Freshdesk Review

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Freshdesk is a strong help desk solution–it intuitively converts your customer emails into tickets so your team can easily manage and prioritize them. Not only does this tool organize queries, but it also automates workflows and tasks, saving your team valuable time. Freshdesk is known for its outstanding value, scalability, and advanced communication and analytics features. Its sleek design enhances the experience for customers and support agents alike by simplifying and routing correspondences automatically.

Compare Freshdesk to its Closest Competitors

Freshdesk is a hybrid help desk solution combined with call center functionality. As such, it competes with a wide range of brands in different categories. 

If most of the service you provide is over the phone, Nextiva is our favorite call center solution and our top pick for most businesses. It’s affordable, easy to implement, straightforward to learn, and comes packed with all the call handling, routing, outbound dialing, and customer service tools you need. 

Don’t need advanced call center features? Help desk software, like Freshdesk (our top pick), Zendesk, or HubSpot may be a better choice.

Zendesk is a strong choice for smaller teams that are just getting started–HubSpot offers the best free omnichannel support solution we’ve seen. 

Freshdesk: The Good and The Bad

The Good:

Highly Customizable Interfaces: Freshdesk’s FreshThemes feature lets users customize their dashboard, making it a breeze to keep it looking both sharp and on-brand. With a modern, clean interface and prebuilt themes, Freshdesk starts off easy for beginners. Using FreshThemes is also straightforward. You choose a template and then drag and drop the elements you need most, such as ticket lists or analytics charts. This customization does more than make your dashboard look good, it also streamlines your work by putting everything you need just one click away.

Example of coding in the Freshdesk customize portal page

Canned Forms: A canned form is a pre-set template used in customer support interactions for quick information gathering from customers, helping to solve their issues more efficiently by ensuring all necessary details are provided upfront.

What sets Freshdesk apart in this arena is its smooth integration of these forms into the ticketing workflow. Once a canned form is saved, it’s readily available within the reply editor on the ticket details page, making it easy for agents to insert the information with just a few clicks.

Freshdesk customized form fields

Customized Reports: Freshdesk offers custom analytics on the Pro and Enterprise plans to help administrators extract deeper insights from their customer support data by focusing on what matters to their specific organizations. Unlike traditional reporting tools that offer limited metrics and fields, Freshdesk’s custom reporting feature allows users to create reports tailored to their unique business needs. Users can:

  • Choose specific metrics to follow
  • Apply relevant filters to organize data
  • Share metrics teamwide

Freshdesk’s widget library also provides a wealth of options for data visualization, from pre-built templates to customizable widgets—which can be tailored to showcase metrics across various modules such as tickets, timesheets, and surveys.

Lastly, the drag-and-drop functionality makes it easy to arrange widgets and resize them to fit the desired layout, ensuring that users can effortlessly design reports that suit their preferences.

Freshdesk analytics

Smart AI-Powered Ticketing: Freshdesk’s AI-powered assistant, aka Freddy AI, provides intelligent suggestions to agents as they work on tickets, helping them navigate the platform and find solutions faster.

One of the best parts of this feature is its agent collision detection, which prevents multiple agents from working on the same ticket by mistake. Plus, SLA management lets you set deadlines for responding to and resolving tickets based on things like business hours and other categories, all powered by AI-connected technology.

Freshdesk customer question with Freddy AI suggestions

Strong Collaboration Capabilities: Freshdesk presents a suite of collaboration features meticulously designed to streamline teamwork and expedite issue resolution.

  • In-ticket discussions: By involving stakeholders from diverse teams, these discussions maintain visibility and context, leading to speedier resolutions.
  • Shared ownership of tickets: Allowing teams to address issues concurrently fosters transparency and ensures prompt responses to customer queries.
  • Parent-child ticketing system: By dividing tasks and promoting accountability among internal teams, this system accelerates issue resolution.
  • Integration capabilities: With ways to unify support and field teams, these capabilities facilitate a better overall customer service experience for agents and customers. 
Freshdesk ticketing and issue tracker

Top-Tier Routing: Routing technology directs customer inquiries to the appropriate agents or departments, enhancing efficiency and customer satisfaction. Freshdesk has dozens of routing-related options and features, including IVR, automation rules, dynamic call routing, custom call flows, omnichannel ticket assignments, auto ticket distribution, chat routing, and more. The routing options you’ll get depend on the products you purchase. 

Workflow Automations: Freshdesk is equipped with the tools to automate routine tasks and allow customer service agents to focus on more complex issues.

