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How to Use Zoom – Free Video Conferencing and Virtual Meetings

ZOOM is the most popular video conferencing software today. You can use it to host meetings, hold zoom interviews, and conduct video conferences. Also, the good thing about ZOOM videos is that you can use it on almost any device like a MAC or a PC or even an iPhone or an Android. 

Zoom is also really easy to use and really user friendly. You are simply given links and meeting id’s and you can start joining and creating meetings. This is why Zoom has risen to popularity these past months.

To get this amazing video meeting software, you can just look for words like “Zoom US Download” or “Zoom for Mac download” and you can easily get the Zoom setup software.

So here are some details on how to use Zoom.

If you’re using a MAC or a PC, all you have to do is go to your taskbar, search for the software then open it up. This will open up your zoom app on a windows laptop or your zoom for mac.

The Zoom interface.

Basically, you’ll notice that you have a Meeting ID that is unique to you. You can also see any previous meetings you have had and some options up at the top like Home, Chat, Meetings, and Contacts.


The first thing you want to do is to click on your face. 

Then you’ll see some basic information about yourself. All of this information is editable, so feel free to so do as necessary.

Zoom settings explained.

The settings page will have all the features needed to control your Zoom meetings. It is an intuitive way of customizing your zoom experience.

Under settings, you will see a bunch of options like Dual Monitors, or Enter in Full Screen when joining a meeting. If you prefer using a dual monitor or any of the other options here, feel free to check any of those boxes. 

You can also choose Themes. You can get a Light or Dark Theme. And then, you can also select Skin Tone.

Video – This section controls how your video is set up, as well as some interesting add-ons that make Zoom fun to use.

  • Once you select this section, a video preview screen can be seen. You will then see how others see you during meetings. You can now use this preview to make sure that the shot is exactly how you want it to be. 
  • The other option for video is that you can set it on a Facetime HD camera.  It’s a standard camera that comes with any IOS product and then you can also rip it on a widescreen in case you really like how that looks. 
  • Note: You can also check to enable HD. It just looks a lot nicer when you’re presenting or just having a one-on-one conversation with someone. 
  • An interesting feature is to touch up my appearance which just smooths your skin.

There are some other settings under Video — feel free to check any of these boxes that you want.  You can actually have a video preview before joining a meeting. This just gives you an opportunity to make sure that you look ok before your meeting.

Audio –  These are just standard set-ups – if you have an external mic or something like that, you can go ahead and you will see it in here. If you don’t have an external mic, you can select “Same as System” just to keep it very simple. 

Next, you may want to look at any of the settings down below and have all of the options checked like Join audio by computer when joining a meeting and Mute microphone when joining a meeting. This is useful because you don’t want anything that you may be saying to come across before you actually join a meeting. 

NOTE: Press and hold the space key to temporarily unmute yourself. By holding the spacebar again, you can go back on mute. This is a handy option since it eliminates that extra step of hovering your mouse over the mute button. There have been a number of times when there are meetings and people have been talking, only to realize that they didn’t take themselves off from mute. So, this is a really quick shortcut that will help make sure that doesn’t happen to you.

Share Screen – This is super helpful when you would like to display some information that is on your hard drive or if you are giving a presentation. 

There are some options here like scale to fit shared content to the zoom window. It means that even if you are showing a large document, zoom will try to minimize that window to your screen. This greatly helps during zoom screen sharing. 

You can also silence system notifications when sharing your desktop. This is really useful especially if you are the presenter.  You don’t want notifications like meeting notices, and stuff like that, to flash across the screen while you’re presenting.

Chat – This feature is really neat because it allows people in the meeting to provide feedback or make comments in real-time.

The other options under the Chat feature include other options like “Change my status to Away when I’m inactive for 15 minutes.”  You can also manage blocked users here.

Virtual background – Maybe, your room is messy, or you forgot to pick up something, or maybe, you just don’t want people to know what’s inside your house especially since everybody is using ZOOM these days. The virtual background is an awesome option where you can place an image as your background on the zoom video.   

  • You can download pictures of conference rooms, office environments to have a more professional approach to your videos. If you would like something fun, you can try and download images of beaches or tourist spots.
  • Zoom’s virtual background is pretty good as far as tracking your movement is concerned. There may be times that the image becomes a bit pixelated, but have a flat single colored backdrop should fix this. 

The virtual background is not perfect, but it’s pretty neat. And you can also add your own videos as a meeting background.  Note that you  can turn the virtual background ON or OFF depending on your preference.


Recording –  This is useful for meetings because you can backtrack and make sure that you have all of the information captured during a zoom meeting.

  • If the person on the other end also needs to view the information later, you can record the meeting and put it in a shared location.
  •  You can save your recorded videos either on your desktop or specialized folder. 

Profile – The profile zoom section where you can change your subscription and edit your information.

Statistics –  This is also available under settings but it’s more of the technical side of things.

Keyboard Shortcuts – Basically, if you’re using a MAC, it’s going to tell you all the shortcuts that you need for MAC. And if you’re on a Windows computer, then it’s going to have all those corresponding Windows shortcuts for you to go ahead and learn. This way, you don’t always have to go through the menus in order to figure out or find the things that you’re looking for.

Accessibility – The last feature on zoom which is really helpful. The options are really interesting because you can add subtitles or for the closed captioning, you can adjust the size of the text. 

Depending on the computer screen you may be on, the test can really be so tiny and it’s really helpful to know where to go to make the text much bigger so that you can actually read it. The same way with the Chat – sometimes, the text inside the chat is really so tiny, that’s why there are accessibility settings which can help.

Now that we are done with the zoom admin dashboard, we can now actually start using the product.

How to join or host a zoom meeting?

To join meetings, there is usually a link given to you that you just click.  You can also send the same link by looking for a “Copy Invitation” on the main dashboard.

If you want to start a meeting, you will just click on START. You then become the host of that meeting and people can join when you give them the link you copied on your invitation.

How secure is Zoom?

Another thing you need to know is that recently, ZOOM updated their security mainly because there was something known as ZOOM bombings. Zoom bombings are where people with nothing else better to do would join meetings that they weren’t invited to and put graphic images up.

For security, basically, you see all these different options here. And you can lock your meeting, so that way – no one else can join your meetings after it has already started.  And you can also control what the participants do.

How do I disable videos on zoom meetings?

Lastly, you can mute yourself or turn your video cameras off and on from the buttons on the lower left-hand side of the meeting.


So I hope that these Zoom 101 tips have been helpful. These are just the basics for Zoom users.  and for more detailed instructions on using Zoom, you can watch the video.

Note: Software changes frequently and some of the screenshots may look different over time. 

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