HubSpot consistently ranks as a top customer relationship management (CRM) software solution, and these high ratings don’t happen by accident.
HubSpot has an impressive list of features that make it a powerful choice for those businesses and organizations that need the benefits of CRM software to manage current clients and find new clients.
It has one of the most comprehensive free editions among CRM solutions in the market, which will adequately meet the customer management needs of some businesses.
For those who need more powerful features, HubSpot’s subscription tiers provide highly competitive offerings for businesses of all sizes and in all industries.
We have consistently ranked HubSpot as the top product among the best CRM software. That doesn’t mean HubSpot is perfect, though. We’ll break down the good and bad features found with HubSpot (but mostly good).
HubSpot Pros and Cons
- Surprisingly powerful free version with no trial period
- Easy to upgrade from free tier to paid tiers
- All-around solid package for a CRM
- Easy to use and intuitive
- Excellent help features
- Integrates closely with email accounts
- Helps with social media campaigns
- Focuses on business growth features
- Easy to generate performance reports
- Integrates with dozens of third-party products
- Can record and save calls with clients
- Especially helpful for startup organizations
- Price adds up quickly for extra features and products
- Pricing tiers can be tough to understand
- Huge organizations may not need its features
- Using advanced features requires a learning curve
- Free version lacks sales and marketing features
- Live customer service could be better
How HubSpot Compares to the Top CRM Software Solutions
HubSpot is our top-ranked CRM software for a variety of reasons. We appreciate the way HubSpot can tailor its feature set to match the needs of team members and employees based on their particular job requirements.
Additionally, HubSpot sets itself apart by offering a completely free tier for its software rather than just a free trial. HubSpot’s free version isn’t overly powerful, but it’s a great way to start for small businesses. If you like the free version of HubSpot but outgrow it, you can easily upgrade your plan.
If HubSpot doesn’t meet your needs, here are a few other top CRM options:
- Salesflare focuses on B2B sales features. It tracks every interaction with a potential client, pulling relevant information from those conversations to give your salespeople a boost in their communications capabilities. HubSpot has more of an all-around focus for managing customer relationships, rather than focusing on B2B sales as much as Salesflare does.
- Zoho CRM offers packages like accounting and inventory management software to help small businesses manage all aspects of the operation. If you already use other Zoho software in your organization, it’s easy to add Zoho CRM. Although HubSpot has a wide range of software features and packages, it doesn’t have native accounting and inventory management options.
- Salesforce has many similarities to HubSpot in terms of the variety of services it offers to its customers. One of Salesforce’s best features is its ability to deliver detailed analytics to its clients, helping them determine the precise areas of success in their marketing and sales campaigns.
- Insightly contains the ability to perform project tracking, ensuring that team members are always aware of tasks that need attention and where projects stand. HubSpot also offers basic project management software as an add-on tool to its CRM suite, but Insightly’s project management features work a little more like high-end project management software.
HubSpot’s Team Size
CRM software brands are available for almost any business size, whether only a few people will be using it or a large enterprise needs help managing customer relationships.
HubSpot provides the highest level of benefit for small and medium businesses, although almost any size of company can make use of it. One reason why so many small companies love HubSpot is due specifically to their free version. It has enough features to allow companies with little to no budget to set up email marketing campaigns (with tracking), manage workflows, and contact management.
HubSpot’s feature set may not work well for giant organizations, as it has limited integrations with other tools and little flexibility. Also, the package costs can get pricey for the higher tiers for bigger businesses.
Despite it working extremely well for SMBs, it is important to note that many large businesses do take advantage of HubSpot’s CRM and seem to get great use out of it. These companies include Trello, BBC, Lucidchart, and the San Francisco Chronicle.
Among huge organizations looking for CRM software, Salesforce is a popular choice. It offers a few more advanced features than what HubSpot does for these types of enterprises, plus it lets a company have everything they need in one platform.
HubSpot has a robust set of features, giving it all of the capabilities you’d expect to find in one of the best CRMs.
HubSpot uses a series of “hubs” to create its CRM software. Organizations can choose to purchase the hubs individually to save some money or purchase all of the hubs together in a fully-featured package.
First, we’ll break down the features in each of the hubs. In the next section, we’ll focus on the pricing tiers within each hub and the prices for bundles.
HubSpot’s sales hub is the strongest in the HubSpot CRM package, delivering everything an organization could possibly want to help with sales lead generation and conversion.
With HubSpot, your salespeople can develop templates for generating sales-oriented email campaigns. They’ll be able to track the results of those emails, too, determining whether clients opened them.
A couple of features that set HubSpot Sales apart include:
- Call Recording: You can record calls with a client and store the audio files with the client’s information allows salespeople to always be up to date on any client’s account status. The Enterprise tier even includes call transcription capabilities.
- Sales Information: Through HubSpot, you can develop marketing materials that reflect your sales strategy and plan. By storing them in HubSpot, salespeople can easily access the marketing materials they can repeatedly use for consistency.
- Sales Pipeline: As you go through the work to generate sales leads, you don’t want to lose track of them because of an oversight. HubSpot tracks all interactions for you and develops reminders to make sure you don’t miss anything.
Some CRMs lack vital marketing tools, but HubSpot’s marketing hub has plenty of high-end features that help customers launch marketing campaigns. They can run entire campaigns from within HubSpot, simplifying the process.
Some of the areas where HubSpot helps with aspects of marketing include creating and tracking the success of ads, managing various social media accounts, developing a landing page that keeps clients interested, and publishing blogs and articles.
Once the marketing campaign is rolling, you can use several built-in analytics tools to see how the campaign progresses. Reports show areas where the marketing campaign is succeeding and where it is not working.