Here’s a list of commonly automated tasks in Freshdesk:

  • Ticket assignment
  • Ticket prioritization
  • Status updates
  • Follow-ups
  • Customer notifications
  • SLA policies
  • Reports and analytics
  • Approval processes
  • Customer onboarding
  • Ticket escalation
  • Email automation

The Workflow Automator identifies specific events like ticket creations and ticket updates, then performs specified actions based on these events. All you have to do is create a set of rules and triggers to let the program know exactly what you want it to do. In addition to internal automation, there are over 1,000 programs that directly integrate with Freshdesk. This allows you to unify your accounts and make sure that all of your data is synced.

The most popular integrations include WhatsApp, Slack, Shopify, Salesforce, Microsoft Teams, and Mailchimp. Freshdesk’s app store has a pleasant design and a helpful search bar with category sections and filtering options, making it easy to find the brands you want to connect to your help desk tool. If you want to build your own app integration, the Freshworks Neo Platform offers a customizable enterprise solution.

Supported Communication Channels: Freshdesk covers just about every communication channel to make it easier for customers and businesses to stay in communication. For example, a virtual call center may connect with customers via phone at first but switch to email support outside of business hours. This kind of service is essential for elevating the overall contact center experience.

You’ll be able to leverage email, phone, chat, forms, a help widget, social media, and a self-service portal for true omnichannel customer service. It gives you access to conversations and resources from multiple channels in a single screen, reducing the agent’s task-switching time between different tools. It also allows supervisors to track real-time performance for a better management experience.

A Free Plan You Can Actually Use: Freshdesk’s free plan offers unlimited agents, contacts, and tickets. It’s an excellent way for small businesses to get started without burning their budget.

The Bad:

Steep Learning Curve: Freshdesk boasts a rich array of features, which can initially overwhelm those who are just getting started with a help desk tool. There are also a ton of different products and services to choose from, making everything even more complicated. To make things easier, we recommend avoiding custom themes and analytic display builds until you’ve gotten familiar with the program.

Lag with Certain Integrations: Freshdesk states its commitment to providing a wide range of integrations, yet some users have expressed a desire for more seamless connections with specific third-party tools. Slow data syncing seems to be the main issue. 

Costly at Scale: Although Freshdesk offers a free plan, scaling up can become costly. Some businesses find the jump in pricing between tiers a bit steep, especially small to medium-sized enterprises with tight budgets.

Freshdesk Plans and Pricing

Freshdesk is well-known for offering a free plan, so upgrading to other tiers depends on the bells and whistles you want for your business. 

The Free Plan

The Freshdesk Free plan is an ideal launchpad for startups and small teams. Here’s what you can expect from this tier:

  • Cost-free efficiency: Equip up to 10 agents with a comprehensive ticketing system at no cost, maximizing value for emerging businesses.
  • Streamlined ticketing: Handle email and social media interactions effortlessly from a single dashboard, ensuring a cohesive customer support experience.
  • Insightful analytics: Leverage ticket trends and dispatch reports for a clear view of customer inquiries and team dynamics.
  • Empower customers: A self-service knowledge base reduces inbound queries, allowing customers to find their own answers quickly.
  • Data compliance and speed: Choose your data center location to optimize performance and adhere to regional data regulations.
  • Enhanced collaboration: Promote team efficiency with built-in collaboration tools, supported by 24/7 email assistance.

Despite how the free plan lacks automation and customization options, it includes plenty of features to get you started and organize your customer service operations.

Growth Plan: Starting at $15 per Month per User

The Freshdesk Growth plan includes all the features of the Free plan, plus:

  • Automation
  • Collision detection
  • Over 1,000 marketplace apps
  • In-depth helpdesk report
  • SLA management & business hours
  • Custom email server
  • Custom ticket views
  • Custom ticket fields & status
  • Custom SSL
  • Time tracking for agents
  • 24-hour phone support on weekdays

The Growth plan will provide the most value to up-and-coming businesses seeking to enhance their customer support capabilities with advanced automation, customization options, and extended support coverage.

Pro Plan: Starting at $49 per Month per User

The Pro plan suits larger businesses or those with complex customer support needs. It builds upon the Growth plan by adding:

  • Management of multiple products
  • Up to 5,000 collaborators
  • Round-robin routing
  • Custom roles, objects, reports, metrics, apps, and dashboards
  • Segmented customer support
  • Customer journey tracking
  • Canned forms
  • Version management in the knowledge base, which can also be multilingual
  • Community forums
  • Extended API limits
  • CSAT surveys & reports
  • Multiple SLA policies & hours
  • SLA reminders & escalation
  • Report sharing

Companies that benefit the most from the Pro plan are those that manage multiple products and services, require detailed customer segmentation and personalized support paths, or need advanced reporting and analytics to drive decision-making.

