HubSpot is one of the platforms that makes the “must-use” list of marketing gurus across the internet, but HighLevel (better known as GoHighLevel) has also made waves in the marketing sphere. Both are highly popular with small businesses, large corporations, and marketing agencies on both sides of the Atlantic.
So, which is best?
At HighThrive Digital, we are going to take you through the differences, similarities and overlap between GoHighLevel and HubSpot so you can decide which is best for you. We’ll start with a summary to give you an overview, then delve into the minutia of all the features, benefits and drawbacks of each platform.
Let’s dig in!
Table of Contents
TL;DR Summary - GoHighLevel VS HubSpot
To sum up this whole article in a paragraph: GoHighLevel is a CRM software platform that’s really designed for agencies with a sophistication that skilled marketers will be impressed by. On the other hand, HubSpot is a little more beginner friendly as a CRM and marketing automation platform. It offers more support and is quite comprehensive… but it’s not cheap!
Ultimately, we find that GoHighLevel provides excellent flexibility and puts more emphasis on being full-featured at a very reasonable price. HubSpot, on the other hand, has a simpler user interface and is happy to compromise on some flexibility to make the platform friendlier for beginners.
Both have an excellent range of features, so you’re covered on this front whichever you choose. We’ll explore the features below.
Finally, the price difference is important to note. Neither are “cheap” but when you look at value for money, GoHighLevel is a clear winner.
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Which Is Best For Marketing Agencies?
No beating around the bush here – GoHighLevel is best for agencies. Hands down.
The primary reason for this is that GoHighLevel was designed for marketing agencies. It has a white label feature, so it can be used for your clients, and scalability that HubSpot can only dream of.
Furthermore, one of the drawbacks of GoHighLevel overall is that it’s not always beginner friendly. But while that’s a drawback for business owners trying to manage marketing alone, it’s a huge benefit for experienced marketers that know their way around a CRM and desire flexibility with an incredible range of features.
The flexibility of GoHighLevel also extends to the pricing, which is competitive and tiered so that no matter the size of your marketing agency and client base, GoHighLevel can work seamlessly.
So, while HubSpot has some absolutely fantastic features and shouldn’t be written off, it’s definitely not the top choice for marketing agencies in particular.
Side by Side Comparison
Ease of Use
Available at higher tiers
Email Marketing Integration
Pricing is important. One agency may have a different budget to another agency, but what we all have in common (including us at HighThrive Digital) is that we’re looking for value for money.
Here’s exactly how much you’ll be paying to use GoHighLevel or HubSpot.
GoHighLevel Pricing Plan
GoHighLevel uses a 3-tier structure, not dissimilar to the tiered structure that HubSpot uses. The main difference is that GoHighLevel uses fewer tiers, at lower prices, and each tier has a wider range of features to explore.
14 day free trial
It’s exactly what it sounds like. A no-strings-attached 14 day trial to help you discover if GoHighLevel is a right fit.
Starter – $97 per month
You’ll notice in our screenshot above that the starter tier for GoHighLevel provides the longest list of features. This is because GoHighLevel equips you with everything you need from the start. Unlike other platforms (including HubSpot) you don’t need to pay for a higher tier just to access basic features that every marketing agency needs.
This is one of the key benefits of GoHighLevel. The higher tiers (explained below) provide scalability and additional features more suitable for large and established agencies.
Included in the starter tier are the workflow and campaign builders, CRM, email and SMS features, pipeline manager, and all the standard integrations.
Agency Pro – $497 per month
The top tier from GoHighLevel is incredibly versatile and includes an incredible array of features that will impress any marketer. It’s also, notably, several thousand dollars cheaper than HubSpot’s highest tier.
Features at this tier include SaaS mode, split testing, agent reporting, and more.
Ultimately, GoHighLevel is designed to offer every marketing agency the tools they need from the starter tier. Higher tiers offer tools that the largest marketing agencies desire and amazing scalability. Although the lowest tiers are higher in price than HubSpot, when you see the price difference of the highest tiers, it’s hard not to be impressed!
HubSpot Pricing Plan
Just from the pricing structure, it’s easy to see that HubSpot is aimed more toward beginners and individual companies, as well as agencies.
The lower tiers are cheap, but they’re inflexible. The higher tiers offer features that are more comparable with GoHighLevel, but the pricing is out of this world.
An important note about HubSpot tiers: HubSpot does not have just a single tier structure to choose from. Instead, they have separate tiers for marketing, sales, service, CMS and operations. Below we will be comparing the tier pricing for the “CRM Suite” because it bundles all the features from the separate categories listed above, into one. This makes it the most comparable to what GoHighLevel offers.
Offers a basic CRM system with limited features. It’s a good way to learn the basics of marketing for a complete beginner, but for agencies and more complex businesses, it’s not comprehensive enough.
Starter – $50 per month
The starter tier includes 1,000 marketing contacts, 2 paid users for the sales and service hubs, a website builder limited to 1 subdomain and 50 pages, and a limited landing page builder.
There’s a very long list of “limited” features that come with this tier.
