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ActiveCampaign vs HubSpot

Scaling businesses need a platform that can keep up with their growth and give them the power and flexibility to craft a best-in-class customer experience. This page compares how HubSpot and ActiveCampaign stack up when it comes to building delightful customer experiences at scale.

Ready to see the power of HubSpot’s CRM? Get in touch with Sales for a demo.

Overview

There are many platforms out there promising to help businesses perfect the customer experience. But many of them offer incomplete solutions, requiring you to cobble together a tech stack of various point solutions that are hard to manage and even harder to secure. HubSpot and ActiveCampaign make it easier to get tight control over your customer experience by managing marketing, sales, and service all from one central place--without the unnecessary complexity of legacy platforms. This article breaks down the differences between both products to make your evaluation easier.

HubSpot

HubSpot is a CRM platform with products focused on marketing, sales, content management, and customer service. Built from the ground up as a single system, each of our different Hubs connects to a single database, regardless of whether you use just one or the whole platform. As your business grows, HubSpot provides a foundation of connected data upon which you can build a truly engaging customer experience at scale

ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign is a Customer Experience Automation platform that helps businesses connect and engage with customers. It creates optimized customer experiences by automating many behind-the-scenes marketing, sales, and support processes. ActiveCampaign offers one product with additional add-on specialty sales and service features.

According to 3rd party research, HubSpot is the recommended choice among software buyers*

 HubSpot ActiveCampaign
NPS

15

1

% Highly Satisfied (9-10)

37%

33%

*This information is based on the results of a 3rd party survey paid for by HubSpot. A total of 2,234 qualified respondents completed the survey. To qualify for the survey, respondents were: Ages 18-65 | Software decision-makers | Currently use Sales/CRM, Marketing, Customer Service, CMS, and/or iPaaS software, including at least one of a specified set of brands. Fieldwork was conducted January 10-Februrary 28, 2022. HubSpot sample = 958, ActiveCampaign sample = 498

  • Marketing automation is essential for any scaling company. As you grow, actions that you used to do manually, such as sending nurturing emails at a regular cadence, are no longer feasible. You have too many contacts to manage, and too many other tasks taking up your time. Marketing automation lets you continue to give your customers a personalized experience, allowing you to focus on mission-critical tasks.

    ActiveCampaigns’s marketing automation tool lets you use a drag and drop tool to create basic workflows to automate tasks like emails, segmentation, and contact updates. ActiveCampaign also has some limited ability to automate via API. However, ActiveCampaign contains fewer automated workflow enrollment trigger options and only has one SMS integration option available. Additionally, ActiveCampaign allows teams to see how workflows are connected, but does not give you the capability to to check how Workflows relate to other assets like Lists and Properties at a glance like HubSpot does.

    HubSpot’s automation platform goes beyond just email. Triggering an email based on actions your contacts take is just the tip of the iceberg. HubSpot’s workflows tool lets you manage your contact database, rotate leads amongst your sales team, and even create support tickets automatically. You can also go a step further and add delays and conditional logic to your automation, allowing you to customize your workflows to meet the exact needs of your team. HubSpot’s automation platform is meant to assist your entire business — not just your email marketing.

     

     
    HubSpot
    ActiveCampaign

    Simple Workflow Automation

    green-checkmark

    green-checkmark

    Workflow optimization & Visualization

    green-checkmark

    green-checkmark

    Workflow Contact Enrollment

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    green-checkmark

    Conditional if/then automation logic

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    Event Tracking

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    Automate lead management & segmentation

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    Automate the process of updating contact or company properties

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    Custom automations through API

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    Limited

    SMS Integration Options

    9 options

    1 option only

  • Powerful marketing automation is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to crafting a best-in-class customer experience. To be truly successful, you need insight into what's working and what's not so you can adjust your strategy, effectively set goals, and identify strong coaching opportunities for your team.

    HubSpot’s CRM platform brings all of your data together in one central place to help you easily answer key business questions and empower your whole team by giving them access to the data they need to do their jobs, without waiting for help from an analyst or spending hours a day merging data in spreadsheets.

