An essential part of running any business is fielding customer inquiries. If you’re not on hand to answer your customers’ questions and solve their problems, then your business is in trouble. The question is, how is your business meant to handle these support requests, when they might also be busy with other tasks.
The answer is a robust help desk software to support your high-performing customer service team. Without the proper technology in place, companies will struggle to manage a high volume of customer inquiries and fail to provide a satisfying customer experience.
93% of customer support teams say that customer expectations are higher than ever, which means your business can’t afford to do without help desk software. Companies that invest now will see a rise in customer satisfaction, customer loyalty and customer retention.
What is help desk software?
Help desk software is a customer service tool that receives, tracks, and replies to requests from customers, enabling businesses to engage in ticket management. The system turns the request into a trackable ticket that is managed by your customer service representatives, storing data about the request such as the customer, time submitted, and the agent who is handling the request.
The best help desk software is critically important because it tells you the status of a customer ticket: Open, Pending or Closed. This is vitally useful for support teams who need to know whether a customer is being taken care of and keep their operations running efficiently.
So now you know what help desk software is and are aware of the top help desk software features, let’s take a look at some of the best help desk tools on the market today.
The top 10 best help desk software for 2023
The first tool on our list is our very own help desk solution Keeping, making it one of the best help desk software tools. With Keeping, you can drastically improve the level of customer service you are able to offer using its unique features, making it one of the best help desk software on the market.
Keeping is a tool that integrates with your existing Gmail account to provide its service directly through Gmail. This means that new Keeping users don’t have to learn a different tool to benefit from Keeping’s features.
Keeping makes it simple for a team of customer service agents to work collaboratively together through email. It turns every new customer email into a trackable ticket, with the ability to assign the ticket to the appropriate agent. Customer support interactions become much more streamlined, as agents know what is expected of them.
On the customer-side of things, emails from Keeping just look like regular emails. Conversations with customers therefore feel more natural, even though behind the scenes Keeping is tracking the performance of your team.
To keep things moving, Keeping offers special features like automations to route tickets to the right department, and canned responses that help you send automated replies to common queries.
Companies that migrate to Keeping will be amazed at how easy it is to keep track of customer queries and blaze through the ticket queue. Your agents will appreciate the streamlined user experience and intuitive workflows of Keeping’s interface.
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Kustomer is a customer service CRM platform that offers omnichannel help desk software, AI-powered automations, and more. Customers can reach out to your business on any channel and it will be presented as a unified view to your agents. Historical customer data allows your agents to provide better experiences for your customers through an understanding of how customers have previously engaged with your business.
If you’re interested in automations to provide self-service to your customers, Kustomer offers code-free chatbots that can deliver personalized experiences to your customers. Chatbots can link customers to your business’s FAQs as well as accessing your CRM.
Kustomer presents your customers in a timeline view, so agents can see orders, reviews, and appointments, giving them extra context when dealing with customers. Due to Kustomer’s extensive integrations, agents can use the timeline view to access billing status and order number, to keep tabs on every single customer.
3. Help Scout
Help Scout is a well-known help desk software that is aimed at teams who want to improve customer satisfaction among their user base. You can manage customer conversations with Help Scout’s shared inbox, enabling your team members to collaborate on support tickets seamlessly. The interface of Help Scout is similar to an email inbox so agents find it easy to use.
Help Scout comes with a knowledge base tool called Docs that enables you to set up a self service portal for your customers who don’t need to reach out to an agent. It comes with in-built reporting features that tell you what articles your customers most search for.
Another feature of Help Scout is its live chat functionality which allows your agents to communicate with your customers on your website or app in real-time. Their live chat tool is called Beacon, which you can install on your site easily, and set opening hours for your business so customers are directed to other channels when your team is unavailable.
ProProfs offers a large suite of products that includes their very own help desk system for customer support. The advantage of ProProfs is you can integrate with their other software to provide superior customer experiences. At its most basic, ProProfs is a shared inbox tool that enables you to unify your customer support channels in one place. All of your customer-facing inboxes can be routed to the same place so you can keep track of every single query.
ProProfs has invested heavily in automation so you can save time with your help desk. Round-Robin or advanced ticket assignment means you can spread your support tickets evenly throughout your customer service team. Canned responses mean you can reply to commonly-asked queries in an instant.
Reports help you unlock key customer service metrics and keep track of your agents’ performance. You can even capture customer feedback with CSAT or NPS, or create your own custom surveys. ProProfs knowledge base, survey maker and live chat are built in so you can provide an all-round customer experience.
Kayako is popular help desk software along with a fully customizable knowledge base that helps you provide self-service experiences for your customers. Kayako integrates live chat, email and social, for a unified view into every customer. You can stay on top of the entire customer journey with full context instantly available.
