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Later vs Hootsuite: Which Social Media Scheduling Tool is Right for Your Business?

Later vs Hootsuite: Which Social Media Scheduling Tool is Right for Your Business?


Later vs Hootsuite: Which Social Media Scheduling Tool is Right for Your Business?

In a marketing campaign, social media is either your worst enemy or best friend. How you handle your social media pages plays a significant part in your success as an entrepreneur. Luckily, you don’t have to do it alone.

Besides your team, several social media management tools are available that can help create or expand your audience base. For instance, Later and Hootsuite are great social media schedulers with their own forte and gaps, perfect for different types of businesses.

Before committing to either Later or Hootsuite, let us help you differentiate the two. Let’s begin.

Later vs. Hootsuite: Side-by-Side Comparison

No businesses are entirely alike. Each has its specialties and needs that cater to its market. In comparing social media schedulers, we must establish criteria to help you determine which tool fits seamlessly with your business.

For this article, we’ll use the following features to compare Later and Hootsuite:

  • Usability
  • Social Media Platforms
  • Post Scheduling
  • Content Creation
  • Customer Engagement and Management
  • Reporting and Analytics
  • E-Commerce
  • Platform Pricing


Whether you’re tech-savvy or not, user experience plays a significant role in the overall performance of the software. A highly intuitive social media tool ensures that your campaign is impactful, efficient, and streamlined.

Later has a quirky brand language with playful and colorful visuals, but ultimately, it is still browsable and fun to use. Moreover, Later dubs its content creation as Visual First, which allows you to create, edit, and preview posts before posting. Overall, Later is a well-structured and sound platform.

On the other hand, Hootsuite can sometimes be quite overwhelming because of its extensive toolkit. It has a higher learning barrier than most social media schedulers as it provides a complete management suite. But once you’ve invested time in learning Hootsuite, you’ll be rewarded with wide-ranging features for all your social media needs.

Our Choice: Later (1-0) secures the first point with its user-oriented interface.

Social Media Platforms

No matter how feature-rich your social media scheduler is, it won’t matter if it can’t connect to your preferred platform. That’s why effective schedulers can integrate into as many social media platforms as possible.

For Later and Hootsuite, the social media platforms they can connect to are the following:

Social Media PlatformLaterHootsuite
Facebook or Meta

Our choice: Hootsuite (1-1) wins our second head-to-head with its connection to YouTube.

Post Scheduling

As social media schedulers, the core feature of Hootsuite and Later is how they can handle the automated posting of your content.

Let’s begin with their similarities. Both Hootsuite and Later have a drag-and-drop content calendar that allows you to schedule content using visuals. Moreover, you can include texts, images, and videos on your content calendar for both tools.

Hootsuite and Later also have automatic scheduling features. The former calls it AutoSchedule, while the latter refers to it as Best Time To Post. You can use this feature to have an AI create a posting schedule for you, which you can tweak if you desire so.

If you’re an enterprise that needs to schedule posts months in advance, Hootsuite offers CSV integration, which lets you upload a posting schedule of up to however long you need. 

Our Choice: Overall, both tools are similar in scheduling, but it’s CSV integration puts Hootsuite (1-2) above Later.

Content Creation

Another critical facet of social media tools is content creation. Sure, you can always use a third-party tool to make your content — but wouldn’t it be more efficient if your social media scheduler had capable content creation features? Thankfully, both platforms offer their version of content development.

Hootsuite has two tools that separates it from the pack: Grammarly and Canva. Both software is available in-app for Hootsuite. This allows a streamlined approach to the following functions:

  • Copywriting
  • Graphics design
  • Multimedia production

Hootsuite also offers templates for your infographics, image presets, icons, group policies, pitch decks, and even campaign strategies.

Whereas Hootsuite is a jack-of-all-trades, Later is a master of one. If your main demographic comes from Instagram, consider getting Later instead. Its Visual Planner allows you to create, schedule, and preview your Instagram content. 

Later also has a built-in editor for: 

  • Posts
  • Reels
  • Stories

Moreover, Later has a Media Library, which lessens the hassle of content curation as it allows you to catalog your content using tags.

Our Choice: It’s a hard pick, but Hootsuite (1-3) takes the narrow victory because it covers more ground.

Customer Engagement and Management

The most important aspect of marketing is being heard. However, the competition is just as passionate as you, and without an effective social media management tool, your voice is in danger of being lost in the crowd.

