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Top 11 Help Scout alternatives and competitors for 2024

A scalable support solution makes it easier for you to deliver an exceptional customer experience. Compare Help Scout alternatives to find the right fit.

Why you should choose a Help Scout alternative

Última atualização em January 22, 2024

Providing a great product can make a sale. But consistently delivering an exceptional customer experience can create a loyal customer base.

Look at Taylor Swift, for instance. Her music catalog is packed with sing-alongs, heart-wrenching ballads, and epic anthems. But it’s the immersive live experience she delivers to her loyal fan base night after night that packs stadiums.

Customer experience extends to all industries, from entertainment to customer service software. One vendor, Help Scout, provides customer service software for multichannel support. It features a shared inbox and standard ticketing system that allows agents to manage customer conversations. Its reporting and analytics enable teams to track basic metrics like ticket volume, response time, and resolution details. Help Scout's knowledge base software provides self-service options. It offers live chat tools for real-time support and 90+ apps and integrations.

However, the platform doesn’t have some of the tools and capabilities to keep up with scaling businesses or the level of customer service brands need to provide.

Help Scout doesn’t offer custom or real-time reporting, advanced knowledge management capabilities, a robust apps marketplace, or many integrated social channels. Most of its AI features are also in beta, meaning that there may be some inaccuracy as Help Scout works to improve quality. As a result of these limitations, some businesses that use Help Scout are forced to migrate to a more mature solution, which can increase your total cost of ownership.

Our guide to Help Scout competitors and alternatives compares the important details you need to know in order to pick the right customer experience software for your business. From features and pricing to capabilities and benefits, we’ll help you fill in that blank space in your research.

More in this guide:

Best Help Scout alternatives at a glance

Our comparison chart lists an overview of key features, starting prices, and free trial options for Help Scout alternatives.

Help Scout alternativeStarting priceFree trialKey features
Zendesk$19 per agent/month (billed annually)14 days
  • Unified omnichannel experience

  • 1,500+ integrations

  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

  • SLAs and OLAs

Freshdesk$0 per agent/month

(up to 10 agents)

21 days
  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

Intercom$74 per month (2 seats, billed annually)14 days
  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

KayakoContact Kayako14 days
  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

LiveAgent$9 per user/month (billed annually)7 or 30 days
  • Unified omnichannel experience

  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

HubSpot Service Hub$0 per month/td> Unavailable
  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

HelpDesk$29 per agent/month(billed annually)14 days
  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

ProProfs Help Desk$20 per user/month

(billed annually)

15 days
  • Unified omnichannel experience

  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

Front$19 per seat/month (billed annually)Unavailable
  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

Zoho Desk$14 per user/month (billed annually)15 days
  • Unified omnichannel experience

  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

Hiver$15 per user/month7 days
  • Custom reporting and analytics

  • Self-service

A deep dive into the top alternatives and competitors to Help Scout

Let’s take a deep dive into the top alternatives and competitors of Help Scout. Some software may have you singing “You Belong With Me,” while others might leave you thinking, I knew you were trouble.

1. Zendesk

zendesk chat screen

Zendesk offers a customer service solution built specifically for the customer experience. It’s designed to scale with businesses of any size—from startups and small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to enterprises—and it can scale to support new products, channels, segments, regions, and more.

“The way we could just create flows and automations was so much easier than it would have been through Freshdesk or Help Scout. I wanted to get the system up and running quickly, and Zendesk was the better tool for being able to make changes at speed.”

-Fabrice Dowling, global head of customer care at HeliosX.

By delivering a stellar product and a remarkable customer experience, Zendesk created a customer base of 160,000+ businesses (compared to Help Scout’s 12,000). With that many loyal customers, Zendesk just might be the T. Swift of CX software.


What Zendesk has that Help Scout doesn't:

  1. Unified omnichannel experience: Zendesk features an Agent Workspace. This intuitive interface enables agents to work seamlessly across channels and have access to the entire customer journey in a single view. It consolidates customer data, interactions, order history, ticket information, and customer context, so agents spend less time toggling between apps and more time delivering a personalized customer experience.

