Decoding Microsoft E3 and Microsoft 365 Business Premium: Choosing the Ideal Suite for Your Business Needs

At Three Cherries, we understand that choosing the correct Microsoft Business licencing can prove a challenge. Therefore, in this blog post, we will break down the most popular options and how Three Cherries as a leading IT support company can help businesses in Bristol and the Southwest choose the most suitable Microsoft Licencing for their exact needs.


What is Microsoft 365?

Microsoft 365 is a digital toolbox offered by Microsoft including well known pieces of work based software including Word, PowerPoint and Excel. As the name suggests, it acts like a personal office accessible wherever as long as you have an internet connection. To access this suite, the correct licensing needs to be assigned to the user. These vary in price depending on the amount of access you need etc. In this blog however we will be looking at the two most enhanced licensing options being 365 Business premium and E3 business premium.


What is Microsoft Business Premium?

Tailored towards smaller businesses and enterprises, Microsoft Business Premium offers features such as email hosting, online storage and productivity tools such as Word and PowerPoint. This is the ideal package for businesses looking to modernise their technology and implement an impressive range of tools into their arsenal. Microsoft Business Premium also includes enhanced security features to safeguard businesses against cyberthreats and data loss protection. Included in each license is access to a 50Gb mailbox and calendar system allowing for next level scheduling and organisation for each user. Microsoft Teams is included in this license meaning that your business is able to seamlessly connect with one another and have group chat sessions streamlining collaboration. 1Tb of OneDrive storage per user is included in the Business Premium licence meaning that your employees can store their files and data securely in the cloud.

man on laptop


What are the Benefits of Microsoft Business Premium?

Tailored Licencing- Microsoft Business Premium is specifically designed and tailored towards small/medium sized businesses. Typically, this means that there won’t be any unnecessary programmes or tools which go unused that are being paid for. This licence is the perfect choice for scalability whilst a business grows and is in an “in between” stage of enterprise licencing and Business.

Affordability- Microsoft Business Premium provides massive flexibility due to its “Add-Ons” style per licence. Depending on each users need, different add-ons such as increased security can be added on a per licence basis rather than having to introduce it across the whole office. Relating to its tailored style mentioned above, its pricing is also suited to the budgets of smaller businesses.

Enhanced Security- An area which should be paramount to all businesses coming into 2024 is cybersecurity due to the ever-changing landscape of threats. Microsoft Business Premium introduces a high level of security across the whole Office 365 suite and OneDrive ensuring that your files stay secure and safe from any data loss or breaches.


What are the limitations of Microsoft Business Premium?

Limited functionality- Due to the suite being specifically tailored towards small/medium businesses, there is a reduced number of tools available within the particular licence. An example of this is the more advanced security features designed for more complex needs.

Maximum capacities- Within Microsoft Business Premium licensing, there is a maximum capacitance of 300 users. The mailbox is also capped at 50Gb whereas the E3 version allows for more seats and a 100Gb mailbox per user.


What is Microsoft E3?

Microsoft E3 includes everything that the standard business premium offers however at a larger scale. It also features higher security levels to accommodate for enterprise sized businesses rather than small/medium. It also includes software such as Power BI pro which provides expert level data analytics and access to Microsoft Viva meaning managers can follow and gain insight into employee behaviour like never before.

group of people on microsoft licensed laptops


What are the benefits of Microsoft E3?

Large Business Suitability- Microsoft E3 is specifically tailored for large businesses and making sure they have access to the exact tools they made need to maximise productivity and efficiency. The security measures are also tailored specifically enabling for sensitive data to be secure and away from any risks.

Optimal Security- Microsoft E3 features enterprise level security for data and files. It incorporates multi factor authentication, data loss prevention and encryption ensuring that your business can stay worry free regarding security.

Enhanced Collaboration- Members in the business are able to utilise Microsoft SharePoint, allowing for bespoke file sharing sites which users in your organisation can access. Managers can also edit permissions within the SharePoint site to only allow certain users access to files for different privacy reasons.


What are the limitations of Microsoft E3?

Higher Pricing- The main limitation surrounding Microsoft E3 is that it comes at an increased cost compared to the standard Microsoft Business Premium licence. This mainly comes at a limitation for smaller businesses who may not require every tool that the E3 version offers. Therefore, it is vital that you check whether the additional features are of use to your business.

Bespoke Features- Another limitation of E3 is that the extra features included such as the analytics tools may be of little use to some businesses especially ones on the fringe of small/medium business and enterprise level.


How can Three Cherries Help your Business Choose the Correct Licencing?

Three Cherries, a leading Bristol IT support company, understand that choosing the correct Microsoft licence to enable your business to work effectively is a challenge. Therefore, our experts are here to assist you by advising on the best fit for your exact needs and rolling it out across each user’s device. Contact us today and allow us to take the gamble out of your business IT and help you weigh up the debate of business premium vs e3.



Don’t hesistate to contact our friendly and knowledgeable team today for IT support across Bristol and the South West.

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