Zendesk vs Intercom: Which Solution to Choose in 2024?

zendesk or intercom

The app includes features like automated messages and conversation routing — so businesses can manage customer conversations more efficiently. When making your decision, consider factors such as your budget, the scale of your business, and your specific growth plans. Explore alternative options like ThriveDesk if you’re looking for a more budget-conscious solution that aligns with your customer support needs. When comparing Zendesk and Intercom, evaluating their core features and functionalities is essential to determine which platform best suits your organization’s customer support needs. Let’s explore how Zendesk and Intercom stack up in terms of basic functionalities required by a helpdesk software.

For example, you can read in many Zendesk Sell reviews how adding sales tools benefits Zendesk Support users. While Intercom offers unique feature options that weave together well into campaigns and series, it lacks voice calling–a critical feature–and spreads its more advanced features out too much among plans. In a nutshell, none of the customer support software companies provide decent assistance for users.

Well, I must admit, the tool is gradually transforming from a platform for communicating with users to a tool that helps you automate every aspect of your routine. Zendesk is a ticketing system before anything else, and its ticketing functionality is overwhelming in the best possible way. They’ve been marketing themselves as a messaging platform right from the beginning.

Zendesk and Intercom are prominent players in the field of customer support and engagement platforms, each offering unique capabilities and advantages to address varying user requirements. Luckily, a range of customer service solutions is available that enables you to communicate directly with your customers in real-time. These tools are ideal for personalizing the customer experience and building better customer relationships. It tends to perform well on the marketing and sales side of things, which is key for a growing company. And considering that its tools (including live chat options) are so easy to use, it’s probably going to be easier for a small business to get integrated and set up.

On the other hand, Intercom is generally praised for its support features, despite facing challenges with its AI chatbot and the complexity of its help articles. Intercom generally receives positive feedback for its customer support, with users appreciating the comprehensive features and team-oriented tools. However, there are occasional criticisms regarding the effectiveness of its AI chatbot and some interface navigation challenges. The overall sentiment from users indicates a satisfactory level of support, although opinions vary. There are many features to help bigger customer service teams collaborate more effectively — like private notes or a real-time view of who’s handling a given ticket at the moment, etc.

You can always count on it if you need a reliable customer support platform to process tickets, support users, and get advanced reporting. You can also use Intercom as a customer service platform, but given its broad focus, you may not get the same level of specialized expertise. Zendesk’s pricing structure provides increasing levels of features and capabilities as businesses move up the tiers.

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If your organization aims to enhance customer engagement through live chat, in-app messaging, and proactive outreach, Intercom might serve as a viable alternative to Zendesk. However, it’s essential to recognize that Zendesk has its own array of strengths, particularly in its comprehensive and versatile customer support platform. On the contrary, Intercom is far less predictable when it comes to pricing and can cost hundreds/thousands of dollars per month. But this solution is great because it’s an all-in-one tool with a modern live chat widget, allowing you to easily improve your customer experiences. At the same time, Zendesk looks slightly outdated and can’t offer some features. Intercom, while differing from Zendesk, offers specialized features aimed at enhancing customer relationships.

On the other hand, Zendesk is a more comprehensive customer support tool that offers a broader range of features, including ticket management, knowledge base creation, and reporting and analytics. Its robust ticketing system and automation capabilities make it an excellent option for businesses with high-volume customer support needs. Additionally, Zendesk’s customizable dashboards and reporting features provide valuable insights into customer support performance. Intercom and Zendesk offer robust customer support options, including email, phone, and live chat support, comprehensive knowledge bases, and community forums.

MOBILE APPS

For small companies and startups, Intercom offers a Starter plan — with a balanced suite of features from each of the solutions below — at $74 per month per user, billed annually. Hivers offers round-the-clock proactive support across all its plans, ensuring that no matter the time or issue, expert assistance is always available. This 24/7 support model is designed to provide continuous, real-time solutions to clients, enhancing the overall reliability and responsiveness of Hivers’ services.

zendesk or intercom

Determining whether Zendesk is better than Intercom hinges on your unique customer support and engagement requirements. Zendesk excels as a robust and versatile customer support platform, offering comprehensive tools for managing customer inquiries and support operations across various channels. If your business values a feature-rich and customizable solution for customer interactions, Zendesk may be the better choice. Zendesk and Intercom are tailored to enhance your customer support and engagement, providing robust tools for managing customer inquiries, automating responses, and facilitating communication. However, a fundamental difference between them is their scope and focus.

