When you say, “all-in-one marketing software”, you already know a few things right off the bat:
- It’s software, so why does it cost as much as a premium sedan?
- If it’s easy to use, why an Onboarding fee?
- When you buy Hubspot, is Inbound marketing way easier than it should be?
The answer? No one knows. By the time you know, you’d have ended up spending for an entire year of Hubspot’s mandatory annual pricing.
A while ago, I wrote on Hubspot and what I thought about it. I’ve worked (and I still do) with the Hubspot platform while I work with clients.
There are a few things that are awesome about Hubspot, if you forget Hubspot’s ridiculously expensive price tag for a moment:
- It’s a company that birthed Inbound marketing.
- Hubspot provides you with absolutely everything for Inbound marketing you need within a single platform without you having to spend on at least 17 other services, apps, and tools to make Inbound marketing work.
- You get Hubspot CMS, Hubspot CRM, landing pages, Website Builder platform, marketing automation, lead generation, lead nurturing, email marketing, lead analytics, social management, analytics, and more.
Now, let’s get to the price tag: Honestly, Hubspot is expensive for a small business.
You can go on all day about how you should think of Hubspot as an investment and how it’ll pay off over the long term, but it’s still expensive.
Hubspot is only software. It’s not like you are going to get blogging, content marketing, lead magnets, email automation, and every other piece of content written for purposes of marketing done for you.
Because all that writing? You’d have to do it yourself or hire a full stack agency or content marketers to write for you.
Hubspot won’t do any magic for you. The work involved with digital marketing? There’s just no escaping that.
For a fraction of the price of Hubspot’s software, you could get a full-stack agency to do complete digital marketing for you, even if you decide to tape 200 different platforms, plugins, SaaS Apps, and services together.
Hubspot CMS Vs WordPress
While Hubspot’s CMS does work, and for some people it might even be easier to use than WordPress, you just can’t beat the sheer versatility of WordPress. No, you just can’t.
Of course, there are better CMS solutions out there but you’d rather just stick to the ease of use, availability, security, dependability, and popularity of WordPress.
Using WordPress gives you incredible Choice:
- You can host your WordPress website with any hosting provider. Choose the best of the hosting in the world thanks to the likes of Kinsta, Flywheel, WPEngine, and others.
- You could use any email list building tool, social proof tool, sales funnels, and other popular marketing tools such as Sumo and OptinMonster. Each of those tools gives you unlimited potential to design and test your creatives the way you see fit.
- You have the freedom to switch tools, apps, and hosting providers when you want to. You are not stuck with any one company, you see?
If you had to drop Hubspot or cancel your plan, what would you do with all the content you’d worked to build upon Hubspot?
That’s something to think about.
Hubspot CRM Vs Other CRMs
Yes, Hubspot’s CRM is certainly an amazing tool to work with. But then, it’s a way for them to get you into their ecosystem of tools and services. There are certainly better CRM systems that work great for small businesses such as PipeDrive, Base, and many others.
Heck, you could hack Trello or Asana (project management systems) or even Gmail to make them work like CRM systems.
It’s true that Hubspot will make it all look like how all your Inbound marketing efforts are finally leading towards leads generated and sales.
In a single dashboard view, you can see how your inbound marketing efforts are working to get you the results you seek.
But with a little effort, you could make Google analytics do that too (Goals, anyone?).
You could mix and match. Play and experiment.
Do your own thing, you see?
Hubspot’s Limited Contacts
Hubspot’s pricing is set up in a way that it increases as your business grow. For simplicity sake, let’s just assume that “growth” for Hubspot relates to the number of active leads within your Hubspot lead database.
I find that severely limiting for a growing business.
I want to spend as less as possible while I make more in terms of revenue and profit.
I don’t want to spend more as my business grows, at least not for something like Software — the costs for which can remain more or less predictable and costs much less. Plus, I want the flexibility to drop a tool or two from my marketing stack when I want to. Or switch hosting if I wanted to.
Why am I expected to pay a bomb and stay married to it this way?
Hubspot Mandatory Onboarding Fee
Hubspot charges a ridiculous $3000 one-time for an onboarding fee, and I find that funny.
If hubspot is so complicated that it requires a $3000 onboarding fee to help clients understand “How Hubspot Works”, then a small business shouldn’t even be playing with this toy.
No business can afford to work with tools and software that have a steep learning curve (Infusionsoft also demands an onboarding fee that I don’t like and I am not a big fan of).
No, I don’t have $3000 lying around just to learn how software works. I should have had the privilege of learning it myself.
Hubspot is so confident about its platform that it even published a blatant workaround or a slew of alternatives to using Hubspot. They call it FrankenSpot.
I don’t think adding up the price for all those tools and software will come to a whopping $52,000 or more per year.
It’s ok to use WordPress for your Inbound marketing needs. It’s fine to tape together X, Y, or Z disparate systems, platforms, plugins, tools, and SaaS apps to make your marketing work. It’s alright to spend on 10 different services or tools.
I don’t see a big problem with duct tape marketing. I certainly don’t see a problem with “not spending on Hubspot”.
Also, read Ryan Masuga’s experience with Hubspot in detail:
What do you think?