Zendesk vs Salesforce

Help desk tools such as Zendesk and Salesforce can help you provide solid and reliable customer support, but different products do come with different benefits and weaknesses. In the article below, we will see the features as well as the pros and cons of Zendesk vs Salesforce. By understanding their differences, you will be able to determine which one is the most suitable for your business.

Zendesk Overview
Zendesk has become one of the most popular help desk solutions in the market. Zendesk is essentially a suite of support apps that can help your customer service department maintain customer retention and build lead sources.

It has a modular design; the support, chat, call center, and knowledge base sections are all separate modules which you can upgrade individually as needed. The basic version already includes the chat, call center, and knowledge base modules, so you can get started right away.In addition to the knowledge base, it also allows you to create an online community and customer portal. The higher versions of Zendesk have even more advanced capabilities, including answering bots, reports, and analytics.

Zendesk puts all customer interactions in a dynamic interface that is seamless and efficient. It is very user-friendly. You can take in customer queries from any channel via web widgets, pre-defined ticket responses, and customer search history, so that you can respond faster with a relevant context. Take a look at our previous post about Jira Service Desk vs Zendesk here!

Note that Zendesk does not fully support the ITIL framework. Due to not focusing on the ITIL compliance, Zendesk can be very flexible and versatile. The social media capabilities are great.

Zendesk is a cloud-hosted solution. It has five subscription plans available for SMB and enterprise users.
• The Essential plan costs $5 per agent per month, and includes the email and social channels, basic knowledge base, and SDK for web widgets and mobile apps.
• The Team plan costs $19 per agent per month, and adds business rules, public apps and integrations, and performance dashboards.
• The Professional plan costs $49 per agent per month, and adds multilingual content, CSAT surveys, as well as custom reports and dashboards.
• The Enterprise plan costs $99 per agent per month for launch success program, multiple ticket forms, custom agent roles, multi-brand support, and satisfaction prediction.
• The Elite plan costs $199 per agent per month for 99.9% guaranteed uptime SLA, unlimited light agents, data center location, and advanced security features.

Zendesk Pros
The first advantage of Zendesk vs Salesforce is the great customizability. Zendesk is highly customizable. You can decide how you are going to build the platform as well as what integrations that you will implement on it. You can adapt Zendesk to suit specific business needs and processes. The modular design also makes it easy to configure. There are lots of integrations available, and you can use the API to create your own specific integrations.

Zendesk is a powerful ticket management system. The social media capabilities are good. In addition, it also has many other capabilities, including reporting and analytics. It can do almost all the things that modern businesses need, and it does them well.

Note that Zendesk starts at a lower price. The Essential and Team plans may cost lower than Salesforce’s cheapest plan, depending on the number of agents in your customer service department. This is an advantage if you are looking for a budget-friendly solution.

Zendesk Cons
There are also some disadvantages of Zendesk vs Salesforce. First of all, although Zendesk starts from lower prices, the higher subscription tiers are more expensive. The total cost may also become more expensive if you decide to upgrade individual modules. You need to calculate the total cost before deciding to upgrade; make sure that you actually get all the features and benefits to get the most from your money.

Zendesk may lack some features. For sure, it is not entirely ITIL-compliant, so this is not the best choice if you need an ITIL-compliant solution. It also lacks content management and customer history tracking. Some users say that the social media support is not as extensive as Salesforce’s Desk.

Salesforce Overview
Salesforce’s Desk is a solution that may catch your attention if you are looking for a more basic help desk solution. This is a suitable choice for users in the SMB sector who only need the basics. Formerly known as Assistly, Salesforce’s Desk offers a fast and efficient way to deliver the best customer service to your clients.

In Salesforce’s Desk, customer conversations are collated in a single channel where your team can collaborate in order to handle, prioritize, and personalize responses. It supports multiple channels, such as email, phone, chat, and social media. It also has the ability to add or remove part-time agents. If you need an ITIL-compliant tool, you can use Salesforce’s Remedyforce which comes with comprehensive IT service management and ITIL-compliant features.

Salesforce’s Desk is available in three pricing plans. You can upgrade or downgrade at any time, but keep in mind that you can’t refund a prepaid plan. So, before committing to a higher subscription, you should carefully consider whether you really need the additional features or not.
• The Standard tier costs $20 per month. This plan already includes self-service support, multi-channel support, knowledge base, workflow and automation capabilities, agent productivity tools, integrations, and reporting.
• The Pro tier costs $60 per month to add multi-brand self-service support, advanced reporting and analytics, further multilingual support, telephony, native CSAT scores, and customized page layouts.
• The Business tier costs $100 per month to add custom dashboards, advanced integrations and workflows, custom agent roles, customer health monitor, unlimited multi-brand support and page layouts, and SSO for agents and admins.

Salesforce Pros
When choosing between Zendesk vs Salesforce, you should consider choosing Salesforce if you need an ITIL-compliant customer support solution. Salesforce’s Remedyforce is suitable for IT service management and help desk, and it comes with capabilities in incident, problem, client, and asset management.

You may also want to choose Salesforce if you are looking for a simple solution that is suitable for SMB purposes. Despite the simplicity, there is no missing key feature. The social media capabilities of Salesforce’s Desk are great. Also, the interface is aesthetically pleasing.It is easy and intuitive to use.

Finally, the higher subscription tiers of Salesforce are relatively more affordable. If you need the more advanced features that are available only in the higher subscription tiers, Salesforce can be a more cost-efficient solution.

Salesforce Cons
The disadvantage of Salesforce is the limited customizability. It does have a number of integrations, but it does not provide an API to make custom integrations. Because of this, Salesforce is not very suitable for large businesses with particularly complicated workflows that require custom integrations.

Salesforce may also lack some features that may be needed by large businesses. For example, it does not have advanced analytics and security features. It also has a seeming lack of deadline awareness, so the user needs to be more conscientious when dealing with tickets.

- Not fully ITIL compliant- Remedyforce is an ITIL compliant tool
- Great customizability with an open API- Limited customizability, no API
- Has more advanced reporting, analytics, and security features- Relatively simpler, easier to use without missing any key feature
- Starts at a lower price, but the higher subscriptions may be more expensive- Starts at a higher price, but the higher subscriptions are more affordable

If you only need a simple help desk solution that is easy and intuitive to use, Salesforce makes a good choice. You may also want to choose Salesforce if you need an ITIL-compliant tool. However, if your business requires high customizability, Zendesk is the way to go. Zendesk comes with lots of integrations and a nice API. Zendesk also has advanced reporting, analytics, and security features.

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