- $990 per month per license for up to 3,000 attendees
- $2,490 per month per license for up to 5,000 attendees
- $6,490 per month per license for up to 10,000 attendees
Got more than 10,000 attendees? You can contact the sales department directly to get a quote for webinar plans for 10,000 or more attendees.
Need some add-ons? Zoom gives you a choice between audio conferencing, event services, cloud storage, and premier developer support.
GoToWebinar offers users three webinar hosting subscription plans: the Starter, Pro, and Plus.
The starter plan costs $89 per organizer and can be billed monthly or annually. This plan allows you to add 100 participants and also comes with the GoToMeeting add-on.
GoToWebinar Pro costs $199 per organizer and is billed monthly or annually. You can also get the GoToMeeting add-on and the option to add up to 500 participants.
The GoToWebinar Plus plan costs $429 per organizer and is also billed monthly or annually as per customer preference. You can add up to 1,000 participants with the Plus plan and get the GoToMeeting as an add-on service.
If you want a pay-as-you-go option, you can choose to only pay for the webinars you host. With the GoToWebinar Flex plan, you only need to pay a monthly fee of $19 and the per event fee.
The event fee is billed monthly or annually based on webinar size and the number of webinars you host.
GoToWebinar does not have a free version for the webinar hosting app, but it does offer a 30-day free trial. The free trial includes all the features of the Pro plan outlined above.
Customer Support: Zoom vs GoToWebinar
When you’re managing a large-scale webinar with many attendees, video presentations, and other advanced features, you’re bound to come across some glitches.
Zoom provides you with the option to partner with its webinar experts to make your webinar a success. The additional service is included under their Event Consulting Support. The service promises to provide live support, monitoring, and moderation during the webinar.
Zoom also supports clients with their extensive knowledge base, live demos, expert training, and consumer support page. You will also find general information and support on their blog, phone, email, or their help desk.
GoToWebinar does not fall behind when it comes to client support. Their event service team gives you the expert production support required to run a webinar.
To avail of the additional service, GoToWebinar offers 3 different prices and packages based on how much support you want.
GoToWebinar also provides general support with their extensive FAQs on their website. You can access their news, community support, live training, downloads, and more online.
Reporting: Zoom vs GoToWebinar
Zoom reporting involves polls, surveys, registration details, session activity, and more. Access to these usage reports is typically restricted to the host or admin.
While not everyone knows about this feature and makes use of this opportunity, reporting is an indispensable service that can help you determine the success and shortcomings of your online events.
GoToWebinar also offers its own version of this vital feature. By using its service, you can monitor attendee behavior, track engagement, webinar performance, and more.
Their Webinar Engagement Report lets you find out how long your attendees stayed, their votes during a poll, the answers they provided during a Q&A, and questions asked during the webinar.
Final Verdict: Zoom vs GoToWebinar
It’s difficult to choose between the two. Though you’ll find minor differences between them, both platforms offer the same basic webinar hosting service.
If you’re planning a massive event with more than 3,000 attendees, Zoom will be your logical choice since GoToWebinar can only accommodate a maximum of 3,000 people. Their pricing is also a little easier on the budget. Both applications support browser-only attendance that don’t need their applications to be locally installed by users.
If you’re looking for easy integrations, GoToWebinar will be your go-to option. On the other hand, if you want a large number of people from outside your organization to quickly jump on a call, Zoom may be your best bet since it is the more popular of the two.
Overall, it’s hard to declare a clear winner between Zoom vs GoToWebinar. However, if we had to make a decision based on the stability of calls and the features offered, Zoom would be our top choice.
With many business transactions and interactions taking place online, having a reliable platform for events, meetings, and webinars is vital to the success of your business.
A good video conferencing platform allows you to easily share ideas, documents, and presentations with a group of people in a more organized and efficient way.
If you’re unsatisfied with your current meeting and events platforms, we hope this review has helped shed some light on the topic. While each platform has its own pros and cons, both provide the same basic service of providing flexible and technology-enabled ways for your teams to meet and engage remotely.
Whether you go with Zoom vs GoToWebinar will be determined by your organization’s specific needs and preferences. It’s a good idea to give both a try just to familiarize yourself with the interface and the meeting quality that each offers. You can then take a closer look at the features that interest you before subscribing to a paid plan.