Jessie Smith
By Jessie Smith on July 03, 2024

Ask These 6 Questions Before Hiring a HubSpot Onboarding Agency (+ How To Find a HubSpot Partner)

The good news is – HubSpot is a killer CRM with robust features that can help you take nearly every aspect of your business up a notch (or ten). 

The less than stellar news is that you have another major decision to make quickly – what will you do for Hubspot onboarding? 

Hubspot Onboarding is required if you purchased Professional or Enterprise, but you still have the option to choose whether you’d like to complete that onboarding directly with Hubspot or through a Hubspot Agency Partner

There are hundreds of Hubspot Agency Partners to choose from. How can you choose the right Hubspot partner for your business? 

Our best tip is to start by searching the list of agency partners by industry. Which partners have worked with businesses in your industry before? This field should help you narrow your list significantly. From there, you can leverage the agency's reviews and ratings and the “About” section of their listing page to see if they seem worthy of further investigation. 

What’s the risk of choosing the wrong partner? You may be asking. 

A solid onboarding experience is crucial to maximizing your HubSpot adoption process and getting the most from the tools in your CRM. If you have a strong onboarding process and experience, you’ll get a better return on your CRM investment. 

On the flip side, choosing the wrong partner can lead to costly challenges including delayed implementation, a poorly configured system that hinders your marketing and sales efforts, friction among your team, and a negative impact on your overall business goals. 

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To reduce your risk and avoid costly pitfalls, here are 6 questions you should ask before deciding on your Hubspot onboarding agency:

Question 1: How Is The Onboarding Workload Distributed?

When choosing your Hubspot onboarding partner, understanding how the workload will be distributed between your team and your partner is crucial. If you choose to do your onboarding with Hubspot, the process will be collaborative but standardized, while if  you opt to complete your onboarding with a Hubspot Agency Partner, the onboarding process can be tailored precisely to your business needs, timeline, and budget. If you opt to hire an Agency Partner, you can also choose to have White Glove or Done-for-You onboarding, where your account gets configured for you. 

Regardless of the route you choose, it’s important that you and your onboarding partner clearly delegate all onboarding responsibilities. Be sure you have one place where all onboarding actions are tracked with clear ownership and timelines. 

Some key considerations when choosing between Done-with-You onboarding vs Done-for-You onboarding should be:

  • Your budget
  • Your team’s bandwidth
  • You and your team’s prior experience with HubSpot

 On average, Hubspot onboarding takes between 6-8 weeks to complete. 

Question 2: How Will The Onboarding and Setup Be Documented? 

In an ideal onboarding experience, the time, energy, and money you invest into your new software solution will return a hundredfold! Once your onboarding process is complete, your team should be trained and confident using the new solution and ready to participate in continuing education and Hubspot certifications to level-up their skills. 

Imagine you have a flawless onboarding process… only for some of your key marketing stakeholders to leave the company. Will your new stakeholders be able to step in and pick up the baton, continuing to manage your CRM the way you were trained in onboarding?

You need your team members to be able to get up and running within your existing software quickly and seamlessly. Diving into a new business software can feel like a puzzle at first as you navigate the setup and start to connect the dots on how and why things are set up the way that they are. 

Without thorough documentation of your Hubspot account setup, you’re extremely vulnerable to inefficiencies when you hire new staff or consultants. These new users will spend hours trying to understand your account setup. 

As a result, it’s vital that your Hubspot onboarding partner equips you not only with the skills and knowledge you need to leverage the software at a high-level today, but the peace of mind in knowing that your processes are cleanly documented moving forwards. Be sure to ask potential partners what their onboarding documentation looks like so you know what to expect. 

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Question 3: What Are The Key Phases of Implementation?

There is a standard order of operations for most aspects of Hubspot onboarding regardless of who you choose to do your onboarding with. Early weeks are generally dedicated to account setup and integration management, while the later weeks are typically more advanced and flexible based on your business priorities and goals. 

Before you sign up with a HubSpot onboarding partner, you’ll need to ask what their key phases of implementation and training look like. 

At Lean Labs, we recommend breaking out onboarding into four phases over six weeks. This pace can always be adjusted based on your business needs. 

Below is a sample breakdown of each phase: 

Phase 1: Initial Assessment (1 week)

What’s Covered: 

  • Your Hubspot Goals
  • Stakeholder Alignment
  • Platform Audit
  • Integration Planning
  • Contact Property Management
  • Email Account Setup
  • Connect Social Accounts
  • Hubspot Tracking Codes

Phase 2: Data Setup (2 weeks)

Phase 3: Process Automation (2 weeks) 

  • Establish Lead Status
  • Map Nurturing Processes
  • Develop Custom Workflows
  • Create Templates and Sequences
  • Assign Lead Ownership
  • Setup Smart Content

Phase 4: Training & Success Planning (1 week)

  • Setup Meeting Link
  • Contact Record Maintenance
  • Software Key Feature Highlights
  • Staff Q&A
  • Success Planning 

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Question 4: Do You Have Case Studies From Onboarding Companies Similar To Mine? 

