Microsoft 365 License Comparison: M365 Business Standard vs. O365 E3

Office Applications included in both Microsoft 365 Business Standard and Office 365 E3

During your Microsoft 365 License Comparison of Microsoft 365 Business Standard vs. Office 365 E3, you’ll see that both subscriptions include Office applications for up to 5 PCs, an Exchange mailbox, OneDrive for Business, Microsoft Teams, and Microsoft 365 SharePoint Online, while the price difference is an additional $10.50 user/month for the Office 365 E3 plan.

So, the question is: what exactly is included that justifies the price difference and does your organization need these additional capabilities?

Office 365 and Microsoft 365 License Comparison

Scalability Limits

Firstly, you want to consider scalability limits.

With the Microsoft 365 Business Standard plan, you may run into a few scalability issues. You will only be allowed to license up to 300 users, so if you have more than that currently or plan to soon, you’ll need to ditch the M365 Business Standard options and choose an Enterprise License.

Essentially, you will need to plan for scalability very carefully if you choose Microsoft 365 Business Standard license.

Security Comparison

Moreover, you want to consider security threats to your organization.

To clarify, the Microsoft 365 Business Standard license is a great price for all the features you receive for a small business, with one caveat – Security

Above all, Email is still considered the most vulnerable entry-point for security breach due to the public nature of the service. Securing cloud services such as Microsoft Office 365 and Azure requires a comprehensive approach to your devices, networks, and SaaS applications. 

Office 365 E3 Security Additions

Unlike the Business Standard license, Office 365 E3 license is equipped to secure your environment from threats presented daily.  Above all, with Office 365 E3 you will have information protection, including message encryption, rights management, and data loss prevention for email and files.  Lastly, you will also have group policy support and roaming settings. 

How to decide?

In conclusion, review these questions below to decide what Microsoft 365 license is right for your organization:

Do we have more than 300 users?

  • Microsoft 365 Business Standard only allows up to 300 users
  • Office 365 E3 allows unlimited users

What size mailboxes do our users have?”

  • Microsoft 365 Business Standard allows up to 50GB mailbox size
  • Office 365 E3 allows up to 100GB mailbox size

What is our need for security and device management?

  • Office 365 E3 has security and device management included
 Microsoft 365 License ComparisonBusiness StandardOffice 365 E3
Base price per user per month $USD$12.50$23.00
Install Office on up to 5 PCs/Macs + 5 tablets + 5 smartphones per user3
Multilingual user interface for Office applications
Office Mobile Apps – Create/edit rights for commercial use of Office Mobile apps4
Office Online – Create/edit rights for online versions of core Office apps
Office 365 for Mac
Exchange OnlinePlan 1 (50 GB)Plan 2 (100 GB)
SharePoint OnlinePlan 1Plan 2
Skype for Business OnlinePlan 2Plan 2
Microsoft Teams 
OneDrive for Business1 TB1-5+ TB9
Yammer Enterprise
Microsoft MyAnalytics
Microsoft Flow
Microsoft Forms13
Microsoft Graph API
Microsoft Planner
Microsoft PowerApps14
Microsoft Shifts
Microsoft Stream
Microsoft Sway16
Office Delve
Office 365 Groups
Microsoft Kaizala Pro
Microsoft To-Do
Microsoft Bookings
Outlook Customer Manager, Invoicing, Business Center & MileIQ  ●17 
On-premises Active Directory sync for SSO
Mobile Device Management (MDM) for Office 36518
Microsoft Intune  
Access to equivalent on-premise servers (Exchange, SharePoint, Skype for Business) 
Group Policy support, Office telemetry, Roaming settings 
Shared computer activation 
Legal compliance & archiving needs for email – archiving, eDiscovery, mailbox hold 
Information protection – message encryption, rights management, data loss prevention for email and files 

Contact Enclyne for a Microsoft 365 License Comparison