Let’s just get this out the way, shall we? HubSpot onboarding doesn’t need to be as nerve-wracking, nail-biting and downright painful as most software migrations.
Generally, it’s pretty simple and rather exciting to see your new shiny HubSpot tools up and running.
In this post, we’ll unpack exactly what a HubSpot onboarding is, what’s included and what you need to know to get your team up and running.
So, I guess, let’s start at the beginning...
What exactly is a HubSpot Onboarding?
Well, simply put, HubSpot onboarding is the process of configuring your HubSpot account to meet your business needs, and getting yourself and your team acquainted with your brand spanking new HubSpot tools.
Regardless of which HubSpot Product Hub you’ve selected, the objective of every onboarding is to make sure HubSpot is ready-to-use. The onboarding process is a critical step towards your sales, marketing or customer service goals.
Is a HubSpot Onboarding necessary?
Think back to one of those rare moments you get to unbox and hold a brand new smartphone...collective sigh of pure joy and utter excitement.
You probably knew it was packed with a host of exciting features and was filled with endless possibilities. But most of us probably didn’t understand how most of those features worked, or how to set them up ourselves.
HubSpot is not too dissimilar to that first smartphone of yours.
As a CRM and marketing automation platform, HubSpot’s potential is vast. With a variety of products and services tailored to marketing, sales and customer service teams of any size, whether you’re a start-up or large enterprise organisation.
That means it’s packed with tools and features, just like your first smartphone, that needed to be configured and customised according to your organisation’s needs.
Depending on your business’s needs, onboarding can become tricky. Custom integrations, template development or sophisticated automation generally require product experts to be involved throughout the HubSpot onboarding process.
So in short, regardless of how complex or customised your HubSpot needs may be, onboarding is an essential first step.
How long does a HubSpot onboarding take to complete?
Standard onboardings for any of HubSpot’s Professional Product Hubs can take up to six weeks to complete.
Starter tiers can generally be done in two to three weeks whilst Enterprise level onboardings may take up to eight weeks to complete, depending on the level of customisation that is required.
It’s worth mentioning, however, that the length of any onboarding will obviously depend on the level of customisation your business requires.
Five of the most common factors that influence the time it takes to complete an onboarding are:
1. Are you a fresh HubSpot user or migrating from another platform?
A fresh HubSpot user starts off with a clean slate. All the data you gather from the moment your licence is activated is synced and available within your HubSpot portal. No lengthy, sometimes complex, integrations, exports or migrations are needed. Which naturally means the onboarding process is much quicker.
Migrating from one platform to another is seldom without its challenges. Extracting data, assets or info can be time-consuming, and sometimes a little tricky depending on the CRM or platform you were using previously.
2. How much data has to be imported?
Importing a list of old contacts can often be like cleaning out an old, unused closet. If there is a lot of ‘untidy’ data to be imported, it can take a bit of time to clean up and remove anything that can’t be used.
Syncing legacy systems with HubSpot products can be a time-consuming process too. Mapping previous deals and deal stages to your new HubSpot sales pipelines as an example often requires more time than first assumed.
3. How much automation is needed?
Automation is one of HubSpot’s strengths. Through workflows and sequences, you can automate just about anything. But that’s not to say all that automation is easy to do.
Depending on how much automation is required, and the depth of customisation needed, automation can take several weeks to build, test and deploy.
4. What depth of custom reporting is required?
HubSpot has a fantastic default reports library that covers most of the important metrics we all consider for marketing, sales and customer service. But it’s not uncommon for a business to require a unique view of how they are performing.
Hubspot’s custom reporting feature means you’re able to display just about any data in a manner that makes sense, although the initial reporting set-up can take some time depending on the requirements.
5. How much custom design work is required?
Whilst standard onboardings involve building out of a set of landing pages and blog templates to enable you and your team to begin creating campaigns. You may require the need a set of custom pages or themes to be created.
Luckily HubSpot has a host of ready to go themes available from their asset marketplace, although the level of customisation required in each build can impact the duration of the onboarding.
What’s included in an onboarding?
The objective of every onboarding is to equip every team with a set of HubSpot fundamentals, enabling them to hit the ground running from day one.
Here are some of the items typically included in a HubSpot onboarding:
Default Marketing Templates: From landing pages to emails, you’ll have templates aligned to your brand and ready for your next campaign.
Domain Setups: Connect both your primary, email and sub-domains within your HubSpot portal in order to track them all within your HubSpot dashboards.
Migrating Data Into HubSpot: Importing your existing contacts, marketing assets or external data into HubSpot.
Social Account Integrations: Connecting all your relevant social accounts enables your teams to schedule content from the same marketing platform.
Analytics Integrations: Connecting all your existing analytics software, such as Google Analytics, Ad Accounts and Google Search Console.
Deal Automations: Reducing the administrative burden on your sales team by automating elements of their deal creation and tracking.
Pipeline Creation: Importing your existing deals and configuring your sales pipeline to match your sales process.
Lead Scoring And Assignment: Creating processes to automatically score your leads based on their engagement and your requirements, and assigning leads within your teams.
Reporting Dashboards: Defining a set of dashboards for each of your marketing, sales or service teams that displays live, accurate reports.
Do we need to do onboarding through HubSpot? HubSpot Partners? Or can it be done in-house?
Onboarding is required for all paid HubSpot product hubs. This means unless you’re a HubSpot partner yourself, it can’t be done in-house.
HubSpot themselves offer a series of onboarding services, which is usually the best fit for teams who:
- Require a basic understanding of HubSpot settings and technical aspects.
- Have the capacity and time available to ‘learn by doing and take a more hands-on approach.
- Require a general overview and walkthrough of HubSpot features associated with your account.
The other option is to use a HubSpot agency partner to complete your onboarding. Typically this works best with teams who:
- Require a deeper understanding of HubSpot’s capabilities.
- Are short of capacity and need a hands-on approach.
- Require custom automation, templates, integrations, etc.
- Wish to partner with an agency for future projects or retainers.
- Expect a complicated migration from a legacy system.
How much does it cost?
HubSpot onboarding costs can vary depending on which of HubSpot’s products you’ve selected.
HubSpot provides their onboarding services from $250 for their starter tiers, with professional hub onboardings starting at $3 000 and advanced onboardings costing as much as $8 000.
One of the attractions of selecting an agency partner to work with your teams during your onboarding is often the price. Partners may be able to offer greater onboarding discounts if there is an existing or future retainer of work agreed upon as an example.
HubSpot onboarding is an exciting first step for most businesses, but not one that requires a one size fits all approach.
Instead, the objective of every onboarding should be to tailor your new platform to match the intricacies of your business and team.