Top 12 Freshdesk Alternatives for 2021

When you talk about customer service tools, there are certain tools that dominate the market today. Freshdesk not only happens to be one of them but forms the cream of modern help desk tools.

But, wait a minute. Despite its golden reputation, why are thousands of users looking for Freshdesk alternatives or software cheaper than Freshdesk

Let’s be honest, Freshdesk is not perfect and has its own set of flaws. While many users feel they have to throw thousands of dollars for core features, others want a solution that is simple, less complicated, and offers the features “they need” rather than what they “might want.” 

In this blog, we are sharing 12 amazing alternatives to Freshdesk along with their features and pricing details.

Freshdesk Alternatives: Features, Pros & Cons

Software Key Features Price
ProProfs Help Desk Respond faster with canned responses
Agent collision detection
Encourage self-service with a knowledge base
Use chatbots to generate leads
Monitor performance with smart reports
Forever free plan
Essentials: $10/user/month
Premium: $15/user/month
Zendesk Unified view of the customer
Create help articles & guides
Actionable reports & analytics
Build help center and community forum
AI-powered answer bots
Suite Team: $49/agent/month
Suite Growth: $79/agent/month
Suite Professional: $99/agent/month
Kayako Create self-help articles & FAQs
Kayako Messenger
Offer support with proactive messages
Stay on target with SLAs
Offer support over Twitter & Facebook
Inbox: $15/agent/month
Growth: $30/agent/month
Scale: $60/agent/month
Zoho Desk Route tickets with assignment rules
Use filters to sort tickets
Create help centers for multiple brands
Maintain SLAs and escalate violations
Integrate Zoho Desk with Zoho CRM
Free: Forever free plan
Standard: $12/agent/month
Professional: $20/agent/month
Enterprise: $35/agent/month
SysAid Allow users to reset domain passwords
Build an extensive knowledge base
Initiate and respond to chat conversations
Leverage ticket history
Create automated routing and escalation rules
Price available on request
Intercom Multichannel support
Automated ticket assignment
Share relevant help articles
Leverage custom bots
Targeted messages to share updates
Start: $59/month
Grow: $119/month
Accelerate: $499/month
Scale: $999/month
Help Scout Create custom fields
Receive desktop notifications
Create mobile-friendly help articles
See key metrics for specific agents
View chat support history
Standard: $20/user/month
Plus: $35/user/month
Company: Price available on request
HubSpot Service Hub Create a library of help articles
Automated ticket assignment
HubSpot mobile app
Share NPS surveys
Analyze performance with custom reports
Free: Forever free plan
Starter: $45/month (2 users)
Professional: $360/month (5 users)
Enterprise: $1200/month (10 users)
Front Respond faster with context
Gmail-like interface
View trends across messages
Chat with your teammates
Customize with other business apps & APIs
Starter: $19/person/month
Prime: $49/person/month
Enterprise: $99/person/month
Kustomer Deflect support tickets across channels
Monitor customers’ sentiment
See agent availability
Create SEO-friendly help centers
Monitor customer satisfaction
Enterprise: $89/user/month
Ultimate: $139/user/month
Live Agent Create workloads for your agents
Capture social media messages
Set up chat, contact, and survey widgets
Reward agents with badges
Use spam filtering to avoid spam emails
Free: Forever free plan
Ticket: $15/agent/month
Ticket + Chat: $29/agent/month
All-Inclusive: $39/agent/month
Freshdesk Create knowledge base articles
Parent-child ticketing
Track time & log billable hours
AI-powered chatbot
SLA management
Sprout: Forever free plan
Blossom: $15/user/month
Garden: $35/user/month
Estate: $49/user/month
Forest: $99/user/month

What Is Freshdesk? 

what is freshdesk software

Founded in the year 2010, Freshdesk is a leading cloud-based customer support software used by popular brands such as Bridgestones, Decathlon, Hamleys, and more. The tool does a great job of unifying conversations from email, phone, chat, help center, social media, etc., and helps you resolve customer requests and issues across multiple channels. With Freshdesk, you can automate repetitive and manual tasks, offer self-service options to customers, and collaborate across departments to resolve issues faster. 

Why Look For Freshdesk Alternatives? 

