The Complete Guide To Getting Started With Drift + Use Cases, Features and Pricing

Table of Contents

Drift is a conversational marketing and sales tech company and they are based in Boston, USA. It was founded by David Cancel and Elian Torres in 2015 and the company uses conversational marketing and sales to help companies grow revenue and increase customer lifeline value.

The company has a total of $107 million in funding and they have a number of acquisitions – Fetchnotes (which was acquired on April 21, 2015), Siftrock (which was acquired on September 4, 2018) and Giant Otter Technologies (acquired on September 3, 2019).

In this review, we’ll be exploring Drift’s features, functions, benefits and ratings from platforms like G2 and Capterra.

Ease of use4.5

Getting Started with Drift

1. Select Log In on Drift’s homepage.

Drift’s Homepage

2. Click on Create a new Drift account.

I have an account with them, hence this page looks this way.

3. Select Sign up with email. Input your work email and password and click on create free account.


Drift has 3 pricing plans that help you scale your business. They include:

Drift’s Pricing Plan

a. Premium

This plan is for small businesses and it has the right amount of conversational firepower to keep your business growing.

The Premium plan starts at $2,500 per month and you’re billed annually. Key features include Intel (which makes use of contact and account enrichment, reverse IP and contact syncing to de-anonymize your site traffic), Live chat, Custom chatbots, Conversational landing pages, and Real-time notifications. It also comes with a 12/5 customer support service.

b. Advanced

This plan helps you engage your audience(s) with personalized messages and grow a qualified pipeline with less effort. You’ll need to contact Drift’s sales team to get a price plan.

The Advanced plan comes with everything in the Premium plan including Advanced Routing, A/B Testing, Audiences (helps you discover who is on your website, where they are from and what they are interested in), and Fastlane.

This plan also comes with the following services – 24/7 Customer Support, Semi-Annual EBR, Dedicated CSM, Annual Sales User Training, Access to Drift Support Engineer and Quarterly Drift Strategy Consulting.

c. Enterprise

This plan helps you scale your personalization and pipeline generation efforts across the full customer lifecycle. This is a custom plan as you’ll have to contact Drift’s sales team.

With this plan, you have access to Fles Routing Workspaces, AI-Powered Chatbots and Custom RBAC. This plan comes with the following services – semi-annual sales user training, 24/7 customer support, access to Drift Support Engineers, Quarterly EBR, and Dedicated CSM.

How Drift’s Dashboard Works

1. The conversation button gives you an overview of all conversations you’ve had with potential clients and customers.

2. The visitors’ button gives you an overview of all your contacts. You can segment and import your contacts.

3. The playbooks button gives you strategies on how to engage with your audience either through chat, email or signature.

4. The report button gives you an overview of reports with revenue and these reports are powered by Drift’s Salesforce integration.

Features of Drift

1. Customer/Contact Profile

This feature introduces you to direct contact and relationship with customers and clients. It’s designed like a business card – just that it is digital.

How It Works

Go to the visitor’s button and click on it. I currently have 2 contacts, you can select import contacts to add more contacts.

Click on one of the displayed contacts – I chose Tricia Gellman. This is her profile, you can follow her by clicking on +Follow and subscribe or unsubscribe. Under Attributes, every field (start date, name, phone, last contact, CQL source, alias, country) can be edited.

Click on any of the fields to edit and update. When you scroll down, you see custom attributes, drift Intel company and drift Intel personal – they all make up this contact profile. You can access/know your contacts’ activity by clicking on the activity timeline. Notes can be added to the activity timeline.

Select/click on send message to start a conversation with a contact/customer. Your contacts’ recent activity and conversation information can be viewed here. Meetings can be booked and you send your calendar availability directly to your contacts.

With the Drift profile, customers (you) can copy your Drift link in your social bio – think Twitter – to learn more about a contact.  

2. Playbook

This feature is an automated way of connecting workflows, messages and campaigns which proactively reach out to your site visitors and also connect leads to your team.

