January 31, 2024
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HubSpot review

Alessia Armenise
Brand & Content manager

Looking for a new CRM? Not sure if HubSpot or folk is right for you? 

In this blog post, we’ll give you a quick overview of HubSpot and talk about their main target audience. We’ll also do an in-depth review of its capability as a CRM covering:

  • Integrations
  • Price
  • Pipeline management
  • Email marketing capabilities
  • Collaboration capabilities 
  • Limitations 

Quick overview of HubSpot

HubSpot is a customer platform with a suite of tools built for marketing, sales, customer service, and content management. It is well known for its free CRM product that has a solution for sales, marketing, operations, customer service and business owners.

HubSpot CRM

Who is HubSpot for?

HubSpot was built for several business functions, including sales, marketing, customer service and operations. It is also designed to help business owners, large and small as it scales with the business. 

Key features

  • Free forever plan 
  • Supports multiple business functions including sales, marketing and customer service in its CRM 
  • Can support B2B and B2C businesses 

Pros

  • HubSpot’s integration library gives you access to 500+ third-party applications including Zapier, Gmail, and more to customize your CRM
  • A few tools from HubSpot’s suite is available for free and included in the free version of the HubSpot CRM including their marketing sales and service hubs

Cons

  • The user experience is clunky and not intuitive. Expect a steep learning curve, and the need to block out time to train your team properly before you get started
  • Limited support options for customers on the free plan 
  • Limited features on the free plan mean that when you’re ready to scale, you’ll face some steep subscription fees

HubSpot review

Let’s take a closer look at HubSpot and its capabilities as a CRM.

Integrations

One of HubSpot’s greatest strengths is its application marketplace. It provides access to 1,526 applications to help you fully customize your HubSpot CRM. While impressive, the main drawback is affordability. If you want to fully customize your CRM, expect to incur additional costs such as an integrations consultant to help you get setup. 

Price plans

HubSpot’s free CRM is generous because it’s free, forever. Once you’re ready to scale be ready for steep price plans that start from $1786 per user per month on an annual subscription. If you’re looking for an enterprise plan, this starts from $5460 per user per month. 

Pipeline management

HubSpot offers free pipeline management software that allows you to customize your sales pipeline to match your internal sales process. However, this is limited to sales use.

HubSpot's pipeline management

Email marketing capabilities

HubSpot has an email marketing tool that allows you to build campaigns using a drag and drop method. You can use it to A/B test subject lines, design and personalize emails.  It’s AI writing tool is currently in public Beta mode.

HubSpot's email marketing template library

Chatbot feature

HubSpot offers a branded chatbot feature on its free plan that allows you to interact with customers on your website. You can remove the watermark on any paid plan. 

HubSpot's free chatbot feature comes with HubSpot branding watermark

Collaboration capabilities

HubSpot supports team collaboration by giving you control over shared views, reports and dashboards. You can also assign team members to a universal inbox to make sure the right people follow up on important business contacts.

Limitations

HubSpot is well-known for its poor user experience, thanks to the steep learning curve new users face. It can be challenging to use HubSpot from day one and customers have been known to block out time to train staff to use the platform fully. 

HubSpot’s pricing and plans

Let’s take a closer look at the price plans of HubSpot’s CRM.

HubSpot’s free forever plan

For businesses on a budget, HubSpot’s free plan is generous. The flip side to that is – when your business is ready to scale, you will face some steep price plans. While you’re on the free plan, you will have access to basic features from their sales, marketing and customer service hubs. It offers enough features for a new business just getting started.

Some features you can expect include: 

  • Contact management: Build views and run automated actions to keep your contacts and data organized.
  • Chatbot: Live chat feature for your website (includes HubSpot branding).
  • Lead capture forms: Online form builder that comes with conversion-ready forms.
  • Landing pages: Design and test landing pages with ease.
  • Email marketing: Email scheduling, reply tracking, team email and one shared inbox. Limited email health reporting. 
  • Contact list segmentation: The list segmentation criteria is limited to form submission data. But you can get 10 active lists, 1,000 static lists.
  • Dashboards: Up to 3 dashboards are available. With only 10 reports per dashboard.

HubSpot sales

HubSpot’s sales CRM helps businesses automate their sales process. Expect steep price plans and limited access to features.

Starter plan: $18 per user, per month. Suitable for two users.

Professional plan: $450 per user, per month. Suitable for five users.

