Ontraport vs Hubspot 2020: The Definitive Comparison

Which is the Better Marketing Automation Software for Small Businesses – Ontraport or Hubspot?

Hubspot is a true powerhouse and offers everything that you will ever need for your small business – IF your business can afford the price tag.

Comparing Ontraport to Hubspot is a tricky task. They really do play in different leagues.

Whereas Ontraport is an affordable, powerful, all-in-one software that is capable of doing 95% of what a micro to midsized “small business” needs when getting started, Hubspot is a SUITE of powerful tools that can be mixed and matched according to the needs of a midsized to large small business – with a price tag that reflects that power.

In-depth Comparison by Certified Expert

Hi there, I’m Sarit Neundorf, and I’m one of very few people in the world who are Certified Experts for BOTH Ontraport AND Infusionsoft by Keap. I have used both platforms extensively in my own businesses, and I have helped hundreds of business owners with strategic planning, implementation and optimization on both programs. So, yes, I do know what I’m talking about…

             

In the small business automation ecosystem Hubspot is without any doubt positioned at the very top end. One step further up, and you’ll find yourself in the ecosystem of corporate level / enterprise level software. Hubspot is right there at the threshold between small businesses and corporate needs, and as such it can serve either larger small businesses or smaller corporations.

The price tag and commitment level for Hubspot are staggering, and are not for the faint of heart, and in my experience as a consultant for small businesses completely out of reach for most of the small businesses that I have worked with.

Hubspot serves the “SMB” segment. Usually that is being understood as “Small and Mid-sized Businesses”, and this is also how they like to position themselves officially.

However, according to a few sources, and when we take a look at the pricing options below, Hubspot is actually rather serving the “Medium-sized Businesses” or maybe “Smaller Medium-sized Businesses”.

Ontraport on the other hand serves small or “micro” businesses.

First of all, Hubspot is a SUITE of components that you can purchase separately and combine according to your needs:

These components are:

  • Hubspot CRM (free)
  • Marketing Hub
  • Sales Hub
  • Service Hub
  • Hubspot CMS

First things first – The Hubspot CRM:

The Hubspot CRM is FREE for everyone and forever, for unlimited users and up to 1 million contacts (that’s right, one million contacts and unlimited users! If you have one million contacts, then what are you still doing in the small business ecosystem? Get outta here!).

It is a robust CRM with plenty of features like:

  • Contact management
  • Contact website activity – what is it that a contact is doing on your website? Page views, form submissions, sales activity, and more.
  • Companies
  • Deals – manage, track and report the “deals” (aka “opportunities”) that the sales team is working on
  • Tasks & activities
  • Company insights
  • Gmail and Outlook integration
  • HubSpot Connect integrations
  • Custom support form fields
  • Prospects – gather intel about which companies are visiting your site
  • Support Ticketing – Log, track, organize and prioritize customer issues as tickets
  • Forms – as embedded or popup
  • Ad management – connect your ad accounts, create audiences dynamically
  • Conversations inbox – a shared team inbox for all incoming email and live
  • Reporting dashboards
  • Email tracking & notifications
  • Email templates
  • Canned email snippets
  • Documents – create a library of sales documents that your sales team can easily share with prospects
  • Calling – Call contacts through VOIP from inside your HubSpot account. Calls can even be recorded and auto-logged on the contact record.
  • Meeting scheduling – Share a link with customers that lets them see when you’re free and book meetings with you.
  • Messenger integration – capture contact information, have two-way communications with your contacts, create chatbots, and report on chat volume through Facebook Messenger.
  • Custom fields for contacts, companies and deals

So, if you’re only looking for a CRM, then this here may be all you will ever need, and did I mention that it’s F-R-E-E? If that is the case, read no further and sign up for it. And I am not even an affiliate with Hubspot, so I don’t even get any credit for sending you there.

The Hubspot CRM is the center piece (aka database) of all the other components. None of the other components can funtion without the CRM at its core.

I think that making the CRM free to use is a genius move by Hubspot to enroll customers into their ecosystem. (And a little unfair, too – they are big enough to afford giving this away for free, which is increasing the pressure on smaller players. How can smaller vendors possibly compete with that?) Once you have a few thousand contacts in there, and you want some of the other features, how likely will it be that you stay with the software that’s tried and trusted. Well played, Hubspot!

HOWEVER!!!! Here comes the catch….

If you ever want more than what the free version has to offer, be prepared to put some premium dollar away for marketing budget.

