We have a SharePoint Online that is currently used as an intranet. Now, we're considering using it as an extranet as well. The users invited to our extranet will be our customers.

I searched Google and read a lot about inviting external users to SharePoint Online. However, it seems that we need to configure SharePoint for external sharing.

What I would like to do is to add our customers to our AD and then just grant the customers access to our SharePoint via a SharePoint group.

In terms of licensing this seems to be ok - as the following sentence from Microsoft states: "External users means users that are not either your or your affiliates’ employees, or your or your affiliates’ onsite contractors or onsite agents."

But is it still ok to store these users in our AD? Or do we need to send invitations via the External User mechanism in SharePoint?

We have approximately 300 users we would like to add.

Thanks in advance.

1 Answer 1


We have used approach, creating an AD account for our external users and sync them to O365 site. We dont assign any license as they dont need any exchange account or access to other office products. These users will still get access to SharePoint site.

Please let me know if you need additional information.

  • Thank you for answering. We went ahead and used the same method as you described. Works perfectly. :-) Apr 21, 2017 at 7:08

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