Social Media

Hootsuite vs. Buffer: Which Social Tools is Best For You in 2023?

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You can administer your social media accounts smoothly by using social media management software, which lets you automate posts and promotions, keep track of results, and manage performance.There are several solutions available, but Buffer and Hootsuite are the two you'll hear mentioned in this area the most frequently. Although they both refer to social media management, their features and methods for doing the job vary slightly.For my Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram accounts, I took my time testing each programme, and scheduling and monitoring my updates. Here is how they compare: Hootsuite vs. Buffer

What is Hootsuite?

Hootsuite - Social Media Management Tool

Ryan Holmes developed and introduced the Hootsuite social media management platform in 2008. The majority of social media management functions, including post-scheduling and content curation, are covered by its features. Even specifically designed analytics tools for measuring ROI are available. With a single dashboard for accessing all social media campaign data, the product offers a simple user experience. It can even interface with many third-party apps and has team management and collaboration functions.

Hootsuite Features

  • Hootsuite offers comprehensive solutions for managing material on social media and scheduling posts.
  • It provides comprehensive analytics tools for monitoring and enhancing social media ROI.
  • Hootsuite expands its feature set by integrating with over 100 outside applications.

What is Buffer?

Buffer - Social Media Management Tool

Buffer is a simple and easy-to-use programme that offers functionality for publishing material on social networking platforms. A Buffer account is simple to set up and use once it has been created. The tool's greatest asset is how simple it is to use.For data analysis and report production, Buffer offers a variety of tools. It even offers tactical suggestions for boosting social engagement and reach. It also works with the newest social media features, including Instagram Stories.

Buffer Features

  • It contains specialized applications for content analysis and publishing.
  • You can visually organize your social media efforts with Buffer.
  • It also offers a comprehensive analysis for evaluating social media participation.

A Closer Look at Hootsuite and Buffer

Hootsuite is better suited for larger enterprises that want a complete social media management platform, especially those that require conversation management. Buffer is ideal for small businesses seeking only a scheduling tool with a few extra capabilities.Both Hootsuite and Buffer are compatible with most of the widely used social media platforms, however, I've discovered that their main objectives differ. You can manage all of your social media platforms with Hootsuite, a programme specifically designed for managing social media.Buffer concentrates more on the production of content. It is fundamentally a platform for posting and queuing material that connects to social networks. Naturally, Hootsuite has more functions and is a more complete platform than Buffer.Below is a quick comparison table of the key attributes I considered while comparing Hootsuite and Buffer. Basis Buffer Hootsuite Free Plan Free plan which allows you 3 accounts and 10 scheduled posts at a time.The free plan which allows 2 accounts with 5 scheduled posts at a time, forces people to get a paid plan Conversion Tracking Doesn’t allow you to respond back or replyContains an Inbox to help you respond back when neededScheduling and postingSimple straightforward scheduling and postingLoaded with features such as 350 posts scheduling at once Ease of Use Simple and easy to useSophisticated and with too many featuresAnalyticsHelps you track impressions, create reports, engagements followers tracking etc.Complete social media analytics and performance

Small Businesses prefer Buffer – Big Firms or Businesses prefer Hootsuite

All companies, from small startups to established corporations, use social media, but not all of them have the same requirements. Buffer is a better option if you're just getting started and need something straightforward to schedule your posts. However, Hootsuite's functions are far more potent if you manage a prominent social media account.On to analytics first. On Buffer, you get all the essential information - engagement, the optimum posting times, metric insights, and post-performance. By including information about your social media effort, you can even create personalized reports.Hootsuite, however, takes things a step further by basing every decision on your goals. For instance, Hootsuite will advise you on the optimal days and times to publish if your objective is to increase traffic based on post-link clicks over the previous 30 days. The ideal advised times, however, will be determined by impressions for the same time period if your objective is to increase brand awareness.

Hootsuite Analytics

Some other aspect of Hootsuite that I adore is the ability to curate the content you see on your dashboard by using the Streams tool. Want to compare your postings on the same subject matter with those of your rivals on a certain topic? Possible. You must review the effectiveness of each of your planned postings on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram.Hootsuite is far better suited for monitoring your published material and discovering new articles in a way that is tailored to your workflow because Buffer lacks anything to emulate this kind of capability.Additionally, Hootsuite excels at managing teams. By letting you choose which employees have full posting access and which ones need approval, Buffer makes things simple. If you have a small team and few social media platforms, this method is fantastic. But what if you run a sizable business with lots of employees, contractors, and other stakeholders who need their own unique groups and permissions?