Professional – $1,780 per month
The professional tier is already more expensive than the highest GoHighLevel tier. It also doesn’t provide as many features. At this point, it’s clear that GoHighLevel is superior in our comparison when it comes to price and value for money.
Nonetheless, if you are considering the professional tier from HubSpot, you’ll have access to 2,000 marketing contacts and up to 5 paid users for the sales and service hubs. For most small businesses, this is ample.
The professional tier increases the scale a little. You go from 1 inbox to 100, up to 10 teams, etc. Few features are labeled as unlimited.
Enterprise – $5,000 per month
The highest tier is an eye-watering $5,000 per month (or £4,110 for our British readers) and includes the widest range of features available on HubSpot. 10,000 marketing contacts are included, 10 paid users for certain hubs, and more.
Yet there are still limits. For example, up to 50 dashboards, only 15 audiences for ad retargeting, and up to 300 connected accounts for social media.
Also worth noting is that HubSpot wants you to pay for additional users and marketing contacts beyond what each plan offers – there’s no unlimited option here. It gets pricey very fast!
Ease Of Use
If we took a layperson, a business manager or someone just starting in the field of marketing, and sat them down to set up HubSpot, they would find it easier than GoHighLevel.
HubSpot is designed to be relatively easy. It’s all about marketing automation for a business, not just the marketing agency managing their clients.
There are several ways in which both GoHighLevel and HubSpot make marketing automation and CRM easier:
- They’re both designed as an all-in-one platform, to keep all your tools in one place,
- They both have features that are designed for agencies – GoHighLevel more than Hubspot,
- They both have a range of integrations, with GoHighLevel having hundreds to choose from and HubSpot offering some of the most popular integrations for businesses (e.g. MailChimp),
- And, they both have good customer support available.
The real difference in ease of use is the platform itself. HubSpot is laid out so a business owner with only a basic understanding of marketing can learn how to navigate the platform. GoHighLevel assumes that you’ve already got a good grasp on the technical aspects.
The flexibility and sophistication of GoHighLevel is suitable for marketing agencies, but HubSpot wins overall for ease of use.
The customer support for GoHighLevel is great. Here is how to get help with the system:
- Check the Help Center for useful “how to” videos,
- Pull up the live chat to get advice from a GoHighLevel expert,
- Request a support ticket, so someone can contact you with a solution,
- Book a 1-on-1 Zoom call with a GoHighLevel expert for in-depth advice and assistance,
- Reach out to official Facebook communities and groups to get advice and help from fellow users.
So, you have a variety of options depending on the acuteness of your query.
In comparison, here’s what HubSpot has to offer in the way of customer support:
- Help Documentation & Training offers education content similar to GoHighLevel, with additional training for complete newbies,
- Live chat via HubSpot, which is often the easiest way to get in contact with them,
- Email and phone support – similar to the support ticket feature on GoHighLevel,
- Community support within HubSpot, which acts like a forum, with events for developers and other benefits.
The key difference between customer support for the two platforms is that it’s tailored to the type of person who uses the platform. For GoHighLevel, support is oriented toward helping experienced marketing agencies overcome technical problems that aren’t easily solved – a Zoom call in this situation is a real Godsend, and it adds a personal touch to the service.
On the other hand, HubSpot customer support with more focus on live chat and “training” is really designed to troubleshoot the most common problems that new users have. If you have an in-depth issue, the developer forum may be able to help… but it’s not a dedicated service.
There’s also a really helpful Facebook group network that we are personally hooked up with. We recommend joining the HighLevel Of
Nonetheless, our personal experiences at HighThrive Digital with customer support from both platforms has been overwhelmingly positive. We’re confident that you’re in good hands either way.
ficial Community group at least, so you can stay up to date with new features (they’re being added all the time). The Pro-Agency Group offers exclusive training for agencies too.
The Customer Relationship Management (CRM) function is really where GoHighLevel and HubSpot shine. The main draw to these platforms in particular is that they encompass many features in one.
Instead of hooking up your website analytics with your email management software, then hooking this up to your WordPress site, and desperately trying to remember the passwords for each of them… you can manage everything related to your customers from a single dashboard.
This is what you, as a marketing agency, need and it’s also what your clients are looking for. Both HubSpot and GoHighLevel fulfill this need.
So, let’s identify some of the key differences between what each platform offers.
GoHighLevel’s CRM includes insights and a dashboard that you can rebrand for your clients. It centralizes all your data in one place, and also provides pipeline management. Call tracking, reputation management… all those great GoHighLevel features that are included in every tier can be managed from the CRM. There’s great flexibility here to manage your customer relationships in the way that works best for you, regardless of which tier you subscribe to.
In comparison, HubSpot’s CRM is great but not the best feature. The integrations are staggered between tiers, and many will also incur an additional fee. You may find that you still need a few different tabs open as you manage your customers from different platforms just to keep costs low. Many people also note that GoHighLevel has more flexibility when it comes to CRM, while HubSpot has a set way of displaying information, tracking, integrating, etc. that may not meet the needs of all your clients.
Once again, HubSpot prioritizes simplicity and ease of use over the flexibility that GoHighLevel is known for.