    ActiveCampaign also offers out-of-the-box reporting and a custom report builder. However, you’ll still need to address the underlying data issues. You will also need to consider how your various sources of data are syncing, their timing, accuracy, etc. Since ActiveCampaign focuses on fewer features, you will need to assess what (if any) additional data sources to incorporate.

    HubSpot's Web traffic analytics connect all of your website traffic and engagement data with your CRM, turning volumes of data into actionable insights to give you a full picture of your customer journey. You can drill down further to analyze web, landing page, and blog page performance by domain, language, country, and more. Plus, you can see all of your sourcing data in one centralized place, making it easier to understand which key channels are driving traffic to your site, and whether those leads go on to become customers.

    Sales forecasting helps sales leaders who need to actively understand their team’s performance to set goals and coach their teams to hit them. But forecasting is only as accurate as the CRM data added by your team.

    The HubSpot CRM platform makes it easy for sales reps to input data, and automatically captures insights. You’ll get powerful forecasting in Sales Hub that helps you take control of your decision making.

  • Store and customize all your data—right inside HubSpot.

    Many companies leverage data outside of HubSpot to make decisions or rely on data that can't be bucketed into HubSpot's standard categories (contacts, companies, deals, or tickets). Custom objects will give you the flexibility that you need to import, store, and report on that data. You can name the object, determine its properties, and decide what other objects it should be associated with. Custom object data looks, feels, and acts just like standard objects within HubSpot, so there's no adjustment period for your team and no new apps to figure out--just better, more complete data.

    ActiveCampaign also offers custom objects and tools to help sync those objects with other applications and data sources. These objects are constrained in several important ways and therefore these custom objects cannot be used to create list segments, advanced searches, conditional content, goals, If/Else automation forks, or lead scores.

  • Most marketers know that one of the best ways to engage contacts is through email marketing. Not only does email marketing have a high ROI--email generates $36 for every $1 spent (source), which is an astounding 3,600% ROI- but also, email marketing can be easy to implement given the tools at your disposal.

    ActiveCampaign is mainly a tool equipped to help marketers with their email marketing.  You’ll be able to create subscription forms, dynamic content, email segmentation, and split testing to help you engage and nurture your contacts. The drag-and-drop email designer lets you set up campaigns in minutes. At the same time, you can select among various email templates, or start from scratch to create your own unique design. ActiveCampaign offers other channels besides email marketing but its leaner configuration is meant for businesses who plan to expand their marketing tech stack with other applications. 

    HubSpot pioneered the inbound methodology to give power to the marketer via inbound marketing software. From there, HubSpot created best-in-class tools that help marketers tell their stories to their audiences. HubSpot offers the same email marketing features as ActiveCampaign, and a lot more. Our drag-and-drop email editor is easy to get started with, and we offer a variety of templates that you can personalize to meet your brand’s specific needs. You’ll also enjoy personalization features like smart send times, A/B testing, list segmentation, and personalization tokens using any information you’ve collected in the free HubSpot CRM. You’ll be able to report on all your emails using HubSpot’s email analytics, offering you in-house data with deep insights into how your marketing emails are performing. Inside the analytics tool, besides email specific analytics such as open and click rates, you can drill down into emails to see exactly which links are generating the most clicks compared to other links, without needing to use Google Analytics.

    The real power of HubSpot’s marketing email tool comes when it’s combined with the CRM and our marketing automation platform. With HubSpot, you can create smart email campaigns that give each contact a customized experience based on the information you’ve gathered within the CRM. With more information on the contact record in HubSpot, imagine the possibilities that come when you want to create personalized emails for your contacts or connect nurturing emails to your sales process. This holistic, all-in-one capability in HubSpot is what separates it from ActiveCampaign, as you won’t need to use multiple tools to run and report on your marketing campaigns.

