Microsoft 365 Business vs Enterprise

Is Microsoft 365 Enterprise worth the extra money or can you settle with Microsoft 365 Business? With a price difference of $12 per user per month is it worth to take a closer look at the differences between the two.

The Microsoft 365 bundles are known for combining the best of Microsoft for an attractive price. But the different plans make it a puzzle to find the best plan for your organisation. In this article, I will explain the major differences between Microsoft 365 Business vs Enterprise to help you pick the best plan for your organisation.

The basics

First, if you want to know more about Microsoft 365 and how it compares to Office 365 you should read this article.

So let’s talk about Microsoft 365 Business vs Enterprise. The basic difference between the two is on the Office and Windows front and the user count. With both, you get all the Office apps for both desktops and online. Nothing special here.

Then Windows 10, with Microsoft 365 Business you get an upgrade license for Windows 10 Pro. So that means you will need to have a valid Windows 7 or 8 license to upgrade to Windows 10 Pro. Now keep in mind that every new computer you buy these days as already a Windows 10 pro license.

With the Enterprise plans you get a license for Windows 10 Enterprise E3 or E5.

The Microsoft 365 Business plan is limited to 300 users. If Business is sufficient for your organisation you can actually buy 300 Business licenses and extend it with Enterprise E3 licenses if you need more.

Microsoft 365 Business vs Enterprise

Standard Services (Onedrive, SharePoint and Exchange)

Just like with Office 365 Business and Enterprise that are some differences in the standard services. The Business plan comes with some extra apps specially for small Businesses (Invoicing, Bookings, Outlook Customer Manager etc).

But there are also some difference between the Onedrive, Sharepoint and Exchange plans.


With Microsoft 365 Enterprise you get Onedrive Plan 2. This includes all benefits from Onedrive Plan 1, but add with the difference of Unlimited storage instead of 1Tb. It also offers Advanced data-loss prevention and In-place hold to preserve documents.


The same goes for SharePoint, plan 2, that is included in the Enterprise plan, comes with In-place hold, advanced DLP features and enhanced search features. Not real big deal makers, but I have to say, In-place hold is really useful if your organisation is involved in a lot of legal cases or has to provide warranty or support on projects over many years.


The difference with Exchange is in line with the other two. With Plan 2 you get more store (100Gb mailbox + unlimited In-place archive), advanced DLP features and in-place hold.

Threat Protection

We will find the most difference when it comes to threat protection. Microsoft 365 is focused on manageability of your devices and keeping control of your data. Microsoft 365 Business comes only with the Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection (ATP), where the Enterprise E3 plans have a lot more to offer:

  • Microsoft Advanced Threat Analytics (ATA)
  • Device Guard
  • Credential Guard
  • App Locker
  • Enterprise Data Protection
  • Azure Active Directory – Conditional Access


Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection is a cloud-based email filtering service. It basically scans your email and detects unknown malware, viruses or harmful links. It comes with advanced reports and URL tracing to give us insight into the attacks that are coming in through email.

ATP, Microsoft Advanced Threat Analytics, is the more advanced protection platform. It is capable of detecting targeted cyber-attacks. It basically scans all your network traffic for information gathering to find abnormal behaviour, malicious attacks and security risks. If you want to know more about ATA, you should take a look at these services description.

On-Premise CAL Rights

On other big difference and for some really important, is the on-premise CAL rights. With the Microsoft 365 Enterprise plans you get the ECAL suite. This give your the access rights to run the following servers locally:

  • Exchange
  • SharePoint
  • Skype
  • Windows
  • SCCM
  • Windows Rights Management


Microsoft 365 Enterprise (E3) cost $12.- per user per month more than the Business plan. In my opition, the real value is in the additional security features that you get. Keeping your data safe is a never-ending task. We always need to upgrade our security measures to keep viruses (ransomware) out and protect our network against targeted attacks.

Microsoft 365 Enterprise gives you the tools to do this. And an important part of securing your network is keeping it up to date. So I think it’s worth the extra $ 12,- if you have the budget for it.

Comparison chart Microsoft 365 Business vs Enterprise

 Microsoft 365Microsoft 365
  BusinessEnterprise E3
Core Details   
Price user/month (annual commitment)  $ 20.00 $ 32.00 *
Seat Cap Up to 300Unlimited
24/7 Phone support Only CriticalAll issues
Desktop version of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher 
Web version of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote 
Office apps on tablets and phones 
Windows 10 Pro upgrade 
Windows 10 Enterprise E3 
Standard Services   
1TB cloud storage (OneDrive for Business 
Unlimited cloud storage (OneDrive for Business) 
Email, Calendar (Exchange) • (p1)• (p2)
Online meetings, IM (Skype for Business) 
Communication and team sites (SharePoint) • (p1)• (p2)
Team hub (Teams) 
Enterprise Social (Yammer) 
Content discovery and search (Delve) 
Manage schedules and daily staff work tasks (StaffHub) 
Manage tasks and teamworks (Planner) 
Manage your business better (Invoicing, Bookings, MileIQ, Business center)  
Manage customers (Connections, Listings, Outlook Customer Manager)  
Advanced Services   
Active Directory integration 
Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) 
Licensed for hybrid deployment 
Support for shared computer activation 
Video content management 
Compliance – Archiving, eDiscovery, hold 
Windows Information protection – message encryption, RMS, DLP 
Device Management   
Azure Active Direcory Plan 1 
Microsoft Intune 
Fine Tuned User Experience  
Windows Analitycs Health  
Windows Autopilot 
Advanced Security Features   
Azure Information Protection Plan 1 
Device Guard  
Credential Guard  
Credential Guard  
Direct Access  
Windows Defender Antivirus  
Windows Hello  
Microsoft Advanced Threat Analytics (ATA)  
More Info  More Info
& Prices
More Info
& Prices


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2 thoughts on “Microsoft 365 Business vs Enterprise”

  1. Shared computer Activation is now enabled on Microsoft 365.
    And probably worth noting it includes conditional access now as well.
    Both pretty huge additions.

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