Do you need a system to manage everything from your customers, data, communication, to deals, on-boarding, and appointments, etc.? Then, you need good CRM software.
Nowadays, everything is digital, and managing business is a challenge. Because customers’ data, conversations, products are online. So, sales, marketing, and support teams have to juggle a lot to get accurate data quickly.
So, a CRM can put your business ahead in the competition. It will be a secure, smooth, and simple business management tool, period.
Especially for small to medium-sized businesses, CRM software makes the entire process seamless. That’s why 91% of companies with >11 employees use CRM now.
At the core, CRM software like HubSpot can streamline the business functioning.
You might also be using one in your organization or heard from fellow entrepreneurs about the CRM.
Here’re some solid reasons why we need tools like HubSpot to maintain and enhance our commercial activities:
● The Need for HubSpot and Other CRM Software
○ Small Business has too much in their plate
Small businesses already have a few people working daily. Therefore, very few people oversee essential activities like marketing, sales, support, production, etc.
So, these guys have to ensure that they complete the tasks in the given deadline and also maintain the quality of the work.
For example, a single person in SMB also has to send out emails to 100 customers and also look for quality control of the production.
So, a CRM can release this headache and help the individuals execute multiple tasks efficiently.
○ They lack a system
Small businesses usually don’t have a centralized system where they can access all the data. Even if they have, they are using local computers, documents, spreadsheets, etc. which are not quickly accessible.
So, if the owner wants to know how much money the business has made in the last quarter, they would either have to calculate on their own or ask someone from the staff to do it for them.
So, a cloud-based CRM software will be a lifesaver. It will not only store the data but also help teams prioritize and execute future tasks and update the status anytime.
○ They need to improve their marketing
To execute profitable campaigns, brands need to know what users are currently seeing from them and the results of on-going marketing activities.
Marketers need to know the sales figures to forecast the prospects’ current mindset and how to create winning campaigns.
That’s when the CRM comes into play. It provides all the necessary data and real-time results that make improving marketing efforts easy and quick.
Moreover, marketing and sales teams will have a single-stop solution to store and access all the required data.
○ They want to close more sales
To close better sales, teams need to have clear data to determine the current sales figures.
A CRM may provide marketing automation tools that execute manual tasks on its own. Sales and marketing teams have to give some inputs to automate specific tasks without them having to interfere with every conversation.
○ The owner needs to evaluate the teams’ performance
As an owner, you need to know how people are operating in your organization:
- Are they completing their tasks?
- Are they generating intended results?
- Who is working on which project?
- What are the deadlines?
- What did the client say?
- How has the customer responded?
You must know these answers to monitor and improve your company’s structure towards growth.
● What does HubSpot offer
HubSpot is a robust online software that gives you more than just a CRM software.
You can plan, evaluate, and optimize your marketing, sales, customer support, and website management tasks with HubSpot CRM.
You get detailed reports to make informed decisions. You can assess the performance of campaigns, teams, and products within a single dashboard.
Let’s look at free HubSpot CRM, Marketing Hub, Sales Hub, CMS Hub, and Service Hub in detail.
○ FREE HubSpot CRM
As the name goes, Free HubSpot CRM provides a complete CRM solution to store customers’ data and oversee inbound marketing activities for your business.
Under the free CRM, you also get free features for marketing, service, and sales.
You can plan, create, and deploy marketing, sales, and service activities while maintaining a centralized communication system within your team.
You get marketing and sales automation features and chatbot support to talk to your prospects.
With the free version of HubSpot, you also get several features.
You have secured storage for unlimited users’ data. You can store their message, email address, names, and almost everything that you had asked for in the frontend.
You can invite unlimited users to use HubSpot CRM. This way, you can club your entire team together.
Free HubSpot CRM lets you integrate your email communications to Gmail.
You get list segmentation, email marketing, forms, conversation inbox, live chat, mobile optimization, reports, etc. within a free plan.
HubSpot provides you enough features to beginners who understand their customers and improvise their inbound marketing efforts without going for a free plan.
○ CMS Hub
CMS Hub has been added recently to HubSpot. CMS stands for a content management system to manage websites and their content.
HubSpot’s CMS Hub enables responsive themes and web elements that can give you attractive landing pages and high converting elements that are responsive on tablets, smartphones, laptops, and desktops.