In addition to Intercom vs Zendesk, alternative helpdesk solutions are available in the market. ThriveDesk is a feature-rich helpdesk solution that offers a comprehensive set of tools to manage customer support effectively. Intercom is praised as an affordable option with high customization capabilities, allowing businesses to create a personalized support experience. Although the interface may require a learning curve, users find the platform effective and functional. However, Intercom has fewer integration options than Zendesk, which may limit its capabilities for businesses seeking extensive integrations.

Intercom recently ramped up its features to include helpdesk and ticketing functionality. Zendesk, on the other hand, started as a ticketing tool, and therefore has one of the market’s best help desk and ticket management features. Key offerings include automated support with help center articles, a messenger-first ticketing system, and a powerful inbox to centralize customer queries. Onboard, educate, and notify customers with proactive messages on your website, mobile app, email, mobile push, or SMS. Proactive support means fewer questions for your team and much happier customers. So yeah, all the features talk actually brings us to the most sacred question — the question of pricing.

But I like that Zendesk just feels slightly cleaner, has easy online/away toggling, more visual customer journey notes, and a handy widget for exploring the knowledge base on the fly. In contrast, Intercom follows a pricing structure that can be straightforward for businesses looking for specific functionalities. However, it’s important Chat PG to note that Intercom’s pricing can vary depending on factors such as the number of users, conversations, and additional features you require. In some cases, Zendesk may be considered a more cost-effective option compared to Intercom, particularly for businesses with smaller budgets or those looking for more predictable pricing.

In addition to these features, Intercom offers messaging automation and real-time visitor insights. Because Intercom started as a live chat service, its messenger functionality is very robust. It feels very modern, and Intercom offers some advanced messenger features that Zendesk does not. These plans make Hiver a versatile tool, catering to a range of business sizes and needs, from startups to large enterprises looking for a comprehensive customer support solution within Gmail. Moreover, for users who require more dedicated and personalized support, Zendesk charges an additional premium.

Resolutions in minutes—not months

Additionally, the platform allows for customizations such as customized user flows and onboarding experiences. However, the right fit for your business will depend on your particular needs and budget. If you’re looking for a comprehensive solution with lots of features and integrations, then Zendesk would be a good choice.

However, if you are looking for a robust messaging solution with customer support features, go for Intercom. Its intuitive messenger can help your business boost engagement and improve sales and marketing efforts. Zendesk takes the slight lead here because it offers some advanced help desk features, which Intercom does not.

With Zendesk, you can anticipate customer questions, allowing for shorter reply periods. Don’t miss out on the latest tips, tools, and tactics at the forefront of customer support. Zendesk has more pricing options, which means you’re free to choose your tier from the get-go. With Intercom, you’ll have more customizable options with the enterprise versions of the software, but you’ll have fewer lower-tier choices.

Its multichannel support is more focused on engaging customers through its chat and messaging systems, including mobile carousels and interactive communication tools. However, compared to Zendesk, Intercom might not offer the same breadth in terms of integrating a wide range of external channels. While it excels in interactive and engaging communication, especially on mobile, some businesses might find its focus on chat-based interfaces limiting if they need extensive email or voice call support. You can foun additiona information about ai customer service and artificial intelligence and NLP. Zendesk is a customer service software offering a comprehensive solution for managing customer interactions.

Whether it’s syncing data with your CRM, enhancing communication via messaging platforms, or automating tasks with productivity apps, Zendesk makes it possible. Both tools also allow you to connect your email account and manage it from within the application to track open and click-through rates. In addition, Zendesk and Intercom feature advanced sales reporting and analytics that make it easy for sales teams to understand their prospects and customers more deeply. Zendesk started in 2007 as a web-based SaaS product for managing incoming customer support requests.

It offers a chat-first approach, making it ideal for companies looking to prioritize interactive and personalized customer interactions. With its robust ticketing system, versatile automation capabilities, and extensive reporting tools, Zendesk empowers businesses to handle customer inquiries effectively and improve support efficiency. It’s best used when you need a centralized platform to manage customer support operations, whether through email, chat, social media, or phone. Zendesk is ideal for businesses seeking to enhance their customer service processes and maintain a high level of customer satisfaction across all communication channels. While both Intercom and Zendesk excel in customer support and engagement, the decision between the two depends on your specific requirements. It’s well-suited for organizations aiming to enhance customer engagement through real-time communication.

The price levels can even be much higher if we’re talking of a larger company. If I had to describe Intercom’s helpdesk, I would say it’s rather a complementary tool to their https://chat.openai.com/ chat tools. You can publish your self-service resources, divide them by categories, and integrate them with your messenger to accelerate the whole chat experience.

