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15+ Zoom Tips & Tricks for Top-Quality Meetings - Riverside.fm

Improve your recordings with our list of 15+ Zoom tips and tricks! We cover Zoom hacks for hosts and participants all the way through to lighting tips.
Kendall Breitman
Social Media & Community Expert
Published:
February 5, 2023
Last Updated:
December 27, 2023
15
min
Reviewed by
Ortal Hadad

Zoom is a hugely popular platform used for many types of remote meetings, from presentations to swapping ideas with colleagues. However, it might surprise you to know that you’re probably not using Zoom to its full potential.

By following tips about lighting, presentation, video resolution, and more, you can create a professional, top-quality Zoom meeting. 

Check out our list of 15+ Zoom tips that are sure to leave others impressed in your next meeting.

What are some Zoom tips?

The great thing about wanting to improve your Zoom meetings is that there are loads of tips that can help you. Zoom tips are handy suggestions such as setting up natural lighting, using breakout rooms, and sharing your screen.

These tricks can make it easier for participants to understand information and to keep their attention on a presentation. Knowing even a few Zoom tips can be very helpful when it comes to achieving high-quality meetings.

Zoom Tips & Tricks for 2024

We’ve compiled a helpful list of tips to make your next Zoom meeting a home run. Many of our suggested tips are simple actions you can take straight away to improve your meetings. So why not jump in and give them a go?

Zoom Presentation & Lighting Tips     

1: Sit facing a light source

Having your face to a light source such as a lamp or window is the best way to illuminate your features. This position will make you appear naturally well-lit and show your face clearly on a video call.

2: Use Zoom’s low-light feature

 Recording in a dim space can make it very difficult for others to see you. It can also reduce your video quality, and even make you look unprofessional. Thankfully, Zoom has a fix for this. 

Head to your Zoom settings, click on Video and then enable Adjust for low light. This feature will automatically lighten your appearance. 

3: Add a virtual background

Using a background on Zoom is a simple and very effective way to transform the appearance of your space. This can be particularly helpful if you are in a small room, or a location that doesn’t suit the nature of your meeting.

Adding a background in Zoom is straightforward. In a meeting, find More in the controls, then go to Background and Effects. From there, you can choose a background to apply.

Make sure that the background you use suits the tone of your meeting. For example, you could have the image of an office space or bookshelf behind you if you are conducting a professional interview.

4: Use a ring light

Tired of pesky shadows covering your face during video calls? If it’s within your budget to buy a good quality ring light, this piece of equipment can be a game changer. Ring lights help you achieve a consistently bright and clear appearance on camera. This can ensure you record high-quality videos no matter the time of day.

5: Wear the right clothes

You might be tempted to wear a bright or patterned outfit on a Zoom call to stand out on video. However, very bold colors and styles can cause you to clash with your background, or be difficult to look at on a 2D screen. The best option to go with is a smart outfit – avoid sweatpants or pajamas – in block colors. Ideally, choose clothes that do not blend in with your skin tone, and avoid fluorescents to look your best.

6: Have good posture

Posture is one of those things we tend not to think about enough. But sitting up straight or slumping over can make the difference between looking professional or sloppy on a video call.

First impressions count, so make sure your posture conveys confidence in your next meeting. Keep your shoulders back and your hands in your lap during a call. Avoid gestures like rubbing your nose or scratching your face, and make sure to keep your chin up so your expression is visible.

Read more: Video Lighting: How to Setup & The Best Lighting Kits

Zoom Tips for Recording

7: Check your equipment works

A common pitfall of Zoom attendees is not checking equipment before a meeting starts. This can lead to awkward moments, like starting to speak and finding your microphone is switched off. A tip to avoid this problem is to make a list of your equipment to test before any meeting.

Your list might include the following: headphones, microphone, camera, laptop, and internet connection. When it comes to the device you will record on, such as your laptop or PC, it’s worth checking before a meeting that there are no planned updates that could disrupt your call.

8: Set up your camera properly

The correct position for your Zoom camera is at eye level, so it appears as though you’re looking people in the eye when you speak to them on video. This can be difficult to achieve with a built-in camera on a laptop or mobile. Consider investing in a simple tripod if you’re planning to conduct a meeting on a smartphone. This will make your video look stable, and you can position the tripod to frame you correctly. 

9: Preview your camera angle

Before diving into a meeting, take a moment to check how you look on camera. You can do this by going to the Video tab on Zoom. There, you will see a preview of your on-camera appearance. Make sure all of your face is visible in the frame, as well as your shoulders and the top of your chest.

10: Make sure your internet connection is strong

Before you join a Zoom meeting, you should always check the strength of your internet connection. For a high-resolution video call, you should have at least a 10Mbps download speed. You can test your internet speed quickly and for free by typing ‘internet speed test’ into Google and pressing Run Speed Test.

There are some things you can do to improve a weak connection. With a smartphone or laptop, move to different areas in your location to try to find a spot with better bandwidth. If this doesn’t work, or you’re unable to leave a specific place, check the location of your router. It should be at least 5 feet off the floor, and not positioned behind solid objects like a bookcase to ensure the best internet connection.

