What you get with Groups for Business

User-managed groups, Collaborative Inboxes, and more

Groups for Business is a core service in your Google Admin console that controls how your organization's groups can be used at the Google Groups user app at groups.google.com.

As a Groups admin, you use Groups for Business to:

  • Control whether users can access your organization’s groups at Google Groups (determined by whether the Groups for Business service is on or off).
  • Control how your groups can be used at Google Groups.

Groups for Business On vs. Off

When Groups for Business is On

  • Your organization's groups become available in users' Google Groups directory—available from users' App launcher as shown here, and at groups.google.com.
  • As an admin, you can allow users to create groups in your organization. You can also set organization-wide policies for accessing and working in your groups.
  • You and other group owners and managers can make a group a Collaborative Inbox, set posting and moderation policies, and add other features at Google Groups.
  • Members with the correct permissions can access your organization's groups in the Google Groups directory, view and post to group conversations, and do other tasks.

When Groups for Business is Off

  • Your organization's groups aren't available at users' Google Groups app.
  • Users can't be allowed to create groups in your organization.
  • You can't use Collaborative Inboxes, moderate conversations, or add some other features.
  • Admins can still create groups in the Admin console that can be used in a variety of other ways (see below).

Note: To show or hide external groups at Google Groups, use the Google Groups additional service.

 Already decided?  Turn Groups for Business on or off

Step 1: Compare available features

Here are features you get with Groups for Business turned on vs. off:

Available Groups feature Groups for Business service
Google Groups app (at groups.google.com) On Off
Available in users' App launcher *
Shows public and other external groups * *
Shows your organization's Internal groups  

* Available only if the Google Groups additional service in your Admin console is on

How groups can be used    
Email and distribution lists, sharing, calendar invites
Configuration group for making Admin console settings
Target audience for Drive and Docs sharing
Collaborative Inbox  
Group conversations with additional features  
Who can create groups    
Administrators with the Groups privilege
Internal users (if allowed by your settings)  
External public (if allowed by your settings)  
Options for managing group membership    
Add members directly
Manage members dynamically, such as by department
Bulk member management via API or syncing with an LDAP server
Add external members to a group
Invite users to join a group  
Allow non-members to request membership  

Step 2: Learn where to manage your organization's groups

Skip this section if you turn off Groups for Business. In that case, all internal group management is in your Admin console.

If you turn on Groups for Business, you can manage your organization's groups from either the Admin console or the Google Groups app. Each place lets you manage the same groups, but you may have to go to one place or the other to use a particular feature.

Here's a breakdown of what you can do where.

  • Admin console—At the Homeand thenGroups list (unless otherwise noted)
  • Google Groups—Opened from the App launcher or at groups.google.com
Administrator task Admin console Google Groups
Create new groups for these uses    
Email lists, sharing, calendar invites, moderated discussions
Collaborative Inbox
Target audience for Drive and Docs sharing *  
Configuration group for making Admin console settings  
Manage a group's membership    
Add and remove members manually
Manage membership dynamically, such as by department  
Assign default roles to members (owner, manager, member)
Create and assign custom roles for a group  
View and manage group settings    
View your organization's groups
Update a group name or email address
Delete a group
Add a welcome message, auto-replies, and more  
Make a group a Collaborative Inbox  
Manage and moderate group conversations  

* Target audience groups are located at Directory and thenTarget audience, not at the main Groups list

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