When comparing the automation and AI features of Zendesk and Intercom, both platforms come with unique strengths and weaknesses. When comparing Zendesk and Intercom, various factors come into play, each focusing on different aspects, strengths, and weaknesses of these customer support platforms. The two essential things that Zendesk lacks in comparison to Intercom are in-app messages and email marketing tools. On the other hand, Intercom lacks many ticketing functionality that can be essential for big companies with a huge client support load. Basically, if you have a complicated support process, go with Zendesk, an excellent Intercom alternative, for its help desk functionality. If you’re a sales-oriented corporation, use Intercom for its automation options.

In contrast, Zendesk primarily relies on a knowledge base, housing articles, FAQs, and self-help resources. While this resource center can reduce the dependency on agent assistance, it lacks the interactive element found in Intercom’s onboarding process. There are several notable alternatives to Intercom in the customer support and engagement space, including Zendesk, Freshdesk, Help Scout, HubSpot, and Zoho Desk. There are several notable alternatives to Zendesk in the customer support and engagement space, including Intercom, Freshdesk, Help Scout, and Zoho Desk.

Overall, when comparing Zendesk to Intercom, Zendesk’s features will probably win out over time. But the most important thing is that you get a help desk that you believe in—and that you integrate it into a website as thoroughly as possible. You can zendesk or intercom use this support desk to help customers or you can forward potential new users to your sales department. You can create a help platform to assist users in guiding themselves, or you can use AI-enabled responses to create a more “human” like effect.

zendesk or intercom

With help centers in place, it’s easier for your customers to reliably find answers, tips, and other important information in a self-service manner. The cheapest plan for small businesses – Essential – costs $39 monthly per seat. But that’s not it, if you want to resolve customer common questions with the help of the vendor’s new tool – Fin bot, you will have to pay $0.99 per resolution per month. Whether you’ve just started searching for a customer support tool or have been using one for a while, chances are you know about Zendesk and Intercom.

What is Zendesk best used for?

The Intercom inbox is AI-enhanced and designed for speed and efficiency. No switching tools, no lost context, and no ticket backlogs—so your team can resolve complex issues faster. What can be really inconvenient about Zendesk is how their tools integrate with each other when you need to use them simultaneously. Just like Zendesk, Intercom also offers its Operator bot, which will automatically suggest relevant articles to clients right in a chat widget. So you see, it’s okay to feel dizzy when comparing Zendesk vs Intercom platforms. For standard reporting like response times, leads generated by source, bot performance, messages sent, and email deliverability, you’ll easily find all the metrics you need.

If you’re already using Intercom and want to continue using it as the front-end CRM experience, integrating with Zendesk can improve it. Let’s dig into the nitty gritty of Intercom versus Zendesk and see what makes Zendesk a better product for CX.

However, if your organization heavily relies on Intercom’s real-time communication features, in-app messaging, and chat-based support, transitioning entirely to Zendesk may not cover all your needs. Intercom’s focus on instant interactions and personalized engagement is particularly valuable for businesses prioritizing chat-first customer support and real-time communication. Its chat-based approach, automation capabilities, and chatbots are ideal for handling routine inquiries efficiently.

zendesk or intercom

If money is limited for your business, a help desk that can be a Zendesk alternative or an Intercom alternative is ThriveDesk. They offer straightforward pricing plans designed to meet the diverse needs of businesses, with only 2 options to choose from; it makes it easier for business owners to make a decision regarding pricing. Choose the plan that suits your support requirements and budget, whether you’re a small team or a growing enterprise. Both Zendesk and Intercom have AI capabilities that deserve special mention. Zendesk’s AI (Fin) helps with automated responses, ensuring your customers get quick answers.

Pricing

Now, let’s delve into the Zendesk vs. Intercom comparison to help you make an informed decision when selecting the right customer support and engagement platform that aligns with your specific needs. Although many people tout it as the solution for large businesses, its bottom pricing tier is a nice entry for any small business looking to add customer service to its front page. Intercom also has a mobile app available for both Android and iOS, which makes it easy to stay connected with customers even when away from the computer.

Zendesk, less user-friendly and with higher costs for quality vendor support, might not suit budget-conscious or smaller businesses. When comparing the omnichannel support functionalities of Zendesk and Intercom, both platforms show distinct strengths and weaknesses. Fin, our breakthrough AI chatbot, uses the most sophisticated AI technology to deliver safe, accurate answers that resolve customer questions and reduce your team’s ticket volume instantly.

The latter offers a chat widget that is simple, outdated, and limited in customization options, while the former puts all of its resources into its messenger. The Zendesk chat tool has most of the necessary features like shortcuts (saved responses), automated triggers, and live chat analytics. Intercom is more for improving sales cycle and customer relationships, while Zendesk has everything a customer support representative can dream about, but it does lack wide email functionality. On the other hand, it provides call center functionalities, unlike Intercom. The Intercom versus Zendesk conundrum is probably the greatest problem in the customer service software world. They both offer some state-of-the-art core functionality and numerous unusual features.

