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10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020



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List Of The 10 Best Helpdesk Software

Here’s our top helpdesk software list:

Below you’ll find an overview of these helpdesk software tools, with screenshots, feature overview, and pricing.

Jump to helpdesk software reviews

Helpdesk Software FAQ

Don’t know where to start? Browse our FAQ to get the lowdown on helpdesk software basics.

What is helpdesk software?

Helpdesk software is a digital hub where customers can send queries to be logged, organized, and resolved. This may involve elements such as ticket management, automation suite, reporting and optimization. It may also provide a knowledge forum for the self-serve resolution of repeat or ongoing requests.

What are the benefits of helpdesk software?

The benefits of helpdesk software include faster turnover for technological issues, customer satisfaction, increased revenue, increased productivity, and better job satisfaction.

Why is helpdesk software important?

Helpdesk software is important because it unifies all of the communication and records about your support issues, providing a single system to effectively communicate about, track, manage, and analyze issues.

Not looking for a helpdesk tool? Check out our other lists of top software to manage teams, resources, and projects.

  1. Bug Tracking: If a lot of your help desk traffic is about bug reports, maybe it’s time to start investing in bug-tracking tools like DoneDone, Trackduck or DebugMe.
  2. CRMs: Many customer relationship management tools offer modules for customer support—see if you can cut down on the number of tools you’re using by getting a CRM that has helpdesk features included.
  3. Collaboration Software: you could also look at using online collaboration tools to manage communication between departments in order to resolve issues and keep a searchable record of communication.

This will help you quickly compare and evaluate the best helpdesk software, including helpdesk ticketing software and IT helpdesk software.

As our workplaces become more interconnected, help desk software is more useful than ever across a wide range of applications. Product teams, development studios, ecommerce companies, and many other types of teams are adopting ticketing systems that streamline the way they handle customer service and IT support.

There are two main kinds of service desk software: those intended to help your employees and those intended to help your customers.

Depending on your needs, you may find yourself drawn to tools that address one, the other, or both types. Improving the “customer journey” has proven to increase revenue up to 15% while also boosting customer satisfaction by around 20%. On the other hand, your internal employees may be losing up to two weeks of work time per year to technology and computer issues.

Knowing this, it’s easy to see the importance of support desk software for your customers, staff or both. A robust IT help desk can help keep your customers happy, help you identify issues and route them to the correct people to resolve them, and help your support team manage their workload.

You might be wondering: Okay, so…what are the top helpdesk software? What does my team need? How can I best make these decisions? While we can’t definitely match every group with the ideal help desk solution, we can give a concise review of the best help desk management software available today.

In this post I’ll:

  • Share with you the best service management tools to include on your help desk support software shortlist.
  • Explain what IT service desk tools are.
  • Explain how service desk software tools can help you streamline customer and/or employee service.
  • Answer some FAQs about helpdesk system tools.
  • Tell you what you should look for in IT support software tools and our evaluation criteria.

By the end of this article you should have a well-rounded list of some of the best helpdesk software on the market. That way, you can make the best call for your company and your team.

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The Best Help Desk Software

Helpdesk Software Comparison Criteria

What criteria do we use to determine the best IT help desk software? What does it mean to have support desk software that stands a cut above the rest? How do we evaluate help desk ticket systems in our ticketing system comparison?

We like to be completely transparent in our evaluation methods so we have broken down the who, what, where, why, and how for you here.

  1. User Interface (UI): How well-designed is the support desk software? Does it offer clear displays and intuitive navigation? Is it aesthetically pleasing or all-business? Who does the UI cater to and do they succeed in addressing their target user?
  2. Usability: Is this easy to learn and master? Are there tutorials and training? What tech and user support is offered by the software company?
  3. Integrations: Is it easy to connect with other tools? Any pre-built integrations? How many different integrations are available and how easy (or costly) are they to implement?
  4. Value for $: How much does it cost? Are there different tiers? What features do you have access to at each stage?
  5. Features & Functionality: How many of the key helpdesk software features and functions does it provide, and how powerful are they? Specifically, I looked for:
    • Multi-Channel Ticketing System: Tools should have a robust ticket management software. They should streamline tickets from multiple sources so you can communicate across channels (email, phone, etc) from one place. It should help you manage this stream tickets by providing the ability to automatically tag, categorize, prioritize and assign incoming tickets from any channel. Help desk ticketing system comparison between product tiers.
    • Collaboration: Tools should keep users informed of ticket owners, statuses, responses and priorities to help sync your team efforts.
    • Automations: Helpdesk systems should offer the ability to set time-based and event-based triggers, as well as custom workflows with automations that route tickets to the right user for the best response.
    • Reporting and Analytics: The helpdesk system should offer configurable dashboards that display key helpdesk data as well as live reporting to get a bird’s eye view of current operations.
    • Knowledge Management System: ITSM utilizes a repository of previously resolved problems. Could be a public customer self-service website, or an internal repository for customer service reps and technicians. Should incorporate advanced search technologies (such as auto-suggest) to help users find answers quickly.
    • Self-service: This includes things like product documentation, downloadable patches, and forums or user communities that help customers solve their problems. Tools should provide a way to submit issues when customers can’t resolve through self-service.

