We love HubSpot at Accelity. I personally work in the tool every day, we are a HubSpot partner agency and I even wrote a rap about HubSpot (nerd alert!) which turned into this gem of a video.
All that being said, HubSpot is not without its flaws, and while we do love HubSpot, we like to be transparent, too. That’s why I’m discussing a few changes HubSpot could make to improve its sales and marketing tools.
1. Adding more flexibility to sales and marketing dashboards
If you need a quick overview, the HubSpot dashboards will likely provide you with all you need when it comes to reporting. However, some companies need more.
For example, we recently had two separate clients ask us to add reporting “widgets” that would allow them to drill down on contacts directly from the dashboard. Because our clients don’t typically go into HubSpot often (as we manage the tool for them), having this information readily available on the dashboard would save them time and avoid confusion. However, we found the widgets were limited and didn’t fully offer the solution they needed.
There are workarounds to get them the exact information they wanted. When you dig into the reporting of each individual “module” in HubSpot, you’ll find a plethora of information and quality reporting on the marketing side. However, allowing for more dashboard flexibility would take this tool from great to outstanding.
2. Bulking up HubSpot Sales reporting
Similar to my first point, we’ve found that HubSpot Sales reporting doesn’t always offer enough detailed information.
Here’s some background—HubSpot Sales is a truly awesome tool, especially once you have access to the Professional Level (only $50 a month). This is because you’re able to send account based marketing emails (also known as 1:1 emails) directly from HubSpot. The benefit? You have the ability to:
- Track emails you’d normally send via Gmail or Outlook365, so you know when someone opens or clicks your email
- Send 1:1 marketing messages so it looks like they come directly from you
- Automate your sales emails so they drip on qualified leads—saving sales time so they can do more selling
So, back to my initial point—while HubSpot Sales is a great tool, the reporting is lacking. When we send 1:1 emails, we want to know who is engaging with them. Currently the reporting functionality doesn’t have an easily accessible way to see this information. At times, this makes it difficult for sales to grab the information they might need to follow-up with prospects in a quick manner.
That being said, HubSpot Sales reporting offers high-level metrics. So, if you simply need a high-level overview of how effective your 1:1 campaigns are, you’ll be set. Not everyone stops at high-level reporting, though, so HubSpot could improve user experience by drilling down a bit more to provide more detailed analytics on the sales side.
3. Building out CRM capabilities at the free level
HubSpot CRM is great for most startups and small businesses (and HubSpot in general is a no-brainer for startups). However the CRM is light and lacks integration features unless you’re a paid user. Additionally, the CRM doesn’t allow for automation capabilities unless you’re paying for it. While the monthly fee for these pieces is small, many early-stage startups are on a shoestring budget.
If you have trouble setting up the CRM, you may also run into support issues. HubSpot has a great support team, but there are times you may get directed to forums or user community sites instead of connecting directly with HubSpot. Though this is very typical for free tools, it’s a turn-off for some users, and is something to take note of if you’re shopping for CRMs.
Overall, we’ve found that the pros of HubSpot massively outweigh the cons. However, HubSpot can take its marketing and sales tools to the next level by offering more robust capabilities that provide users with flexibility and ease of use.