Enterprise Plan: Starting at $79 per Month per User

As far as enterprise-level pricing goes, Freshdesk’s Enterprise plan is relatively affordable, especially considering the depth of its offerings. This plan includes everything in the Pro plan, plus:

  • Unlimited products
  • Sandbox
  • Agent shift management across time zones
  • Audit log
  • Skill-based routing
  • Knowledge base approval workflow
  • Flexible knowledge base hierarchy
  • IP range restriction

This plan is all about customization and scaling, so it’s best-suited for organizations focused on delivering exceptional, tailored support experiences. If customer service is the single most important element of your business—and you value unparalleled control over your operations—then this plan may be for you.

How We Reviewed Freshdesk

When looking into Freshdesk, we had to take somewhat of a unique approach because it offers both help desk and call center features. 

We looked closely at:

Ease of use: We simulated the user experiences by contacting customer support, walked through Freshdesk’s interface, and assessed its intuitiveness for various support tasks.

Channel centralization: From email to social media, we researched and checked the availability of over 10 channels for organizing and responding to customer inquiries.

Routing options: To determine how Freshdesk manages incoming support requests, we examined its ticketing options, using both automation and specific routing rules.

Knowledge base tools: We reviewed Freshdesk’s agent training guides, public knowledge base, and supplemental training videos.

Automation: We evaluated the automation capabilities within the platform, including workflows and rule-based actions for managing various support processes.

Analytics and insights: We watched detailed walkthroughs of case studies and demos to analyze the creation and review of both premade and custom analytics charts. 

Integrations: We browsed Freshdesk’s extensive collection of API integrations and read customer reviews rating the effectiveness of the most commonly used ones.

Customer service: By trying to contact the company through phone, chat, email, and contact form, we confirmed availability, response time, and support quality.

Pricing: We compared Freshdesk’s pricing to its closest competitors, considering the features offered in each plan.

Check out our favorite call center solutions or help desk platforms to learn more about how we review the different types of software and our top picks. 

Freshdesk FAQs

What are the benefits of Freshdesk?

Freshdesk offers a complete customer support platform through omnichannel integration, advanced ticketing, automated tasks, customizable workflows, and comprehensive reporting.

What integrations does Freshdesk offer?

Freshdesk offers over 1,000 direct integrations with popular apps like WhatsApp, Slack, Shopify, Salesforce, Microsoft Teams, and Mailchimp. It also offers customizable enterprise solutions through the Freshworks Neo Platform.

Are there any disadvantages of Freshdesk?

The main complaint from Freshdesk users is that there are occasional speed and loading issues that slow down operations. Some subscribers need to refresh tickets often, which can interrupt some workflows.

To help minimize tech issues, make sure that both your hardware and software are updated. You can also try using a different browser if you experience speed issues with Freshdesk.

How many businesses use Freshdesk?

Freshdesk is a widely used customer service platform, with over 12,000 companies actively using it as of 2024. The platform’s popularity spans businesses of all sizes and sectors globally, highlighting its versatility.

The companies utilizing Freshdesk are most frequently found in the United States and within the IT sector. However, several types of businesses use Freshdesk, ranging from universities to medical laboratories.

Can I use Freshdesk for free?

Yes, Freshdesk offers a free plan designed for small teams and new businesses that are just starting out with customer support. It includes basic features such as:

  • Integrated ticketing across email and social
  • Ticket dispatching
  • Knowledge base
  • Ticket trend reports
  • Out-of-the-box analytics
  • Optional your data center location
  • Team collaboration
  • 24/7 email support

While it lacks more advanced features such as advanced customization or phone support, it’s an excellent value for those with smaller support needs.

Which is better, Zendesk or Freshdesk?

Choosing between Zendesk and Freshdesk depends on your unique needs. 

Zendesk offers a robust platform with extensive customization options, advanced analytics, and a comprehensive set of features suitable for large enterprises and businesses with complex customer support requirements.

Ultimately, it’s beloved for its powerful ticketing system, live chat capabilities, and many integrations.

Freshdesk, on the other hand, is often praised for its user-friendly interface, affordability, and effectiveness for small to medium-sized businesses. It provides essential support tools such as ticketing, a knowledge base, and automation features that are easy to set up and use.

Altogether, Freshdesk might offer more upfront value because of its free plan. Zendesk has no such offering, with plans starting at $55 a month.

If possible, give both platforms a try and assess them based on their features rather than solely considering the cost. You may find that one platform’s specific features better align with your business needs, making it the superior choice for you.

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