Despite its high popularity and range of features, users are actively looking for products similar to Freshdesk. Here are some compelling reasons that show why they are right. Let’s discuss some top Freshdesk cons in detail. 

For First-Timers, Freshdesk Can Appear Complicated 

Don’t be surprised if Freshdesk appears to be a complicated tool at first. Even if you are a customer service member who has used a help desk tool before, you will need a demo and at least one complete day to understand how Freshdesk works. It’s simply not a tool that you can set up in minutes and start resolving concerns right away. 

Freshdesk’s Basic Plans Lack Important Help Desk Features

Although Freshdesk offers a free plan and a basic plan that starts at $15/agent/month, you need to opt for their higher-end or premium plans (Available at $99/agent/month) to enjoy maximum benefits. The basic plans lack important features such as skilled-based ticket routing, custom reports, customer roles, agent shifts, and more. This makes Freshdesk an unfeasible option for businesses that are on a budget. 

Internal Collaboration Features Need Improvement 

Even though Freshdesk comes with many team collaboration features, many users have complained that it’s not easy to have a seamless conversation with your teammates.  While most help desk systems allow you to share internal notes or comments right on the ticket, Freshdesk users need to integrate it with another tool called FreshConnect to chat with other team members. 

The Features Freshdesk Alternatives Must Have

In order to narrow down the top Freshdesk alternatives, you must first know what exactly you need from the tool. 

While different businesses might have different requirements, there are certain help desk features that should be standard. To make your life easier, we have compiled a list of top features that every Freshdesk alternative should have. 

  • The right alternatives to Freshdesk should be easy-to-use with a simple user interface. The tool should not require extensive training programs. 
  • Shared Inbox to manage customer conversations from multiple channels
  • Team collaboration features for multiple agents to work on complex issues together 
  • Insightful reporting and analytics to measure performance. For instance, the ability to track metrics such as ticket resolution time, customer satisfaction, etc. 
  • Core ticket management features such as ticket tracking, ticket assignment, ticket filtering, etc. 

Our Selection Criteria for Freshdesk Alternatives

With hundreds of customer service tools out there claiming they are the best, finding affordable yet feature-rich tools like Freshdesk can seem like climbing a mountain. Moreover, research can be pretty painstaking as well. 

To save you from endlessly scrolling through online reviews and product websites, we have selected the top tools that will put a full stop to your search. To make it to our list, all the alternatives must pass the following criteria: 

Fundamental Help Desk Features: All Freshdesk competitors must be built around core help desk features such as ticket organization, automation capabilities, reports and analytics, multichannel customer service, etc. 

Listed on Top Software Review Platforms: The software alternatives should be listed on the top online software review platforms such as Getapp, SoftwareWorld, and Capterra. 

Minimum 10 User Reviews: All alternatives must have at least 10 reviews from genuine users on these above-mentioned platforms. Genuine reviews can shed light on the pain points that are common among users or the important features your team can look forward to. 

12 Best Freshdesk Alternatives You Should Consider 

Now that you have gained some deep insights into the various pros and cons of Freshdesk, it’s time to explore other similar tools. Here are some of the best alternative to Freshdesk help desk tool: 

1. ProProfs Help Desk

ProProfs Help Desk is one of the best free Freshdesk alternatives

ProProfs Help Desk is undoubtedly one of the best free Freshdesk alternatives in the market that is super easy to use. In addition to robust ticket management features, you get ProProfs Chat, ProProfs Knowledge Base, and ProProfs Surveys – so you can have an all-in-one seamless solution.

No matter if a customer shares his concern over email, live chat, or raises a query on your help center page, ProProfs makes it easier for you to track and respond to all support conversations. 

Customer service agents can collaborate to solve challenging issues together, share internal notes, prioritize urgent conversations, and track the progress of every single support ticket – all from a common dashboard. Moreover, you can measure customer experience with metrics such as CSAT, NPS, FCR, etc. 

You Can Use ProProfs Help Desk To: 

  • Create and use canned responses for common customer questions
  • Avoid sharing multiple replies to a single request with agent collision detection
  • Encourage self-service with a knowledge base
  • Use chatbots to assist customers and generate more leads
  • Leverage smart reports to measure performance and monitor customer satisfaction

ProProfs Help Desk Plans Include: 

Forever Free: Forever free with limited features. 

