Trying to make a big impact with your next business presentation? Skip the tried and true Microsoft Powerpoint and switch to a better presentation software. By choosing one of the hundreds of online presentation tools designed long after the advent of Powerpoint, you'll enjoy better features, dynamic presentations, fewer issues, and cleaner designs. Not sure what program to use or how to load your favorite presentation templates? Give one of these six Powerpoint alternatives a spin based on your needs.
Why Skip Powerpoint?
Since Powerpoint is the most widely used and one of the oldest presentation software options, many business owners and entrepreneurs assume it's the best option. However, it's difficult to use both during the design and presentation phase, limited in customization options, and hard to learn. Finding an alternative to Powerpoint could save you a lot of headaches and help you produce better business presentations in a shorter timeframe.
Creating a presentation video and uploading it directly to your website or Youtube channel is a great way to get public support for your cause or request donations from a large group of people. Instead of putting hours into learning After Effects or fiddling with Powerpoint to try and fake the smooth transitions of a video, try Wideo. The online software is easy to use and works similarly to Powerpoint with an even more intuitive interface. Arrange slides with a few clicks and add professional quality animations to make your information stand out. There's a free option with very limited controls, while the premium software allows you to add music and remix existing videos to create your own viral hit.
5. Google Slides
When you only want a basic presentation platform you can share quickly with colleagues, try the Google Slides app. It integrates seamlessly with Google Drive, but predictably it's very limited in design and exporting options. It is good for working on rough drafts of large presentations when a lot of people are involved in the input and approval of the slides. You can quickly copy text from the Slides presentation and transfer it to another platform after the basic layout is tested and finalized. Don't expect to make revolutionary or eye-catching presentations with this free software. It's only available through the Google Play store for now, so you'll need a mobile Android device to make use of it. This greatly limits its audience and can make it hard to share with people that only use Windows or Mac operating systems.
On the other end of the spectrum, Prezi offers precise controls for customization and has the ability to produce presentations that are works of art. All that control is linked to a complex and sometimes complicated interface that takes some practice to learn. If you're planning to make presentations on a regular basis as a designer, you might find it worth learning, but entrepreneurs and business owners that only make a few presentations a year may not want to invest the time. Even the templates on this platform can take hours to understand at first. Consider how much time you want to spend on the presentation before committing to using Prezi as your platform.
3. Proclaim Online
Need software with a very specific focus and tools that support that goal? Proclaim Online is an online presentation software that is tailored to the needs of worship directors and other religious figures planning public events. Since these presentations are multifaceted and include video, audio, and text elements all mixed together, it's a good idea to use software that tracks all of these elements and combines them into a single cohesive performance. You'll find the value of this particular platform limited if you're planning a business or sales presentation instead of a worship event since most of the features are tailored to that particular crowd. However, it could still be put to good use for personal presentations that include lots of photos and videos, such as a birthday or funeral event.
2. Slide Chef
This isn't your usual replacement for Powerpoint, but it's worth investigating. It can be tricky knowing what to include and what to exclude when designing the content for your presentation. Good presentation templates prompt you for the right information with section labels, but they can't gather the data on your behalf and automatically fill out the slides. Slide Chef aims to do just that by prompting you for all the information you need based on the type of proposal you're making. If you're building a start-up pitch deck or a bid presentation, this tool is amazing for narrowing down the focus for each slide. However, you're only given a basic deck of text cards after completing the process. You'll still need to import that information into another tool to make it pop. The software claims to deliver your completed slides after just 10 minutes of work, and that's true when you only need minimalistic cards to use as notes. Slide Chef lacks in the customization and design department, but it's worth using as part of your presentation preparations.
For the most well-rounded online presentation package, go with Slidebean. This platform includes everything you need to create, share, and display presentations of any type. From pitch decks to sales proposals, the template collection includes plenty of options for all businesses. When it comes to presentations you email or link to, Slidebean stands out by offering tracking and analytics. You can see who's viewed your slides and how long they spent watching the presentation. This is essential information you can't gather with most platforms. When you're relying on the equivalent of cold calling for soliciting interest from investors or new clients, being able to track their reactions to your proposal is essential. The platform is also based around producing clean and impressive designs.
Each template offers enough font, background, and layout control that you can tweak things until they're perfect. On top of all of this, most of the features on Slidebean are available for free. You can upgrade to Premium at any time to take advantage of the rest of what's available. It's easy to learn and speeds up the design process for busy professionals.
No matter what software you choose for designing a business proposal, make sure you have hard data to fill it with. Generalities and vague statistics can't be balanced out with good design alone.