How It Works

Go to the playbooks button and click on it. You have 3 options – chat, email and signature, pick one. I selected the chat playbook. There are 3 playbooks/records displayed, click one – I selected Online Welcome Message – you’re directed to a new page – targeting.

Select how often visitors/audiences see it, you can do advanced settings that let you use cookies/JavaScript to target visitors based on their behaviours.

The next option – bot message – is for automating your bot flow. Click on the text how can we help? We’re here for you to make edits, select who to send to from and click on Save. Click on Goal, select a lead stage (I chose outbound conversation), highlighted Route conversation and clicked on Save.

The next option is settings and which includes selecting an inbox where a conversation will be directed.

Enable your playbook and click on Publish. Go back to your playbook page and select the signature playbook. Click on create signature playbook, name your playbook and click on create playbook. This signature playbook helps/lets you build your brand and drive traffic to your website.

Under Signature, click on compose template and configure/edit the template displayed before you. The editor in Drift’s signature makes use of Jinja – a specific style of templating. When you make edits to your template, you see changes in your preview at the bottom of the page.

You can include (or select) a banner graphic, an avatar and company social media. Edits can be made by clicking Insert in the template box and choosing between personalization or calendar link. Clicking personalization lets you include one or all displayed fields – full name, company name, address/URL, your email, phone number, team/personal IG, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Select any one – I chose Phone Number – and input a default value and select Insert. You can add more than 4 banners. You have the ability to preview the signature on your playbook.

Go to Enable under Review to choose to see your reports right away. Playbooks can be edited. To enjoy this Drift Signature playbook, your team has to have the Drift Chrome extension version 4.5.22 or something more recent.  

3. Teammate Onboarding

This feature helps you bring/onboard teammates to your team. You can check (and you are also notified) your teammate’s availability.

You have to upgrade your plan to be able to do this.

4. Integrations

With Drift, you’re able to connect your apps (from different categories – communications, two-way integrations, marketing insights and data, customer success and support) to Drift’s tech stack to enable an easy flow of work.

5. Reports & Analytics

There are different types of reports that are powered on Drift and this is possible via the platform’s Salesforce integration. Drift also shows detailed metrics on how email and chat playbooks perform.

How It Works

Go to your playbook and click on chat playbooks. Click on any or one of your edited playbooks – in this case, Online Welcome Message – and enter it. Click on view report and you’re provided with a metrics breakdown.

Or you can go to Settings and click on integrations and click on Analytics. Select any of the integrations – I chose Google Analytics, click on Connect, input your ID and click Connect.   

6. Live Chat

This feature helps customers connect with their website visitors which provides support and captures leads.

How It Works

Select the conversation button and click on create new section and input your section name, conversation filters, an option to add filter & group and then click on Create.

Files and emojis can be sent to the inbox, visitor information and site activity can be viewed and meetings can be scheduled.


1. Salesforce Forecasting

This feature is quite extensive for any messaging platform. You’re able to create a lead/contact record and you also have administrator access.

On a scale of 1-5, Product Curve ranked it 4.

2. Analytics and Reporting

Drift’s analysis & reporting feature helps you track website management, engagement and metrics. You use these results to improve and optimize across both sales and marketing.

On a scale of 1-5, Product Curve ranked it at 4.5

3. Email Integration

This feature helps you route (direct) real human responses to the right client which guarantees follow-up and drives more pipeline.

On a scale of 1-5, Product Curve ranked it at 4.5

4. Sales Enablement

Drift’s sales enabling tools – Fastlane and Sales Seat – are designed to connect a company’s high-profile buyers with sales representatives in real-time. They also collect intent signals from various touchpoints from an organisation’s CRM activity, sales engagement platforms, an organization website and/or marketing automation system.

On a scale of 1-5, Product Curve ranked it at 4

Comparative Analysis: Drift vs Intercom

This section takes a look at Intercom as an alternative conversational and sales tool when compared with Drift. We’ll look at Intercom’s features and pricing plan.

