What is Google Workspace?

May 15 / Steve Bunyan
I want to tell you about a thing called Google Workspace—but first some history.

Industry Standard

If I asked you to think about office productivity software, probably the first thing that would come to mind is Microsoft Office. It’s the industry standard. You might even believe that if someone wants to do business online, they must have Microsoft Office.

Well OK, but that’s simply not true anymore and hasn’t been for several years now—I’ll explain.

Office Productivity Software Reinvented

Microsoft Office was launched in November 1990 and the internet wasn’t really available to the public until April 1993. This is important because it shows that Microsoft Office was originally developed for offline use. Then, in February 2006, Google launched a product which completely reinvented office productivity software and what it could do. Google Workspace (as it’s now called) was built for the internet from-the-ground-up. Collaboration, file sharing, cloud storage and use on multiple devices are all part of its DNA. Yes, of course, Microsoft Office has added these things along the way, but they all had to be retro-fitted as after-thoughts. They were never part of its original development plan.

Google Workspace provides collaboration, file sharing, cloud storage and using multiple devices, beautifully and with ease. Conversely, Microsoft Office can do them, but only in a very clunky and dis-jointed way.

Small Business Advantage

As small businesses, we can take advantage of this because we can adapt quickly to change. Big businesses cannot change quickly. They have to make enormous investments in their technology choices. They have to invest millions in planning, consultation, software, hardware, systems, staff, training, and so on. For us small business owners, we only have to invest a tiny fraction of that to change how we operate. This gives us a tremendous advantage.

Stuck in the Past

Now let’s look at the IT (information technology) industry. These are the people we buy our technology from. Pretty much the whole of the IT industry was brought up on Microsoft Office, Outlook, Word, Excel, Windows and everything else Bill Gates had to offer. In their day, Microsoft products were truly amazing. They provided proper solutions to business problems. The IT industry built their businesses on them, and those products prevailed for many years. As a result, many IT companies became completely set in their ways and today, they simply refuse to accept there are now better ways to do things.

For me, the IT industry of today is firmly stuck in the past. Of course, there are exceptions, but most IT professionals will still advise a small business start up to buy Windows PCs and Microsoft Office. This blinkered view of the reality, even when technologically better options now exist, is true in the design industry too, with their love of all things Apple and their almost total blindness to alternatives.

In my opinion, Google Workspace should be the office productivity software of choice for small and medium-sized businesses everywhere. Don’t get me wrong, Microsoft and Apple products are still great products, but today, for most businesses and especially small businesses, Google products like Chromebook and Google Workspace are simply the smarter choice.

Google Workspace

Google Workspace is available in two versions:
1. The 100% free version.
2. The paid version (with tiers).
Empty space, drag to resize
The key differences between the free and paid versions are first, the paid version allows you to use your own domain for your email addresses, (e.g. yourname@yourdomain.com), where the free version doesn’t. Second, the paid version comes with a lot more file storage space in Google Drive. There are other differences too, but these are the two big differences.

Here are a few more things to consider about Google Workspace:
  • It works on any device.
  • It works anywhere with an internet connection.
  • You won’t need to run software updates.
  • You won’t need to back up your files.
  • You won’t need memory sticks or backup drives.
  • You won’t need to email files to people.
  • You won’t get confused about which version of a file is the latest one because everyone can work on the same file at the same time.
  • You won’t be “at the wrong computer” ever again.
  • You won’t need to subscribe to software like GoToMyPC or LogMeIn.
  • You won’t need a local network or server.
  • You won’t lose your files.
  • You can still open and work on, and create Microsoft Office files.
  • You can integrate Google Workspace with thousands of other software tools.
  • You’ll get world-class, technical support from Google, 24/7.

You Already have a Google Account

Most of us now have a Google account, so you can use that single account to access everything Google offers, including Google Workspace.

Here’s a non-exhaustive list of things Google Workspace can provide for your business:
  • Gmail: Email service with personalised email addresses (and email aliases) for your domain, advanced spam filtering, and integrated search.
  • Google Meet: Video and audio conferencing tool with screen sharing, real-time captions, whiteboards and integrations with Google Calendar and Gmail.
  • Google Calendar: Schedule and manage events, create shared calendars, and send event invitations.
  • Google Tasks: Task management tool with integration with Gmail, Calendar, and other Workspace apps.
  • Google Drive: Cloud-based storage for files, with synchronisation across devices and file sharing capabilities.
  • Google Docs: Collaborative document editing with real-time collaboration, version history, and exporting options.
  • Google Sheets: Collaborative spreadsheet editing with real-time collaboration, version history, and data analysis tools.
  • Google Slides: Collaborative presentation editing with real-time collaboration, version history, and various design templates.
  • Google Keep: Note-taking application with colour-coded labels, reminders, and sharing capabilities.
  • Google Forms: Create custom forms and surveys, collect responses, and analyse data.
Here are a few other things to consider:

Real-time collaboration

Google Workspace allows users to collaborate on documents, spreadsheets, and presentations in real-time. Multiple team members can simultaneously work on the same file, with changes being saved automatically. This feature fosters teamwork and speeds up the completion of tasks.

Cloud-based storage

Google Workspace is a cloud-based system, which means files are stored online and can be accessed from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. This provides flexibility and convenience for small businesses, as team members can work from any location and easily share files.

Cost-effective pricing

Google Workspace offers affordable and flexible pricing plans for small businesses. With monthly or annual payment options, businesses can choose the plan that best suits their needs and budget.

User-friendly interface

Google Workspace has a clean and intuitive interface, making it easy for users to navigate and work within the platform. This can save time and reduce the learning curve for team members who are new to the software.

Security and reliability

Google Workspace is known for its strong security features, including two-factor authentication and encryption. With Google’s robust infrastructure, businesses can trust that their data is secure and the service will be reliable.

Mobile apps for on-the-go productivity

Google Workspace offers mobile apps for all its core applications, enabling users to work from their smartphones or tablets while on-the-go. This can be a significant advantage for small businesses with remote or travelling team members.

Google Workspace Marketplace

The Google Workspace Marketplace offers a wide range of third-party applications that can be easily integrated with Google Workspace. This allows businesses to customise their experience and add additional tools to meet their unique needs.

Regular updates and improvements

Google continually updates and improves its Workspace features, ensuring that users have access to the latest tools and functionalities.


As a small business grows, Google Workspace can easily scale to accommodate more users and storage needs. This means that businesses can continue to use the platform without major overhauls or migrations.


If you have a small or medium-sized business, Google Workspace is a great choice. If you have a big business, it’s still a superb choice and is well worth considering, but the costs associated with changing might be a barrier for you. OK I admit it, I’m an avid Googlephile and a raving fan. Yes, if you’re used to using Microsoft Office, there will be a learning curve with Google Workspace—it’s a bit different, but for good, solid reasons and you’ll soon get used to the differences. I’ve been using the paid version since 2010 and I would never go back to Microsoft Office, even if it was free.
Empty space, drag to resize
Finally, don’t take my word for it. Always remember to do your own research. Choose tools that are a good fit for you, your business, and your budget.
Empty space, drag to resize

14-day free trial of Google Workspace


Message me to get 10% off for a year

Empty space, drag to resize

Share this blog post