HubSpot vs WordPress—Which Is a Better Fit for Nonprofits?
Created by Camille Winer
Creating a new website for your nonprofit can be overwhelming. Before you can start building a website though, you need to find the right content management system (CMS) for you and your team.
While there are many CMS platforms to choose from, two come through as among the most popular, and potentially most useful for your efforts. So here’s the big question—HubSpot or WordPress? What’s the best option for nonprofits?
Your website is a crucial marketing tool for your nonprofit, and your chosen CMS can greatly affect your team’s ability to build out, update, and optimize the site as your organization (and traffic) grows. It’s important that you know the benefits of each CMS when it comes to marketing a nonprofit organization, so we're here to help you make an informed decision.
What Does Wordpress Offer to Your Nonprofit?
WordPress is an open-source software package and is currently the most-used CMS in the United States. To use it you must install it, either by configuring it on your servers or by using a third-party hosting provider. It has relatively flexible content creation tools, but that flexibility comes at a cost.
WordPress requires plug-ins for additional functionality like site maps, SEO, analytics, and more. These plug-ins can slow down your website (which affects your SEO performance) and can potentially cause errors on your site (especially if they are not updated regularly).
While WordPress is technically a free service, this comparison between HubSpot and WordPress shows how with hosting service costs, plug-ins, paid or custom themes, security fees, and maintenance and support, you might pay from $5,000 to over $80,000 (or even more!) to build a site on WordPress that can meet your nonprofit needs.
Also, since WordPress is open-source, you’ll likely find yourself paying extra when you encounter unexpected issues.
It’s the most commonly used CMS on the market partly due to the flexibility it offers the user. But unless you have a dedicated internal team with WordPress development experience, you might find it a little more unwieldy than advertised.
How Would HubSpot Benefit Your Nonprofit?
HubSpot offers everything from free CMS tools to a high-end CMS Hub Enterprise, with monthly subscriptions that top out at $1,200 a month (along with $25/month and $400/month plans and the free option, depending on the needs of your organization).
These subscription plans give you the freedom to figure out what works best for you, and each option offers a variety of options that will give you more control over your nonprofit website.
Unlike WordPress, HubSpot's subscription-based model includes world-class 24/7 technical support. There’s nothing worse than scrambling to fix a website issue during a fundraising event or when you're getting a boost in traffic. The benefit of using this subscription-based model is that you don’t have to worry about resolving any issues in a timely manner or having to pay a third party a hefty sum to fix your site. HubSpot has your back.
Apart from the value it offers with its customer service, HubSpot mostly differentiates itself with its seamless integration of various marketing tools to help support your sales, email marketing, and social media.
HubSpot's connected ecosystem also lets you personalize content directly on web pages based on the insights gathered from your contacts. By personalizing and contextualizing content, you can tailor your message for specific people based on criteria and filtering within your CRM. That’s huge for nonprofit marketers!
I recently shared another feature that sets HubSpot apart from other CMS platforms—its “drag and drop” themes. With WordPress, a theme change can be a giant project (that can cost a fair amount of your yearly marketing budget). But with HubSpot, your team can make changes, add pages or content, and quickly adjust the layout of any page. With easy website editing and design, HubSpot increases your staff's capacity to update and build out your nonprofit’s website.
With HubSpot, your website's hosting is taken care of, removing the need to connect to external hosting accounts. The process of setting up a HubSpot website is straightforward, with clear instructions provided, and their 24/7 support ensures you receive timely assistance.
HubSpot's integrated ecosystem, user-friendly interface, automatic security, and comprehensive support make it a fantastic choice for nonprofits looking to accelerate their marketing efforts in order to grow, all while maintaining a seamless web user experience.
HubSpot vs Wordpress—Which CMS Is Best?
Full disclosure: We used to use WordPress for our Yodelpop website, but we made the change to HubSpot some time ago and haven’t looked back since.
While WordPress remains a popular choice, it lacks the comprehensive features found in HubSpot. WordPress allows for great flexibility, but it’s dependent on plug-ins that might interfere with the user experience. It operates as a standalone website without the interconnectedness to marketing tools that HubSpot provides, while also requiring significant coding and development efforts to build and scale your website effectively, unlike the streamlined experience offered by HubSpot's CMS.
That’s why we recommend HubSpot for nonprofits looking to maximize the benefits their CMS can provide for their websites.
As a nonprofit marketer, your website is an integral part of your arsenal. And that website has to live on a CMS that both looks great AND works well with your lean team. We’ve used both WordPress and HubSpot, and we have found that HubSpot undoubtedly works best for us.
If you’re currently on WordPress and are curious about making a change, we created a handy guide for migrating over to HubSpot to help you through the process.
We know that you might be familiar with WordPress, which means you probably have felt our pain when issues have popped up (we’re still bummed about the New Year’s Eve gatherings we had to miss so we could help clients using that CMS fix everything from the dreaded white screen of death to fatal server errors).
But take it from us. Our experience using HubSpot has led to fewer headaches, fewer holidays missed, and, most importantly, fewer costs to fix our site if something suddenly breaks. If you’re curious about what HubSpot can do for you, they offer a free demo online.
Your CMS is your choice, but when it comes down to who we prefer in the battle of HubSpot vs. WordPress, HubSpot wins.