Hubspot pricing options are so complex that it takes a while to understand it all fully. They even have calculators on their pricing page to help you make sense of it all. Each of their paid modules is available in three tiers (Starter, Professional and Enterprise) that offer an increasing spread of features. The price per month is a complicated formula of which modules you have, at which tier, and for how many contacts.

So for example, it is entirely possible to have the following combination: Free CRM + Marketing Hub Starter + Sales Hub Enterprise + Service Hub Professional, each of them with their own base prices and adjustments for the number of contacts you need.

Hubspot offers “Complete Bundles” that bundle all modules at the same tier, for 25% off single module pricing. That is a nice incentive if you really do need all modules.

Let me attempt a comparison:

1) Ontraport PRO with all Ontraport features (marketing, sales, membership sites etc.), unlimited emails, 3 users and 10,000 contacts: $297 per month, paid monthly (16% off when you pay for the whole year at once, so roughly $250/mo).

2) Hubspot CRM ($0) + Marketing Hub Professional for 10,000 contacts ($1250/mo billed anually) + Sales Hub Professional ($400/mo if paid anually)
$18,000 for Marketing Hub Professional for the whole year (paid up front) including required onboarding
$5,050 for Sales Hub Professional for the whole year (paid up front) including required onboarding.
So you have to pay $23k up front for the first year. Divided up into monthly expenses that would be ca. $2000/month. And that does not yet include features like the CMS (another $300/mo) to build web-pages (entire sites, actually) or custom reporting/dashboards (another $200/mo)

Missing in Ontraport in this comparison (features that Hubspot “Professional” has, but Ontraport doesn’t): Conversational bots, live chat, social media, SEO % content strategy, Blog & content creation tools

The price difference (and admittedly the set of features that Hubspot offers) is even more breathtaking once you want to start using their Enterprise tier.

Paying $23k up front is a huge commitment. You better be sure that you need all those features and that your business is in a position to justify this. In my experience Hubspot’s ecosystem is absolutely worth it for more mature businesses who have been around for a while and know exactly what they are doing. But not so much for the small or micro sized business who is taking its first steps into the direction of sales and marketing automation.

The biggest PAIN and PLEASURE points

 

Here is a list of the biggest “gotchas” from a daily practice point of view that will shed some light on the Ontraport vs Hubspot comparison.

The PLEASURE points are features that will delight you, excite you, turn you on and make you sing “Hallelujah” each time you realize that they are available and/or you use them.

The PAIN points are these daily “Oh Dear!” moments when you think “How could it be possible that this is so clumsy or not even there at all?”

Ontraport Pleasure Points

 

  • Game-changing, award winning, state-of-the art visual campaign builder with serious visual reporting and analytics capabilities (and an industry-first “Projection Mode” to predict the impact that changes in strategy will have)
  • “Ontrapages” landing-page builder to create mobile responsive forms, landing pages, order pages, forms and entire websites and membership sites.
  • Ontraforms mobile responsive, great looking modal forms with a wide range of display options and proper in-line validation.
  • Ontramail mobile responsive email editor
  • Built in A-B-C-D split testing for everything: emails, sms, post cards, landing pages, even entire campaigns
  • Built-in 2-way text messaging
  • Built-in 1-click upsell
  • Built-in Membership Sites functionality: build entire membership sites with tiered and protected content right there in Ontrapages, or alternatively use the native “PilotPress” WordPress plugin to protect your WordPress content. No expensive 3rd party apps!
  • Task Outcome Automation – trigger different follow up automation based on the outcome of a user task
  • Custom objects with 1-to-1, 1-to-many and many-to-many relationships that allow you to build custom data objects in addition to the basic “contact” object
  • Webhook API integration (receive data from many other cloud services who can send webhooks, without the need to invest in a 3rd party connector like Zapier)
  • Completely customizable Card View to build any kind of structured pipeline (not just deals/opportunities)
  • Built in Stripe Integration (and other popular merchants) so that you can immediately start collecting payments with ease almost anywhere in the world (compare with Infusionsoft by Keap Pain Points)
  • Facebook connect (1-click opt in)
  • Built-in Facebook Custom Audience integration
  • Rules that watch everything you can imagine
  • Built-in tracking of website visits by data base contacts (which can then trigger an action)
  • Personalized URLs (PURLS)
  • Built-in Postcards (US only)
  • Personal coupon codes (one-time use, can be set to expire on specific date or amount of time after creation)
  • Group coupon codes can be limited in number
  • Private IP possible (extra fee)
  • Attractive subscription management page
  • Built-in leadsource tracking with UTM variables
  • Conditional logic on forms (not yet on the new Ontraforms, but the old “smart” forms)
  • Easily add fields to order forms
  • Lead scoring with tons of conditions and automatic degradation
  • Dashboard widgets are very flexible for reporting

