How to Raise a Virtual Hand to Get Noticed in Zoom Meeting

Zoom has become an essential tool for meetings, webinars, and events in the virtual world. With in-person gatherings limited due to the pandemic, Zoom makes it possible to connect and collaborate online.

However, engaging in a virtual meeting comes with its own set of etiquette and best practices. One useful feature in Zoom is the ability to raise a virtual hand, signaling you want to speak or ask a question. Using this feature appropriately and effectively helps make meetings run more smoothly.

When Should You Use the Raise Hand Feature?

The raise hand feature serves an important purpose – allowing participants to indicate they want to contribute without interrupting the speaker or host. Here are some appropriate times to use the raise hand feature:

Asking a Question

If you have a question related to the current topic of discussion, raise your hand. This allows the host to call on you when there is an opening.

Providing Input

If you have expertise related to the discussion and want to provide additional insight, raise your hand. The host can then give you the floor to share your perspective.

Technical Difficulties

If you are experiencing any technical issues with audio, video, or screen sharing, raise your hand to notify the host. They can then help troubleshoot so you can fully participate.


The host may conduct polls or votes related to meeting agenda items. Raise your hand to cast your vote.

Best Practices for Raising Your Hand

When using the raise hand feature, follow these best practices:

Wait for an Opening

Only raise your hand during natural pauses in the conversation. Avoid interrupting while others are speaking.

Be Concise

When called on, clearly and concisely state your question or input. Avoid long-winded remarks, especially if others are waiting to speak.

Lower Your Hand

As soon as you have finished speaking, lower your hand. This keeps the queue visible for the host.

Use Good Judgement

Avoid overusing the raise hand feature, as too many interruptions can derail conversations.

Step-by-Step Guide to Raising Your Hand in Zoom

Raising your virtual hand in Zoom only takes a few simple steps:

On Desktop

  1. Click “Participants” at the bottom of the Zoom window
  2. Click “Raise Hand” at the bottom of the participants list
  3. A hand icon will appear next to your name that is visible to host
  4. To lower hand, click “Lower Hand”

On Mobile

  1. Tap “More” at the bottom right corner of the screen
  2. Select “Raise Hand” from the menu
  3. A hand icon will appear next to your name that is visible to host
  4. To lower hand, select “Lower Hand”

On Phone

  1. Press *9 on your phone’s dial pad to raise hand
  2. Press *9 again to lower hand

Alternative Ways to Get the Host’s Attention

If you are unable to access the raise hand feature, here are some other ways to notify the host:

Chat Function

Send the host or co-host a direct message that you have a question or comment. Wait for them to address you.

Audio Input

If your audio is enabled, say “Excuse me, I have a question,” during a pause. Wait for host to call on you.

Nonverbal Cues

Use hand gestures or hold up a physical sign that reads “Question” or “Comment.” The host may notice and call on you.


If the meeting chat is disabled, email the host directly with your question and ask them to address it when they can.

Zoom Etiquette Reminders

To keep Zoom meetings positive and productive for all, keep in mind:

  • Mute microphone when not speaking
  • Eliminate background noise and distractions
  • Listen attentively to whomever has the floor
  • Wait for appropriate pauses before raising hand
  • Be patient if host doesn’t call on you right away

Remember, a virtual hand wave may not come naturally at first, but with some practice it can be an effective way to participate. By following Zoom etiquette and using the raise hand feature appropriately, you can ensure your voice is heard in your next online meeting.