Alternative to Circle (Circle.so)

Hall is the alternative made for customer communities, not creators or influencers.

Circle logo

Hi there! Thinking about moving over to Hall? Or trying to decide which platform to use for the first time?

If you’re wondering what the differences are between Hall and Circle for companies looking to create a customer community, we put together this simple overview.

Made for customer communities

Circle (Circle.so) is a community platform that’s made for creator and influencer communities. Because of Circle’s creator community focus, Circle excels where monetizing and charging members access for community, paywalled content, or other digital products is a priority. In particular, communities that have a training or learning component may benefit from Circle’s ability to create and sell courses to members.

Hall on the other hand is made specifically for customer communities. What’s the difference? Well, customer communities are formed around an existing product or service offered by your business, like a SaaS product. Customer communities serve to connect users and customers, share knowledge about your product or service, get community support, and build loyalty and drive awareness. Whereas with the creator communities commonly built with Circle, the community is the product. This distinction can result in significant differences in the features and capabilities of a community platform.

It is still a fairly new platform and it can have glitches here and there. I pay for the highest tier and have priority support which helps but it can be frustrating on occasion if something is glitching or the solution just owner intuitive. They are always improving and that's what keeps me on the platform as well.

Circle is clunky and awful for members to use.

It gets expensive quickly if you need all the features, and it's not as specialised when it comes to quick communication ie instant messaging. Events from an attendee side can be difficult to navigate to.

Features for customer communities

Circle’s featured customer stories on their website are professional coaches, teaching communities, and content creators1. This focus on creator communities has meant that Circle has built out a depth of features for collecting payments, monetizing community, selling courses and coaching, and paywalling content. These features may be crucial when building creator communities, however they are typically not requirements for customer communities. Circle’s published product updates show that they are continuing to prioritize and expand their platform with features specifically for creator communities2 at the cost of improving the platform for customer communities.

By comparison, Hall is built for companies looking to create a customer community around their product or service. In addition to discussion and member functionality common to many community platforms, Hall has features for specific use cases that are desired in customer communities such as for product ideation, feature requests, and user feedback, as well functionality for peer-to-peer community support with questions and answers.

Modern product and user experience

Is the platform simple, easy, intuitive, and enjoyable to use by members? Does the platform designed to drive engagement?


Made for customer communities

Is the platform designed for customer communities? Does the platform have the features to support the needs of their users?


Powerful admin controls and analytics

Does the platform have comprehensive admin controls? How robust are analytics and reporting capabilities?


The verdict

When it comes to building a community for creators, influencers, or learning-focused groups, Circle is a strong contender. Its features for monetizing content, selling courses, and offering coaching make it well-suited for communities where the community itself is the product.

For companies looking to create a customer community around an existing product or service, a platform like Hall that is purpose-built for customer communities may be a better fit. Circle’s focus on creator communities means it may lack key features for customer communities such as product ideation, feature requests, user feedback, and peer-to-peer support.

With features tailored to the specific needs of customer communities, Hall provides the tools to connect users, gather valuable feedback, and provide community-driven support. Hall, being purpose-built for customer communities, offers a compelling alternative for companies who want to build an engaged community around their product or service.

Common questions about Circle

We’ve collated all the frequently asked questions to help answer your questions quickly.


1Website: Circle Customer Stories, https://circle.so/customer-stories.2Circle’s public roadmap page.

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