  2. Robust integrations: With 1,300+ apps in the Zendesk Marketplace, you can tailor your software to fit your business needs, adding to its existing functionality and capabilities.

  3. Customizable reporting and analytics tools: In addition to native, pre-built dashboards that allow you to crunch numbers from day one, Zendesk has the flexibility to point-and-click your way to custom dashboards, metrics, charts, and filters. No coding required.

  4. Self-service options: Zendesk offers 24/7 support through self-service options that help deflect tickets, answer FAQs, and keep workflows manageable. These include AI-powered chatbots, customer portals, help centers, and knowledge bases.

  5. Service level agreements (SLAs) and operational level agreements (OLAs): SLAs and OLAs define clear objectives and policies for your team to achieve with customers and internal business operations. Zendesk is one of the few solutions to offer OLAs.

Additionally, Zendesk is easy to set up and use. That means agents can jump right in and start using it immediately without spending time training. These benefits result in a fast time to value, so you can see a speedy return on your investment.

Check out our Zendesk vs. Help Scout page for a more detailed comparison.

Features:

  • Unified omnichannel experience

  • Reporting and analytics

  • SLA and OLA management

  • Self-service and knowledge base

  • Integrations

  • 360-degree customer view

  • Live chat and messaging

  • Automation and AI

  • Advanced ticketing system

  • Customizable workflows

Pricing:

  • Support Team: $19 per agent/month

  • Support Professional: $55 per agent/month

  • Support Enterprise: $115 per agent/month

    *Plans are billed annually.

Free trial:

14 days

2. Freshdesk

Freshdesk ticket window

Image credit

Freshworks offers customer service software called Freshdesk. With Freshdesk, support teams get a multichannel support tool that consolidates phone, email, live chat, and social media interactions. It has a ticket management system so agents can organize, track, and collaborate with other departments in one place.

Freshdesk hosts an apps marketplace, but reviews—like this one —describe low offerings. Its ticketing system has issues trying to handle requests from across many channels, ultimately slowing down the entire program. Additionally, its limited reporting features don't meet expectations and a lack of real-time reporting was specifically pointed out.

Features:

  • Automation

  • Collision detection

  • SLA management

  • Time tracking

  • Integrations

  • Basic reporting

Pricing:

  • Free: $0 per month (up to 10 agents)

  • Growth: $15 per agent/month

  • Pro: $49 per agent/month

  • Enterprise: $79 per agent/month

    *Plans are billed annually.

Free trial:

21 days

3. Intercom

Intercom ticket window

Image credit

Intercom’s software has a broad set of use cases, including sales, marketing, customer service, and onboarding. Like Help Scout, Intercom uses a shared inbox rather than an agent workspace, which includes certain limitations. For example, Intercom doesn’t offer custom reporting, problem-incident management workflows, or routing by agent skill, or conversation priority.

It offers 350+ integrations for customer relationship management (CRM) platforms, email, reporting, social media, and ticketing tools—more than three times the amount of Help Scout. However, there is no visibility to customer feedback on its app marketplace, which makes it challenging to prove their reliability.

Intercom provides live chat and continuous messaging options with the Intercom Messenger add-on. Users can link its ticketing system, Intercom Messenger, allowing agents to manage and respond to requests through the integration. Intercom customers must log in to Intercom Messenger to connect to agents, adding an extra step to get support.

Features:

  • Intercom Messenger

  • Shared inbox

  • Ticketing

  • Help Center

  • Basic chatbots and automations

  • Analytics and reporting

Pricing:

  • Starter: $74 per month (includes 2 seats)

  • Pro: Contact Intercom

  • Premium: Contact Intercom

    *Plans are billed annually.

Free trial:

14 days

4. Kayako

Kayako ticket window

Image credit

Kayako’s help desk software features shared inboxes so teams can manage conversations. Kayako SingleView consolidates customer interactions into a visual timeline view, allowing users to see customer order and shipping history, website visits, self-service activity, and emails. The inboxes are customizable, allowing users to personalize the interface view and tags.

