2023 HoneyBook Review: Is It Worth It for Wedding Pros?
If you were searching for a real 2023 HoneyBook review from a fellow wedding pro, you're in the right place! (You can watch this HoneyBook review by clicking the video above.) Are you thinking about trying out HoneyBook to manage your clients better? I've previously talked about the 7 tools you need for your wedding clients. And in my opinion, one of them is an all-in-one client relationship management software, or CRM. So today, I'm giving you my honest 2023 HoneyBook review, from my perspective as an active wedding professional. I'll tell you everything you need to know about HoneyBook, how I use it in my business, and whether it's worth it for wedding pros.
In case we haven't met, I'm Carolyn Kulb, and I help busy wedding business owners book more weddings and stop getting ghosted with my proven Wedding Client Roadmap(™), which creates an effortless, elevated wedding client experience - with less work than ever. I’m also the CEO of Bloom Poet, a boutique floral and event design studio in Seattle. As a wedding florist, I'm known for being super organized, providing a fabulous client experience, and of course, breathtaking floral design. I use HoneyBook for my wedding business, so my HoneyBook review might be a tiny bit biased. Nevertheless, let's dig into my 2023 HoneyBook review, what it can do, whether it's worth it for wedding pros, and whether it's right for you.
What is HoneyBook?
HoneyBook is an “all-in-one” CRM, or customer relationship manager, for creative professionals, including wedding pros. HoneyBook helps you streamline your client experience from start to finish, and includes a lot of neat tools. As a result, it can handle your entire client workflow, from when a client inquires on your website, to when you offboard your clients after a wedding. You log in, and everything is right there, in one web app. HoneyBook offers software tools like intake forms, brochures, email integrations, scheduling, proposals and contracts, payments, questionnaires, and more. And most importantly, it offers multi-step automations.
HoneyBook has lots of other tools that I don’t personally use a lot, like financial reporting, P&L statements, and time tracking. It also integrates with a TON of apps, including Zapier, so there are a lot of things you can do with it, if you are tech-inclined. To be honest, I find that stuff a little overwhelming! (Maybe you do too - and that's why you're looking at 2023 HoneyBook reviews!) But the great thing about HoneyBook is that it is super user-friendly from the get-go, and easy to set up. They have step-by-step guides for everything.
Since HoneyBook can do so many things, I can’t go into every single tool in this HoneyBook review. It’s a very powerful piece of software, and I don't even use all the features it has! So instead, I’m going to share some of my favorite features with you, and how I use them in my business.
The Intake Form
HoneyBook allows you to create your own intake form that you can put right on your website. It’s really easy to use, too. You set it up in HoneyBook with the questions you want to ask. You can ask your clients to fill in their wedding date, contact info, and any other information you need. Once you set it up, you just copy and paste some code in your website. Best of all, you can edit the colors and fonts, so that it can mesh with your existing brand! When someone fills out the form, it emails you all the info, AND pre-populates a HoneyBook project for you, with all the info. I love this form because when I log in, it’s all right there - their date, their details, anything else I need to know. I’m never manually entering client info into a system. And I love the way it looks on my website.
Another great feature that HoneyBook offers is a client pipeline. HoneyBook has a customizable pipeline where you can see, at a glance, what stage all of your leads and clients are in at any given time. The cool thing is that you can customize this pipeline to fit exactly what your client experience looks like, so that you have the steps that are particular to YOUR business. So you can have every step laid out, visually, and see where your people are at. This is really important so you can stay organized. I also like it because I'm a visual thinker - and it helps me to just see everything laid out. You can also assign certain files to each stage. So having this pipeline helps you keep your act together - nothing is falling through the cracks, especially if it’s automated.
By far, automations are the MOST important tool that HoneyBook offers to help wedding pros streamline their businesses. Unfortunately, I don't think many wedding pros have really taken full advantage of automations. The automations are so easy to set up, but can be super complex if you want them to be. However, some automations are simple and sort of come standard with HoneyBook. For example, as you see below, your client can be sent a payment reminder 3 days before the payment is due. Or if someone doesn’t respond to a file you send, they get an automatic reminder. These can also be turned off and customized. Of course, we customize these so that our client experience remains cohesive.
Some automations can be much more complex. For example, I use an automation to nurture new leads through email. They get a brochure, then several emails, then more emails if they don’t respond. But it’s all automated - I never have to send anything manually, until they book a call with me. (Booking a call is something they have to do - and it automatically populates my calendar!) I still send my clients hand-written emails when we are discussing the particulars of their wedding. But I’m NEVER sending hand-written emails for the initial contact. That is all automated. It saves me dozens - maybe hundreds - of hours per year!
