Top 10 Things HubSpot Can't do

Just in case there was any doubt... we love HubSpot! It's by far our favourite piece of software and we've used it off an on for more than ten years. We are a fully accredited HubSpot partner, and love it more with every accreditation we do. But we were recently reminded of some of the the things it cant do. 

So here is our top 10 things HubSpot Can't do
HubSpot CRM Contacts

The HubSpot CRM is the heart of the platform. Offering a 'single source of truth' for your teams as regards the various and different touch points in your business. It integrates the information the sales tools generate, the insight from the marketing tools and the perspective the customer service tools offer. It will automatically recognise companies associated with contact and create and populate company records, and will even guide you through importing and deduplicating additional records.

But what it can't do 

As clever as it is, the CRM isn't a 'creative' brain. It can't designed personas based on the data your website or research can help you build. It can't decide how to segment your database, thought it will allow to do it. It can't intuit insights for the data that it present back to you with its customer reporting functionality. 

Account Based Marketing

One of the best new feature on HubSpot is the ability to measure your specific activities for your ABM efforts. It will surface all sorts of data to ensure your sales and marketing efforts towards acquiring your most wanted clients is as aligned as it can be. It provides at a glance insight into the activities you have conducted, and in fact the ones you need to undertake too. Any account based sales person will drool over the power it provides to run this approach. 

But what it can't do 

It can't chose the clients you want to target for you. It cant take inspired guesses based on judgement and experience to target a client that on the face of it is a bad fit, that turns into the best client you have. It can have a go at suggesting target account actually, pretty effectively, based on the data it has to hand, but it will never leap to the conclusions an experienced account executive with product and market knowledge has. 

The Conversations Inbox

HubSpot can integrate your client communications from email, Livechat and even social media into one easy to manage place. It will allow you to directly answer a clients enquiries in the native application they first got in contact with, and even route leads and customer service tickets to the right place at the right time. Or if you prefer, it can be programmed to do that stuff automatically helping smaller teams achieve high levels of service. 

But what it can't do

It can't empathise with an upset client with an unhappy story to tell. It can't judge when to move on from a vexatious, serial complainer, knowing that you've done all you can to resolve a problem, and it's time to escalate. It can't offer experiences that surprise and delight your customers, thought it offer you the communication tools to do so. 

Paid and Social Media

HubSpot comes with an integrated paid ads and social media publishing tool that is simply first rate. Not only can you run your paid for social media and ad campaigns through the tool, you have full insight into the results and returns on your campaign that, being integrated with the CRM software, is available at the contact level. This means new users or customers acquired through your paid channels are attributed right the way through the whole funnel. They are tracked as ongoing customers for the life of their custom meaning you can get the fill impact of your advertising and Return On Ad Spend. 

Further, in terms of organic media, posts can be published, scheduled analysed and again, included into the reporting suite. Social listening is a few steps away, meaning you can keep an eye on that dark social thats going on, potentially causing unseen issues for your brand.

But what it can't do

It can't write awesome ad copy and inspiring social media content. It will help you keep track, and even chose the best variations of your ads with AI, but it can't create campaign themes, ad sets, take amazing pictures or engage with your audience to build a genuine sense of community. 

Awesome websites 

The new HubSpot CMS allows for greater flexibility and more sought after features that ever before. Its security levels like 24/7 monitoring and threat detection keep the 'IT guys' happy, the powerful tools like serverless functions and custom tools keep the 'Dev team' happy and the drag and drop editor, multivariate testing and SEO tools keep teh marketers ahead of the game. 

But what it can't do

HubSpot CMS can do many things better than most CMS available to the average company, but it cant design amazing, sticky, engaging pages with brilliant copy that inspires your audience to take action. While it can automatically learn what works best, and even personalise the user experience for your customers, the marketer will need to craft the words and options to feed into the machine. 

Powerful email 

It can certainly run many types of email campaign for you. Transactional, marketing and sales emails take on new power and dynamism when used in conjunction with the automations tools available to pro users in the platform. Design and templates are handled brilliantly. Insight is provided by fully integrated reporting functions like those you'd expect - open rates and click throughs - as well as some of those you might not expect to see - optimisation suggestions and domain health insights. 