Hubspot Pleasure Points

 

  • Hubspot CRM is free 100%, forever!
  • Visual campaign builder available on with the more pricey Marketing Hub and Sales Hub components
  • 150+ integrations for Hubspot CRM. The number of available integrations for Hubspot’s free CRM has grown steadily over the years. These involve lead management, data transfer, mobile apps, and E-commerce integration.
  • Hubspot CMS is a formidable one and is one of their core strengths but this comes at an additional cost as it is another component, and Ontraport can do just the same with their very own Ontrapages.
  • They offer both free and paid courses and certifications for pretty much everything (inbound marketing, email marketing, marketing automation, lead generation, branding, social media, blogging, etc.)

Ontraport Pain Points

 

  • No tag categories (grouping of tags only by exact naming convention and filtering – a minor inconvenience that requires proper planning and naming of tags)
  • Fewer reliable 3rd party apps to enhance functionality beyond the built in features. Rudimentary Zapier integration (but growing).

Hubspot Pain Points

 

  • In order to use marketing automation, landing pages, SEO tools, you’ll need to upgrade to have the paid Marketing Hub and Sales Hub components.
  • Much more pricey to avail of the same features already available in Ontraport! 

Feature Comparison by Category

 

In this detailed feature comparison by category I explain the features, what’s good and what’s bad about them, and the “winning” feature is marked in BOLD typeface.

If you’re pressed for time, then just glance over the columns below and notice which of the two products has more bold text in them. Do you see a pattern emerge?

CRM

Ontraport CRM

 

  • Great, flexible, fully customizable CRM, including a powerful concept for company and opportunity / deals records with many trigger types, data manipulation and merging of company/deals data into emails, text messages etc.
  • B2B-enabled CRM with company records and opportunities. Slick “Kanban style” Card View for opportunities and deals. All company and deal data can be used as triggers, can be manipulated, and can be used in emails and text messages.
  • Fully customizable “Quick View” for contacts to show you only the data that you want to see.
  • Freely customizable Card View to arrange ANY contact data into cards that can be moved between “stages” per drag and drop
  • Custom data objects (starting at Pro level) that can be linked in 1-to-1, 1-to-many and many-to-many relationships. Linked data can be used in automation. This is very unique and powerful. (Read more…)
  • Contacts can enter through one-click Facebook connect
  • 150 Custom Fields (per object type)
  • Layout of the CRM part is fully customizable in tabs, sections and fields (standard and custom fields)

Hubspot CRM

 

  • Hubspot’s free CRM is good but sales and marketing tools are their strong suit.
  • The CRM itself is the main skeleton or database that powers the other 3 components or Hubs (Marketing, Sales and Service).
  • More custom reports and dashboards can be created by upgrading to the Reporting Add-on which costs $200/month. This serves as a dashboard that places all marketing and sales reports into one central interface. Quite convenient and powerful! But the additional cost just makes it more pricey. This level of reporting is readily available within Ontraport.
  • Kanban-like board for deal and task management

Marketing and Automation

Ontraport Marketing and Automation

 

  • Ontrapages – a mobile responsive landing page buildersimilar to LeadPages
  • Ontramail – mobile responsive customizable email templates
  • Extremely convenient, integrated A/B/C/D split testing for everything – landing pages, forms, emails, postcards.
  • Leading edge visual campaign builder tool with very strong built in campaign reporting
  • Facebook Custom Audience integration
  • Printed post cards (full-color on both sides, UV coated, and sent with first-class mail, USA only) great builder for post-cards – elements can be arranged on layers and moved freely
  • PURLs = Personalized URLs that can be printed on postcards in order to track client interaction or sent by email for better personalization
  • Two-way SMS messaging out-of-the-box
  • No voice broadcast (but integrates with VoiceShot and CallLoop, an additional expense per month)
  • Easy built-in membership site functionality within Ontraport (using PilotPress plugin for WordPress sites is optional) is included (simple but powerful functionality, it allows you to display or hide pages and content according to a contact’s membership status, pre-built campaigns included)

Hubspot Marketing and Automation

 