Intercom Inc was founded in California in 2011 by 4 Irish engineers and designers – Des Traynor, David Barrett, Ciaran Lee and Eoghan McCabe. The software company specializes in business messaging and also provides businesses with a way to chat with customers.

The company has offices in Dublin, London, Sydney and Chicago whilst the headquarters is in San Franciso. They have raised a total of $240.8 million over 9 rounds with their latest funding being on January 30, 2021, from a Secondary market round.

As of January 20, 2021, Intercom had a post-money valuation in the range of $1 billion to $10 billion.

Features of Intercom  

1. Customisable Bots

This feature helps you grow your pipeline and qualify your leads with custom bots. You don’t have to know how to code before you can design bots. Customisable bots replace web forms.

2. Business Messenger

This helps you engage your customers – whether on your website, app or product. Your style and layout of your content are your choices.

3. Product Tours

This feature helps onboard and introduce your products to customers.

4. Inbox

This feature is built for support at scale. It helps gives your team context on how to resolve customers’ issues.

5. Integration

This helps you connect the platforms’ application with your tech stack – it enables and increases team efficiency and also gives customers satisfaction.

6. Outbound Messages

This feature lets you use targeted in-app messages, mobile push and targeted emails to increase sales and onboard new users.

7. Customer Data

This feature gives you key insights into (your) customers’ behaviours. You’re able to easily integrate customer data from your entire tech stack and this way, your team can access a customer’s most recent history.

8. Mobile Apps

You’re provided with a seamless experience for users across mobile and desktop. You have customisable navigation options and integration options that have your apps design in mind.

9. Mobile Carousels

With no code needed/required, you can create beautiful and customisable carousels to support and engage mobile app customers.

Intercom’s Pricing

Intercom’s pricing plan is in two stages/categories.

Intercom’s Prcing Plan

a. For most businesses

i. Support

This plan gives you personalized and high-quality help at scale. It comes with these features (amongst others):

Human Support – outcome reporting, tickets, teams’ inbox, live chat for support, workload management, role-based permissions, service level agreement rules.

 Proactive Support – product tours, targeted messaging.

Self-serve support – help articles, resolution bots.

ii. Engage

This plan helps you re-engage, activate and onboard customers. It has the following features (amongst others):

Engagement and adoption – custom bots, news, push messages & notifications, multi-channel campaigns, mobile carousels.

Optimise performance – messaging versioning, A/B testing.

Personalized targeting – Salesforce & Marketo integrations.

iii. Convert

This plan turns website visitors into paying customers. It has the following features:

Website conversion – smart lead qualification, live chat for sales, conversational chatbots.

Prospect data – Salesforce & Marketo integrations, Reverse IP lookup & data enrichment

Manage leads – multiple team inboxes, revenue and performance reporting, automatic meeting booking

b. For very small businesses

The Starter Plan

It’s for building great relationships across the customer journey. With the plan, you can support, onboard and engage customers.

You’re billed $74/month when billed annually and you have the ability to connect the tools you already use – including HubSpot, Slack, Pipedrive and 250+ more in the app store, gain insights and improve customer experience through reporting dashboards, conversation ratings and tags, company & behavioural data; scale without scaling your team via shared inbox, saved replies/macro, conversation outing bot, help centre and support & engage your customers at every step of their journey with email & chat support, in-product messages and targeted outbound email.

You can customise this plan with add-ons.

Benefits That Make Drift Stand Out

1. Drift’s patented AI helps automate and nurture qualifications to help you start convos at the right time in a customer’s journey.

2. Drift gives you better connectivity to Marketo and Salesforce with 50+ popular sales and marketing tools including Gong, Pardot, 6Sense, and SalesLoft – which Intercom doesn’t offer.

3. While Intercom is focused on customer support, Drift is greatly designed for sales and marketing. The platform gives you a quality pipeline and revenue that’s faster which is why Drift customers see a 670% ROI.


If you’re trying to get your hands on a good conversational and sales tool, Drift is your go-to tool. It’s good and beginner friendly for a team.

Charis Raji
Charis Raji
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