For smaller organizations that can’t hire a dedicated marketing team, these tools are invaluable. They help the organization make it seem as though it does have a marketing team managing the account.
If your organization needs to save money and doesn’t need the extensive marketing features found in HubSpot, Apptivo delivers basic email marketing capabilities at a reasonable price. Salesforce comes the closest to matching HubSpot’s marketing capabilities among the top CRMs.
After you’ve used the sales and marketing hubs in HubSpot to develop a nice collection of clients, you need to be able to manage your interactions with those clients, ensuring you keep them happy and satisfied. Few things are as frustrating as investing significant time and expense to obtain a customer, only to lose that customer through poor customer service on your end.
HubSpot gives your front-office team the capabilities it needs to efficiently and successfully serve the customers you have.
Primarily, HubSpot generates tickets for requests from customers, ensuring no customer requests fall through the cracks.
HubSpot collects all of the communications from clients, whether they occur through chat, social media, email, or another source. This ensures that your team doesn’t miss any messages and that clients receive the service they deserve.
Content Management System (CMS)
As your organization grows, having the ability to deliver simple information to your clients and customers without the need to occupy your sales or support teams’ time can be critical.
One way to do this is through general information published to your website, which you’ll build through a content management system or CMS.
Through HubSpot’s CMS hub, you can create web pages with a built-in editor that’s extremely easy to use. By building your web pages in-house, you’ll save money versus hiring an outside development team. You’ll also be able to update the information as needed in very little time.
HubSpot delivers recommendations on SEO (search engine optimization) to make sure your web pages have the best chance of delivering the results you want.
Now, HubSpot’s CMS isn’t as feature-rich or powerful as a dedicated piece of CMS software, such as WordPress or Wix. But it handles the basics well, and HubSpot’s CMS is one of the best in the world of CRM software.
The operations hub handles integrations with third-party apps, simplifying the process of sharing data between HubSpot and the apps your organization uses.
This is HubSpot’s newest hub offering. It helps with the automation of data syncing and management.
As your organization grows, the amount of data entering the system from third-party apps can become overwhelming. The operations hub attempts to make managing this data far easier.
Pricing for HubSpot can be a little confusing. You can purchase individual hubs alone or buy a bundle to receive most or all of the hubs.
Within each individual hub, you also can select from multiple pricing tiers (including a free tier in some). All hubs have an Enterprise tier, where you’ll need to request a customized price quote. However, the Enterprise tier does have a free trial.
HubSpot doesn’t determine a price based on the number of users. Instead, it charges a flat fee for the services included within each tier.
Additionally, for startup organizations, HubSpot offers a specialized package at a significantly reduced price.
Within each pricing tier, you’ll receive the features from the previous tier, as well as some additional ones.
The free tier truly sets HubSpot apart from its competitors because it doesn’t have a trial period that will expire after 14 or so days. Some of the tools in the free tier include marketing, sales, and customer service features. You’ll have an email marketing tool and ticketing for customer service as well.
At any time, you can migrate from the free tier into a more robust subscription tier and migrate all of your settings and data.
- Starter: At $45 to $50 per month, you’ll receive some automation features, the ability to make calls through the software, and a reporting dashboard.
- Professional: At $450 to $500 per month, you’ll receive sales analytics, sales forecasting, and personalized sales campaign features.
- Starter: At $45 to $50 per month, you’ll receive some email marketing tools, targeted ad campaigns, and conversational bots.
- Professional: At $800 to $960 per month, you’ll receive SEO recommendations, social medial account management, and automated marketing campaigns.
Customer Service Hub
- Starter: At $45 to $50 per month, you’ll receive customer service ticket generation, conversational bots, and reports calculating service response times.
- Professional: At $360 to $400 per month, you’ll receive ticket pipeline tracking and surveys regarding customer experiences.
- HubSpot doesn’t offer a Starter tier in the CMS hub.
- Professional: At $270 to $300 per month, you’ll receive a webpage editor, SEO optimization tools, and automated security monitoring.
- Starter: At $45 to $50 per month, you’ll receive the ability to customize the data you’re receiving from your third-party app integrations.
- Professional: At $720 to $800 per month, you’ll receive a tool to scan the data, eliminating redundancies while automating some of the data collection and management requirements.
Bundled CRM Suite
With the fully bundled HubSpot CRM Suite, you’ll receive access to all of the free tools and each of the hubs mentioned earlier. You can customize your CRM Suite package to get the exact features you want. These bundles do require an annual commitment.
- Starter: Starts at $68 per month for 1,000 marketing contacts but does not include the CMS hub.
- Professional: Starts at $1,600 per month for 2,000 marketing contacts.
- Enterprise: Starts at $4,000 per month for 10,000 marketing contacts.
HubSpot integrates with most common tools and apps you may be using, including Gmail and Microsoft Outlook for email tracking.
With the free tier, HubSpot can pull data from several dozen third-party apps your organization already uses. You may need to subscribe to a paid tier in the operations hub for more extensive integration features.
To see all HubSpot’s integrations, visit the HubSpot App Marketplace.
HubSpot can create reports in various categories, including ad conversion, call conversion, email conversion, and the performance of the sales team or individual sales representatives.
HubSpot pulls data you entered into the software to create its reports. For customizable reports, you will have to upgrade to a paid tier. The free level does offer some basic report creation features, though.
It’s easy to recommend HubSpot. It earns its position as a top CRM through its robust feature set, easy-to-use interface, ability to serve a variety of businesses, and sales tracking capabilities. It keeps all of the team members on the same page regarding sales, marketing, and customer service, which is vital to the success of any organization or business.