Buffer vs. Sprout Social: Find the Best Social Media Management Tool for Your Profiles

Jul 3, 2023 4 min readSocial Media Marketing
Photo of Phill Agnew
Phill Agnew

Senior Product Marketer @ Buffer

Social media management tools are essential for businesses, entrepreneurs, and creators looking to grow their social media presence and reach more people. In this blog, we'll compare Buffer and Sprout Social to help you decide which tool is the best fit for your needs.

To kick off, here are seven key differences between the two products that all potential users should be aware of 👇

7 questions to ask when comparing Buffer and Sprout Social

1. Is there a free plan?

Buffer's free plan lets users to connect three different social channels and schedule up to 30 posts per month. We think this is the most generous free plan on the market. In comparison, Sprout Social doesn't offer a free plan, requiring users to pay for access, which may be a barrier for entrepreneurs, SMBs, and creators with limited budgets.

2. What’s the price difference?

With plans starting at just $6 per month, Buffer provides a budget-friendly option for folks looking to manage their social media without breaking the bank. In contrast, Sprout Social's cheapest "Standard" plan begins at $249 per month.

3. What do you get for the price?

Despite costing an eye-watering $220 more a month than Buffer, Sprout Social ultimately provides a very similar feature set.

Both tools offer unlimited post scheduling, review management, analytics and reporting, engagement features, iOS and Android mobile apps, and paid promotion analytics. Yet, Buffer offers these features for $220 less per month, helping smaller businesses and creators with tighter budgets.

4. How many users?

Buffer's Team plan offers unlimited users for just $12 per month, making it a perfect fit for growing businesses with expanding teams. In comparison, Sprout Social's "Advanced" plan, which is their most expensive offering, only covers one user, with each additional user costing $349 per month, per user. This significant difference in user access can greatly impact a company's ability to scale, so pick your tool wisely.

5. What social media profiles can I connect?

Buffer supports a wider range of social channels, including Google Business Profiles and Mastodon, two channels that Sprout Social does not offer. Furthermore, Buffer allows users to connect their Shopify account for insightful data analysis, enabling businesses to make more informed decisions based on their e-commerce performance.

6. What’s the price per profile?

Sprout Social's cheapest plan, priced at $249 per month, restricts users to connecting only five social profiles. In contrast, Buffer allows users to connect up to 40 different social profiles at the same price point, along with unlimited users, providing businesses with greater flexibility and control over their social media management.

7. Is AI available?

Buffer's AI Assistant helps users create better content faster than ever before. It’s available to all users (including those on the free plan) and works with every single channel. Sprout Social, however, only offers AI for its chatbots. Thousands of customers use Buffer’s AI Assistant every day to generate ideas in just a click and repurpose existing content, helping them grow engagement and reach more followers.

Why most people pick Buffer

Since launching in 2010, Buffer has become the go-to choice for 7 million people worldwide due to its dedication to world-class support, our intuitive yet powerful interface, and our affordability for users at all levels.

We’re proud of our NPS score consistently above 50, a customer satisfaction score of 94%, and a 4-hour first reply time to support tickets. Unlike others, we strive to offer world-class customer support regardless of if you’re a high-paying customer or a newbie on one of our free plans.

Over 350 positive reviews on G2Crowd praise Buffer for how easy it is to use and its seamless setup process that takes only three clicks. As a pioneer in social media management, Buffer was the first to add Mastodon and integrate AI.

We move fast, but we’re also reliable, partnering with industry giants like Meta, LinkedIn, and Pinterest—while working directly with Twitter as it makes major changes to its API.

Here at Buffer, our values-led approach makes us stand out from the crowd as we put long-term profitability above short-term gains. As an independent and mostly profitable company, we happily share our roadmaps, salaries, and key business metrics with the world.

This openness ensures our incentives line up with our customers, letting us invest in the right tech and adapt to the fast-moving social media landscape without making rushed decisions.

We’re incredibly proud of this, and we think it’s fuelled our popularity.

Rounding up

In summary, Buffer offers an intuitive platform with more flexibility and powerful features at a fraction of the cost of Sprout Social. Plus, our values-led approach and commitment to long-term profitability set us fundamentally apart from other tools in the market.

If you're looking for a social media management tool that prioritizes customer success and offers the latest powerful features at an affordable price, Buffer might be the choice for you.

So, what are you waiting for? Give Buffer a try today (it’s free)!

P.S. Got any feedback? Send us a tweet and let us know.

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