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A Breakdown of HubSpot CRM Free Features & Limitations

HubSpot: No. 1 CRM Solution

USER SATISFACTION 99%
OUR SCORE 9.8

One of the typical problems with sales is the abundance of disparate data. Campaign feedback, customer conversations, lead profiles, performance indicators of sales reps and other important customer data reside in different databases and devices. Without proper visibility on such data you’re missing out on potential opportunities and glossing over weak points and bottlenecks in your sales process.

Econsultancy pointed out that only 0.5% of data available is used, which is sad considering the potential of insights for revenues it could provide. Historical sales data in particular can be leveraged to improve the close rate in each of your sales stages.

Like any good CRM, HubSpot captures all essential data in an organized way, which helps in nurturing leads and ultimately improving your conversion rate. In general, it consolidates sales and marketing data to help you see a clearer picture of your critical metrics, such as, sales cycle, lead velocity, lead quality, close rates and customer profiles.

What make HubSpot CRM different are two things: it’s free and it’s simple. In our breakdown of HubSpot CRM free features you’ll find out how the tools can improve your sales team’s productivity and efficiency despite being offered at no cost. This tool can actually help your business grow. While HubSpot is not the only CRM software for free that you can find out there, it’s by far the best one, so we recommend you start your journey with that tool and then compare it to other alternatives.

As for simplicity, HubSpot CRM is the kind of tool that you can understand, set up and start using in a matter of minutes. The UI is clean and designed around a sales rep’s typical daily busywork: entering contacts, associating them with deals, plotting them on a sales pipeline, calculating their value… except that, now, these are automated with rules.

Unlike complex CRM like Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics, which are technology-driven and the reason why a CRM can be problematic with impatient sales reps, HubSpot CRM is problem-solution oriented, addressing the common pain points of sales reps and teams.

Is HubSpot CRM Really Free?

Yes, HubSpot CRM is entirely free with no limitations on the features you can use, which also means it is one of the best and easiest CRM software providers to get started with. “Free” here may throw you off as cheap or a pared down version which will impose some limitations on you, but trust me, it’s not the case with HubSpot. The app is truly a rare gem in the SaaS landscape. It is a complete CRM (we’ll explain all the key features below) that matches, if not outperforms, many paid solutions. In fact, feel free to take a closer look at the app’s key functionalities now, as it will give you a great first hand impression of the features we’ll be discussing below. You can easily sign up for HubSpot CRM free app here.

That being said, there’s one thing you should know. If you’re using HubSpot Marketing, the contacts you add to the free CRM will also go into the Marketing tool. HubSpot Marketing offers 100 contacts for free, but then you’re charged with $100 per month for every additional 1,000 contacts. So if you add, for instance, 1,100 contacts to the CRM, you’ll be charged $100 monthly.

Do you need HubSpot Marketing? Yes, if you want to accelerate inbound lead cycle and automate much of your marketing process. It will drive sales-qualified leads to your CRM, so you can jumpstart your sales cycle. You can read our detailed review of HubSpot Marketing to learn more about the features it offers.

But you’re also good to go with HubSpot CRM alone given that you already have substantial leads in the pipeline and you can consider moving to HubSpot Marketing later down the line.

What companies is HubSpot CRM designed for?

If you don’t have a CRM system in place yet, getting HubSpot CRM is a good start. It’s primarily intended for sales reps and SMBs looking for efficiency in their sales process.

Or, if you’re underutilizing a complex platform, HubSpot can get your CRM going. In fact, the HubSpot CRM doesn’t aim to dislodge Salesforce from the top spot; rather, to complement it. Salesforce has rich enterprise functionality, deep analytics, case management and reporting, but they’re geared towards the sales manager or director of large sales departments. HubSpot CRM, on the other hand, wants to assist sales reps and teams to improve their productivity. In many cases, small and medium-sized businesses will find in HubSpot all the CRM tools they’ll need.

What HubSpot CRM features are you getting for free?

As mentioned above, all HubSpot CRM features are available for free, and they consist of five major sections:

  1. Dashboards
  2. Contacts
  3. Companies
  4. Deals
  5. Tasks

Plus a bunch of sales tools. Here’s a breakdown on each group of features:

Dashboards

It’s a collection of reports that lets you track prospect interactions and deals in one location for quick visibility. The free app gives you basic reports for deal forecast showing:

  • Total deal value per stage
  • Sales performance indicating contacts and deals assigned to reps
  • Productivity highlighting the total number of calls
  • Notes, meetings and tasks done in a given time period
  • Deals closed vs. goal and recent activity.

The free dashboard can be spruced up with add-ons for a fee, which allows up to 200 dashboards, access to custom builder, leaderboards, funnel analytics, detailed forecasts and engagement rates.

Deal Forecast reporting is available in HubSpot CRM

Contacts

This section allows you to sort customer and lead details from over a hundred fields! You can view contacts in a way that is meaningful to your sales team. The fields range from sales stage, deal ownership, demographics, social media, activity, email information and analytics history. As if that’s not enough, you get to add your own fields by creating properties.

