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Help Is On the Way: Live Chat Vs. Email Help Desk Software

By Marc Prosser, Last Modified
Feb 22, 2017
> Technology

If you are looking for a solution to better manage your business’ customer support tasks, then help desk software is what you need.

Help desk software basically simplifies and automates the customer complaint/issue resolution process in an organized and efficient way, making it much easier to establish a quick and helpful customer support reputation. The tricky thing is that different help desk solutions excel at different things, making it nearly impossible to identify a one-size-fits-all solution.

That’s why we have broken down 4 main options below, based on what they excel at, to help you better discern which the best fit for your business is.

SupportBee Help desk software

1. SupportBee - So Easy Your Grandparents Could Use It

When you think of SupportBee help desk software, think simple. Of all the help desk solutions we tested by Fit Small Business, SupportBee was the clear winner when it comes to quick setup time and ease-of-use. The interface is actually a lot like the Gmail interface, which makes it a great solution for those who are not as technologically savvy. Instead of spending hours figuring out a complicated interface, you can be up and running in no-time. In fact, responding to customer complaints/problems in SupportBee is basically like sending an email to a friend/customer, which is something even people with little tech experience can generally figure out.

SupportBee is great for businesses that just need a lightweight and basic help desk solution on the cheap. You do not have multi-channel support and cannot respond to tickets via social media, you just have the email option. There are no self-help forums you can set up, no live chat, advanced reporting, or other more advanced features. But, for a small business that just needs a good solution for responding to less than 500 emails/month, SupportBee could be perfect.

Related Article: Like PB&J: Customer Service as a Marketing Strategy

HappyFox Help Desk Software

2. HappyFox - It Is All About the Email

Although it is possible to get social media monitoring, live chat, and phone support options, HappyFox is really geared towards businesses that receive a lot of customer support emails. In fact, most of HappyFox’s main features, which are extensive and distinctive for the price range, are geared towards email ticketing.

You can clone, split, merge, link, and forward email tickets, making it much easier to handle a large volume of tickets. For example, if you have 4 customer tickets that are all dealing with the same problem, you can link them together so that your customer service rep can deal with them all at once, which leads to a much quicker ticket turnaround time on average.

If your business handles a lot of email from customers needing assistance, then HappyFox could be a good fit. This is especially true if you have more than 3 customer service agents, because other helpdesk solutions cap their basic plan agent limit at 3(to force you to a higher-cost plan), whereas HappyFox allows unlimited agents on its basic Young plan. Intrigued, read the complete review of HappyFox.

Kayako Help Desk

3. Kayako - Chatting/Calling it Up Like a Boss

Kayako provides a basic email ticket management plan, but it is more expensive and has fewer features than competitors like FreshDesk. However, unlike many helpdesk solutions that focus on email ticket management and make live-chat and phone support more of an afterthought, Kayako has great live-chat and phone integration features.

Before you begin chatting with a customer, Kayako will tell you what region they are from and what pages they have browsed, giving you a better idea of how to help. While you are chatting, you can see not only previous chat history, but also phone and offline message history as well, giving you all the tools you need to make sure you do not give the customer duplicate information. You can also transfer any chat to another agent and create tickets directly from chat conversations.

Kayako also has great phone support integrations, and connects with any business VoIP provider that is SIP-compatible (which most are). You can embed a click-to-call button on your website, so your customer can request an immediate call-back. Also, when talking with the customer, similar to live-chat, Kayako pulls up all the customer’s message history from multiple channels, so you can know exactly where in the help process they are and what solutions have already been tried.

If your business has been looking for a live-chat or phone support help desk solution, then Kayako is one of the better options out there in the industry to handle your needs.

Related Article: Tips to Improve Customer Service on Your E-commerce Site

Deskero Help Desk Software

4. Deskero - Keeping it real on Facebook, Twitter, and other Social Media

If your business has a lot of presence in the social media space, then Deskero has your help desk needs covered.

You can link unlimited Facebook accounts to Deskero, which will then convert messages, comments, and wall posts seamlessly to Deskero customer support tickets. When you respond, your response automatically correlates with the original ticket (i.e. responses to comments are posted as comments, wall posts as wall posts).

The Twitter features are basically the same. You can even search for Twitter posts that mention your business but were not posted to your handle, and convert them into tickets. One exciting thing is that Deskero has a YouTube integration which is scheduled to be released in the next month or two, which is the first of its kind in the industry. This will allow you to turn any YouTube comments on your videos to Deskero tickets.

If your business does a lot of marketing on social media, or interacts with clients/customers primarily on social media, then Deskero will give you the best tools to provide customer support via social media channels. If you post a lot of demo videos/product videos on YouTube, the new release of the YouTube integration is right down your alley. However, if you are primarily going to be doing email or phone support, then Deskero is not for you.


Marc Prosser
Marc Prosser
See Marc Prosser's Profile
Marc Prosser is the publisher of small business “how to” website, Fit Small Business. Previously, Marc was the first employee and Chief Marketing Officer of a company that went public on the NYSE.
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