Essentials: Starts at $10/agent/month

Premium: Starts at $15/agent/month

2. Zendesk

Zendesk, one of the best alternatives to Freshdesk, offers a complete customer service solution that is not only easy to use but shows great scalability to match your growing needs. The tool empowers you to support your customers over messaging, live chat, email, voice, etc., and makes it easier for customers to contact your business. 

You can create a unified view of your customer and leverage that data to personalize experiences across the entire customer journey. Moreover, help desk managers can monitor reports, trends, KPIs, etc., and understand what customers really need. 

You Can Use Zendesk To: 

  • Create a unified view of the customer
  • Allow agents to contribute to self-service articles and guides
  • Get actionable insights with the help of reports and analytics
  • Encourage self-service with help center and community forum
  • Use AI-powered answer bots to support customers 24×7

Zendesk Plans Include:

Suite Team: $49/agent/month

Suite Growth: $79/agent/month

Suite Professional: $99/agent/month

Have a look on the best zendesk alternatives

3. Kayako

Kayako is another help desk software like Freshdesk

Kayako is another help desk software like Freshdesk that can be used to deliver astounding customer service in multiple languages across channels such as live chat, email, Facebook, and Twitter. You can track every interaction your customer has had with your business to offer a more personalized experience

In addition to its modern interface, Kayako is also known for its remarkable team collaboration features. For instance, you can pool together knowledge and share them with internal notes. Similarly, agents can avoid duplicate replies by checking who else is viewing or replying to a conversation. 

You Can Use Kayako To: 

  • Create a repository of self-help articles, FAQs, and videos
  • Interact with customers in real-time using Kayako Messenger
  • Offer support with proactive messages
  • Stay on target and track performance with the help of SLAs
  • Support and engage customers over Twitter and Facebook

Kayako Plans Include:

Inbox: $15/agent/month

Growth: $30/agent/month

Scale: $60/agent/month

4. Zoho Desk

Zoho Desk is another free Freshdesk alternative

Zoho Desk is another free Freshdesk alternative that helps you channelize the power of customer context to improve agent productivity, manage multiple communication channels, encourage self-service, and enhance customer happiness. You can easily connect the tool with other apps your team uses and add custom capabilities through APIs. 

Zoho Desk lets you easily embed a customizable web form widget on your website. This allows customers to fill out a form and share their queries, which will be automatically converted into unique support tickets inside Zoho Desk’s ticketing system.

You Can Use Zoho Desk To: 

  • Create assignment rules to route tickets to the right agents or departments
  • Use filters to sort tickets based on their priority, type of customer, or urgency
  • Create distinctive help centers for multiple brands
  • Maintain SLAs and escalate violations automatically
  • Integrate Zoho Desk with Zoho CRM and other business tools

Zoho Desk Plans Include: 

Free: Forever free plan, limited to 3 agents

Standard: $12/agent/month

Professional: $20/agent/month

Enterprise: $35/agent/month

5. SysAid

SysAid Help Desk is a power-packed tool

SysAid Help Desk is a power-packed tool that is built for IT support teams. As a close competitor of Freshdesk, the tool offers important features such as a robust ticket management tool, IT asset management, mobile solution, self-service, chat, password reset, and more.

You can use this tool to create a knowledge base with how-to-solutions that can be used by both, your employees as well as customers. Moreover, support managers can view insightful reports and analytics right on their dashboard and agents can target relevant Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to improve IT support performance. 

You Can Use SysAid To: 

  • Allow users to securely reset their domain passwords 
  • Build an extensive knowledge base for internal employees and customers
  • Initiate and respond to chat conversations
  • Use ticket history for a more personalized support
  • Speed up your process with automatic routing and escalation rules

SysAid Plans Include: 

SysAid offers two subscription plans- Basic (for easy and efficient IT support) and Fuel (For ITIL-aligned mature organizations). Pricing details available on request. 

6. Intercom

Intercom is another strong alternative to Freshdesk

Intercom is another strong alternative to Freshdesk that helps you seamlessly provide human, self-serve, and proactive support. Now, Intercom is more than just a regular ticketing system. You can launch marketing campaigns, onboard new customers, and share proactive messages with your audience at the right time. 