Users can also configure assigned conversations to automatically route the request to the appropriate agent. Kayako includes live chat software with its help desk, allowing agents to communicate with customers in real time. Paired with its customizable self-service knowledge base, Kayako can provide 24/7 support.

However, some Kayako customers experience challenges in terms of growth. One review mentions Kayako having a basic help desk with features that couldn’t keep up with their needs. They also mentioned a lack of product innovation.

Features:

  • Single sign-on (SSO) security

  • Help center and knowledge base

  • Shared inbox

  • Customizable email templates

  • SLA reporting

  • Agent collision prevention

Pricing:

  • Kayako Cloud: Contact Kayako

  • Classic On-Prem: Contact Kayako

Free trial:

Unavailable

5. LiveAgent

LiveAgent ticket window

Image credit

LiveAgent provides a customer support platform with call center software and a ticket management system. LiveAgent’s multichannel interface consolidates voice, chat, social media, SMS, and email for agents to manage in one place. They offer automation features, like interactive voice response (IVR) and smart routing, sending requests to the right place based on predefined rules.

LiveAgent’s live chat service enables real-time communication. It monitors visitor activity on a business’s website, automating proactive chat messages in relevant situations. An available live agent will get looped in once the customer responds.

Features:

  • Ticket routing

  • Live chat software

  • Self-service portal and knowledge base

  • API (application programming interface)

  • Reporting and analytics

  • Automation

Pricing:

  • Small business: $9 per agent/month

  • Medium business: $29 per agent/month

  • Large business: $49 per agent/month

  • Enterprise: $69 per agent/month

    *Plans are billed annually.

Free trial:

7 or 30 days

6. HubSpot Service Hub

HelpSpot Service Hub ticket window

Image credit

HubSpot Service Hub offers a customer service platform with a shared inbox that provides information like customer history, previous interactions, ticket details, and personal data. Its reporting dashboard provides standard customer service metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs).

HubSpot's shared inbox can be hard to scale for a number of reasons. Like other shared inbox solutions, agent collision is a limitation. Reporting capabilities are also limited, making it difficult for users to get insights and filter reports. There are also examples of HubSpot Service Hub slowing down the agent when they're trying to provide support and lowering business performance.

Features:

  • Shared inbox

  • Knowledge base

  • Customer portal

  • Omnichannel messaging

  • Reporting dashboards

  • VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) calling

Pricing:

  • $0 per month (limited features)

  • Starter: $45 per month

  • Professional: $450 per month

  • Enterprise: $1,200 per month

    *Plans are billed annually

Free trial:

Unavailable

7. HelpDesk

HelpSpot Service Hub ticket window

Image credit

HelpDesk’s shared inbox helps teams keep ticket requests organized and enables collaboration on issues. It includes channels like email, contact forms, social media, live chats, and messaging. HelpDesk allows users to create custom fields and email templates that match the look and feel of your brand.

HelpDesk offers visual reporting and analytics dashboards with five different options. It also offers weekly summary reports with custom time ranges that overview team achievements. However, the reporting dashboard can be confusing and difficult to navigate and the interface “could be more interactive and user-friendly.”

Features:

  • Shared inbox

  • Automations

  • AI text enhancements

  • Team management tools

  • Private notes

  • Customized prewritten responses

  • Real-time progress reporting

Pricing:

  • Team: $29 per agent/month

  • Enterprise: Contact HelpDesk

    *Plan is billed annually.

Free trial:

Unavailable

8. ProProfs Help Desk

ProProfs Help Desk ticket window

Image credit

ProProfs Help Desk provides multichannel support with its shared inbox. The software features automated routing capabilities, like agent tagging, ticket assignments, and round-robin routing. It also features alerts and notifications to help keep agents on top of high-priority requests.

