This Buffer Review is my personal opinion as a social media marketer after using this tool for 2 years (on and off). NOT sponsored by Buffer. I am in no way, shape or form affiliated with this business. All opinions are my own. So, let’s begin!
The Best Social Media Scheduling Tool Should Have These Features
If you’re a social media manager (like me) you’re always looking out for the best and most affordable social media scheduling tool. In my opinion, the perfect tool should have the following:
- A visual content calendar
- Multi-channel scheduling
- Management of multiple clients (10+)
- Analytics reports (PDF or Excel)
- Dashboard that is easy to navigate
- Helps save time with bulk actions
In this post, I am breaking down all the main features of Buffer from publishing to analytics and will answer your question: “Is Buffer the best social media scheduling tool?”.
PS: The results might surprise you! 😉
Ranking System for The Best Social Media Tool
This review is going to be based on these 5 key ranking factors:
- Pricing – Is the price fair for the value you’re getting? Any hidden charges? Is there a FREE trial?
- Publishing Features – Does it support planning & auto-publishing content across all social media networks?
- Analytics Reporting – Does it have advanced insights, and can you customize, create and export PDF analytics reports?
- Team Collaboration – Are there team collaboration tools? Do they actually make team collaboration and workflow more effective?
- User Experience – Is the dashboard easy to use, and does it come with a visual calendar?
So now that we’ve explained the expectations and ranking system let’s start the Buffer review.
Buffer Review 2023
1. Buffer Pricing
Buffer’s pricing is in the mid to high range with $12/mo. for 1 social media channel. Each additional channel will cost you $12/mo. extra. This is higher than Pallyy’s $15/mo. for 1 complete set of social channels, but lower than SproutSocial’s $99/mo. starting fee.
However, they have a free plan with limited features, which is good to trial before you decide on your purchase.
- 4 pricing options ranging from FREE to $120/mo.
- Buffer”Team Plan” comes with analytics, team collaboration and publishing tools for $12 per month per channel (1 Instagram page & 1 Facebook page are 2 channels: $24/mo.).
- 14-Day free-trial available
2. Buffer Publishing Features
As you would expect, Buffer offers a complete range of publishing tools. I think they’re well designed with simplicity in mind. There’s something calming when you see a content calendar that’s minimalist and straightforward. I’ve used Buffer to schedule posts on and off for the last 3 years and what brings me back to this tool is the minimalist dashboard design that makes navigation from Publishing to Analytics and Calendar feel so intuitive.
Buffer Publishing Features Pros
- Calendar View with monthly, weekly and daily views
- Publishing to multiple social media networks: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin, TikTok, Facebook groups, Shopify, GoogleMyBusiness & Pinterest
- Easy scheduling by clicking the “+” icon anywhere on the calendar
- Drag & drop posts across the calendar
- Post formats supported: images, carousel and reels videos
Buffer Calendar Dashboard View
Buffer New Post Creator
Buffer Publishing Features Cons
- NO preview for Instagram grid
- NO cover photo for videos
- Difficult to delete a post that was scheduled
- Some people may find the dashboard too minimalistic
- More expensive than competitors (eg: Buffer vs Pallyy)
3. Buffer Analytics Features
One of the main things my followers ask me on Instagram is: “What do you think of Buffer analytics features?”. The short answer: They’re great! I used Buffer analytics to create custom PDF reports for 2 years+ and I still think they’re one of the most easy and complete Instagram analytics reports you can generate online.
If you compare it with SproutSocial – which costs upwards of $100 per month, I think 🤔 Buffer analytics are better priced and there’s definitely more value for money.
Buffer Key Analytics Features
- Complete set of insights for Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Shopify
- Create custom analytics reports (add logos, summary, charts)
- Download PDF analytics reports
- Create ad campaigns and track them in Buffer
Example: Instagram Analytics Report using Buffer
Buffer Analytics Cons
I recently noticed they added “reels publishing” on the app, but at the time of writing this post, they don’t show insights for Reels. Instead, metrics like “reach” show “0” – which is not accurate. Hope they rectify this.
4. Buffer Team Collaboration Features
Buffer supports teams and multiple users. If you sign-up for the “Team Plan” you can invite your team members and work together from the same dashboard. I haven’t used their team tools enough since I don’t have a team at the moment so I cannot give you more details.
5. Buffer User Experience
I love using Buffer! I think the usability is great, and that’s one of their strongest points: they make it feel that planning a month of social media content is vert easy (when it’s not!) But if you’re looking for a tool to preview your Instagram grids – then, it’s not the right one for you! You can also find more affordable social media platforms out there if cost is a concern.
Final thoughts on Buffer Review 2023
Do I recommend it?
Yes, absolutely. I think they have created a scheduling platform that is very thoughtful, focused on user experience and simplicity of use. And the analytics reports are just a dream for anyone working in social media.
Is it a little too expensive?
This is the only part where I have a problem with. I think their pricing is quite high – especially if you compare it to Pallyy which comes with more features, and at a fraction of the cost. I really hope the Buffer team reviews their pricing because many new social media managers would be able to benefit from Buffer analytics and scheduling tools.
Who is Buffer for?
I think a lot of people will enjoy using Buffer scheduling tools including:
- Bloggers & influencers
- Social media managers with 1-3 clients
- Brand managers with 1-2 channels
- Social media marketers looking for a shortcut to create analytics reports
Buffer Review Score: 8/10
I hope this review has helped you decide on whether Buffer scheduling tools are the best fit for you – especially if starting a marketing agency.