With the demise of Timely.is for social media buffering, I have been forced to choose between Hootsuite and Bufferapp for this service. I thought that I would take a few minutes and catalog the pros and cons of each and then pick which I think better and will continue to use moving forward.
Buffer has two levels of service, the free service allows for 2 profiles and 10 updates in the queue for each profile. For $10 per month, you can have unlimited updates and up to 12 profiles. Being the cheapskate that I am, the paid service is out of the question so for the comparison I will comment on the free Bufferapp service.
- The apps and extras allow you to work well with Buffer within your favorite browser.
- Buffer allows the use of your own URL shortening service such as bit.ly
- The user can schedule how many posts a day get published and at what times they go out.
- The web interface is easy to use
- Limited to 10 posts per profile in the free account
- Limited to 2 profiles in the free account
- More than two profiles can be managed for free
- There is no limit to the posts that can be scheduled.
- Hootsuite emails a very helpful report showing the performance of your posts.
- Hootsuite has a “hootlet” for the most common browsers that make posting updates very easy.
- The user has no control over how many posts go out per day nor when they get sent. I suppose you could take the time to go back in and manually change the scheduled time, but this defeats the purpose of a scheduling service
- The user is limited to the owl.ly URL shortening service.
- The “hootlet” for Firefox is a little bit funky and puts the browser name in the Tweet. The hootlet works great in Chrome.
For me the deal breaker with Buffer continues to be the 10 post / 2 profile limits for the free account. Given that there are no such limits with Hootsuite, I have to go with Hootsuite. Sure, I’d like to have all of my URL links tracked in one place using bit.ly, but given the report that Hootsuite sends out, I can get this information with no effort on my part.
The ability to schedule the updates is a nice-to-have but not a deal breaker for me. So the obvious choice for me seems to be Hootsuite at this time.