In this 6-minute read:
- What is a file sharing app?
- How can file sharing apps or software help your remote/virtual team?
- Best file sharing apps to try
It doesn’t matter what industry you are in, you have likely emailed a file (or several) to an employee, client, or partnering company. Sharing files like forms, articles, photos, videos, and more becomes a hassle when you’re always emailing them back and forth. And some file types aren’t supported by email.
In this article, we’ll go over the advantages of using file sharing apps with your remote team and list some of the best apps to start with.
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What is a file sharing app and why do you need one?
A file sharing app is a cloud-based system that allows you to easily share files with your team online. You can upload most file types to your app of choice and then organize them in a way that makes it easy for your team to access the files they need.
You can also share links to specific files or folders with your customers if they need to review a project or presentation before it is published or presented.
File sharing apps were designed to make your life easier. So take advantage of that. Find these many benefits of using a file sharing app:
- Convenience of having everything you need in one place
- Reduced costs—if you are storing all of your files in the cloud you don’t need as much physical space for hard copies or server space to back everything up
- Saves time to have files online and in a place where you can type a quick query to find what you need
- Additional security for your files when you choose the right application
Top file sharing apps for remote teams
If you’re ready to hop onboard with a file sharing app, consider with one of these solutions. You may find that you only need this on occasion and a free app might work great for you. Or you may need advanced security measures and more storage space, in which case some of these solutions offer premium upgrades for an additional cost.
Google Drive is free for anyone with a Google account. Just go to drive.google.com and log in with your free Gmail address. You’ll have access to create and edit text documents, spreadsheets, and slide presentations, and you’ll be able to upload just about any files that you need to store online.
You’ll also be able to share files easily and set permissions for whether a person can edit, comment, or view the file that you share.
One caveat with the free version is that it only has 15GB of storage. If you’re only storing text documents and spreadsheets, that may work just fine for you and your team (each person can use their own account). However, if you have large file types like videos or hundreds and thousands of files that you need to store, then you may need an upgraded plan.
With Google One, you can expand your Google Drive storage space and receive additional benefits.
Payment plans for Google One:
100GB: $1.99/month or $19.99/year when paid annually
This includes, you guessed it, 100GB of storage, access to Google experts, option to add your family (or team) to the plan, and extra member benefits.
200GB: $2.99/month or $29.99/year when paid annually
This includes 200GB of storage, everything from the first plan, and 3% back in the Google Store.
2TB: $9.99/month or $99.99/year when paid annually
This includes 2TB of storage, everything from the first plan, and 10% back in the Google Store.
If your business uses G-Suite, you may already have access to more Google Drive storage depending on your plan.
Access files and photos from any device with OneDrive. With OneDrive, you can also edit and share your files, and it will back up and protect any files that are saved in OneDrive. With Office apps you can also collaborate on documents in real-time.
Microsoft has several plans that include OneDrive. The first is their free plan which only includes 5GB of storage. If you need additional storage space, we suggest upgrading to the next plan.
Microsoft’s paid plans include:
OneDrive 100 GB (Personal): $1.99/month
This plan provides 100 GB of storage on OneDrive, with no additional features.
OneDrive for Business Plan 1: $5.00/month per user
This plan includes 1TB of storage for each user and requires an annual commitment.
OneDrive for Business Plan 2: $10.00/month per user
This plan includes unlimited cloud storage for each user and advanced security and compliance capabilities. It also requires an annual commitment.
If you have either of the Microsoft 365 Business plans, you will have OneDrive available for each user on that plan, too.
Dropbox is great for file sharing and backing up your files in a digital space. It also offers file recovery if you accidentally delete the wrong file and version history so you can rollback to a previous version if you change your mind about an edit you made.
You can easily create links to files or folders to share them with other team members or customers for collaboration and review. And it’s easy to create folders and keep your files organized rather than digging through your email to find the right attachment.
Dropbox Basic is their free plan, but it only offers 2GB of storage space. You can certainly start there to test it out, but we’re willing to bet you’ll need more space than that. No worries though, you can always upgrade to a paid plan from Basic.
Dropbox business plans:
This plan allows one user, provides 3TB of secure storage and a few additional highlights:
- Send up to 100GB of files with Dropbox Transfer
- Mobile offline folders
- Remote account wipe
- Document watermarking
- Priority email and chat support
Standard: $15/user per month
This plan must start with at least 3 users, allows 5TB of storage per user, and include collaboration tools. Additional highlights:
- Single admin login to manage teams
- Admin console and audit log
- Secure encryptions
- Granular sharing permissions
- Priority email, chat, and phone support
Advanced: $25/user per month
This plan must start with at least 3 users and allows as much space as you need. Plan highlights include:
- Everything included in the Standard plan
- Advanced admin controls
- Tiered roles for admin
- Single sign on (SSO) integration
- Invite enforcement
Additional resources to help your remote workforce
FIle sharing isn’t the only thing that will help your remote team succeed. Check out these extra resources and tools that your business can benefit from:
- Helpful tools to support your long-term remote workforce
- Best time tracking tools for your remote workforce: features and pricing
- Why use a virtual private network and which VPN solutions you should consider
- Best practices when hiring remote team members for your small business
- 5 best project management solutions for small businesses
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