But what it can't do

You'll probably never need another email tool, especially when combined with the segmentation power of the CRM and the automation of the marketing platform. But again copy designed to inspired and generate actions by the recipient is an art from. Subject lines need to be crafted, and just the right amount of text applied to get the results you require. 

Sales enablement 

HubSpot simply put, has the best sales enablement tools on the planet, in our opinion, based on power and ease of use together. Productivity tools like snippets and templates, meetings link, quotes, documents and playbooks at the click of the mouse, while in the contact record you are using, so you never need to move, add huge power. And the intuitive UI makes this so easy to pick up, even for the most tech averse seller. 

Task management and the automated task queue are lifesavers you won't be able to do without once you get used to using them and old favourites like deal pipelines and forecasts are easy to use, find and visualise. 

But what it can't do

Sales and productivity tools don't make sales by themselves! Finding the language to influence your prospect and having the discipline to execute the sales strategy can't be faked. In fact, the lack of these essential sales skill is positively exaggerated by use of HubSpot. People buy from people. 


HubSpots RevOps tools are perfect to show an aligned sales, marketing, and customer service team where the wins are. The flywheel means that 'force' can be added at the 'after sales' stages and friction removed from throughout the customer journey. The teams that work together on mutually agrees targets and KPIs are clearly going to be more effective than those that are siloed and work with their heads down, not worried about the interconnectedness of their actions. For instance, when sales are as responsible as customer service for C-Sat and NPS score you'll see more thorough qualification and expectation setting. This equals more successful customers!

But what it can't do 

As powerful as it is in this area, the HubSpot platform can't provide the leadership your teams need to operate as a truly integrated and aligned customer success team. Keeping the competing imperatives of these teams in equal tension is a task in itself and pivotal to the culture of the organisation. A team in competition with itself is less effective than one on each others side. 


HubSpot can basically automated everything! Want events on the website, like video views or form submissions to trigger complex activities like both the surfacing of the customer behaviour to the sales person, a report of the change of status to the marketer and a direct response thats required by the customer to work seamlessly, every-time? You need automation. 

Automate the emailing of weekly reports, sales sequences, social media posts, emails, and CRM hygiene. Automate qualification, meetings bookings and so on. The list goes on and on. 

But what it can't do 

Automation can't replace a sensible, or indeed intelligent conversation with a prospect or customer. The marketing works is full of horror stories of where automation has gone wrong. from harmless stuff like getting a personalisation token wrong to the more serious 'spamming' of a lead that has opted out of all communications. 
Knowing when and where to apply automation to save time and effort is crucial. Knowing what your customers need and being able to harness the power of a platform like HubSpot is not easy. 


HubSpot reporting is one of the unsung benefits of the platform. It can report on pretty much anything you can think of, in the realm of sales, marketing and customer service via its out of the box reports you can build specific dashboards from. And a ton of other things no one has ever thought of yet that can realised through the customer reporting tools. Single or cross object, funnels or attribution reports. All is possible! 

The newly minted sales analytics tools offer a first rate insight into sales person and sales leader performance, forecasts and pipelines and sales outcomes. 

But what it can't do

Despite having seemingly endless reports available for all flavour and style of manager, HubSpot can't interpret data for you. It can tell you what the data says, and allow you to look at it up and down, inside out and back to front, but its takes experience, insight, judgement and experience to draw firm conclusions capable of leading the business forward.

So there you have it! All powerful or a clever tool that can be used to awesome effect if you know what you are doing? It's pretty clear that its the latter! And if you want to learn more about what HubSpot can and can't do, don't hesitate to get in touch. We can talk to you about all the does, don't, can's and cannot's of all the Hubs, Sales, Marketing, Customer Service and CMS Hub, AND help put you on the path to mastery! 



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Tony Dowling

FCIM | HubSpot Platinum Partner | Revenue Consultant | HubSpot Certified Trainer | South Wales HUG Leader | | 07812 582213

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