Freshdesk will work best for those who need highly economic plans due to being a small operation. Zendesk focuses on interaction features such as customer satisfaction features. Desk.com will appeal to those with larger businesses who need more enterprise level plans due to higher end features like full Salesforce integration.
Covered in this report
Get up to 3 agents per month for free.
Free 30 day trial with unlimited agents and features such as custom agent roles.
Best for: Those looking for the lowest cost solutions possible.
Easy access to a demo.
Customer satisfaction surveys available even with some cheaper plans.
Best for: Those who plan on using a high level of customer interaction with their business model.
One inbox for multiple channels including phone and email.
Desk connect for salesforce makes for easier integration.
Best for: Those who want Salesforce integration directly.
Having options for responding effectively to your customers with customer support software is getting more important than ever as customers are demanding more and more interaction and responsiveness. Fortunately, there are plenty of options available to you for handling this these days. Here are a few of them with a focus on the features of each.
Freshdesk is software for customer response used by many different companies including Soy Pictures, QuizUp, Toshiba, Grofers, Unicef, Honda, and others.
- Free Plan-There’s a plan called “Sprout” which doesn’t cost you any money at all, and you still get up to 3 useable agents. The free plan gives you email and phone support channels and a knowledge base you can set up to help out your customers.
- Free Trial-You can get access with unlimited agents for 30 days. This usually lets you try out the Estate plan.
- 24/7 Email Support-If you need help with any of your channels or other features, you can get this help through email even if you go the free route.
- Custom Agent Roles-At the “Estate” version of the plans available, you can assign specific roles to each of your agents to make it easier for them to operate and know exactly what they’re supposed to be doing.
- Extra Temporary Agents-There’s a feature called “Day Passes” that allows you to assign temporary agents if you have a spike in service.
Zendesk has a fairly iterative main page with a woman doing jokes in the video in the background and animated icons that show you each aspect of the software. The Zopim chat option through Zendesk makes it easier to monitor the progress of all support agents and to give them easy tools for handling support.
- Satisfaction Surveys-The “Regular” plan lets you dish out satisfaction surveys after rendered products or services to help give you a sense of how your customers are reacting to what you provide so you can then make adjustments.
- Multibrand Support-Some of the more expensive plans have support even if you are using more than one brand and want to connect them all together.
- Infinite Light Agents-The “enterprise” program lets you use as man ‘light’ agents as you want with your system.
Desk.com has more specific integration with Salesforce. The two services appear to be one in the same. There’s a link for quick phone access in the form of an icon of a phone in the top right corner of the window.
- Universal Inbox-Handle all inquiries for email, phone and social media channels in one inbox.
- Salesforce Desk Connect-This allows your sales and service departments to work together by having direct Salesforce integration between the two. They often need to correlate in most businesses, so it makes a lot of sense to push integration.
- Interactive Dashboards-You can see how your customer service efforts are going right away with easy to read dashboards that you can tweak and use for instant interaction.
- Custom Permissions-The higher levels of plans at Desk.com allow you to assign specific custom permissions for particular agents dependent on the level of trust and responsibility that you want to afford them in your organization.
- Infinite Self-Service Portals-The higher level plans also give you abilities such as being able to keep various different brands separate with different help services for each if you plan on having a lot of related brands that all interconnect in some important way.
Head to Head
Plans start with “Sprout” which is free on Freshdesk. Then there’s Blossom which is $16 per month if you go annually, Garden which is $25, Estate which is $40, and Forest which is $70 per month done on an annual basis.
Zendesk charges $1 per month per agent. This is the annual price. Otherwise, it costs $2 per month. The “regular” plan is $25 per month. Then you have the Plus plan which is $59 per month. This plan includes time tracking as well as custom dashboards and reports and an internal knowledge base. If you go any higher than this, such as the Enterprise plan, it’s $125 per month, and you have to talk to them through the “contact us” option.
Desk.com doesn’t have any low-cost options, with their “Standard” option starting at $30 a month if you buy it a year in advance. This starts off with a multi-channel service option, though, including phone email and social media all in the same place. The ”Pro” option is $60 per month and this includes desk connect for salesforce.
Overall, Freshdesk is definitely the most economical plan since you can use it for free. Individual and small business owners will like this the best. Zendesk does have a cheap $1 option as well though, however. Desk.com is definitely the higher end for pricing.
Features and Usability
There has to be something to be said for the usability of Freshdesk given that 50,000 people use it. Overall, the systems seems fairly intuitive to use since you have your clearly defined agents and channels. Some features include several different possibilities for interactive channels such as through email, which is available on the free plan, or through social support or community forums with the Blossom plan. The Garden plan is what you need to get a live chat support channel.
Zendesk has a number of interesting features such as the team inbox you can try out so that you and your team can handle emails as a joint exercise with features designed to make this easier. You can also try out a free 30-day trial to see if you’ll like any of this stuff. Usability is something the program definitely appears to have put some effort into improving as you can see with the shared inbox option. This way it’s easier for everyone to use the software in a cooperative fashion.
Desk.com has a high level of usability for those more familiar with Salesforce due to the integration ability there. Other features include having one inbox with universal multi-channel support and a knowledge base.