Proposals, Contracts, and Payments
HoneyBook can integrate proposals, contracts, and payments in one file, which I find amazing. It means that you can send your client only one file for them to review, sign, and pay. I love how simple this is for clients, and how easy it is to keep everything in one place. After all, if I am updating something in the proposal, I probably also need to double-check the contract and the payment schedule. They also integrate payments, and doing payment plans is super easy in HoneyBook - you just tell it how you want to split payments, or set custom dates. Click the video below to see an example in action.
However, it’s worth noting that they do take a small cut of your payments, just like any payment processor. HoneyBook takes 2.9% plus 25 cents for each payment. Stripe and Square take the exact same percentage plus 30 cents for each payment, so this is an industry standard. Sometimes the fees are massive, and that sucks, but we just bake them into our pricing at this point.
Lastly, I love this feature because you can ALSO just send contracts by themselves, for signature. I often use this for my freelance team, if my freelancer doesn’t already have a contract they like to use. This way, we are both clear and protected, they know they will be paid at a certain rate, they know what meals are included, how to invoice me, etc. and we’re all on the same page. So I love that HoneyBook lets me do both complicated and simple contracts and payments, and makes it easy for literally everyone who uses it.
GMail and Google Calendar Integration
HoneyBook integrates with both GMail (GSuite) and Google Calendar. Most of my business stuff is on GSuite, so I really appreciate how easy this makes my life. So, everything comes to my Google inbox. As a result, I don’t have to log into HoneyBook, and I can reply easily. And when a client schedules something, it also syncs with my Google Calendar - again, so easy for me. It will even allow Google Meet to be the virtual meeting option if you use GCal, which means you don’t have to pay for Zoom if you don’t want to. So since I use Google stuff for just about everything, I really appreciate that this integration is so seamless.
Brochures and Files
HoneyBook allows you to send SO many types of files to new leads and clients, and people have gotten really creative with this. You can send a brochure, a digital magazine, a file that looks more like an internet sales page, a questionnaire, and so much more. They even have “smart files” now that allow people to view your services and pay you right there, which would be great for anyone with standard packages. The options are really limitless AND they have a ton of free templates for you to get started with. It can become a rabbit hole, for sure - but the flexibility is unmatched. Below, you can see just a couple of examples of templates for these types of files. There are literally hundreds of pre-built templates! I wish I could show you more examples in this HoneyBook review, because it's honestly impressive!
Of course, this brings me to the last thing that I wanted to mention as something HoneyBook does really well: customization. Almost everything is customizable, which means that it seamlessly represents your brand. You can’t use custom fonts in every type of file, but you can do everything else - custom colors, logos, and more. You can upload graphics, your best photos of your work, and anything else you can think of to make your files feel more like you. That means that everything your client sees is beautiful - and reminds them of how much of an expert you are. That’s worth a lot to me!
So, now that we've covered my 2023 HoneyBook review, let’s talk pricing. HoneyBook just changed their pricing this year, so they now have different levels of pricing. The lowest level is $19/month or $192 annually, and it includes a lot of things - unlimited clients and projects, proposals, contracts, payments, questionnaires, and basic reports. However, it does not include a scheduling tool or automations - two major things that will save you time.
The next level is $39/month, or $384 per year, and includes automations, a calendar scheduling tool, Quickbooks integration, up to 2 team members, more financial tools, and more reports. I think this plan is absolutely worth $384 a year to save you dozens of hours on emails alone!! If I were starting with HoneyBook today, that’s probably the plan I would go with.
The highest level is $79/month, or $792 per year. This includes everything above, plus unlimited team members, priority support, multiple companies under one account, an onboarding specialist, a dedicated account manager, and advanced reports. If you’re a massive company with a big team migrating to HoneyBook, this would certainly be worth it! Especially to get someone to help you onboard all your files. But for a solo owner, the middle plan is probably the best value for you.
If you'd like a free trial plus 35% off your first year, you can use my affiliate link to snag that deal and test it out!
Is HoneyBook Worth It for Wedding Pros?
So is HoneyBook worth it for wedding pros? Absolutely YES! A lot of my friends and colleagues also use it, and love it. And I’ve been using it for many years now, and it’s been such a major time-saver for me and my business. My clients also love it - so I’ll continue to use it. And you can start with a free 7 day trial, and also get 35% off your first year if you decide to purchase, with this affiliate link.
I hope this 2023 HoneyBook review has helped you make a more informed decision in your business! Before you go, I just created a new free PDF guide that I would love to send to you. It’s called 3 Things That Completely Changed How I Sell Weddings Forever. If you want that, just pop your info below and I'll make sure you get a copy!