The 10 Best Help Desk Software Overviews

LiveAgent logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • freemium version
  • Free trial
  • From $15/ user/ month

1. LiveAgent – Best help desk software for analytics and reporting

LiveAgent screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

Live Agent is a feature-rich tool that allows you to track and easily report on a large number of support activities.

LiveAgent is for customer support teams of all sizes. The software collects and organizes customer queries from multiple channels, and enables agents to collaborate to resolve them.

The software has tons of useful help desk features. LiveAgent’s multi-channel ticketing system converts all received messages from social media, email, phone and live chat into tickets, and then organizes them according to importance. The software is collaborative, and eliminates account sharing, device and account monitoring, duplicate answers, and confusion. The software has powerful automation rules that can be either time-triggered, SLA triggered, or action triggered.

LiveAgent’s reporting and analytics features enable users to create comprehensive reports on agent availability, resolution times, rebukes, and more. The software also recognizes the need for self-service in customer support and enables users to create internal and external knowledge bases that are fully customizable and equipped with FAQs, feedback, suggestions, and forums.

The software’s UI is very clean and minimalistic, however, it does have quite a learning curve. Not to worry though, LiveAgent provides integrated guides so you can utilize the software in no time. The biggest pro of using LiveAgent is its price to value ratio. LiveAgent offers over 179 advanced help desk features and integrates with over 40 third party applications. The software is fully customizable– from general appearance and sounds to specific feature customization. The cons include a steep learning curve and limited mobile app capabilities.

LiveAgent supports both native and third-party integrations. Native integrations include but are not limited to Braintree, Slack, Instagram, Shopify and more. LiveAgent also provides built-in migration plugins that enable you to migrate data from your old help desk software into LiveAgent.

LiveAgent costs from $15/user/month. They also offer a free trial, a forever free account, and a product demo.

Jitbit Helpdesk logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • Free trial
  • From $29/month

2. Jitbit Helpdesk – Best email ticketing system for medium and large businesses

Jitbit Helpdesk screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

JitBit offers variou support features like live chat, knowledge bases, etc, but their main focus is their email ticketing system with built-in anti-spam, deduping, email flood protection, and built-in mailboxes.

Jitbit Helpdesk is a help desk software that was built to help you provide email support for your customers and users. With its pricing, Jitbit is a great fit for medium and large businesses across different industries. If you want to host the app on your own server and use it internally, Jitbit also offers an on-premise version.

Although email is the primary channel, Jitbit supports various other channels, like live chat, web-portal, API and multiple built-in integrations with third-party apps. Jitbit updates in real-time and offers ways to collaborate on user issues with your team; for example, you can see when other techs are looking at a ticket or typing a reply. You can also assign multiple people to a single ticket.

Automation Rules is a pretty slick feature in this tool, designed to carry out the more boring parts of the job. You can do simple things like “if a ticket comes from this company assign it to this agent” all the way up to something more sophisticated like “if ticket subject contains ‘word’, send an HTTP request to this URL”.

This helpdesk software offers more than 10 built-in reports and a custom report builder on all aspects of customer support. You can see various metrics, including response speeds, the number of tickets you get per day, and your team performance is broken down by individual techs. Most reports allow you to export data to Excel, too.

They also offer a Knowledge Base with some AI-powered self-service features. So, this means that if you take your time to fill out your Knowledge Base with helpful articles, Jitbit will suggest those articles to your users as they are submitting the tickets. I’m sure you’ve seen this type of support feature on a couple of the sites you have accounts with, and it can be useful as it sometimes takes care of the issue without even needing to open a support ticket.

I’d say that Jitbit has a very small learning curve, thanks to clean design and easy-to-use UI. You can customize both the public-facing and the private parts of your help desk to match your company branding—so you can change colors and add your logo and a favicon. For more customization, you can change pretty much anything else through CSS and JS code.

Jitbit integrates with a lot of apps out of the box. Apps like Slack, Jira, Github, Dropbox and a lot of others are really easy to set up and start using. If that’s not enough you can use Zapier to integrate with 500+ other apps.

Jitbit Helpdesk costs from $29/month. They also offer a free trial and an on-premise version.

ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • freemium version
  • From $12/user/month

3. ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus – Best helpdesk software for incident management processes

ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

The ServiceDesk Plus dashboard includes data and analytics on SLA violations and change requests.

