Using a content management system (CMS) is essential for creating, managing, and modifying the digital content on your website.
Simplifying the process of web content management is the purpose all CMSs are supposed to serve. With the ever-increasing array of such systems available at your disposal, it may be difficult to know which CMS system is best according to your industry, the resources you have at your disposal, and the goals you wish to achieve.Using a content management system (CMS) is essential for creating, managing, and modifying the digital content on your website. #CMS Click To Tweet
WordPress and HubSpot some of the two biggest players in the CMS market these days, and can both serve as excellent platforms for managing B2B websites. But the real question is – which one does the job better?
With such crucial factors as ease of use, target audience, cost, SEO friendliness, themes & plugins, downtime, security, community & support, and flexibility & ownership in mind, we are going to compare WordPress vs. HubSpot in this article.
First released in 2003, WordPress is one of the most popular open-source content management systems out there. For any newcomer in the website development and digital marketing fields, WordPress is usually the first choice.
Owing to its user-friendliness and tons of other cool features that we shall discuss shortly, today WordPress owns over 27 million live websites on a global scale, which essentially means 35.6% of websites on the internet are made and managed with WordPress. With a CMS market share of 50%, this CMS mammoth is leading the market by a wide margin.
Launched in April 2020, HubSpot CMS, which is called a content optimization system or COS, was developed especially as inbound marketing and sales-focused cloud-based content management platform.
HubSpot COS allows content creation, workflow automation, sales pipeline, social media marketing, lead capture, performance tracking, customer relationship management, and a lot of other features all in one place, thus allowing companies to attract and convert leads on their website.
Being a newer and more streamlined CMS, its stats are nowhere near as high as its competitors when it comes to market shares. However, a study shows that websites using HubSpot CMS have seen an increase in online conversions by 38% in this less than one year since its launch.
WordPress vs HubSpot
Now, let us put these two content management giants against each other and compare them based on certain selected specific features.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Ease of Use
A website is a two-way street, where you have to pay attention to accurately representing your company as a developer as well as making it engaging for customers. This translates to using an optimally designed CMS that gives you insight into your customers, thus making it easier to assess them as well as makes the process of website development less burdensome.
With WordPress, you will need to connect your site with Google Analytics or similar alternatives like JetPack or Monster Analytics using a plugin, in order to get access to audience analytics on your WordPress site. HubSpot, however, is an all-in-one platform that has analytics, marketing automation, and lead management as built-in features.
For developers, WordPress provides lots of themes and templates that are completely customizable but at the same time highly competitive in the theme’s marketplace.
Whereas HubSpot being comparatively new, has lesser resources available, and has other limitations in terms of customizability and complex system integration. While HubSpot would not provide as much of the professional functionality to you as a developer as WordPress would, it does make the development process way simpler and easier.
The Winner – HubSpot is hands-down the easiest to use for a B2B business owner who is new to website development and management. The reason is that it offers all the built-in marketing tools you need to get your website up and running quickly. You don’t really need to be a technical guru or hire one to use the Hubspot CMS.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Target Users
One of the most important questions to ask before choosing a CMS is – who will be using it? This essentially means who the target users of that CMS are.
If you are a professional website developer, then you can choose to use a more complicated CMS that requires coding and other technical web-building knowledge. However, if you are a marketing professional, you may need a CMS that is simple and doesn’t require any technical expertise whatsoever.
The point is, you need to choose a CMS that is made using your skillset and needs in mind.
Being open-source software, WordPress can really be used by just anyone. However, the range of functions that it offers is so vast that one needs to gain a lot of experience using WordPress in order to be able to fully utilize all the features that it has to offer.
This is why most professional designers and developers are known to use WordPress more often than not. It acts as a full-fledge framework that can be customized to create anything on the internet from marketing sites to e-commerce applications and isn’t limited to business purposes alone.
HubSpot is made mainly for marketing departments and business professionals who don’t have much technical knowledge. It is made to cut out the cost of hiring a professional website developer for your company.
HubSpot provides a full drag and drops experience for marketers without them needing to know to code or have any other technological expertise. This however has several limitations, like the inability to create an e-commerce experience owing to the rigidity of the platform and exclusivity of the programming language it uses. Having said that, it needs to be acknowledged that it was made for developing business websites and it does its intended job with perfection.
The Winner – Assuming you are a B2B business owner looking for something that is easy to navigate as well as profitable for your business website, HubSpot would be the perfect CMS for you.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Cost
Usually, this is the first factor any company would like to compare. No matter the size of your business or your website development budget, a CMS is a recurring cost that needs to be factored into the larger scheme of things.
If your rate of expenditure is not optimized according to your estimated budget, it can negatively affect your company’s finances. A comparative analysis of the estimated cost of these two content management systems is therefore imperative.
