Zendesk alternative

The essential features Zendesk alternatives must have

By 21st May 2018 June 27th, 2019 No Comments

Zendesk is the biggest name in the Help Desk software industry. Biggest isn’t always best for everyone. I have witnessed lots of startup products emerge, and slowly mature into robust, stable and feature-rich products. But is this always the best way?

I’m going to talk about features Zendesk alternatives need to have and specifically what you may want (and need) from another Help Desk software that helps you support customers as simply, easily and economically as possible.


Zendesk is cool

Zendesk was born from a trio of Danish founders with a desire to provide a Help desk software that doesn’t require consultants to set up.

Since then, it’s grown and grown and grown. It now has an annual run-rate of $500million and the train doesn’t look like it’s stopping.

Whilst Zendesk is the name that everyone bats around, it’s not the only great option in this space. The industry is big and the shape and size of customers that need a Help Desk solution vary so much too.

Why do users look for Zendesk alternatives?

Zendesk reaches the mass-market. It’s a comprehensive, solid tool for Helpdesk.

Here’s the problem. Tools start out small, they appeal to a certain small segment of the market and they do exactly what that market needs. But, as software grows, it looks to broaden its horizons into more segments, more locations, and more verticals. What does that mean? It means that products release more and more features, yet try to still appeal to each market individually.

This leads to a complete product, whereby certain segments of the market use only certain feature sets. Big companies like Zendesk end up falling short of specializing in one niche, in order to maximize their profits. It’s business, we get it, we all do it. But over time it can mean that your Help Desk outgrows your needs.

The features Zendesk alternatives must have

Naturally, there is a core set of features every helpdesk solution must bring. Beyond that, many times, it’s just a matter of building complexity – and increasing prices – on a standard product. Basically, if companies are looking for a Helpdesk solution, they probably need:

The visual look of the whole process and tickets

 Shared view and collaboration for customer support teams to work together;

Delegation and assignment of tickets to agents, from end to end, in real time;

 Automation of the process – templates, for example – making it easy to reply to customers;

 KPIs tracking, such as time to response or service rating.

For most of simple and small teams, as long as you have these features, it’s all fine. Apart from that, there are some non-feature related value propositionS that may have a fundamental role in the decision-making for companies when choosing a Helpdesk solution. For example:

 Time invested to learn and implement;

 Ease to use a new solution;

 Competitive pricing points;

 UI/UX interface

 Trust on the brand.

There are several Zendesk alternative solutions that bring the features above.

Our Zendesk alternative for small teams

If you can add those features in your Inbox, why not transforming your Inbox into a Helpdesk? Of course, this kind of Zendesk alternative is usually simpler and lighter than a standalone Helpdesk application, but what features would be fundamentally a deal-breaker for you and your Company? Sometimes, less is more. 

Besides that, customer support tickets are emails converted into tickets, that are later converted back into emails to customers. So, why the hell do you need to leave your inbox to support your customers? 

A more immersive Zendesk alternative doesn’t need a more complex system. It’s exactly the opposite. When you understand the whole thing, it’s easier to make things simpler. This is the Drag Team.

At Drag, we believe that good experiences are the ones that add more value for users and makes their effort decrease at the same time.

And software with multiple integrated functions — that makes sense between one another — has great value. We truly do not know all the functions people can achieve with our product, which is why we want everyone to try it out and make the most of it.

The Helpdesk feature on Drag is very simple, to start it out, your emails (or “tickets”) become cards in Trello-like boards, so you can organize them, within your team, as your support progresses.

You can add labels to your cards, so every task belongs somewhere. Here are some other features you can add to your cards:

  • Visual Kanban boards allowing segmentation of tickets per stages;
  • Delegation of tickets;
  • Internal comments;
  • Progress bar;
  • Due dates;
  • Checklists; 
  • Ability to add new cards (or ‘tickets’).

All of it. Right from inside Gmail.


Bigger software is not always the best. You need to understand what are your company needs and only then look up for solutions.

Then, look for a Zendesk alternative. Maybe you will find out that, in fact, Zendesk is the right solution for you. Maybe it’s not. The thing is that Zendesk is not the only Helpdesk solution in the World. And it’s probably not the best universal solution for any company in the World.

Your email won’t be able to do everything Zendesk does, but it surely will make work faster and much simpler. By prioritizing simple processes, you can do much more for your customers, team, and company.

Then, choose your tool based on your specific context and priorities.

Lastly, check Drag out to see if a Shared Inbox, in Gmail, in a Kanban format fits your needs. Maybe it does 🙂

Learn how to Transform your Business with Shared Inboxes by downloading our Ebook!

What you’ll learn inside Drag

Starting now, we’re aiming to share what our plans are, how we’re doing and what lessons we’re learning along the way.

You’ll get:

  • Just like this article, you’ll get real-time updates on what’s happening, what’s working and how it feels in a startup.
  • Quick videos explaining quick wins and how to grow your business
  • Live Instagram updates. Real-time stories of what’s happening

What now?

This is our attempt at sharing everything. It’s as simple as that You don’t have to be a customer to follow us.


Author Drag

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