Kayako is aimed at SMBs who are looking for a cloud-hosted help desk. It’s suitable for smaller teams who want to coordinate on customer service, with features such as collision detection which tells you when agents are already working on a ticket. Internal notes add extra information to a ticket and help agents collaborate behind-the-scenes.
The popularity of live chat means that Kayako is a good choice if businesses want to be available to help customers in real-time. Kayako’s live chat software integrates either with your website or app and means you can be available to your customers during their shopping experience.
HappyFox help desk software and web-based support ticket system helps businesses take their customer service to the next level. It comes with a self service portal such as knowledge base capabilities and a community support forum. Email, phone, chat and web support requests are all converted into tickets within the same system so nothing ever falls through the cracks again.
Ticket management is made much easier when you can classify your tickets into predefined categories that make handling similar cases a breeze. Agents can collaborate with each other or subject matter experts with private notes which are kept confidential from the customer. Complex issues can be broken down into subtickets, as well as being cloned, related, merged, or split.
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Customers can help themselves with the online knowledge base or you can even create an internal knowledge base for your agents. Knowledge base articles can be translated so your business can cater to a global audience. A contact portal enables customers to track their tickets, while AI-powered chatbots leverage answers from your knowledge base.
It’s unlikely that you’ve never heard of Zendesk if you work in the customer service industry. According to data, Zendesk has the largest market share of help desks at 28.99%. But is Zendesk all it’s cracked up to be?
The answer is yes, Zendesk is one of the best help desk tools out there if you’re after a powerful system that can support a rapidly growing team. With Zendesk, you can rest assured that they will be around for the long-haul and are invested in continually developing their software.
Zendesk is a help desk ticketing system that connects you with customers across multiple channels. Zendesk enables you to provide personalized experiences for customers and customize the agent workspace. Sunshine enables you to bring together your entire customer data for full context and provides developers and admins with the right tools to create the most positive customer experiences.
It comes with an integrated help center and community forum so customers can answer their own questions. AI and bots give customers instant answers and relieve the burden on your support team.
8. Zoho Desk
Zoho Desk is another online customer service help desk solution that simplifies customer service and improves agent productivity. It meets the needs of organizations of all sizes so you don’t need to be an enterprise business to benefit from Zoho Desk’s high-performance features. Zoho Desk’s mobile app enables you to close tickets while on the move, and help you quickly understand the health of your customers.
Zoho Desk’s omnichannel support ticketing system allows businesses to streamline their customer tickets and prevents them from having to log into multiple platforms. Tickets can be prioritized and tracked, while routine tasks can be automated to save time for your agents. Assignment rules can send a ticket to the right agent or department automatically.
Zoho Desk has invested heavily in self-service including knowledge base, community forum, and AI-powered chatbot called Zia. It’s also possible to raise a support ticket directly within your app so customers don’t have to switch context to get help.
Freshdesk is also a popular help desk solution that connects your agents with your customers wherever they are. Agents have more meaningful conversations with customers as they have more context and automation to proactively understand customer needs. Agents can work cooperatively and provide much faster responses to customers by prioritizing and categorizing tickets effectively.
Bots and AI enable you to schedule in routine tasks without the intervention of agents, while the system can learn from past ticket resolutions to help resolve current tickets. Teammates can discuss solutions inside tickets without the customer being any the wiser.
Tickets can be filtered according to specific properties so agents are able to understand which are the most important tickets that need attention. Collision detection tells you when an agent is already working on a ticket, while custom ticket views let you decide which tickets you want to see first.
Gladly is a customer service help desk solution that takes a different approach to helping customers, treating them as people rather than tickets. Gladly emphasizes customer relationships, integrating every channel you can think of from email and phone to live chat and social media.
Gladly also offers self-service capabilities so you can grow a knowledge base with your team. Gladly presents customer interactions as a conversation timeline so agents always have access to the context of every customer experience.
One of the most interesting features about Gladly is its ability to accept payments through messaging channels, providing you with the opportunity to increase revenue through customer service. Workforce management helps you make decisions about cross-channel staffing so your team is never overwhelmed.
Choosing the best help desk software is no easy task, as you’ll want to ensure that the solution works well with your team and remains useful for the foreseeable future. You’ll want a solution that can grow with your team while remaining in budget for the team being. That’s why you’ll want to consider Keeping, which is extremely cost-effective while being suitable for both small and large teams.
Any one of the tools on this list can help you provide a superior experience for your customers and potentially become the solution that is the right help desk software. Businesses who prioritize customer service are well-placed to grow and experience higher profits than businesses that neglect their customers. If you’re using a haphazard system to manage customer requests, customers will be able to tell and they’ll start thinking about taking their business elsewhere.
As well as helping you keep track of your customer tickets, the best help desk software usually enables you to report back on your team’s performance and often provides specialized functions to enable you to manage your workload.