What Is Buffer Used For?
Buffer is a multi-faceted tool designed to simplify and automate all activities regarding social media. It helps users to bring all their social media profiles from different channels to the same centralized dashboard.
The tool empowers users to manage numerous social media accounts on different social platforms simultaneously from the same space. This involves creating content, customizing it for different platforms, and scheduling it to be published at the designated time. By automating social media content management for the near future, marketers can eliminate mundane tasks and focus on more important things.
Buffer has integrated all the major social media platforms, including Facebook, Google Business Profile, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, TikTok, Pinterest, and Shopify. It is the first tool to have included Mastodon, one of the new social platforms, into its repertoire of supported channels.
Buffer is known to be a cost-effective tool with a very user-friendly interface. Hence a new user takes very little time to get used to the workflow and functions in Buffer.
What Is Later Used For?
Later is one of the social media marketing tools which helps brands and businesses to streamline their workflows and establish a strong and consistent presence. The tool is primarily a hit among solo entrepreneurs and small businesses in their growing stage.
Users can connect their business profiles and pages from Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and TikTok and start automating their post-publishing activities.
Content creation in a span of minutes and scheduling them for publishing on multiple social media platforms saves a lot of the users’ time. They can as easily reschedule their planned posts by using the calendar dashboard. Just dragging and dropping the content from the previous slot to the date and time of your choice will do the trick.
Its strong analytical capabilities give many valuable insights related to the content and the performance of the pages overall to guide the social marketing strategy in the right direction.
Best Suitable for
Freelancer, Small Business, Agency
Start with $40
Influencers, Small Business
At a Glance
In this section, we have tried to sum up, in short, the quality of experience users felt they had while using the tools. The conclusions drawn here are based on the scores the same users gave Buffer and Later.
Based on overall ratings, Buffer is ahead of Later by a fair margin. But when the setup process and the ease of usage are considered, Buffer and Later match each other closely. Both the social media tools are hailed for their user-friendliness, so it is no surprise that they got rated pretty well in this regard.
But when it came to the quality of support they provided to their customers, Buffer gets trumped over by Later, albeit by a small margin.
Here are all the actual scores we got while comparing Buffer vs. Later. We also included SocialPilot in the mix for a frame of reference.
Quick Comparison – Buffer vs. Later
Here, we will weigh Later vs. Buffer based on the fundamental features of a social media management tool that lays the groundwork for any comparison or selection by users.
Although both tools are affordable, Later comes at a much lower price than Buffer. That difference might result from Buffer supporting more channels than Later. Google Business Profiles, Shopify, and Mastodon are integrated into Buffer but not in Later. But unlike Buffer’s alternatives, just like Later, the tool itself limits the number of posts a user can schedule per month.
As for the other important capabilities, both tools are well-equipped for scheduling, publishing, social media analytics, and collaboration. Where global accessibility is concerned, Buffer is available in only English and Spanish, but Later is available in five languages.
But one of the most important features of a social media marketing tool is missing from both Buffer and Later, and that is white label solutions. This feature is essential for agencies and brands to have a customized marketing experience that fits their needs perfectly.
Note: SocialPilot has white-label features available for its clients, despite being in the same price range as Buffer. This makes it a solid Buffer alternative.
Here’s an overview of all the essential features compared side by side for Buffer vs. Later, and alongside is SocialPilot for a better frame of reference.
|Can't Miss to Compare|
|Number of Accounts||10||36||30|
|Number of Team Members||Unlimited||6||6|
|Number of Posts that Can Be Scheduled||2000||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Scheduling & Publishing|
|Localization||English & Spanish||English, Spanish, French, German, Japanese||German, English, French, Portuguese, Spanish|
|Support||FAQs, How-To-Guides, Video Tutorials, Social Media Support & Email Support||Email & Live Chat||Email, Chat, Social Media, Phone|
|Learn More||Learn More||14 Days Trial|
- Buffer provides an optimal solution for managing and scheduling content across multiple social media platforms. With its centralized platform, users are able to efficiently publish their content on all of their social media accounts simultaneously.
- Buffer also offers a convenient feature where users can create a new page with the help of free templates, providing a jumpstart to their content creation process.