The self-hosting wordpress.org software that you are likely to use for your B2B business can be installed on a web server free of cost. From there on out you will need to invest in things like custom hosting or server optimizations with another provider such as WPEngine, Bluehost, Flywheel, and so on.
Next comes the price of installing custom themes, which is optional. Apart from these, you might expect additional costs in terms of the plugins you use. The great thing about WordPress is that the amount you spend is entirely up to you since you only pay for the specific elements you choose. Combined costs can range from as low as $100 per year to thousands of dollars, depending on the features you choose to incorporate.
HubSpot uses a package system. You can either go for the professional package priced at $270/month or $3240/year, or you can also choose the enterprise package priced at $900/month or $10,800/year.
Both packages include hosting, SEO recommendations and optimization, A/B testing, form builders, and so on. You can find out more about the specific features of each package here. Not only is HubSpot costlier compared to WordPress but it also uses quite a rigid pricing system since you have to buy even the features that you may not need, simply because it is included in the package.
The Winner – WordPress takes the crown when it comes to cheaper and customizable pricing.
WordPress vs HubSpot: SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the masterstroke of digital marketing. When done right it can exponentially increase your organic reach and help with lead generation by making your website and digital content rank at the top of Google search results.
However, SEO is a special skill that needs to be mastered and if your CMS doesn’t come with this feature, it needs to be either done manually or achieved through paid services.
WordPress doesn’t come with a built-in SEO feature by default. But like we have discussed before, anything can be achieved in WordPress by the use of plugins. It is loaded with both free and paid plugins that can do everything from keyword research and optimization to tracking competitors, pages, and inbound links, and integrating databases.
WordPress is highly configurable and is perfect for e-commerce and other similar sites that require diverse, flexible features.
With HubSpot, you will get an SEO tool as a built-in feature no matter which package you choose. This CMS was built for search engine optimization and keeps updated with Google trends and ever-changing algorithms among other things. The software offers various SEO features, like meta description optimization, SEO ranking suggestions, keyword research and optimization, detailed analysis of website content, and so on.
The Winner – HubSpot takes the win in this case since it essentially does the job for you. As a B2B business owner, you can have a basic level understanding of SEO while still having your website perfectly optimized and ranking high on Google search results.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Analytics and Reporting
WordPress has limited reporting capabilities when it comes to content. Therefore, another platform like Google Analytics is usually needed to have access to an adequate amount of analytical data. Since two separate accounts that do not interact with each other are needed, data surrounding your content is incomplete and not optimized for.
HubSpot’s CMS, on the other hand, includes all of the analytics needed to measure your website’s performance. You can view contacts who have visited certain webpages, downloaded your content offers, or interacted with your site in other ways.
The Winner – HubSpot wins the Reporting and Analytics category due to its more advanced and comprehensive reporting capabilities.
HubSpot vs WordPress: Smart Capabilities
HubSpot offers a variety of smart capabilities that WordPress does not. Smart capabilities offer website visitors a simpler and more personalized user experience. Some of the smart capabilities HubSpot offers are mentioned below.
For one, HubSpot offers Smart CTAs. These CTAs change according to a website visitor’s behavior. For example, let’s say you were promoting an ebook that the visitor had already downloaded. Instead of showing a CTA for that ebook, HubSpot would automatically show another CTA for another ebook your company offers.
HubSpot also offers smart content. Smart content personalizes content on your website according to the person viewing your page and what they are interested in.
Lastly, HubSpot also offers smart forms. These forms store user data, preventing returning users from needing to retype their information. This creates a streamlined, more pleasant user experience for consumers.
The Winner – HubSpot wins this category due to the various smart capabilities it offers that WordPress does not.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Themes & Plugins
The style as well as the features it offers are some of the core elements of any website. This is where themes and plugins come in. While the former gives your website a more coherent and unique look, making it more appealing to the visitor, the latter makes it more customizable and cost-effective on the developer’s end.
And, it all comes down to the flexibility and diversity in options that your CMS offers.
RELATED: Best Hubspot Themes and Templates
Having been with the industry for a very long time, WordPress offers an extremely wide variety of themes and plugins, both free and paid, which can be utilized to create a seamless plug-in and play experience.
Furthermore, most of these themes are highly customizable and accessible for modification, without the need to know any coding or any technical know-how whatsoever. To put it in short, there is no limit to what you can do in WordPress as far as themes and plugins are concerned.
Being fairly new to the market, HubSpot offers quite a variety of template packages, both free and paid. These templates are customizable and most allow customization through an easy drag-and-drop feature.
The Winner – The two are tied in this category. However, for those with more advanced coding skills, WordPress may give you more freedom for customization.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Downtime
When a website hosted by a CMS is not available online or does not work properly in completing a task for end-users, it is said to be experiencing downtime.
