There are so many reports that you can run in HubSpot. So much so that we actually have a user guide for each report. But at times it can be confusing when to use different reports for different situations.

The Contacts Report and the Companies Report are two such reports that can be mixed up. Mostly because they actually have identical create screens. However, they serve very different purposes. The Contacts Report allows you to create flexible reporting based on any information you have stored about your contacts. But sometimes you don't want to create reports based on individual contacts in your database. After all, you could have five contacts at the same company, but for B2B businesses that still translates into one account. That's where the Companies Report comes in.

In this post we will go through some examples of when to use each report. If you want a longer list of examples, you can see this help doc that walks through situations when you may want to use one report over another.

Please note that both the Contacts and Companies Reports are Enterprise-only features. However, if you sign up for a free 30-day trial of Enterprise, you will be able to access them.

Companies Reports

How much revenue have I generated by company?

One of the most important decisions marketers have to make on a regular basis is deciding how much time and resources should be spent using different promotional channels. One way to figure this out is by creating a revenue report that shows how much revenue was generated for the business as a result of a channel or, as we call it in HubSpot, source.

For B2B businesses, the Companies Report is the perfect way to figure this out. Because the Companies Report groups data based on company instead of individual contact, it will calculate the amount of revenue generated per company for a particular marketing activity. This information is crucical for B2B businesses who need to rely more on the number of companies they generate for the business instead of the number of contacts.

revenue by source

How many customers do I have?

Marketers are checking the number of leads they have generated on a regular basis. But for B2B companies when the leads close into customers, they aren't checking on the number of individuals within the customer accounts. They check on the number of customer companies that have been generated. 

This is another example where the Companies Report can come in handy. The Companies Report will allow you to group all of your customers into accounts so you can have a better understanding of how large your customer base is.

accounts

What were the most popular conversion activities by company?

Whether you are a B2B or B2C marketer, you need to find out what pieces of content resonate the best with your audience. But if you are a B2B marketer and are only looking at the number of contacts generated from different ebooks, webinars, or whitepapers, you may be deceived. However, if you know a certain number of companies downloaded certain offers or asked for a demo, you will have a better idea of how many closed customers you may have at the end of your sales cycle.

Additionally, if you are considering what content to create for the following month, you may want to see the content that has reached multiple companies. For these purposes, the Companies Report comes in handy to give you a better idea of how many companies are engaged with your content vs. how many contacts are engaged with your content.

conversion activities

You may see a pattern at this point with B2B companies using the Companies Report. That doesn't mean that a B2C company will never want to use the Companies Report, but it may not be applicable to most situations.

On the other hand, both B2C and B2B companies will frequently use Contacts Reports to dig into their contacts database.

Contacts Reports

How much revenue have I generated by contact?

We spoke a lot in the previous section about all of the use cases for B2B businesses. However, HubSpot is also a great marketing platform for B2C businesses.

When it comes to revenue reporting, it is just as important for B2C marketers as it is for B2B marketers. B2C marketers also need to figure out what activities have translated into revenue for their company. However, they do not need this information grouped by company since their customers are individuals.

That's where the Contacts Report comes in. If you are a B2C company interested in reporting on revenue, run a Contacts Report to find out this information. This will show you how much revenue was generated as a result of certain marketing activities as well as how many contacts have been generated as a result of the activities.

revenue by source

How many contacts has a piece of content generated?

After an ebook launches, it is important to see how many leads or contacts that ebook has generated for your company. Whether you are a B2B or a B2C business, this metric is important to understand what content drives conversions.

In this situation, you should run a Contacts Report based on Recent Conversion to find out what ebooks have generated the most amount of contacts. You can then use this information to help inform your content strategy. If you see a certain topic or format that appears frequently in your higher performing ebooks, it is a good indication that you should use that topic or format in future content that you produce.

most converting offers

How many contacts are in each stage of the funnel?

For both B2B and B2C marketers, it is important to understand how many contacts are in each stage of your funnel and how they are moving through the funnel. This information will help you determine what area of your funnel you should focus in on. For example, if you have a ton of leads, but not a lot of marketing qualified leads, opportunities, or customers, you know that you are having trouble nurturing your leads down the funnel. Understanding this will help you focus in on middle of the funnel nurturing activities versus top of the funnel lead generation activities.

In this situation it is important to understand how the lifecycle stage that all of your contacts are in. By creating a contacts report, you will be able to see a breakdown of who is in what stage during a certain period of time. Before running any other report, run this report to get an idea of where you should zero in on for your marketing.

lifecycle stage

What other uses have I missed? When do you use a Companies Report vs. a Contacts Report?

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Originally published Mar 9, 2015 9:00:00 AM, updated December 01 2017