A well-crafted campaign starts with effective but ethical advertising. Hootsuite has a feature called Hootsuite Ads which provides you with Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn advertising. It also optimizes your advertising capacity by tailoring your content to specific demographics based on their:

  • Geolocation data
  • Post data
  • Prior engagement statistics

You can also use Hootsuite’s Paid Social Reporting, which allows you to benchmark your advertising performance to your previous analytics and compute your ROI with Hootsuite Ads.

Later does not have an advertising feature. But it has a First Comment feature that you can use for tagging to improve the discoverability of your Instagram posts. This pairs well with its hashtag suggestion feature for Instagram.

Later also offers a creator and brand collaboration hub, which allows you to socialize and mingle virtually with potential partners and endorsers.

Our Choice: Later gets the job done, but Hootsuite (1-4) casts a much larger net on your potential audience, and—as a result—the lead gets wider.

Reporting and Analytics

Analytics and reporting are essential to your business as they give you the foresight and strategies to market your business better. Fortunately, most social media schedulers provide basic and advanced analytics features. For instance, Hootsuite offers:

  • Competitive Benchmarking: Measure how well you’re performing against your competition.
  • Data Visualization: A graphed representation of your data.
  • Goal-Based Statistics: Reports on how well your business does with pre-defined goals.
  • Paid and Organic Post Statistics: Data about your engagements before and after purchasing Hootsuite services.

Data analysis and reporting are where Later shines. Even in its free tier, Later already provides you with several reporting features such as:

  • 30-Day Likes, Comments, and Clicks Performance
  • Instagram Follower Count
  • LinkedIn Profile Engagement
  • Top Performing Posts

What’s more, Later improves on these features in its higher tiers. For the Growth and Advanced tiers, Later gives you the following:

  • Advanced Instagram Analytics: Numbers on demographics, follower activity, story performance, and more
  • Advanced LinkedIn Analytics: Numbers on buttons clicked, click percentage, location-based data, and more

You can also enable mobile notifications for Instagram posts and engagements on Later. That said, Hootsuite offers more notification options including:

  • Facebook post comments or replies
  • Instagram postings
  • Push notifications on social media posts
  • Twitter mentions and messages

Our Choice: It’s a toss-up, but Later (2-4) snags a point for providing more in LinkedIn and Instagram notifications. 


Marketing tools can now join forces with other tools to maximize its full potential. For instance, integrating your online store into your social media accounts allows you to grow your brand while expanding your sales reach. That’s why your e-commerce platform must connect to your social media scheduler.

Hootsuite offers direct integrations to popular e-commerce tools such as:

Later can only connect to Shopify. Fortunately, it allows Instagram shop set-up and management without needing any add-ons.

Our Choice: With its integrations to more e-commerce platforms, Hootsuite (2-5) pulls an easy win.

Platform Pricing

Social media platforms such as Hootsuite and Later are critical to your marketing strategies. However, since you don’t need all of its features, you must deconstruct each scheduler to identify which best suits your needs. From there, picking a plan becomes a breeze.

For Later, here are the plans it offers:

PricingFreeStarts at $18/monthStarts at $40/monthStarts at $40/month
Users11Maximum of 3Maximum of 6
Channels11Up to 3Up to 6

Later plans cost more with additional features. On the other hand, Hootsuite offers a fixed price on all its plans except for the Enterprise Custom tier. 

Here’s how much Hootsuite costs monthly:

FeaturesProfessionalTeamBusinessEnterprise Custom
Users1Up to 3Up to 5Minimum of 5
ChannelsUp to 10Up to 20Up to 35Minimum of 50

Our Choice: Later (3-5) takes a late victory for its low prices.

In Essence

And that’s a wrap — Hootsuite takes the sweet victory over Later with a 5-3. However, don’t let this score decide the right social media scheduler for you. The crux is that both Later and Hootsuite have advantages and disadvantages, making them an ideal match for certain businesses.

You’re better off with Hootsuite if you have an enterprise or an established business. It gives you access to more social media platforms and creates better content. It’s also great for businesses that focus on e-commerce, as it allows direct integration with Shopify, WooCommerce, and Magento.

Later synergizes well with small businesses, especially those focusing on artistry and content creation. These are influencers, photographers, graphic artists, and more. It’s highly usable and is relatively low-priced. Moreover, it has a more extensive reporting suite than Hootsuite.

Ultimately, either option is a winner. You just have to pick one that seamlessly fits your business, and you’re good to go. While here, you can also check out our comparison of Buffer and Hootsuite. Good luck!

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