Hootsuite Streams

With the help of Hootsuite, you can organize everyone's participation into teams. On a much more specific level, you may choose which team members belong to which group and what level of access they have.Last but not least, Hootsuite offers paid advertising tools that Buffer does not. You may examine organic postings, individual advertisements, and campaigns to obtain a clear picture of how each is doing.

Buffer has ease of access while Hootsuite is Feature Loaded

The UI of Buffer and Hootsuite is one of their most noticeable distinctions. Buffer is simply simple. In contrast, Hootsuite has a challenging learning curve.Buffer provides a slick, understated dashboard that lists all the scheduled posts in detail. The platform is easy to use, and anyone can get the hang of it with little assistance.

Hootsuite vs. Buffer

On the other hand, Hootsuite offers a feature-rich overview webpage that is cluttered and challenging to navigate. To figure out how to use it, I had to watch a few videos. Given the additional functions it delivers, it makes sense, but the experience is undoubtedly worse. It will take some time and training to become a Hootsuite super user.Since the capabilities available are so dissimilar, it is somewhat unfair to even compare the dashboard experience; yet, if simplicity is essential to you, it is still something to consider.

Buffer has a straightforward approach while Hootsuite has all the twists and turns

There are certain settings that overlap between Buffer and Hootsuite for scheduling and posting. You can submit photographs, simultaneously schedule posts across several channels, and edit posts for various networks. The similarities, however, stop there.When your posts should go live, Buffer uses the Buffer Queue to set the timing. You could, for instance, set up a queue to accept posts every day at noon, 3:00 p.m., and 9:00 p.m. The following post you create will automatically be scheduled for noon on the following day once all the slots for that day have been filled. You can manually schedule posts if you'd like, but Buffer is a terrific option if you'd rather not worry about the when and simply make sure posts get queued.The AutoSchedule option in Hootsuite comes at the expense of some control. The number of posts you wish to publish and the window of time when they should go live are up to you, but you have no control over the order in which they appear.Hootsuite or Buffer won't make much of a difference to you in the scheduling department if you don't care about having the freedom to choose the sequence of your posts. Buffer is the best option, though, if you need to make sure that posts are published in the order you've input them.Some of the Known Pros for both Hootsuite and Buffer


  • Helps you in easy image upload directly from the cloud.
  • Easy Canva integration
  • Easy map posts to campaigns


  • Free pixabay images to be accessed
  • Personal customization benefits related to your link preview.
  • Bulk Scheduling abilities to schedule 350 posts at once through an excel or a CSV file.

Hootsuite has a more sophisticated approach, whereas Buffer likes to keep things to the point.

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Easy Conversion Tracking via Hootsuite

You must stay on top of communication with your audience on social media, whether doing so through comments or direct messages (DMs). Customers, in particular, demand it. However, the back and forth can be difficult to monitor and manage, particularly if you are managing many accounts at once.Using the tool itself, Hootsuite enables you to manage all public and private interactions across your social media networks. That implies that you can reply to a tweet in the public domain or an Instagram direct message in private without opening each app separately. You can probably appreciate how much time that saves.Assigning specific messages to team members in order to denote responsibility is another option that is available. This feature is incredibly helpful if you have a large team and want accountability and visibility among members.I'll grant that the feature was a little awkward, but Buffer no longer offers this capability. They used to have a separate app called Buffer Reply for managing your inbox, but it is no longer available. Consequently, Hootsuite triumphs over Buffer in the contest of social conversation management tools.

Buffer Comes with a Better Free Usage Plan

Up to three social media accounts and ten scheduled posts are included in Buffer's fairly generous free plan for each channel. With only five scheduled posts across two social networks, Hootsuite's free plan is essentially nonexistent (and difficult to find—only it's referenced as a footnote on their price website).Although Hootsuite does provide a thorough 30-day trial to try out all the capabilities, solopreneurs may find Buffer's free plan to be sufficient for their needs. Hootsuite's free plan, in contrast, wouldn't accomplish anything for anyone; the paying version is essential.

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The Big Question – Hootsuite or Buffer?

When you're ready to advance from the simple social media scheduling tools, Hootsuite is a Buffer alternative. Here's the conclusion:Utilize Buffer if

  • You work alone or with a small team.
  • You're only beginning to manage social media.
  • You require an easy-to-use content scheduling tool.

Use Hootsuite if you want to:

  • Handle accounts on social media for several clients.
  • You run a sizable company with a sophisticated social media marketing plan.
  • You require a tool with lots of features that goes beyond post-scheduling.
Blog Post written by:
Digital Marketing Institute