Read more: How to Record Zoom Meetings With or Without Permission

Zoom Tips for Sound Quality

11: Wear headphones or earbuds

The best thing you can do to hear others clearly on a Zoom call is to wear a pair of headphones for crisp audio. Noise-canceling headphones are best, as they reduce the amount of background noise that gets recorded.

While many people enjoy wearing headphones for comfort, earbuds are another great option for Zoom meetings as they are more subtle. If you’re struggling to choose the right pair for your recording, take a look at some of our headphone recommendations.

12: Use a high-quality microphone

Many of us tend to use the built-in microphone on our webcam or laptop in Zoom meetings. While this can be a practical budget-friendly option, if you’re able to invest in a high-quality microphone it makes a world of difference to video recordings. Dedicated microphones will pick up clear audio. To find a microphone that suits your needs, check out this handy list of computer microphones we have compiled.

13: Reduce background noise

When joining a Zoom call, it’s easy for us to forget background noises that we might have grown used to. This includes whirring fans or loudly ticking clocks. However, even if the sound doesn’t seem intrusive to you, it can come across very differently in a virtual meeting. Close your windows and turn off any devices you’re not using to reduce background noise on Zoom. You can also use Zoom's background suppression, but be weary that this may affect how your audio sounds.

Zoom top to use background noise supression
Learn more: How to Improve Your Audio Quality on Zoom with 7 Easy Tips

 Zoom Tips for Hosts

14: Mute participants who are not speaking

Some of the most common interruptions in Zoom meetings can happen unintentionally. Coughs, sneezes, background conversations, and mutterings can all come through the microphone of an unmuted participant. The participant may have forgotten to mute themselves, and might not even be aware of the noises they are making. Be sure to mute them by viewing the list of participants in your toolbar, then selecting who to mute or unmute.

15: Manage participants

One of the features of Zoom is allowing hosts to manage their participants. It’s helpful to remember that you can stop a participant’s video and even rename them, for example, if their name is incorrect or inappropriate. You can also manage a meeting by locking it so nobody else can enter, or place participants into a waiting room if you’re not ready for them to join the meeting yet. Managing participants in these ways can streamline your meeting and make for a more professional environment.  

16: Keep an eye on the chat

With so much going on in a virtual meeting, it’s easy to forget some of the elements of Zoom. This includes the chat function, which participants often use to voice questions and feedback. It’s important to check the chat regularly so that you don’t miss anything important. Make sure the chat window is expanded on your screen. You can set up reminders on your computer or phone to ensure you look at the chat throughout a meeting.

15: Share your screen

Sharing your screen with other participants is a great way to show visual information to a group. This can help you make a presentation or explain a certain topic. You can share your screen by clicking the screen share icon in your meeting controls toolbar, at the bottom of your screen. The icon is a green rectangle with a black up arrow inside. You can then share your desktop as a whole or a specific window.

16: Use breakout rooms

As the host of a meeting, it can be a helpful managing tool to break participants up into groups. This way, each group can discuss a specific topic. You can achieve this by using Zoom’s breakout rooms feature. Simply click on the breakout rooms icon in a meeting – it’s a grid with four brown squares. From there, you can choose how many breakout rooms you need, and assign participants to each one. Another option is for Zoom to automatically split up your participants evenly into breakout rooms. 

Zoom Tips for Participants

17: Use the reactions feature

If you have a question or comment to make, a great way to catch the eye of the host is by raising your virtual hand. To do this, just go to the toolbar at the bottom of your screen and locate the Reactions icon on the right. By hovering over this, you can choose from a number of reactions. Raising your hand will suggest the host should call on you to speak.

You can use the other reaction emojis such as the heart or clapping hands to respond to what participants say. This can be a great way to congratulate a colleague on a job well done or smile at a joke. Just be careful not to overuse the reactions, as all participants in a meeting will see them.

18: Look your best

It can be hard to appear well-presented in a virtual space. How we look in real life may not always be how we appear on screen. Luckily, Zoom has a helpful feature to instantly improve the way you look on camera. Go to your settings, and you’ll find a Touch up my appearance tool there. Turning this option on will slightly enhance your appearance, evening out your skin tone on camera and showing you in a softer light.

Zoom Tips for Video Higher-Resolution 

To achieve Zoom videos that stand out and look professional, you’ll need to record in high resolution. This can be easier said than done if you don’t know where to begin. However, if you want to record eye-catching videos, you’re in luck. We’ve got a few great Zoom meeting tips to optimize your video quality.

19. Enable HD on Zoom by clicking the Video tab in settings

There, you can turn on HD. You can then record high-resolution videos of 720p or 1080p. You will still need to meet Zoom’s bandwidth requirements to use HD, and you must have a Zoom Pro account or higher.

20. Adjust your Zoom settings for low light

One of the causes of poor-quality videos is recording in dim lighting. If you’re recording in a dark environment, access your Zoom settings, click on Video and then enable Adjust for low light. This will brighten your video, giving you a clearer picture.