HubSpot CRM allows you to enjoy up to one million contacts with no expiration date for free. But, as we mentioned earlier, if you’re also using HubSpot Marketing you may be charged with $100 per month for each additional batch of 1,000 contacts you import to CRM. That’s because the contacts you add in CRM are synced with HubSpot Marketing, so you’re actually paying for the Marketing tool. The CRM stays free.

Contacts can be sorted in over 100 attributes, plus, you can add your own fields.

Companies

This section acts in the same manner as Contacts, but instead of a person’s name, it lists the company name. Similar to Contacts, when you click on an item, it opens to an interface showing all relevant details about it. Apart from the basic contact information, you’ll see an activity stream, emails, calls, tasks, notes, schedule, deals and related contacts. Using Contacts and Companies means your sales rep can see all related data in one place and perform next-step actions like sending an email or making a call straight out of the same interface.

In Companies View, you get to see all the essential information about the company.

Deals

This is where you view deals across a visual pipeline. You can add stages and define the terminology and configure a pipeline that best reflects your prospects’ buyer journey. One of the most useful features of Deals is configuring the closing probability with a slider. This makes calculating the conversion rate per stage a simple task, which is one of the requirements should you want to increase profits by reverse engineering your revenue goals.

You can also sort deals by a variety of filters including name, owner, amount and stage and get the intel for your next step. Likewise, you can view this section by table or board layout.

Deals neatly laid out on a visual pipeline in HubSpot CRM.

Tasks

This section puts in one place all tasks and their associated records like deals, contact details and activities. HubSpot CRM lets you categorize tasks in seven ways:

  1. Assigned to
  2. By association
  3. Due date
  4. Reminder
  5. Task type
  6. Title
  7. Status

You can also view tasks depending on where they are on the sales pipeline by simply clicking the board layout. This is practical and helps product and sales reps take action, for instance, seeing a task near to the last stage as placing a follow-up call.

The Task section is highly configurable and tasks can be quickly associated with deals, contacts and companies.

Sales tools

HubSpot CRM also comes with loads of free sales tools you’ll find in HubSpot Sales, the vendor’s paid sales tool (it has a free pared down version). When you use the CRM app you’ll be actually using some of these Sales features as well:

  1. Snippets. It saves prewritten replies to common questions for live chat or part of an email. The free app allows for up to 5 snippets per account.
  2. Templates. It lets you create standard email replies to prospects. The free CRM allows up to 5 templates only.  
  3. Documents. It tracks email attachment giving you insight on who interact with your content and for how long. You get 5 documents for free.
  4. Meetings. A personal widget that allows prospects to schedule a meeting with you via a “meeting link.” Only 1 link is allowed in the free app.
  5. Notifications. You get up to 200 notifications on prospects who click a link in your email.
  6. Calling. For up to 15 minutes per user/month.

If you need to scale these sales tools you can start by signing up for a HubSpot Sales free trial and see how it goes from there.

How can HubSpot CRM features benefit your sales team?

Using HubSpot CRM will make your sales team function with more coordination, insights and transparency. In general, this app will help you with:

  1. Organized sales process. You get a clean, visual sales funnel that shows you the most recent activities and events of your sales team. It’s also easy to sort deals, appointments and contracts made at any time period from one location. Likewise, using filters you can sort deals by owner, name, amount or stage. Related records are also associated to give context to a deal, prospect or customer.
  2. Measurable metrics. Sales stages are configured to your exact process, they have clear close rates and you can track sales rep’s performance versus quota. The free CRM provides dashboard visual ticklers on your most important sales numbers, such as, sales cycle length, lead velocity, deal size and conversion rate.
  3. Conversion triggers. Deals are qualified with clear sales criteria. The CRM brings into view the deal’s timeline and associate it with relevant records. This provides you an insight to what motivates a conversion and allows you to set rules and calculate close rates in each stage.
  4. Automation. Manual workflows can be automated with rules, such as, lead scoring, email sequences, reminders, adding contact details, calculating total close rates
  5. Reminders. You can set alerts for follow-ups and schedule meetings across various communication touchpoints like phone, email and live chat. One valuable tool in this free CRM allows you to create a follow-up task by ticking a checkbox that pops up after sending an email or placing a call. This ensures that no sales rep will be sitting on a deal. Follow-ups keep everything moving forward.
  6. Track buyer’s journey. With a clear sales pipeline and associated records, sales reps can follow a prospect’s journey from lead to conversion and identify at each stage his needs, deal value and conversations. This aids sales reps to focus their selling on what’s important to the prospect at a particular sales stage.

How to get started with HubSpot CRM?

HubSpot CRM free features are impressive, not just for a freemium, but they can actually rival many paid tools. Creating a free account if very easy and straightforward. The first step is to sign up for a HubSpot CRM free app here and you’ll be ready to start improving your team’s work in just a few minutes.

After downloading the app, you can follow these simple steps on how to get HubSpot CRM set up. You can then import your leads and contacts into the CRM and configure the sales stages to your workflows.

Gather around your sales team and explain the HubSpot features, so everyone is on the same page. The next step is to use it for a month and see how your sales team has improved by comparing their outputs with the previous month.

Let us know about your experience. You can even share it with others by writing your HubSpot CRM review on our website.

Category: B2B News, Featured Articles

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