The CMS Hub takes away the pain of depending on the developer, changing content, adding elements, implementing different colors, and editing user interface.
With the drag-and-drop page builder, everyone involved, including web developers, can implement changes rapidly on the website.
CMS Hub also suggests you SEO changes with its inbuilt tools ensure that you can attract relevant users to search engines for free.
If you are running out of time to create your designs, you can use high-converting themes and content blocks provided by HubSpot. This will save you a lot of time and hard work.
○ Marketing Hub
Marketing Hub gives you a platform for end-to-end inbound marketing activities.
It can automate your lead generation, nurturing, and closing activities and give robust reports to assess the performance.
Within Marketing Hub, you can plan and schedule persuasive blog content and whitepapers that your customers need. You can communicate with writers and know whether the blog is mobile-friendly.
Then, you can build hooks to make people visit your landing pages.
Based on users’ location, gender, device, etc., you can provide a customized landing page.
You can implement responsive forms with just a single click. You can make the required changes in your landing pages’ content without any web developer or designer.
You get real-time SEO tips and recommendations from the tool to make your landing pages optimized for search engine result pages. This way, you can attract organic traffic without doing tiresome SEO research.
You can draft, automate, and schedule a sequence of email conversations that eventually give you more leads, booking, leads, and sign–ups.
With email marketing by Marketing Hub, you can also implement effective follow-ups to stay in touch with your targeted prospects.
We’re not done yet. With Marketing Hub, you can create comprehensive reports to monitor inbound marketing efforts.
○ Sales Hub
Salespeople will understand the hard work required to keep track of all the activities and get the necessary data to create subsequent sales planning.
If there is no system, the sales team will have no idea how to grow the organization and close more deals.
With Sales Hub, you can automate your outreach and follow up emails and save hours.
You can execute chatbots and effective popups to capture more leads and schedule more meetings with prospects.
You can create a pipeline where you will get a visual idea of the navigation of your website.
You will know users visit which pages after landing on your page. You can go omnichannel and keep pursuing them with relevant emails based on their browsing activity on your website. Most importantly, all of these tasks are automated.
Managing communications between sales teams are never more efficient.
You can create separate processes as statues in HubSpot, as shown in the image above. You can create different task cards and assign them to relevant team members.
As soon as things are done, your team member can update the status by dragging-and-dropping the card to a relevant state.
You get a comprehensive user interface to monitor your sales activities and forecast the profit estimates. With this, you get accurate numbers to evaluate your actions and improvise your system.
○ Service Hub
When you grow your business, the flow of customer inquiries also increases.
You need a robust system to interact with all the customers. If you have a system that can only entertain a few users per month, the remaining ones will feel disgusted and may never contact you again.
With HubSpot Service Hub, you can effectively take care of customer support.
Remember that in this era where there are so many companies competing with the same services, their customer support becomes essential to thrive them. In fact, 51% of customers have stopped doing business after one negative experience.
Whenever a customer asks a question on email or live chat, they expect a right and quick response.
It’s your job to ensure that customer support is frictionless, and your teams do exactly what customers need.
To cut all the hustle, HubSpot provides Conversation Inbox where you can club your email, live chat, forms, Facebook Messenger, etc. in one inbox. This way, you get to check You can convert chats and emails into tickets and those tickets as per your requirement.
With Service Hub, you can provide a resource where users can help themselves. You can create a comprehensive knowledge base that your prospects will fall in love with. It will be a bible of your product where everything is answered.
To create such a great resource, you have to ensure what your users want. Therefore, HubSpot helps you determine what users search online. Based on the reports and analysis, you can create the content for your knowledge base.
This way, the FAQs will be answered effectively by the knowledge base.
Plus, you can run surveys for your existing customers to know how they like the product. You can add these surveys so effectively that users’ won’t feel they are being pursued or asked questions.
You can also provide custom offers and discounts to people who take part in the surveys.
● HubSpot Pricing
With the Free HubSpot CRM, you get marketing, sales, and service tools under one dashboard for effective advertising commercials and customer support activity.
But if you grow your audience and require more data, you can purchase a premium plan.
Marketing Hub has three plans — Starter ($40/mo), Professional ($800/mo), and Enterprise ($3200/mo).