21. Record with separate audio tracks

This gives you more editing control as you’ll have the flexibility to adjust one audio track without affecting any of the others. It’ll be easier to remove unwanted sounds and speakers overlapping. To enable separate audio tracks, go to Settings, then Recording, and check the box beside ‘record a separate audio file for each participant’.

22. Use an alternative platform with high-resolution capabilities

Riverside is a great option to invite participants, hold and record meetings. You can record videos of up to 4K resolution with Riverside, as well as clear, uncompressed audio. 

Unlike Zoom, Riverside doesn’t depend on your internet speed for recording video in high quality. Riverside offers local recording, which means all files are safely captured directly on your device. You can download separate video and audio tracks for each participant, whereas on Zoom you can only record separate audio tracks. Find out more about what Riverside offers you on their homepage, or sign up for free to start recording quality meetings effortlessly.

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Read more: 10 Best Zoom Alternatives & Competitors for Call Recording (2024) 

Bonus: Zoom Meeting Dos & Don’ts

There are many mistakes people fall into during Zoom meetings, from forgetting to mute themselves to having background noise during their call. Before you join your next Zoom meeting, run your eyes over this simple list of Dos and Don’ts. By doing this, you can set yourself up for success in your next video call.

Dos

  • Brief and prepare your guests. Great meetings happen when everyone’s on the same page. Make sure your guests know the topic and purpose of your meeting and outline the points you will cover. This will make it easier for them to follow and engage with the discussion.
  • Check your equipment. Make sure your internet connection is strong, your camera is at the right angle, and your microphone works. Zoom’s Video tab shows a preview of your on-camera appearance.
  • Take the time to learn the platform. It can be easy to come off as unprofessional by making a mistake like not having your camera on, or not knowing how to screen share. Avoid these errors by practicing how to use the platform beforehand.
  • Limit background noise. Fans and noise coming through open windows may sound minor to you but can be a huge distraction on a call. Make your environment as quiet as possible.
  • Wear wired earbuds. Earbuds are great for reducing echo and improving how well you hear others. You can use both wired and wireless earphones to avoid sound leakage. However, wireless earbuds may cause you to experience some audio delays.

Don’ts 

  • Forget to charge your battery. There’s nothing worse than dropping out of a meeting when your phone or computer battery dies. Make sure you don’t miss out on the discussion by charging your device beforehand. Keep a charger nearby while you’re in the meeting, in case your device needs a boost.
  • Leave yourself unmuted when you’re not speaking. Even if you don’t talk over others, your microphone can pick up every sniffle or cough you make while someone else is talking. This can distract others and make you look less professional.
  • Leave lots of tabs open while recording. Not only can this slow your device down, but it could lead to revealing too much when you screen share. If you choose to share your screen, participants may see the tabs you have open.
  • Have bad posture. Be mindful of the way you are sitting and the gestures you make even when you’re not talking. Slouching or picking your nose will look sloppy to others on the call.
  • Wear extremely bright or patterned clothing. These types of clothes can make you hard to look at, especially if they clash with your background. Instead, try wearing neutral colors that contrast your skin tone and background. 

FAQs on Zoom Tips

How do I look more attractive on Zoom?

One way to look more attractive on Zoom is to choose your clothing wisely. You should wear clothes that make you feel confident and comfortable, avoiding pajamas and tracksuits. These can make you look less put together than a nice sweater or blazer. Make sure you are sitting with good posture, and not hunched over your computer.

You can also use Zoom’s Touch up my appearance tool in your settings. Enabling this feature will give your video a softer focus, smoothing out your blemishes and skin tone.

What color clothing looks best on Zoom?

Avoid wearing extremely bright or bold colors on video calls. These can dominate the screen and make you look washed out. You should also steer clear of colors very similar to your skin tone or background, as it can be harder to see the outline of your clothes on screen. Strong colors that are not too bright, including burgundy, navy, and dark green, work best on video calls. They can give you a confident, professional look.

What is the best position for a Zoom camera?

The best position for your camera during a Zoom call is at eye level. If you’re calling from a phone or laptop you might need to raise your device and prop it up to achieve this angle. At eye level, you can interact better with others in your meeting by appearing that you’re looking them in the eye. Look natural on screen by having the camera show a little more than your face, including your chest and the tops of your arms. 

Do I look at the camera during a Zoom meeting?

Although you may need to look at your screen during a Zoom meeting to read the chat and see people’s reactions, you should alternate this with looking into the camera. It’s important to look at the camera during a Zoom meeting to create a sense of eye contact with others in the call. 

Should I get a ring light for Zoom? 

A ring light can enhance your appearance on Zoom. This is because ring lights reduce the shadows on your face so that you appear clearer and brighter. Getting a ring light for Zoom can make you look more professional on video. You do not have to buy a ring light to achieve a good quality video on Zoom, but if you’d like to try one out it can quickly and easily improve your on-camera appearance.

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