With Intercom’s Inbox, agents can capture conversations wherever they are happing — your website, product, social media, and more. They can also automatically route and prioritize conversations that demand immediate attention. 

You Can Use Intercom To: 

  • Respond to conversations on multiple channels 
  • Automatically route conversations to relevant team members
  • Share relevant help articles through your website, mobile app, and product
  • Use custom bots to connect customers to the right agents
  • Use targeted messages to keep customers informed and updated

Intercom Plans Include: 

Start: $59/month (includes 1 seat)

Grow: $119/month (includes 5 seats)

Accelerate: $499/month (includes 10 seats)

Scale: $999/month (includes 10 seats)

Recommended Read: Intercom Alternatives

7. Help Scout

Help Scout is another software cheaper than Freshdesk

Help Scout is another software cheaper than Freshdesk that allows customer service teams to move fast with automation while offering customers a human, personal experience. Using this tool, you can embed help articles directly on your website and reduce your support ticket volume.

With Help Scout, your agents can share private notes with @mentions to other team members. This ensures agents can discuss complex tickets and double-check on responses before replying to customers. You can interact with customers in real-time via live chat and when no one is available to take chats, you can route customers to email. 

You Can Use Help Scout To:

  • Use custom fields to store custom data for each conversation
  • Receive desktop notifications for ticket updates
  • Create knowledge base articles that are mobile-friendly
  • See all key metrics and activity for a specific agent
  • Allow customers to view their chat support history

Help Scout Plans Include: 

Standard: $20/user/month

Plus: $35/user/month

Company: Price available on request

8. HubSpot Service Hub

HubSpot Service Hub help desk tool

As one of the leading Freshdesk alternatives, HubSpot offers a robust universal inbox that gives different teams- sales, marketing, and customer service, a single place to view and manage all conversations. All your team members can have complete transparency and know whether someone has followed up on a support ticket or not. 

You can set ticket assignment rules to route tickets to specific individuals or distribute them evenly across all team members. Moreover, with the use of filters, you can effortlessly sort through conversations and find the ones you are looking for. 

You Can Use HubSpot To:

  • Convert frequently asked questions into a library of help articles
  • Automatically route chats to relevant people in your team
  • Offer support on the move with HubSpot mobile app
  • Share NPS surveys to identify your loyal customers
  • Use custom reports to measure performance 

HubSpot Service Hub Plans Include: 

Free: Forever free plan

Starter: $45/month (2 users)

Professional: $360/month (5 users)

Enterprise: $1200/month (10 users)

9. Front

Front is best Freshdesk alternative

As a popular Freshdesk help desk alternative, Front offers an easy-to-use ‘Universal Inbox’ to manage conversations across channels such as email, chat, SMS, Twitter, and more. This allows customer service teams to keep all their incoming and outgoing customer conversations well organized and actionable on a single tool. 

You can use this tool to easily apply workflow rules to automate manual tasks. For instance, you can assign customer requests to agents based on keywords, sender, time of day, and other relevant criteria. You can also build email templates, and receive messaging insights to have more meaningful interactions with every customer. 

You Can Use Front To: 

  • Give your team the context to make decisions and reply quickly
  • Make the most of an interface similar to Gmail
  • Understand trends across apps and messages
  • Chat with your teammates directly in your inbox
  • Customize with third-party business apps and APIs

Front Plans Include: 

Starter: $19/person/month

Prime: $49/person/month

Enterprise: $99/person/month

10. Kustomer

Kustomer is the besr freshdesk alternative

Kustomer is a popular customer service CRM platform that equips your team with all the tools they need for managing high ticket volume effortlessly. The tool can be accessed anytime, anywhere, allowing your agents to always stay connected with your customers. 

Kustomer is powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) that can help you automate your process, contextualize conversations, and share simple responses automatically. This allows your team to focus their energies on more pressing issues that demand urgent attention. Designed with natural language processing, Kustomer’s chatbots can recognize a customer’s native language and automatically respond with translated scripts.