    Email Marketing Features
     
    HubSpot
    ActiveCampaign

    Drag-and-drop email editor

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    Custom coded email templates

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    Ecommerce emails

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    green-checkmark

    Email personalization

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    green-checkmark

    A/B testing

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    Optimized for any device

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    green-checkmark

    Post-send email analytics

    green-checkmark

    green-checkmark

    Comparative reports

    green-checkmark

    green-checkmark

    Send 1-to-1 emails from the CRM

    green-checkmark

    green-checkmark

    Dynamic/smart send times

    green-checkmark

    green-checkmark

    Holistic CRM personalization

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    Learn more about how you can create email marketing campaigns in HubSpot

  • Marketers rely on social media and ads to build brand awareness, keep contacts engaged, generate leads, and so much more. It’s crucial to have a marketing platform that helps you keep track of your social media content and performance so you don’t have to switch between disparate systems to get the big picture.

    ActiveCampaign does not offer a native social tool. So you can’t post or report on your social media content via ActiveCampaign. If you want to create contacts based on Facebook lead ads, ActiveCampaign has partnered with a 3rd party to provide an integration bridge. You can add or remove contacts from your list based on email and ad campaigns.

    HubSpot’s social media and ads tools give marketers the ability to manage their social accounts and ads all in one place. This means understanding which of your contacts have engaged with specific posts or clicked on an ad. You can imagine the targeting abilities that this opens to marketers who don’t have the time to cross-reference social accounts and their CRM.

    Start by connecting all your social accounts (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter) to HubSpot. Schedule out posts across each network, and quickly report on your success on each channel. You can also connect your YouTube account to HubSpot to see how your audience is engaging with your video content. With the social monitoring tool, you'll be able to keep track of specific trends and keyword phrases that are important to you and your brand, and reply directly to comments on your social posts within HubSpot.

    Social Media and advertising features
     
    HubSpot
    ActiveCampaign

    Conversations on website

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    Social publishing, monitoring, and reporting

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    Facebook/Instagram ads

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    Facebook ads through integrations only

    Google search and display ads

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    LinkedIn ads

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    Advanced website audiences

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    Contact list audiences

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    Syncing limited

    Facebook lookalike audiences

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    Ads ROI reporting across attribution

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    Messenger conversations

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    Learn more about HubSpot's social media and ads tools

  • Having a house without a foundation is a recipe for disaster; so, too, is marketing and sales without a CRM. Having a CRM allows you to track your contacts through the entire sales process to ensure you’re using best practices. The ability to have all of your contact’s information in one place is also ideal for teams who are highly collaborative. Say, for example, a Sales Rep sees that a contact recently responded to a marketing email and filled out a form. If the marketing team or automation never notified the Sales Rep, then the Sales Rep would never have known about a potentially warm lead. This is why a CRM is the foundation that can elevate the growth of your business via better cross-team communication and enable personalization with a tight integration with marketing tools.

    ActiveCampaign’s CRM makes it easy for you to centralize your contact data to perform actions such as notifying your sales team, updating deals, creating tasks, and nurturing leads automatically. You can also segment your contacts based on the data that you’ve collected, such as by campaign interactions, social data, or website activity. Diving into a contact’s record, you can review that contact’s history.

    HubSpot’s strength comes from the cohesive underlying framework of a CRM platform, regardless of which Hub(s) you need. Our advanced CRM gives you extremely granular control over your contacts and how you manage them. Create as many custom properties as you need and use these properties’ values to create segmented lists that can be used within your marketing campaigns. Within a contact record, you can view every single touchpoint that you’ve had with the contact, from marketing emails, to one-to-one emails, to sales calls, to servicing tickets. You can also get personalized details of your contacts such as contact information and web page views. All of these interactions can be used to segment your contacts and reach your customers. You can also restrict who sees contacts by using team permissions, which is valuable for teams with regional offices or who handle different business types. On top of the features, the CRM interface is easy to navigate and is user-friendly for non-IT users, ensuring you and your team can get started quickly.

  • HubSpot is so much more than just email and marketing automation. With live chat, a managed CMS, SEO tools, social media and ads tools, and more, HubSpot has everything you need to get your marketing strategy started, with advanced features that you can grow into. Add your sales and service teams to HubSpot, too, and see how having all teams working out of one system reduces friction in your customer’s entire experience with your company.