As a B2B business website it essentially means lost opportunities for invaluable B2B transactions, lost productivity for employees and third parties, eroded confidence of existing clients, SLA penalties, and damaged reputation. This can be caused by an array of issues but what you need to know is that all of these issues are concerned with the CMS you are using.
Downtime goes hand in hand with WordPress. Since it is an open-source custom solution, even a minor code change or software update can break the site and result in downtime. It is the price you pay for the flexibility and customizability. This means you will need to invest in a technical resource to test plugins and updates before releasing them, which is, of course, an added headache.
A HubSpot site would ensure zero downtime since it is not a full-fledge custom implementation that usually causes a site to break. The hosting is provided by HubSpot itself. The cloud-hosting software is frequently updated to avoid glitches and the customizability is limited which means a developer would not be able to perform any sudden code changes. A HubSpot site would almost never be down.
The Winner – Downtime is quite a deal-breaker given how it can negatively impact your business. For this reason alone, we have to go with HubSpot on this one.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Security
Hacking incidents, the stealth of user information, data breach, malware infection, and so on are the bane of any website. Needless to say, if you are not providing enough attention towards ensuring website security, it can have serious consequences and your business would suffer as a result.
Ideally, your CMS should help you out with this.
WordPress being an open-source software that is self-hosted, doesn’t provide any in-built security features. You would need to do the hard work and select a host that offers strong security features or implement security features such as a firewall, an SSL certificate, backups, malware scanning, and cleanup.
However, this also means that a developer can check to ensure the security of the code since it is openly available for access and modification.
HubSpot’s COS, being a proprietary software on a managed SaaS platform, controls all security aspects themselves and provides an out-of-the-box solution. It includes all top-notch security features such as firewall/VPN, intrusion detection system (IDS), web application firewall (WAF), distributed denial of service (DDoS) mitigation, pro-active scanning and network testing, and SSL protection.
Because it is built on a closed source platform, only HubSpot developers have access to the code. Although this means there isn’t the same scope of self-verification as WordPress, it also means a lesser risk of hacking.
The Winner – Due to WordPress’s popularity it becomes a soft target for hackers as compared to a HubSpot site. Moreover, if you don’t want to employ professional developers or go through the arduous process of manually selecting a secure host as well as installing security plugins, then HubSpot would be the best CMS for your business website.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Community & Support
An important part of using any CMS is familiarizing yourself with the community of users who exchange valuable information with each other.
Another important aspect is the customer support that you get. Although it might seem like a secondary concern, this is the factor that would prove most beneficial in times of crisis.
Having been around for a long time, WordPress has a vast community that comprises contributors and developers who offer design tips and technical advice to users via several outlets like documentation, the community support forum, and the WordPress handbook.
WordPress even has its own YouTube support along with similar groups on other online channels. However, WordPress itself doesn’t provide any customer support in terms of chat or call.
HubSpot’s community is comparatively smaller. The discussions on the forum are limited but constantly growing. Where it takes the cake is customer support.
HubSpot offers a US-based customer service, wherein reps assist users with active accounts, with all of their queries and problems. You either chat or speak to a person on call for a one-on-one discussion. You can also get great marketing tips through their website inbound.org and HubSpot Academy.
The Winner – HubSpot is decidedly better in support whereas WordPress has a more developed community. HubSpot wins this category, however, due to its one-on-one, timely customer support.
WordPress vs HubSpot: Flexibility & Ownership
Last but not the least, the question you need to ask before choosing a CMS to build your website from the ground up, is how flexible the CMS would be to your needs. You also need to consider whether you will have full ownership of your website or not. These are two things you simply cannot or rather, should not compromise with.
With WordPress, you own what you build. Since it is open-source and self-hosted, WordPress does not own any rights to your site. And because of the same reason, you can easily move from host to host. With WordPress, you are building an asset that is independent of pricing and licensing fees.
As for flexibility, we have already seen that WordPress is the most flexible CMS out there in every sense of the term.
The case is exactly the opposite here. When you build a site using HubSpot CMS, it is owned by HubSpot since it is a closed source, proprietary software. This makes it next to impossible to move your site to a different host. You will be essentially paying for a site you don’t even own – a sort of renting arrangement.
Not to mention the rigidity of the platform, which does not let you customize or configure the website according to your personal needs or wants.
The Winner – It is pretty clear that WordPress wins this last round owing to the extent of flexibility and ownership it offers.
The Final Judgment on WordPress vs Hubspot
So, which CMS platform is better, WordPress vs HubSpot? The truth is, neither one is necessarily better than the other – it all depends on what you are looking for. If you are looking for a more intuitive, easy-to-use platform, HubSpot may be the better choice. On the other hand, if you want a more cost-effective platform, WordPress may be a better option for you.
If you need further assistance in deciding on the best CMS for your B2B business or need help in creating or hosting your website, please contact us today. Our team of experts are well-versed in both HubSpot and WordPress and can help you create a website that is fully optimized.