- The cost-effective pricing of Buffer makes it accessible to a diverse group of users, regardless of their budget.
- Users have experienced performance issues with Buffer, such as slowing down or crashing, when handling multiple image uploads or managing numerous accounts simultaneously.
- One potential drawback of Buffer is that its analytics capabilities are limited. Users have noted that the platform should offer a more in-depth analysis of each post's performance and engagement levels.
- Buffer lacks aesthetic appearance, as its whole interface is very monochromatic. Some basic design changes and perhaps a dash of color is needed to make the user experience better.
- The scheduling feature in Later allows for effortless scheduling of posts up to a month in advance, making it convenient for efficient content planning.
- The integration of a suggested hashtag feature in Later saves a significant amount of time during the publishing process on Instagram, providing a convenient and efficient solution for hashtags.
- The capability of Later to preview the overall appearance of your grid on the platform, including a visual representation of how all your posts will look lined up on your profile, offers a valuable tool for ensuring a cohesive and visually appealing aesthetic.
- Later has limited analytical functions, hindering access to essential data, which can be a drawback for the user. The absence of necessary information affects the user negatively.
- Later schedules on various platforms, but support for Google Business Profile is notably excluded. This absence is unfortunate and can hinder the user's ability to reach their desired audience.
- The hashtag function in Later has the tendency to suggest hashtags within the topic. However, some of these recommendations can become irrelevant, so the user must be cautious when using the suggested hashtags to avoid any unwanted content.
- SocialPilot constantly keeps updating itself by keeping a keen eye on customer suggestions and dynamic needs of social media channels. This way, the platform, backed by features that users require, is able to fulfill every demand a marketer may have.
- You can upload and schedule up to 500 posts at once using SocialPilot through its handy bulk import feature. These can be link posts, text, or even image posts to any of the platforms which SocialPilot supports.
- You can prevent delays and ensure that everything gets published according to schedule. As a result, with SocialPilot, your consistency on social networks remains uninterrupted.
- Although the Bitly integration is convenient, you'd like to see all these features built natively within SocialPilot or have automated workflows that create UTM links for all campaigns and other variables.
- SocialPilot does not have a color coding feature which simplifies the interface and makes it easier to navigate.SocialPilot does not have a color coding feature which simplifies the interface and makes it easier to navigate.
- SocialPilot does not have a free version available, leaving users with only a 14-day free trial option to test the app. The free trial can be accessed without the need for a credit card, making it a risk-free opportunity for those who want to explore the features and capabilities of the app before making a purchase.
Pricing – Buffer vs. Later
Now, we come to a crucial thing about any tool that becomes the deciding factor for prospective users, i.e., its pricing. So we will lay out each pricing plan for both the tools in question, Buffer vs. Later, and see which one offers a better deal.
As mentioned earlier, Buffer offers a free plan which is great for starters to use as it lets them manage three social media accounts. But if we’re talking about the utility of a free plan for a whole social media team, it doesn’t offer much. The paid plans for Buffer start from $6, offering a single user to connect one account. Later, on the other hand, it gives its lowest costing plan at $18 for a single user to connect six social accounts, one from each network it supports.
The most suitable plans for agencies for these tools are pretty affordable too. Buffer’s Agency plan costs $120 for unlimited users to connect ten social channels and schedule up to 2000 posts. Later, at only $80 gives six users access to manage up to 36 accounts and no cap on the number of posts. Both tools have fixed rates to add extra social accounts and users.
It looks like both the tools have a similar pricing model, but Later comes way cheaper. But where Later alternatives like Buffer and SocialPilot take the cake is the higher number of social media platforms which comes off as a noticeable lack for Later.
Here are all the pricing plans of both tools given for an adequate comparison. Also provided are SocialPilot’s pricing plans for better comparison.
14 Days Free Trial
No Credit Card Required
14 Days Free Trial
Credit Card Required
14 Days Free Trial
No Credit Card Required
|Learn More||Learn More||Start Your free Trial|
In-depth Scheduling and Publishing Capabilities Comparison
Social media content scheduling and publishing are the core reason for the existence of this whole genre of social media management tools like Buffer and Later. So let us see which of them has more extensive features related to scheduling and publishing.