     
     
    HubSpot
    ActiveCampaign

    Live chat tools

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    Advanced Programmable bots

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    Unified email & chat inbox

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    Blog

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    CMS tools

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    SEO tools

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    Video hosting and management

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    Hierarchical teams

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    Meeting booking tool

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    Lead scoring

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    Automated sales sequences

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    Limited

    Ticket & deal automation

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    Deals only

    Sales playbooks

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    Knowledge base tools

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    Customer feedback tools

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    Help desk tools

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    Academy and educational lessons

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    Limited

    Onboarding and consulting services

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    Limited

     

HubSpot and ActiveCampaign Integration

HubSpot and ActiveCampaign Integration

With HubSpot’s fast, reliable, and powerful integration with ActiveCampaign, syncing your data can be done in minutes – no technical setup required. This makes it possible to use both platforms for your different teams. Learn more about our integration here.

 

Switching from ActiveCampaign to HubSpot

Our dedicated migrations team is here to help you confidently move your marketing team onto HubSpot, with minimal disruption to your business.

At HubSpot, we don’t just copy paste your old, sub-optimal process. We help you design a new, better system – one that will scale with you for years to come. Below is a look at our proven phased approach for switching.  

Migrate from Salesforce to HubSpot

HubSpot is a Leader in B2B Marketing Automation Platforms

HubSpot was named a Leader in the Gartner® Magic Quadrant for B2B Marketing Automation Platforms™. According to Gartner, Leaders have broad support across the platform, sell successfully in more than one industry, and demonstrated the ability to sell and support enterprise-scale customers and deployments on a global scale

Gartner disclaimer: Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in our research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of the Gartner research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. Gartner and Magic Quadrant are registered trademarks of Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and internationally and is used herein with permission. All rights reserved.

Why is HubSpot a Leader?

Within the Gartner Magic Quadrant, Leaders execute well against their current vision and are well positioned for tomorrow. According to Gartner, Leaders have a broad and deep ecosystem of technology partners, sell successfully into more than one industry, demonstrate broad support across all the assessed B2B Marketing automation use cases, and have demonstrated an ability to sell to and support enterprise-scale customers on a global basis.

Read the announcement

What are customers saying?

HubSpot is a leader for businesses of all sizes across multiple categories and has earned special accolades for ease-of-use, business relationships, and company momentum.

  • We were a Salesforce-heavy organization and recently made the switch to HubSpot’s Sales Hub Enterprise. It’s an out-of-the-box solution that’s easy to use and intuitive, while also offering powerful automation tools and robust reporting. With HubSpot, we can see the complete lifecycle of a customer from lead to close, and our teams can own the customizations needed to get their job done. We have had 100% user adoption and couldn’t be happier.
  • On the sales side, the team was pigeonhole into using Salesforce CRM platform, which proved to be overly complex when it came to managing contacts and updating lead information. While data entry took up a lot of time and resources, the sales reps also felt hindered by the lack of qualified leads in their pipeline. With the leads they did have, it was challenging for sales reps to fully understand where a lead was within the sales cycle. Without those insights, the sales team struggled to identify and take the appropriate next step.
  • It needed to be more affordable than Salesforce, it needed to offer the same functionality, and it needed to support our plans of developing an automated marketing machine. So far we have been tremendously successful with our move and wouldn't go back.
  • 'We were using HubSpot as our marketing tool and Salesforce as our sales tool. So when a lead became a sales opportunity, we had to take all the information out of HubSpot and copy it into Salesforce. It was time-consuming and inefficient.' After looking at different alternatives, Feyi decided to implement Sales Hub Enterprise. She chose this solution over Salesforce because it’s part of HubSpot’s CRM Platform, an integrated suite of marketing, sales, and customer service tools. 'We set up our sales process without having to hire a CRM engineer,' says Feyi. 'We could set up new fields, permissions, sequences, and reports without adding to our overhead.'

HubSpot is trusted by over 121,000 businesses in more than 120 countries.

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