You Can Use Kustomer To: 

  • Embrace AI and deflect support tickets across channels 
  • Monitor your customers’ sentiment for improved service
  • See which agents are available and what they are working on in real-time
  • Create SEO-friendly help centers for multiple brands
  • Survey and monitor customer satisfaction as well as customer effort

Kustomer Plans Include: 

Enterprise: $89/user/month

Ultimate: $139/user/month

11. Live Agent

LiveAgent is the freshdesk alternatives

LiveAgent is another Freshdesk alternative that deserves to be on your list. You can use the tool to interact with customers on a plethora of channels such as email, real-time chat, video calls, contact forms, social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter), and more. 

Help desk managers can automatically distribute tickets among relevant agents or departments. Similarly, agents can add tags to tickets, and set up unique rules to automate their workflow. In addition to this, you can grab your visitors’ attention using animated chat buttons and use customizable chat invitations to kickstart a great conversation in seconds. 

You Can Use LiveAgent To: 

  • Automatically create workloads for all your agents
  • Capture messages from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Viber
  • Set up chat, contact, or survey widgets in multiple languages
  • Appreciate your most hardworking employees with badges and rewards
  • Use spam filtering to avoid spam emails

Live Agent Plans Include: 

Free: Forever free plan with some limitations

Ticket: $15/agent/month

Ticket + Chat: $29/agent/month

All-Inclusive: $39/agent/month

12. ThriveDesk

ThriveDesk is a simple, affordable Freshdesk alternative

ThriveDesk is a simple, affordable Freshdesk alternative that is known for exemplary customer service. It is an ideal solution for companies of WordPress theme or plugin, bootstrap-based SaaS startups, and e-commerce platforms. Its built-in functionalities like shared inbox, CRM, live chat, reporting, Knowledge base, email signature generator, and many others make it a complete help desk tool.

ThriveDesk is incredibly easy to use and anyone can get started in a matter of minutes. Your team can provide support efficiently with canned replies, auto drafting, collision detection, tagging, and much more. The tool is trusted by many thriving companies such as Brainstorm Force, CreativeCollab, and so on. 

You Can Use ThriveDesk To:

  • Streamline tickets and customer conversations with a shared inbox
  • Get a 360º view of all your customer data in one place with CRM
  • Provide instant support to real-time visitors with a live-chat assistant
  • Provide self-service with an effective knowledge base
  • Leverage email signatures generator for professional emails

ThriveDesk Plans Include:

Basic: $15/month (up to 2 users)

Standard: $39/month (up to 5 users)

Plus: $99/month (up to 10 users)

Comparison of Best Alternatives of Freshdesk

Software Price Forever Free Plan Shared Inbox Multi-channel Communication Alerts & Escalations Live Chat Self-Service Portal IT Help Desk
ProProfs Help Desk $10/month Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Zendesk $49/month N Y Y Y Y Y Y
Kayako $15/month N Y Y Y Y Y N
Zoho Desk $12/month Y N Y Y Y Y N
SysAid (Not mentioned) N N Y Y Y Y Y
Intercom $59/month N Y Y Y Y Y N
Help Scout $20/month N Y Y Y Y Y N
HubSpot Service Hub $45/month Y Y Y Y Y Y N
Front $19/month N Y Y Y Y N N
Kustomer $89/month N N Y Y Y Y N
Live Agent $15/month Y Y Y Y Y Y N
Freshdesk $15/month Y Y Y Y Y Y N

Final Verdict: Which Freshdesk Alternative Should You Go For?

Freshdesk is a one of the leading customer service software that allows you to:

  • Collaborate across the company to resolve tickets faster
  • Handle customer requests on multiple communication channels
  • Enable customers to find relevant help on their own
  • Identify customer service trends and measure performance

However, despite competitive features, the drawbacks such as complicated setup, lack of important features in basic plans, etc. make people search for the right Freshdesk alternatives. All tools shared in this Freshdesk comparison blog are feature-rich, well trusted, and have been a popular choice among businesses of all sizes. 

If you wish to give your team an all-in-one help desk software that is easy to use and can be set up without extensive training, you must go for ProProfs Help Desk. If you want a tool that has something to offer to both your sales and support teams then Zendesk can be your ideal option.

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About the author

Jared is a customer support expert. He has been published in CrazyEgg, Foundr, and CXL. As a customer support executive at ProProfs, he has been instrumental in developing a complete customer support system that more than doubled customer satisfaction. You can connect and engage with Jared on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn

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