ProProfs offers customizable options, templates for email notifications, and prewritten responses for faster replies. Its reporting and analytics tools let management evaluate agent performance, ticket volume, and customer satisfaction.

Features:

  • Customer portal

  • Reporting and analytics

  • Ticketing system

  • Shared inbox

  • Multichannel support

Pricing:

  • Annual plan: $20 per user/month

    *Plan is billed annually.

Free trial:

15 days

9. Front

Front ticket window

Image credit

Front’s software provides use cases for customer service, operations, sales, customer success. Its centralized inbox consolidates customer inquiries from across the channels Front supports—like email, chat, and social media. Multiple agents can view, assign, tag, and respond to customer queries.

Front has automation features that enable agents to automate tasks, like triggered emailed responses to certain actions. Front also integrates with some third-party apps but does not have an app marketplace. Most integrations must go through Zapier. Additionally, Front doesn’t currently offer a knowledge base feature, but it has plans to add it.

Features:

  • Shared inbox

  • Team collaboration

  • Customer data

  • Omnichannel

  • Reporting and analytics

  • Automated workflows

  • Live chat

  • Integrations

Pricing:

  • Starter: $19 per seat/month

  • Growth: $59 per seat/month

  • Scale: $99 per seat/month

  • Premier: $229 per seat/month

    *Plans are billed annually.

Free trial:

Unavailable

10. Zoho Desk

Zoho Desk free trial

Image credit

Zoho Desk is part of the Zoho suite of tools available on its platform. It aims to help streamline workflows with tools and automated processes. Zoho Desk provides an email management and ticketing system for agents to handle requests. However, according to analysis by the Zendesk product team, its user experience (UI) can be inconsistent between channels, creating a disjointed experience.

Additionally, Zoho Desk includes self-service tools, SLAs, customer feedback widgets, ticket management, and up to 50 custom reports. The platform also allows users to gather customer data from tickets, interactions, and behaviors to improve support processes.

Features:

  • Self-service resources

  • Omnichannel agent workspace

  • Reporting and analytics

  • Mobile optimization

  • Ticket collaboration

  • Ticketing system

  • Routing

Pricing:

  • Standard: $14 per user/month

  • Professional: $23 per user/month

  • Enterprise: $40 per user/month

    *Plans are billed annually.

Free trial:

15 days

11. Hiver

Hiver homepage

Image credit

Hiver’s customer service help desk is designed to pair with Google Workspace. That means Hiver adds functionality and capabilities to the Google programs that your business already uses. Features include shared inboxes, reporting and analytics tools, email templates, shared drafts, and SLAs.

Hiver focuses on internal and external collaboration and offers tools to increase efficiency. Features like collision alerts help teams avoid duplicating work by ensuring only one agent can change a request at one time.

Features:

  • Customer satisfaction (CSAT) surveys

  • Analytics and reporting

  • Automated tasks

  • Workload and client distribution

  • Simple integrations

  • Shared inboxes

  • Collision alerts

  • Activity timelines

  • SLA and business hours

Pricing:

  • Lite: $15 per user/month

  • Pro: $39 per user/month

  • Elite: $59 per user/month

    *Plans are billed annually.

Free trial:

7 days

Frequently asked questions

We’re not out of the woods yet. Here are a few frequently asked questions to help you further your decision process.

How to choose the best alternative to Help Scout

Now that you’ve been introduced to the best Help Scout alternatives, one thing is clear: Zendesk has a reputation of helping businesses crush the customer experience. Unlike Help Scout, Zendesk scales alongside your business and customer base. With features like advanced reporting, a robust apps marketplace, generative AI, and an agent workspace that lets you connect with customers across every channel, our solution is designed for growth. And while Help Scout has a customer base of approximately 12,000, Zendesk helps 160,000+ businesses deliver great CX, solidifying our status as a leader in the market.

Before you make a swift decision, check out the Zendesk 14-day free trial and experience all our features, risk-free. Odds are, you’ll finish the free trial fearlessly singing, “And I don't know how it gets better than this."

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