ServiceDesk Plus is a complete IT Service Management (ITSM) suite with built-in IT Asset Management (ITAM) and Configuration Management Database (CMDB) capabilities. With advanced ITSM functions, powerful automations, smart customizations, and easy-to-use capabilities, ServiceDesk Plus helps IT support teams easily deliver world-class service to end users at lower costs.

Features include strong incident management processes that help resolve incidents swiftly and improve agent productivity; comprehensive problem management features that enable IT teams to classify, analyze, and close issues as well as identify repetitive issues to close tickets faster; and a change management system that allows IT teams to implement IT changes with minimal risk through streamlined planning, approval, and implementation.

The tool also provides integrated knowledge management, virtual assistant, and AI capabilities, as well as effective SLA management with proactive and reactive escalations and escalation actions.

It offers various integration options, including Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft 365, Microsoft Teams, Jira, and more through REST APIs.

Pricing for ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus starts at $12/per user/month for the standard plan. See further pricing plans on their pricing page.

ProProfs Help Desk logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • freemium version
  • 15 days free plan
  • From $10/user/month

4. ProProfs Help Desk – Best help desk software for email ticketing

ProProfs Help Desk screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

ProProfs is a cloud-based help desk software that empowers team members to label, track, assign, and resolve support tickets.

ProProfs Help Desk has an easy to use ticket automation system with round-robin ticket assignments. This is a great tool for teams who manage most of their customer interactions through email. Team members can collaborate using shared inboxes, attach files to support tickets, and resolve complex tickets using parent-child ticketing. Internal integrations like Live Chat, Knowledge Base, Survey Maker, and more make this tool a complete powerhouse.

Users can prioritize tickets, add internal notes, or simply leverage the Canned Response feature to resolve tickets quickly. You can also share CSAT or NPS surveys to gauge customer satisfaction after tickets have been closed.

ProProfs also has a plethora of training videos and an FAQ section so your team can handpick the right information whenever an issue arises. Their human support team can be reached over chat, email, or phone. This tool is also compatible with mobile, tablet, and desktop.

ProProfs Help Desk starts at $10/user/month and offers a free premium trial for first-time users.

EngageBay logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • freemium version

5. EngageBay – Best for creating personalized ticket views

EngageBay screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

EngageBay lets you sort, organize, and manage tickets all in one place.

EngageBay offers help desk software in the form of their Service Bay tool. Users can answer unlimited tickets in one place, as well as create a personalized ticket view to suit their needs.

The tool also offers advanced service automation tools so users can automate routine customer service processes and tasks. Users can also create canned responses to common queries and questions to save time and increase productivity.

EngageBay also includes capabilities for grouping and organizing tickets in order to boost efficiency. You can also manage tickets like tasks in order to keep track of closed and open tickets. The tool offers custom reporting and analytics to ensure you make informed decisions about the support process and specific tickets.

EngageBay’s Service Bay software is free to use.

Freshservice logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • 21 days free trial
  • From $19/user/month

6. Freshservice – Best IT service desk for beginners

Freshservice screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

Freshservice is pretty straightforward to set up, even for beginners, with easy options to set up different support channels.

Freshservice’s modern and intuitive UI requires minimal to no training, and is customizable to IT and non-IT needs. It automates tasks and provides support for issues raised via email, self-service portal, phone, chat, or in-person. Freshservice maintains records of contracts, hardware, software, and other vital customer-data assets.

Built in user-portal, reporting, workflows, and continuous updates mean that you have all the basic functionality you would expect for a helpdesk tool as well as a roadmap for constant improvement.

They offer the whole gamut of helpdesk tools: incident management, change management, release management, vendor relationships all with robust analyzing tools to make sure common problems are tracked and improved.

The biggest cons that I noticed was that it doesn’t work with corrective actions (CAPA) and that it doesn’t manage portfolios or offer product road mapping. These services can be supplemented with another app or service, but that will obviously increase the cost of your overall set-up.

Freshservice scored favorably on our features and functionality evaluation criteria section because it truly is a jack-of-all-trades. The software lets you track assets, manage problems, manage self-service portals, navigate advanced incident management, organize contracts and licenses, and more.

Integrations listed include Slack, DocuSign, Jira, Freshbooks, Google calendar, Survey Monkey, Dropbox, and many more through Zapier.

Freshservice starts at $19/user/month and has a 21-day free trial.

Freshdesk logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • 21 days free trial for paid versions, free version available
  • From $15/user/month

7. Freshdesk – Best enterprise helpdesk software

Freshdesk screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

With this omnichannel helpdesk, your agents can reply to emails, answer customer calls and chat with customers right within Freshdesk.