Website & Funnel Building
At HighThrive Digital, we find that most experienced marketers have a website builder that they prefer and stick to. So, a platform that gives you the flexibility to choose the website builder of your choice – as well as funnel building – is important.
GoHighLevel offers an on-platform website builder with full control over customization. It’s also compatible with WordPress, Wix and SquareSpace. You can create a funnel quickly with templates, or build your own. Once again, the keyword is flexibility.
HubSpot also has an on-platform website builder. The flexibility is not the same, however. Depending on your tier, you may be limited on customization and number of pages. You’re also limited with a drag and drop builder and set themes to select from.
It is possible to create a website externally to HubSpot and install tracking code. This gives you more flexibility, but it adds yet another cost and platform to manage.
Email Marketing Integration
Another big feature that agencies and businesses look for in both GoHighLevel and HubSpot is email marketing integration. In HubSpot, email marketing falls under the marketing category. For the starter tier, you are limited to sending a set number of emails per month – 5x however many marketing contacts you have. Higher tiers take that up to 20x.
Interestingly, GoHighLevel can actually integrate HubSpot email management into the GoHighLevel platform! So, if you are thinking of getting HubSpot solely for email management, don’t bother. GoHighLevel also offers integration with MailChimp and more.
GoHighLevel further offers a range of similar features as standard, including calls, SMS, messenger, and other ways to interact with customers without leaving the platform.
Both GoHighLevel and HubSpot have an insanely long list of features. We’ll give you the highlights of each below. But the key difference is that GoHighLevel tends to be yes or no – we either give you full access to the feature, or we don’t yet support it. On the other hand, HubSpot likes to drag things out – we can give you this feature, but it won’t be unlimited unless you upgrade your payment tier (if at all).
Best GoHighLevel Features
- Reputation management
- Power dialer, call tracking and recording
- AI conversation bot and website chat widget
- Completely customizable membership sites
- Pipeline management
- App and calendar
- Automated on-boarding
- Client portal
- API access
- Smart lists
- And a fully flexible CRM system with hundreds of integrations.
The features here are very oriented toward the marketing agency, with whitelabel and rebranding features prioritized.
Best HubSpot Features
- Data management
- Simple landing pages, funnels and forms
- Templates for everything, from websites to emails
- HubSpot Academy for learning
- App marketplace to discover new integrations
- Membership sites
- Email automation and sequencing
- Option to remove HubSpot branding at higher tiers.
Many of these core marketing automation features are available when you reach the Professional tier, which is already more costly than GoHighLevel.
One of the main reasons that HubSpot is so popular despite the high price, is that the features all work. That’s the advantage of having less flexibility. HubSpot may coax you to use the system and build your marketing strategy in a certain way, but it’s definitely going to work.
That’s good news for businesses, but some agencies might find it stifling.
Ultimately, GoHighLevel is a platform that makes marketing simpler for businesses, but especially agencies who need a scalable platform for their growing client base. It has a simple and friendly interface, but also the flexibility that marketing experts need.
While some beginners might find it more difficult to use compared to HubSpot, it lets you market your business in the way you want.
It’s not without drawbacks, but it’s still the best option for marketing agencies in our opinion.
Pros of HighLevel
- Designed for agencies,
- Competitive pricing,
- Awesome range of features and integrations.
Cons of HighLevel
- Might be off-putting for new/beginner marketers,
- Fewer templates and presets means more time is spent setting up.
GoHighLevel is Best for…
Marketing agencies – specifically, small and growing agencies that need a platform that can scale up with them. While the higher HubSpot tiers offer the functionality a marketing agency needs, sooner or later you’ll be purchasing further integrations and feature extensions that don’t fit your budget.
HubSpot is well-known for being an excellent CRM and marketing automation platform – we’re not going to argue with that. It does have an excellent range of features and integrations, plus the ease of use and support that businesses need.
It’s an expensive platform, but it does what it sets out to do. This is a platform that delivers on its promises. It’s a reliable option.
The main drawbacks of HubSpot become obvious when you compare it to alternatives, especially GoHighLevel.
Pros of HubSpot
- Easy to set up and use,
- Free version available,
- Excellent range of features and integrations,
- Well-known for being reliable and trustworthy.
Cons of HubSpot
- Higher tiers are overpriced,
- Additional costs for extensions and integrations can get extortionately expensive.
HubSpot is Best for…
HubSpot, particularly the free and standard versions, are best for businesses that want to handle their own marketing. While agencies and multi-business owners can find the functionality they need at higher tiers, it makes more sense to choose an alternative platform that can do it all for a lower price.
We like HubSpot, we just think that it’s not the right fit for marketing agencies.
Comparing GoHighLevel vs HubSpot reveals that the two platforms have many similarities, plus features and integrations that are virtually identical. The biggest differences come down to the price and how suitable they are for marketing agencies vs business owners.
As such, we can’t truly say that one is the best marketing software overall. It really depends on your needs. If you operate a marketing agency, GoHighLevel is the obvious choice. If you’re just starting to develop the marketing for your own business, the free or starter tiers of HubSpot will suffice but expect HubSpot to get expensive as you grow your business.
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