Sales Hub has got Starter ($40/mo), Professional ($400/mo), and Enterprise ($1200/mo).
Service Hub has also got a Starter ($40/mo), Professional ($320/mo), and Enterprise ($1200/mo).
CMS Hub has two plans, Professional for $240/mo and Enterprise for $900/mo.
These are separate packages that you have to buy.
If you have specific requirements, you can go for Bundled packages by HubSpot.
Bundled packages have Starter ($50/mo), Professional ($1,275/mo) and Enterprise ($4,200). So considering you have 1,000 contacts to maintain, these bundles can make your purchasing process quick.
You can also create a bespoke bundle and decide which plan you need and pay for that only.
● HubSpot Pros
○ Too many features for free
With the free plan itself, you are getting a ton of useful features that can improve your inbound marketing.
You get a responsive CRM, live chat, chatbot, marketing, and sales tools to skyrocket your growth.
○ Robust email tracking, even in free version
HubSpot has a self-explanatory dashboard to track email marketing and other online marketing activities.
You can run personalized email conversations based on the activity that the user has done on your site.
○ Complete customizations
HubSpot provides an essential structure for CRM software. But it also allows flexibility to make necessary changes as per your requirements.
You can create a bundle for yourself and choose precisely what you need and pay for those features only. This way, HubSpot gives complete control to the users.
○ Integration between marketing and sales databases
This is the most powerful advantage of HubSpot CRM.
Marketing, sales, and customer support are three different teams and departments in each organization.
All of them have to be in sync so that the end-user gets a delightful experience while interacting with the brand.
With HubSpot CRM, all the data of sales, marketing, and services are synchronized brilliantly. And that makes a powerhouse of a tool for the businesses.
○ Supports other CRMs and tools
You can integrate the HubSpot CRM with other CRMs to create a robust system for your agency.
You can connect with Eventbrite, Wistia, SurveyMonkey, Zendesk, etc.
○ Use it for free until you’re ready to grow
On the plus side, HubSpot offers an unlimited trial period.
HubSpot does not provide you limited time to experience the tool and push you towards the paid plan. Use the tool as long as you want for free, and only upgrade if you need advanced features.
○ Can work with Gmail
You can access emails in your Gmail, the favorite email client of many of us.
● HubSpot Cons
○ Steep Price and even steeper price increases
When you plan to unlock more features, you have to pay a lot of money to HubSpot.
As your business grows and you suppose you want to upgrade to Professional from Starter, the price is too costly to be afforded by some organizations.
○ Some organizations might not find the features sufficient
Many organizations also want to schedule social media posts, along with emails. But unfortunately, that is not possible with HubSpot.
You cannot cover other leading digital channels like PPC and social media with HubSpot.
○ Lack of flexibility in some areas
Sometimes users have to stick with the UI/UX provided by the tool.
You cannot completely change the interface to make it most suitable for your needs. So, in this respect, HubSpot lacks flexibility.
● HubSpot vs. Salesforce
Salesforce is a more customizable CRM compared to HubSpot, which focuses more on inbound marketing activities and content management.
Salesforce is for lead capturing and managing the data. The tools are also made for effective persuasion in Salesforce.
Hubspot allows you to edit specific fields within a lead, deal, or contact.
You can play with specific demographics like industry, gender, and country.
Salesforce gives a more comprehensive approach and advanced rules to automatically not only capture the leads but also add them to a specific marketing list.
Plus, you can implement specific rules so that only authorized users can see the required data.
This way, you can club your entire team while keeping some of the areas confidential to required people; that will make uncluttered UI for each team member.
Having said that, Salesforce does charge a premium amount compared to HubSpot.
You are paying $25/user/month for the Essentials Plan of Salesforce. If you are on a tight budget, then I would not recommend Salesforce to you.
● Final words for HubSpot
Hubspot is a great CRM software for small to medium-sized businesses that want to start online.
It is a robust lead generation and content marketing tool for small businesses that do not have a platform to plan, execute, monitor, and optimize their inbound and content marketing activities.
HubSpot boosts them to achieve exponential growth online, period.
Let me know what you think about HubSpot after reading this blog. If you have any questions regarding the tool, feel free to drop them in the comments below.
If I’ve forgotten to add something in this blog, feel free to mention it in the comments below.
Either way. Let me know what you think about the blog.