Enterprise plan: $1,200 per user, per month. Suitable for ten users.

The features you get will vary depending on what plan you’re in. Each price plan includes everything in the free plan. 

Starter plan

For $18 per user, per month the starter plan provides all the basic sales tools your team needs to get started. You’ll get all the free tools with increased limits, including:

  • E-Signature
  • Repeating tasks and task queues 
  • Simple automation feature to trigger tasks and notifications as deal works
  • Conversation routing
  • Multiple currencies 
  • HubSpot provided phone numbers

Professional plan 

For $450 per user, per month the professional plan is more for teams that are looking for support to automate and scale their sales process. You can expect everything from the starter plan and the following:

  • Forecasting based on data from your contact database
  • Sequences that automate your outreach process
  • Playbooks to help you build a library of content and get recommendations for which one to use
  • Coaching playlists of your recorded calls
  • ABM tools such as company scoring and templates 

Enterprise plan

For $1,200 per user, per month the enterprise plan is for large organizations who are after flexibility and full control. It provides you to all the features from the starter and professional plan. You can also expect the following:

  • Advanced permissions that allow you to set granular permissions
  • Lead form routing so you can use forms to qualify leads and book meetings
  • Recurring revenue tracking so you can build detailed reports
  • Custom objects so you can store data and view custom object records
  • Conversation intelligence 

HubSpot marketing 

HubSpot’s marketing supports businesses to maximize their inbound campaign. 

Starter plan: $18 per user, per month on an annual subscription.  

Professional plan: $800 per user, per month on an annual subscription. 

Enterprise plan: $3,600 per user, per month on an annual subscription. 

There is also a one-off onboarding fee in addition to the above costs. 

Starter plan

The starter plan has all the basic features a business needs for inbound campaigns. It comes with everything in the free plan with increased limits, on top of the following:

  • 1,000 marketing contacts
  • Removal of HubSpot branding in the live chat feature
  • Forms including standalone and pop-up ones that can be embedded
  • Responsive landing pages built through a drag-and-drop system

Professional plan

The professional plan has all the features included in the starter plan, on top of the following:

  • 2,000 marketing contacts
  • Omni-channel marketing automation
  • Campaign reporting
  • Social media 
  • Custom reporting
  • Teams

Enterprise plan

The enterprise plan has all the features included in both the starter and professional plans, on top of the following:

  • 10,000 marketing contacts
  • Custom events, the ability to track unique actions on your website, app or other tools
  • Custom objects that allow you to store most types of data in HubSpot and use custom data for marketing automation
  • Control the access you give to content and data 
  • Multi-touch revenue attribution
  • Organize teams to reflect your organization’s structure

HubSpot customer service

HubSpot’s customer service hub provides help desk software.

Starter plan: $18 per user, per month. Includes 2 users.

Professional plan: $450 per user, per month. Includes 5 users.

Enterprise plan: $1,200 per user, per month. Includes 10 users.

Starter plan

The starter plan gives you access to all the features included in the free plan with increased limits, on top of the following:

  • Live chat widget on your website allowing you to chat directly with customers
  • Meeting scheduler through a link you can share with customers 
  • HubSpot support via email and in-app chat 
  • Conversation routing to help you automatically assign incoming chats to the right team members
  • Simple ticket automation that triggers customer emails when tickets are opened and closed
  • Digital payments feature that allows you to accept payment in USD only

HubSpot CRM Suite

If you’re after the full CRM suite, this option is perfect for you. It gives you access to marketing, sales customer service, content management and operation tools. A monthly plan starts from $50 per user, per month. An annual plan starts from $30 per user, per month. 

HubSpot vs folk

Frequently asked questions

Is it easy to get started with HubSpot?

HubSpot is known for its clunky experience and counterintuitive interface. New users are expected to block out several days of training to get started. 

Is HubSpot an affordable option?

If you’re after an affordable option, HubSpot’s free forever plan is one to consider. However, it may no longer be suitable once you are ready to scale due to its steep price plans. The tiered price system means that access to features are gated. 

Conclusion

HubSpot’s free CRM is a great alternative for businesses on a limited budget. However, it might not be for you if you’re looking for a CRM that can do the heavy lifting for you. At least, not without incurring a steep cost. With folk, you get a CRM that is intuitive to use from day one, and scales with you as your business grows. The best part? You won’t get caught out by any steep price plans. Try folk today, free.