Best Zendesk Alternatives 2023 (Top 10 Similar Competitors)
Zendesk is a giant in the help desk software industry. But it has its downsides. It comes with too many features the average business doesn't need and has some of the most expensive monthly plans.
If you're looking for the best Zendesk alternative, you've arrived at the right place. In this post, we'll look at the 10 best Zendesk competitors and see how they are better than Zendesk.
Let’s dive in.
Top 10 Zendesk competitors with similar products
Here are the companies like Zendesk that we think are the best Zendesk alternatives. Although they are all fairly similar, some Zendesk competitors will be better suited to your circumstances than others so read more about the Zendesk competition below.
But before you dive into the Zendesk comparison post below, take a look at this list of the 20 best help desk software. We also have a post that goes over the best Zendesk Sell features that make it one of the best CRM solutions on the market.
Hubspot Service Hub
Best free plan
Salesforce Service Cloud
Companies on a budget
Jira Service Management
$10/month per 50 tickets
Here’s our full list of the best Zendesk alternatives 2022:
It's time to look at the best Zendesk alternatives in closer detail. We'll see which is the top Zendesk replacement overall, which is the most affordable, and which one of the ten Zendesk has most similarities with. Some of these help desk software solutions would be more suitable for smaller businesses and startups, and others for larger companies. There are also some that are geared toward e-commerce businesses, so make sure you pay attention to the ones that best meet your needs.
Here are 10 good alternatives to Zendesk:
1. Zoho Desk: best Zendesk alternative overall
We named Zoho Desk the best alternative to Zendesk as it offers the same suite of advanced features and is highly usable. But what makes it better than Zendesk is its affordability. The cheapest paid plan will only cost you $14 per agent per month. If your budget is tight, there’s a free plan that offers basic functionality.
Zoho Desk is a cloud-based omnichannel help desk software geared towards startups and SMBs that want to keep their customers happy. One of the significant advantages of the software is that it works seamlessly with other Zoho products, like Zoho CRM and Projects. If you're already a Zoho user, you may want to consider sticking with the Zoho universe of products.
Another thing that makes Zoho Desk an amazing product is its powerful automation capability. You can save your team members a good deal of time by automating tasks like assigning tasks to the right people, email notifications, sending alerts, and more.
Zoho Desk has its own AI Assistant called Zia. Zia can have conversations with your customers, understand their problems, and send them relevant help articles so they can fix the issue on their own instead of waiting for a live agent.
Other features include knowledge base tools, integrations, mobile apps for iOS and Android, and advanced analytics. For example, the analytics feature can give you important metrics like time tracking for individual tickets.
Read our detailed Zendesk vs Zoho Desk comparison article to see how these two tools stack up against each other.
Zoho Desk is best for:
Users who need a more affordable solution
Reports and dashboards
Customizable help desk
Standard, $14/user/month billed annually
Professional, $23/user/month billed annually
Enterprise, $40/user/month billed annually
2. Hubspot Service Hub: best free Zendesk alternative
We named Hubspot Service Hub as one of the best free Zendesk alternatives for a reason. The software comes with a good deal of free help desk features you can use for unlimited time. Some of these free features include ticketing, calling SDK, email scheduling, live chat, shared inbox, conversational bots, team email, and more.
Consider trying the free version if your team has never used any help desk software. This will be a great opportunity for your team to learn how this type of software works and whether it's a good fit for your needs. You can always upgrade to the paid features in the future.
In addition to using this Zendesk alternative free of charge, there are three paid plans if you're planning on growing your business: Starter, Professional, and Enterprise. The Starter plan starts at $45/month for two users, the Professional is $450/month for five users, and the Enterprise plan costs $1,200/month for ten users. You can add additional users for an added cost.
On the plus side, Hubspot offers a ton of other products and services, including marketing, sales, and CRM tools.
HubSpot Service Hub is best for:
Small companies looking to scale
Help desk automation
Starter plan, starts at $45/month for two users billed annually
Professional plan, starts at $450/month for five users billed annually
Enterprise plan, starts at $1,200/month for 10 users billed annually
3. Freshdesk: most similar to Zendesk
Freshdesk is a product created by the customer relationship company Freshworks. Freshdesk is known as the simpler, less expensive choice to Zendesk. Despite their differences, the two platforms have many things in common.
Similar to Zendesk, Freshdesk is also part of a larger family of products that work seamlessly with each other, including Freshcaller, Freshchat, Freshsales, Freshmarketer, and Freshdesk CRM. Both Freshdesk and Zendesk give you the ability to create internal and external knowledge bases and come with multi-channel support.
Both platforms have four monthly plans. The only difference between Freshdesk vs Zendesk in terms of pricing is that Freshdesk offers a free plan, while Zendesk only offers a free trial. Freshdesk’s paid plans are also more affordable, starting at $15/agent/month, billed annually.