Buffer and Later have efficient content scheduling capabilities with platform-specific customizations, visual content support, cloud content storage, link shortening, draft scheduling, content calendar, browser extensions, and much more. However, there are some discrepancies in their abilities, and here, we’ll highlight some important ones.
The content library, which is a useful asset for content management, is missing from Later. The other contender, Buffer, lacks important Facebook content scheduling abilities such as carousel posting, audience targeting, and boost posting of Facebook ads.
Note: Even as we compare Buffer vs. Later, both tools are incapable of RSS feed automation. SocialPilot is a similar but much more efficient scheduling tool that provides this feature to its users. This helps maintain consistency on social media platforms, eliminating the need for constantly creating fresh content. At the same time, they can also share valuable content with their audience, which increases their authenticity in the eyes of their audience.
Here is the detailed comparison of scheduling and publishing capabilities, Later vs. Buffer, along with SocialPilot.
|Smart & Advanced Queueing|
|Customize Post for Each Platform|
|Visual Post Support (Image, Video, GIF)|
|Advance Publishing Capabilities|
|Save Draft Posts|
|Watermark on Images|
|Auto publishing from RSS|
|Social media calendar|
|Advance Facebook Publishing Capabilities|
|Support Album Posts|
|Support Carousel Posts|
|Alternate Text on Image|
|Support Facebook First Comment|
|Boost Post Scheduling|
|Support Mention and Hashtags|
|Advance Twitter Publishing Capabilities|
|Support Mention and Hashtags|
|Support Multiple Image Posts|
|Advance Instagram Publishing Capabilities|
|Tag Profiles on Images|
|Support Instagram First Comment|
|Advance LinkedIn Publishing Capabilities|
|Support LinkedIn First Comment|
|Advance YouTube Publishing Capabilities|
|Mention of Other Youtube Accounts|
|Learn More||Learn More||14 Days Trial|
In-depth Analytics Capability Comparison
The analytics section in a social media marketing tool works as a compass for its users, guiding the strategy-making in the right direction. So let us see which of the tools in question have better analytical capabilities.
Buffer and Later have above-average data-driven insights, although this is not their USP. Users get comprehensive information on how their business profiles are performing on the relevant social media platforms, all in the same streamlined dashboard.
But Buffer does not have the ability to email customized reports generated to relevant stakeholders, nor can it schedule the PDFs of these said reports to be sent at a dictated time. Later, in turn, doesn’t even generate downloadable white-label PDF reports, which is a considerable gap as far as agencies with multiple clients are concerned.
Here’s the comparison, Buffer vs. Later, regarding their analytics and reporting features, and thrown in the mix is SocialPilot for better reference.
In-depth Inbox/Listening Capability Comparison
Now we come to the listening capabilities of the tools in question. Listening to and monitoring social media conversations, comments, and reviews from the audience helps a business manage and respond to them, creating the image of a brand that is self-aware and cares about its customers.
However, Buffer and Later have little to offer with respect to listening. In Buffer’s case, users can only reply to messages on Facebook and Instagram comments business accounts. For Later, that ability is persistent for Instagram and TikTok. Other than this, there is not much else the tools have.
Note: SocialPilot, despite being in the same league with Buffer and Later price-wise, offers a lot more in terms of social listening. It has a functional inbox for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Google Business profiles. Users can monitor multiple accounts from this inbox for comments, DMs, reviews, and queries, responding to them proactively. And all of this from the same dashboard.
Here is a glance at all the listening capabilities, Later vs. Buffer, along with SocialPilot, for an effective comparison.
In-depth Social Media Collaboration Capability Comparison
At last, we come to the collaboration capabilities of Buffer vs. Later. So let us see which one of them is better equipped to handle a whole social media team and their clients.
Both tools allow multi-user access to their agency-level plans. For Buffer, an unlimited number of users are allowed in one profile, while Later charges users for every person they add after the limit of six is crossed.
The account admin can assign these users, particular roles and give selective access. They can collaborate on each post and use approval workflow to perfect each piece of content they create before scheduling.
Here is an overview of all the team and client collaborative abilities, comparing Buffer vs. Later along with SocialPilot.