ActiveCampaign vs HubSpot
Trying to choose between ActiveCampaign vs HubSpot as your email marketing software? Here's when to choose each tool – and the pros and cons to know about.
- 3.6 TrustPilot
- 4.6 Capterra
- 4.6 G2
Average 4.3 / 5
An automation platform that combines email marketing, marketing automation, CRM, and machine learning for cross-channel management, segmentation, and personalization. It can also be used to automate sales and support processes.
Starts from $9 a month for 500 contacts (billed yearly)
- Automation features for marketing
- Integrated CRM tools
- Integrations with various popular services
- Landing page constructor
- Intuitive email builder
Availability: 9 am - 11 pm CDT (GMT-5) Communication in the chat or via email
- 3.4 TrustPilot
- 4.5 Capterra
- 4.4 G2
Average 4.1 / 5
A CRM platform that offers email marketing, content management, marketing automation, and customer service capabilities.
Marketing tools only start at $18 a month for 1,000 marketing contacts
- Email automation, reporting, etc.
- Landing pages and forms
- Marketing automation
- Website builder and hosting
- CRM platform
- B2B commerce tools
- Customer service software
- Sales and operations software
- Integrations with various services
24/7 support via email and chat on paid plans, phone support on professional and Enterprise plans. Community support only on the Free plan.
General info about company
ActiveCampaign was founded in 2003 by Jason VandeBoom. Hubs in Chicago, Sidney, and Dublin.
HubSpot was founded by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah in 2006. Headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
No coding or design skills are required as there are plenty of automation recipes available. The system itself is comparatively complex, though, and needs some getting accustomed to.
The software may seem complex and even overwhelming. However, newcomers get service demos and tutorials for a smooth start. Overall, the interface is user-friendly and approachable.
Businesses that plan to scale their email marketing up to include CRM, e-commerce integrations, and diverse automation schemes.
Medium to big e-commerce companies that want an integrated software package with marketing, CRM, customer service, and website hosting all in one.
No free plan. Has a free 14 days trial with up to 100 email sends to 100 contacts. The features available within the trial match the Professional tier of features.
The trial is limited to 1 user and doesn’t include:
- Predictive Sending
- Predictive Content
- Sending auto-responder campaigns
- Custom fields in forms
- Using “Email Results” in subscription forms
- SMS credits or sending
- Adding a domain to a landing page
A free plan for 2,000 email sends per month. Available email templates and features are limited. No customer support, only the access to HubSpot Community.
Marketing + CRM
For 500 contacts, billed yearly/monthly:
- Lite $9 / $15
- Plus $49 / $70
- Professional $149 / $187
- Enterprise — individual pricing
Other pricing features:
- 2-year price lock
- Billing pause for 12 months with the account and campaigns intact.
- Only charges for the contacts the client actively markets to, no matter how many lists they’re on.
- A 20% discount for nonprofits.
- Free 14 days trial.
- Starter: $20 for up to 1,000 marketing contacts
- Professional: $890 for up to 2,000 marketing contacts (the starting price is $3,890 with a mandatory paid onboarding)
- Enterprise: $3,600 for up to 10,000 marketing contacts (the starting price is $6,000 with a mandatory paid onboarding)
Other pricing features:
- Users are only billed for their “marketing” contacts (actively in use) and can have many more inactive contacts
- Even if a user cancels the subscriptions, they will be billed for the rest of their commitment period duration
Working hours: 9 am – 11 pm CDT (GMT-5)
Either live chat or email requests
Aside from online support, ActiveCampaign offers:
- Free online training
- Community and forum
- FAQ website section
- Study Hall — in-person learning classes
- Service demo for new users
- Technical support is available on paid plans only
- Access to the HubSpot Community on the Free plan
- Chat and email support on all paid plans
- Phone support only on Professional and Enterprise plans
- Mandatory paid assisted onboarding on Professional and Enterprise plans
- Advanced and Premier additional onboarding options
- Customer training
- Various courses with certifications
- HubSpot user groups
- Marketing automation
- Landing page builder
- Built-in CRM for small-medium-sized businesses
- Many service integrations
- Drag-and-drop email designer
- Free migration from other services
- SMS marketing
- Site messages
- Live chat and automated chatbot workflows
- Email automation
- Dynamic list segmentation based on various criteria
- Email reputation reporting and tracking
- Custom reporting dashboards
- Integrations with popular services
- Drag-and-drop email builder and pre-made templates
- Landing pages
- Live chat with website visitors
- A CRM app for iOS and Android
No-code dynamic content available
Email template recommendations and guides
- Abandoned Cart
- Conference Event
- Customer Service
- Reviews Feedback
15+ email templates
Only 5 email templates on the free plan
- Welcome messages
- Event invitations
- Ebook emails
Facebook, Google Analytics, WooCommerce, WordPress, Shopify, Unbounce, ClickFunnels, Salesforce, Zapier, and more
1,495 integrations including WordPress, Zapier, Canva, Facebook, Salesforce, Shopify, Stripe, and more.