  • Only available if you add the Marketing Hub and Sales Hub components to the already free CRM backbone
  • Automation is done through their campaign builder equivalent called Workflows, which is not as graphic as Ontraport’s.
  • Personalized emails and and follow-up tasks are automated through called Sequences.
  • Seamless integrations with bigger players in the CRM and e-commerce space such as Salesforce.com and Shopify

Ecommerce

Ontraport E-Commerce

 

  • Has no shopping cart/ storefront, only order forms. It is necessary to have a separate shopping cart. They offer integration with 1Shoppingcart and Ultracart
  • Built in feature to create complete chains of up-sells and down-sells
  • Individual and Group Coupon Codes In addition to general coupon codes (for everybody) you can also create personal custom codes dynamically, in the moment that you send out an email, a  text message or a postcard, and set it to expire on either a fixed date or x amount of time after its creation. Powerful! Group codes can be limited how often they can be used.
  • Build flexible, mobile responsive Order Forms with Ontrapages. Easily collect additional information or let people agree to terms and conditions without hiring a programmer (something that Infusionsoft by Keap has refused to implement for at least 5 years now – inexplicable)
  • Stripe gateway integration out of the box

Hubspot Ecommerce

 

  • Has no native Ecommerce component
  • Shopify Integration available. Extra expense needed to use other platforms like Shopify as Hubspot readily integrates with this platform

Pricing and Signup

Ontraport Pricing and Signup

 

  • Click here to see the Ontraport Pricing Page
  • Four editions: Basic, Plus, Pro and Enterprise.
  • Monthly Fee: $79 (Basic), $147 (Plus), $297 (Pro), $497 (Enterprise)
  • Users: 1 (Basic), 2 (Plus), 3 (Pro), 5 (Enterprise)
  • Number of Contacts: 1,000 (Basic), 2,500 (Plus) 10,000 (Pro) 20,000 (Enterprise)
  • Emails/month: Unlimited (Basic, Plus and Pro) 200,000 (Enterprise)
  • Setup Services – Plus, Pro and Enterprise
  • FREE Two hours Onboarding Consultation
  • Free Postmaster Consultation (Pro and Enterprise)
  • Account Management: Enterprise
  • Free Support Screenshare and Live Chat during the following times: Mon – Thu 6am – 12am, Fri 6am – 9pm and Sat – Sun 9am – 9pm (all times in PST) – the most customer friendly times in the industry. The screenshare support is an industry-first. Screenshare sessions need to be scheduled using an online scheduler, and are often available immediately or within the hour.

Hubspot Pricing and Signup

 

  • Hubspot Pricing Page
  • Flexibility due to multiple components that can be added to free Hubspot CRM for a monthly fee: Marketing Hub, Sales Hub, Service Hub
    Hubspot CMS
  • Each component has 3 pricing plans (which ranges from 50$ to 3,200$ per month depending on what component): Starter, Professional, Enterprise

  • Professional and Enterprise plans can be availed only in annual payments
  • Growth Suite bundle plan is available which  includes all components except Hubspot CMS. These are fully integrated and discounted at 25% off their standalone prices
  • Free Phone & Email Support
  • Solid Help Documentation & Educational Training
  • HubSpot CRM accounts have a limit of 2,000 sends per calendar month. Email limit amounts to five times the contact limit for Marketing Hub Starter, and ten times the contact limit for Marketing Hub Professional and Enterprise subscriptions.

Company and Culture

Ontraport Company

 

  • Has been around since 2006, and as grown by 3,000% in the last 3 years
  • Has a team of around 100 employees.
  • Works with a “bootstrapped” budget but gets stuff done quickly, elegantly and innovatively (and it works!)
  • Has won numerous “best workplace” awards.
  • Ontraport CEO Landon Ray and his VP of development both personally respond to questions or concern on social media. They listen, they care, they respond, and I have seen some product feedback find its way into the product within a couple weeks

Hubspot Company

 

  • Has been around since 2005, serving over at least 4,000 companies in 31 countries have used Hubspot to increase the number of visitors to their website and convert more of those visitors to leads and customers.
  • Their education and advocacy for inbound marketing is almost pioneering and very authoritative.

Hubspot Sticker Shock?

Ontraport is a super powerful all-in-one tool that has 95% of what a small business needs, at a FRACTION of the price!
TELL ME MORE
No thanks, I have a big business and even bigger pockets,
so I don't care what Hubspot costs.
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