Customer relationship management (CRM) has been with us for some time. By the early 2000s, Oracle, SAP, and Microsoft were locked in a battle royale for CRM supremacy. But then the cloud happened, and a host of other vendors entered the scene.
Nowadays, there are a great many CRM options available—NetSuite CRM and HubSpot are among the top platforms. They each have their pros and cons. But which is best?
Each vendor offers standard CRM features as well as sales forecasting, analytics, email marketing, reporting, and more. There are definite similarities, but they also cater to separate niches.
To determine which solution is best for you, keep your organization’s unique needs in mind as you evaluate each vendor’s features, pricing, and ideal users.
What is NetSuite CRM?
NetSuite is a CRM tool that now falls under the Oracle umbrella, but it is far more than CRM. It also encompasses enterprise resource planning (ERP), accounting, business management, human capital management (HCM), professional services automation, omnichannel commerce, and analytics. This is available in a complete suite, although buyers may choose to only adopt the CRM component.
Specific to CRM, NetSuite helps generate a single view of prospects, customers, partners, and vendors. It seeks to give sales, marketing, and support teams the real-time data they need to improve customer experiences and boost sales.
The NetSuite CRM platform is broken down into individual modules:
- Customer service management
- Marketing automation
- Partner relationship management
- Sales force automation
- Configure, price, quote (CPQ)
What is HubSpot?
Unlike NetSuite, HubSpot is focused solely on CRM. It markets itself as an easy-to-use CRM, with modules available for sales, marketing, service, operations, and content management system (CMS).
Each of these hubs is available à la carte or as a bundle, depending on the organization’s needs. One of HubSpot’s strengths is the integration between CRM and web page creation via its CMS.
Also read: Best CRM Features and Why They Are Important
NetSuite CRM vs HubSpot: Sales forecasting
NetSuite’s forecasting tool includes a three-tiered probability system to grade the likelihood of potential sales. It also provides visibility around key performance indicators (KPIs) in a dashboard, but it doesn’t rely solely on automation. Sales reps can adjust forecast parameters to bring them closer to the reality on the ground. As usual with NetSuite, plenty of customization options are available.
HubSpot, too, offers good sales forecasting, sales pipeline, and sales management features. However, user reviews of HubSpot are generally better than NetSuite with a common thread being the depth of functions available. NetSuite provides far greater customization features and ways to tailor forecasts to different verticals. HubSpot just sticks to making its platform better for any user.
Verdict: HubSpot wins. It simplifies the management of every sales pipeline stage, provides just enough customization, and adds a confidence value to deals in progress.
NetSuite CRM vs HubSpot: Analytics
HubSpot wisely embeds analytics in its marketing hub. This makes it possible for users to keep track of website traffic, individual page performance, and sales pipeline trends. Some analytics features help organizations track brand sentiment and the overall level of engagement of different customers.
NetSuite Analytics is a separate tool that can provide analytics to CRM, ERP, and other aspects of the vast NetSuite universe. Its analytics capabilities are excellent, but the need to adopt a separate tool for CRM analytics will add to overall costs.
HubSpot wins for those just wanting to glean important analytics from their CRM data. NetSuite wins if there is a need for an analytics engine that can blend inputs from ERP, CRM, BI, HCM, and other systems the organization uses.
NetSuite CRM vs HubSpot: Email marketing
HubSpot does a good job of email marketing overall. The platform alerts users when leads engage with email and content, which makes it easy for salespeople to integrate their favorite sales and marketing documents to send to prospects.
Users can also create templates based on the emails with the strongest response. HubSpot generates automatic metrics about engagement rates for different aspects of ongoing email campaigns.
NetSuite makes it possible to manage end-to-end email marketing campaigns using database management, segmentation, personalization, and auto-unsubscribe capabilities.
This platform seeks to take the complexity out of lead qualification and conversion by making it easy to track activity and buyer-readiness indications via email marketing. As such, NetSuite includes landing pages and forms that funnel data to the broader CRM database and route relevant leads to the right salespeople.
NetSuite’s lead generation features offer a more impactful email marketing experience.
NetSuite CRM vs HubSpot: Support and ease of use
HubSpot’s users are complimentary of the platform’s ease of use. The company offers hundreds of different integrations to make life simple regardless of the other platforms users want to run or interface with HubSpot.
HubSpot’s free tier offers support via community discussion forums, which can be helpful but less efficient in times of crisis. Paid users get community access, email, and chat support, and the more expensive pricing tiers offer phone support as well. Those willing to pay for higher levels of support well are generally happy with it.;
NetSuite, too, gets good marks for customer support and the user-friendliness of its platform. It has a good variety of integrations with other software platforms, but HubSpot has far more. As NetSuite ventures far beyond CRM, its platform may be too complex for users needing basic CRM functionality.
Another point of contention is the number of users each platform can support concurrently—NetSuite can handle 100 users while HubSpot can support 1000 or more.
With this distinction in mind, HubSpot’s ease of use and support are better positioned for a wider range of needs than NetSuite’s.
NetSuite CRM vs HubSpot: Pricing
Though NetSuite does not provide pricing for its CRM platform, the average cost of $129 per month per user isn’t as affordable as HubSpot. Plus, users may also find themselves paying more for modules such as analytics. There is no free version nor free trial, though the company does offer a free product tour for interested buyers.
Unlike NetSuite, HubSpot offers a limited free edition for prospects who can’t afford a paid subscription or aren’t ready to commit yet. Alternatively, organizations with small budgets may find a perfect fit with the basic version of its Sales Hub that includes two users for $50 per month. Professional versions are priced higher but include more users—the top-of-the-line edition is over $1000 per month for ten users.
HubSpot wins on pricing because of its flexibility and low-cost entry point.
Related: Advantages and Challenges of CRM Software
How to choose between NetSuite CRM vs HubSpot
NetSuite CRM is the ideal choice for anyone already using other aspects of the full NetSuite package. If they are using NetSuite for ERP or HCM, for example, it’s a no-brainer to add NetSuite CRM. Package discounts increase with each additional module, and built-in integration across the platform will streamline accessibility and reporting needs.
On that same note, organizations that are already heavily invested in Oracle software or the Oracle Cloud should probably stick to NetSuite. In addition to integration and discount benefits, the focus on one software stack or product suite enables access to a greater range of data inputs, parameters, and analysis.
HubSpot, on the other hand, is recommended to any organization that falls outside the NetSuite/Oracle user periphery. Its tight focus on CRM makes it a good choice for mid-size and large organizations in particular.
Content-heavy organizations, too, should favor HubSpot. Its CMS features mean that those generating a lot of content for sales and marketing will appreciate the integration and automation opportunities that exist between CMS and CRM. That said, if the company already has a hefty WordPress presence, users may not wish to switch to HubSpot’s CMS.
Yet another point to consider is the volume of users that may wish to access the system concurrently. As NetSuite tops out at about 100 at one time, any sales team that expects more than that should gravitate toward HubSpot.
The decision between HubSpot and NetSuite takes careful consideration. If neither option seems like a clear winner, it may be worth exploring alternative vendors on our list of Top CRM Software Solutions.