In terms of integrations, both platforms come with a generous integrations directory. They both integrate with 1,000+ apps, ranging from CRM to cloud storage and project management apps.
Freshdesk can be a good option for larger teams that need to deal with hundreds of tickets on a weekly basis, like those in a call center setting.
Freshdesk is best for:
Knowledge base and community forums
Reporting and analytics
4. Salesforce Service Cloud: good Zendesk alternative for large enterprises
Salesforce Service Cloud is a powerful Zendesk competitor, best known for its robust reporting options, end-to-end communication system, and unique ticket management capabilities.
Similar to Zendesk, Salesforce offers multi-channel support that lets you communicate with customers across all channels, such as email, instant messaging, and phone. All customer inquiries arrive in a shared inbox so that everything is stored in one centralized space. From here, customer support agents can pick support tickets on their own.
If you use other Salesforce products, like its sales and marketing software, in combination with the Service Hub, you'll be able to get a 360-degree view of your customers, which can lead to faster resolution of tickets.
There's also a self-service portal that can be easily set up and customized for your specific business so that customers resolve the less complex issues on their own.
The software integrates with 3,000+ apps via Salesforce’s AppExchange.
We have a detailed Zendesk vs Salesforce Service Cloud comparison article, so make sure to read it to see how these two tools stack up.
Salesforce Service Cloud is best for:
Reporting and Analytics
Essentials, $25/user/month billed annually
Professional, $75/user/month billed annually
Enterprise, $150/user/month billed annually
Unlimited, $25/user/month billed annually
5. Help Scout: cheaper alternative to Zendesk if you’re on a budget
We voted HelpScout the best cheap alternative to Zendesk. Its cheapest monthly plan starts at only $20 per user per month billed annually, compared to Zendesk's $49 per user per month. There's even a separate offering for startups just starting out; you just need to apply, and HelpScout will give you six months free. If you don't find the software a good fit for your business, you can take advantage of the 30-day money-back guarantee.
Help Scout’s support tools are ideal for growing businesses that want to rely on powerful apps like Zendesk and provide a better customer experience. For instance, all issues come in with full customer data so that you give the best possible answer. Some of the features you’ll find include a shared inbox, knowledge base, live chat, collision detection, and reporting. You’ll be able to set up workflows to automate actions by using basic if-this-then-that logic. Additionally, you can integrate the software with 50+ third-party apps.
Help Scout is best for:
Standard, $20/user/month billed annually
Plus, $40/user/month billed annually
Pro, $65/user/month billed annually
6. Happyfox: top Zendesk replacement for SMBs
Happyfox is a feature-rich customer service platform geared towards SMBs and large organizations. As with all other platforms on this list, Happyfox offers omni-channel support that lets you convert email, phone, chat, social media, and customer requests into tickets.
There’s also a live chat and chatbot features you can enable for your website to chat with your website visitors in real-time. You can help customers resolve issues on their own with the knowledge base and community forum builder. Additionally, customers can complete satisfaction surveys after getting support.
There are two types of plans: per agent and for unlimited agents. As the name suggests, the first type of plans work on a per agent per month basis and start at $29 per month. These plans require a minimum of five help desk agents. Let's say you opt for the cheapest paid plan, which stands at $29 per agent per month. This means you'll be paying $145 per month. The unlimited agents plans are geared towards large organizations. Two-year and three-year contracts are also available.
In terms of integrations, it works seamlessly with tools like Slack, Microsoft Teams, Jira, and Facebook.
Happyfox is best for:
Mighty, $29/agent/month billed annually
Fantastic, $49/agent/month billed annually
Enterprise, $69/agent/month billed annually
Enterprise Plus, $89/agent/month billed annually
Unlimited agents plans, starting at $1,499/month
7.LiveAgent: great Zendesk substitute for startups and small businesses
LiveAgent is an all-in-one help desk software that prides itself on its simplicity. The small learning curve means quick onboarding. It's highly affordable if you're a small business, and it even has a free plan if you want to test the software before you commit to a subscription.
Paid plans start at $15 per agent per month for email ticketing only. If you want to add live chat, you have to subscribe to the Ticket+Chat plan, which costs $29 per agent per month. The All-inclusive plan includes all 180+ features of the software and costs $49 per agent per month.
You can easily set up a customer portal complete with a knowledge base, FAQs, and a community forum. The software integrates well with Slack so that you can receive a notification on Slack every time a new ticket is created. With the smart email ticketing feature, you make sure no ticket gets lost, and the live chat feature lets customers contact you via your website or mobile app.