- Email extensions for Chrome and Outlook
- Mobile app for Android and iOS (possible to review email reports, track customer activity, and manage CRM data).
- No installable solution
- A mobile app for iOS and Android to manage the CRM
- Chrome extension for Gmail or G Suite
- Office 365 add-in and desktop add-in for Office 365
- No installable solution.
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English Chinese (traditional) Danish Dutch Finnish French German Italian Polish Portuguese (Brazil) Spanish Swedish
800+ automation recipes for email and other marketing channels.
Offers the whole customer experience automation:
- Links different integrated services (like Shopify or Facebook) into cohesive scenarios.
- Collects broad data on each customer, so it’s possible to customize segments based on almost any parameter.
- Helps to choose the best content, send time, and delivery channel for each individual customer.
- Has AI advice on improving the marketing strategy.
Many pre-built automations (called workflows) triggered by:
- Tickets (for support purposes)
- Feedback submissions
- Hundreds of automation options even for sophisticated purposes
- CRM features
- Mobile app
- A dedicated email deliverability specialist checks the client’s email for compliance before sending
- Automation of 1:1 communications to customers on the website or social media
- An all-in-one solution for e-commerce businesses: email marketing, CRM, CMS, and more
- 1,482 integrations
- Thorough onboarding and courses
- A strong global community
- Ability to store many contacts for free
- High price and no free plan
- Customer support is often unavailable or slow
- Complicated automations system
- Steep learning curve
- Reports aren’t great (not enough information, no real-time results, visually unappealing, etc.)
- Steep prices
- Complicated feature system may cause additional spendings
- Overwhelming amount of functions
- Support isn’t accessible enough
- Email templates aren’t sophisticated
Reviews from experts
“ActiveCampaign is a solid choice for your email marketing needs. There are few flaws (though they matter), and if you want a service you can integrate into almost any tool chain, ActiveCampaign’s feature-packed plans have few equals.
While its decent feature set could potentially be let down by the rather high prices on more expensive plans, ActiveCampaign still provides good value for your money”.
“So do we recommend ActiveCampaign?
As this ActiveCampaign review highlights, it’s really tough to fault ActiveCampaign, not only do they offer almost everything you need within an email marketing platform, but they do it very well.
The reporting offers you insight into almost all facets, such as page visits, geo-tracking, openers, ecommerce and more. One area that is slightly lacking is the email builder, not offering an experience as slick as other services out there, with a few niggling features that could be done better (like the revision history)”.
The fact that it’s so user-friendly is a big advantage to using HubSpot’s CRM platform. Its guided set-up wizard, demos and intuitive interface make it a great tool for all levels of experience. It’s still a huge software with a lot of bells and whistles, but taking all that into account, its usability is still outstanding. You’ll be particularly impressed with its lead management features.
Anything above Starter gets very expensive and requires you to pay a high onboarding fee. In the case of the HubSpot Marketing Professional plan, this is $3,000 on top of the $890/month.
Surprisingly, HubSpot’s templates aren’t quite what you’d expect from such a popular, modern tool. I’d like to see some more design options for email and landing pages.
Overall: I'm 50-50 with HubSpot. I see it as a compromise and middle step until we are able to get more specialized solutions for each one of their offerings.
Pros: HubSpot is a good solution for organizations at their early steps. It provides all the necessary tools for website management and marketing activities. The contacts' management is good too.
Cons: It doesn't go in-depth on anything. For everything that HubSpot does there is a platform that does it better. But we would need many different tools so we stay with all in one but shallow approach (for now). It is also very expensive for what it is.
*This information is current as of 09/28/2023. While we regularly update our articles, it`s possible that this article may not contain some of the latest information.