Just like every business is unique, every Hubspot onboarding is unique. But it’s important to choose an onboarding partner with a proven track record of success with businesses similar to yours. For example, if you are a B2B SaaS company, it’s strongly recommended that you choose an onboarding partner with experience in that specific industry. 

Why is it important to partner with an onboarding agency that has experience with businesses like yours? Simple: your account setup varies depending on how your business runs. Businesses that operate similarly to yours may have similar setups, and onboarding agencies familiar with businesses in your industry are more likely to have experience with the kind of setup assistance you need. 

Best practices for managing things like your contact properties, lifecycle stages, email automation, and lead nurture, are very different for different industries and business models. A company that sells monthly software subscriptions versus a company that sells cars will have drastically different Hubspot setups. 

When searching Hubspot’s partner directory, you can sort by Industry. This is just the first layer of filtering. From there it’s best to evaluate customer case studies and reviews and then set up some discovery calls to ensure you’ve found a great fit. 

Question 5: What Does Successful Onboarding Look Like? 

Successful onboarding isn’t just about getting through the setup process, it’s about ensuring your team is fully equipped and confident in their abilities to use Hubspot to its full potential. In most cases, there isn’t a single moment where you cross the finish line, and onboarding is over. It’s often times a fluid process that involves checking in with your team and your onboarding partner. 

Be sure to ask your potential partner what a successful onboarding looks like to them so you can ensure your goals and expectations are aligned.

For example, some key signs of successful onboarding with Lean Labs include:

  • System Configuration: Your Hubspot account is set up according to best practices with all necessary integrations, customizations, and automation in place. 
  • Team Proficiency: Your team understands how to use Hubspot’s core features including marketing automation, CRM management, sales tools, and reporting. The team should be able to execute campaigns, manage contracts, and analyze performance. 
  • Achievement of Initial Onboarding Goals: Remember that goal you set at the beginning of onboarding? This might include launching your first marketing campaign, setting up a lead nurturing system, or integrating Hubspot with your existing tools. Whatever the goal was, make sure it has been met.
  • Data Accuracy: Your data is clean, well-organized, and accurately migrated into Hubspot. Your reporting is reliable and you feel confident that your numbers are correct and you know how to access them. 
  • Established Processes: Clear processes are in place for using Hubspot on a daily basis. Your team knows who is responsible for what. This includes things like managing campaigns and reviewing reports and dashboards.

Question 6: How Much Does Onboarding Cost and What Is and Isn’t Included? 

As we’ve mentioned (and you’re surely acutely aware), your CRM is a significant investment for your business. The best possible way to protect your CRM investment is by dedicating appropriate resources to your Hubspot onboarding. There’s a reason Hubspot requires onboarding for Professional and Enterprise accounts: It’s vital to the long-term success of your CRM. 

Certain aspects of agency pricing are very standard, such as basic account configurations, list and workflow creation, email automation, and basic integration setup. 

Costs will begin to vary based on factors like:

  • Number of hours needed for staff training
  • Number of hours needed to ongoing support post onboarding
  • Number of integrations
  • Done-with you vs Done-for-you onboarding services 

Cost of Onboarding Directly with Hubspot: 

  • Hubspot Marketing Hub Professional: Starts at $3,000.
  • Hubspot Marketing Hub Enterprise: Starts at $7,000.

Cost of Onboarding with a Hubspot Agency Partner:

  • Done-with-You Onboarding: If you want to be more involved in your onboarding process or require less comprehensive training, costs start around $3,000+ and vary based on the level of involvement and needs.
  • Done-for-You Onboarding: If you want a Hubspot Agency Partner to handle all aspects of your onboarding, costs typically start at $15,000+.

Nail HubSpot Marketing Hub Onboarding with Lean Labs

Crushing your Hubspot onboarding is crucial for maximizing the ROI on your CRM investment. You need an onboarding partner you can trust every step of the way who has experience with businesses similar to yours. 

At Lean Labs, we have extensive experience helping B2B SaaS companies get up and running on Hubspot. We offer three unique Hubspot onboarding packages and have a proven track record of success executing on all of them. 

Reach out to us today to discuss your Hubspot onboarding and let us help you win the first phase of your Hubspot journey.

Discuss Your Hubspot Onboarding Needs & Goals

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Published by Jessie Smith July 3, 2024
Jessie Smith