LiveAgent is best for:
Knowledge base management
Reporting and analytics
Ticket + Chat, $29/agent/month
8. Jira Service Management: good Zendesk alternative if you want to automate your internal IT operations
Jira Service Management is a service desk software designed for IT, service, and customer support teams. It comes packed with all the features IT and support teams need for service request, incident, problem, and change management. The software integrates seamlessly with Jira software so that your IT and development teams can collaborate better. For example, users can connect service desk tickets to Jira software issues and fix issues before they escalate.
There’s a free forever plan for up to three agents, which is a great opportunity to try the software before committing to a subscription. All paid plans support up to 5,000 agents and an unlimited number of customers. There are also pricing discounts once you start adding more than 15 agents.
Jira Service Management is best for:
Reporting and analytics
Incident and problem management
Free for up to three agents
Standard, $20 per agent billed monthly
Premium, $45 per agent billed monthly
Enterprise, custom pricing
9. Gorgias: great Zendesk replacement for e-commerce businesses
Gorgias is a support desk for small to mid-sized e-commerce businesses. It's an easy-to-use, well-designed help desk software option with affordable monthly plans.
The software integrates well with all the popular e-commerce platforms like BigCommerce, Magento, and Shopify, but there's also an App Store with 90+ third-party apps. By integrating Grogias with your e-commerce platform, you’ll be able to see order details, edit orders, and even do refunds directly from your help desk.
Other features include a shared inbox tool, a knowledge base tool, and a live chat tool.
Gorgias's pricing doesn't work on a per-agent basis but a per-ticket basis. For example, the cheapest plan, which costs $10 per month, gives you only 50 tickets per month. The most popular plan is the Pro which stands at $300 per month and gives you 2,000 tickets. You can purchase additional tickets for each plan at a certain fee. All plans support unlimited users except for the Starter plan, that only supports three. Automation is available as an add-on feature.
Gorgias is best for:
Ecommerce store integration
Omni-channel messaging (Messenger, Whatsapp, Instagram, chat, etc)
Starter, 50 tickets/month, $10/month, available only on a monthly basis
Basic, 300 tickets/month, $50/month billed annually
Pro, 2,000 tickets/month, $300/month billed annually
Advanced, 5,000 tickets/month, $750/month billed annually
Enterprise, custom tickets volume
10. Front: good Zendesk alternative if you want team collaboration
Front is a SaaS customer support software that comes with all the features you would need to improve customer engagement and satisfaction. This customer management tool shines in its team collaboration features that make it stand out from other tools on the market. It comes packed with features like shared inbox, ticket assigning, tags and mentions, and more. People can collaborate and communicate in real-time on customer messages (like leaving private notes) to deliver the most informative answers.
There are also a good deal of productivity features like internal notes, as well as some automation features to reduce manual work. Premium packages have advanced rule triggers and actions. You can get a Front chat widget for a website. In terms of integrations, the software integrates with all the popular tools like Aircall, Asana, ClickUp, Grammarly, Facebook, Google Drive, Jira, and more.
Overall, this can be a great choice if you need powerful ticketing systems like Zendesk.
Front is best for:
Team collaboration on customer messages
Starter, $19/person/month, billed annually, minimum 2 users, maximum 10 users
Growth, $49/person/month, billed annually, minimum 5 users
Scale, $99/person/month, billed annually, minimum 10 users
Which of the alternatives to Zendesk is a good choice for you?
In this Zendesk comparisons post, we suggested that Zoho Desk is the best substantive overall based on factors like features, affordability, and usability.
But this is not set in stone. Zoho Desk can be a suitable option for a large majority of businesses, maybe even for you. For in some instances, other customer service software might be a better choice, depending on a range of factors like your budget, specific needs, and preferences.
The most important thing is to think through the features you want out of a help desk solution. What features are critical? Has your team used help desk software before? If not, consider going with a more lightweight option, so they get the feel of how these solutions work.
After all, these are not the only alternatives. For example, in our Zendesk vs Intercom article, you’ll see how Intercom can be a great alternative to Zendesk.
The good thing is that many of the Zendesk alternatives we mentioned in this post have a free plan, so if your needs are more basic, start with a free plan first and upgrade as your needs grow. Almost every platform has a free trial period, which is another great option to determine whether a help desk software caters to your needs.
Let's look at it this way. If you need a tool that's similar to Zendesk but more affordable, go with Freshdesk. If you're a large organization that deals with thousands of tickets per month, check out Salesforce Service Cloud. HelpScout, HappyFox, and Front can all be good options if you're a small to medium-sized business.
Take your time to choose wisely. The tool you'll opt for will be critical in increasing customer satisfaction and improving customer communication.
And, if none of these tools seem to suit your needs, then how about you consider reading our Zendesk review and giving the tool one more chance?