Their reports are attractive, dynamic, and integrated right out of the box. You can even finagle some forecasting by sourcing every agent’s assigned leads. Intercom primarily focuses on messaging but offers limited channel breadth compared to Zendesk, requiring paid add-ons for critical channels like WhatsApp. The three tiers—Suite Team, Suite Growth, and Suite Professional—also give you more options outside of Intercom’s static structure.

Zendesk is a much larger company than Intercom; it has over 170,000 customers, while Intercom has over 25,000. While this may seem like a positive for Zendesk, it’s important to consider that a larger company may not be as agile or responsive to customer needs as a smaller company. With ThriveDesk, you can supercharge your website’s growth and streamline customer interactions like never before. They have a 2-day SLA, no phone support, and the times I have had to work with them they have been incredibly difficult to work with. Very rarely do they understand the issue (mostly with Explore) that I am trying to communicate to them.

Say what you will, but Intercom’s design and overall user experience leave all its competitors far behind. To sum things up, one can get really confused trying to make sense of the Zendesk suite pricing, let alone calculate costs. If you’d want to test Intercom vs Zendesk before deciding on a tool for good, they both provide free trials for 14 days. But sooner or later, you’ll have to decide on the subscription plan, and here’s what you’ll have to pay.

zendesk or intercom

When comparing Zendesk and Intercom, Zendesk stands out with its robust and versatile customer support solutions. It offers a comprehensive platform for managing customer inquiries and support tickets across multiple channels, providing businesses with a powerful toolset for customer service management. Zendesk’s extensive feature set and customizable workflows are particularly appealing to organizations looking to streamline and scale their customer support operations efficiently. Zendesk is distinguished by its robust and versatile customer support solutions. It provides a comprehensive platform for managing customer inquiries, support tickets, and interactions across multiple channels. On the other hand, Intercom shines in its focus on conversational engagement and real-time communication with customers.

Experience targeted communication with Intercom’s automation and segmentation features. Create personalized messages for specific customer segments, driving engagement and satisfaction. You get a dashboard that makes creating, tracking, and organizing tickets easy. You can create an omnichannel CRM suite with a mix of productivity, collaboration, eCommerce, CRM, analytics, email marketing, social media, and other tools. Both app stores include many popular integrations, such as Salesforce, HubSpot, Mailchimp, and Zapier. Intercom allows visitors to search for and view articles from the messenger widget.

Intercom’s solution aims to streamline high-volume ticket influx and provide personalized, conversational support. It also includes extensive integrations with over 350 CRM, email, ticketing, and reporting tools. Intercom’s pricing structure offers different plans to cater to various customer support and engagement needs, accommodating users with different budgets. Another critical difference between Zendesk and Intercom is their approach to CRM. In addition to its service features, Zendesk offers a fully integrated CRM solution, Zendesk Sell, available for an additional cost, starting at $19/agent/month. It includes tools for lead management, sales forecasting, and workflow management and automation.

The Zendesk Marketplace offers over 1,500 no-code apps and integrations. You need a complete customer service platform that’s seamlessly integrated and AI-enhanced. And there’s still no way to know how much you’ll pay for them since the prices are only revealed after you go through a few sale demos with the Intercom team. Zendesk is a ticketing system before intercom vs zendesk anything else, and its ticketing functionality is overwhelming in the best possible way. Easily track your service team’s performance and unlock coaching opportunities with AI-powered insights. There is a conversation routing bot, an operator bot, a lead qualification bot, and an article-suggesting bot, among others.

Gain valuable insights with Intercom’s analytics and reporting capabilities. Track key metrics, measure campaign success, and optimize customer engagement strategies. Zendesk also offers a sales pipeline feature through its Zendesk Sell product. You can set up email sequences that specify how and when leads and contacts are engaged. With Zendesk Sell, you can also customize how deals move through your pipeline by setting pipeline stages that reflect your sales cycle.

Starting at $19 per user per month, it’s also on the cheaper end of the spectrum compared to high-end CRMs like ActiveCampaign and HubSpot. Triggers should prove especially useful for agents, allowing them to do things like automate notifications for actions like ticket assignments, ticket closing/reopening, or new ticket creation. Their template triggers are fairly limited with only seven options, but they do enable users to create new custom triggers, which can be a game-changer for agents with more complex workflows. Using this, agents can chat across teams within a ticket via email, Slack, or Zendesk’s ticketing system. This packs all resolution information into a single ticket, so there’s no extra searching or backtracking needed to bring a ticket through to resolution, even if it involves multiple agents.

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