Used by over 150,000 businesses, including Panasonic, HP, and Pearson, Freshdesk lets you streamline your support channels (email, phone, chat and more) so that you can then notice trends and assign tickets accordingly. Some features include: automation of repetitive tasks, dissemination of tutorials to customers, and form and community management.

The ability to set service-level agreements (SLAs) and check on them via advanced reporting features stands out as a highlight-worthy features in our features and functions evaluation criteria section. File this under knowledge management, reporting, collaboration—it’s an extraordinarily helpful tool.

Integrations listed include Google Apps, JIRA, various live chat apps, Zoho CRM, FreshBooks, QuickBooks, DropBox, Box, OneDrive, MailChimp, iContact, SurveyMonkey, and many more, including a whole host of selection through a paid Zapier plan.

The app would not accommodate the uploading of larger documents or files, which may not be ideal in many circumstances. Additionally, having the ability to set reminders on tickets would be an asset for anyone whose workload is particularly demanding.

Freshdesk starts at $15/user/month and has a freemium plan and a 21-day free trial for paid versions.

Freshchat logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • 21 days free trial
  • From $15/user/month

8. Freshchat – Best free helpdesk software plan for large businesses

Freshchat screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

Freshchat is a modern, ready-to-scale customer service software with a great freemium plan for up to 100 agents, and with tiered pricing plans ready to scale.

Freshchat is a helpdesk service that meets your customers wherever they are on the web, be it email, chat, on your homepage, or on social.

Users will appreciate automation features, like the ability to boost CRM processes with bots and AI to supply visitors with quick answers and further prompts. Freshchat provides tools to further engage customers with proactive campaigns that send targeted outbound messages by WhatsApp, Apple Business Chat, Facebook Messenger, and other popular social channels.

Freshchat is great for collaboration and communication, something we screen for in our evaluation criteria. The Team Inbox, a Chrome extension, is great for connecting your team quickly and efficiently when a new message comes in. Teams may also like features like co-browsing, team performance reports, private notes, and chatbot analytics.

The software’s weakness is when it comes to mobile integration of communication features. The interface is dull and more than a little bit slow. The efficiency of using the browser version of the app is much preferred to Android or iPhone iterations.

Freshchat integrates with Magento 2, Teamviewer, Stripe, Upscope, Calendly, Hubspot CRM, Salesforce, WooCommerce, Upscope, Pipedrive, Klaviyo, Pipedrive, Pagato, Constant Contact, Pipelinedeals, Knowmax, Mailchimp, Nimble CRM, Insightly CRM, Highrise CRM, Freshmarketer, Zoho CRM, and many more. It also connects with all other Freshworks apps.

Freshchat costs from $15/user/month. They also offer a freemium version of the software for up to 100 agents and a 21-day free trial for all paid plans.

JivoChat logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • freemium version
  • 14 days free trial for paid plans
  • From $13/user/month

9. JivoChat – Best free helpdesk software plan for small teams

JivoChat screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

For an affordable price, JivoChat comes with lots of useful features to monitor website visitors in real-time and start customer chats in a variety of channels.

JivoChat is an all-in-one business messenger that teams use to talk to customers everywhere: live chat, phone, email, and social.

Features helpdesk users will benefit from include live chat for websites, Apple Business Chat, Jivo Business Chat, callbacks, company email integration, and Facebook integration. Agents receive all chats, emails, and calls in one Jivo app so it’s easy to keep track of all avenues of communication.

JivoChat makes multi-channel ticketing and knowledge management easy, two things that we specifically included in our evaluation criteria because they can really make or break any helpdesk strategy. JivoChat pulls all tickets and customer knowledge into a single platform for easy review.

One of the downsides of the JivoChat chatbox is the frequency with which it “pops up” on your site in front of lingering users. This can be a source of contention and even encourage bounce rates.

JivoChat integrates with Pipedrive, Zoho CRM, WordPress, Shopify, Wix.com, BigCommerce, ecwid, Drupal, Joomla, Opencart, Magento, Prestashop, ModX, Bitrix, Weebly, Weblium, and Google Analytics, plus many more through a paid Zapier account. It also has an API for developers.

JivoChat costs from $13/user/month. They also offer a freemium version for up to 5 users and a 14-day free trial for paid plans.

CometChat logo - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020
  • 7 days free trial
  • From $49/month

10. CometChat – Best no-code chat plugin

CometChat screenshot - 10 Best Help Desk Software, Service Desks & Ticketing Systems 2020

CometChat delivers great features in a simple interface that are easy to install as a plug-in on 30+ platforms.

CometChat is a drag-and-drop chat plugin for popular web software and no-code platforms like WordPress, Joomla, and Ning.

Basic features include text, voice, and video chat but the software goes beyond just that, offering chat API, SDKs, and UI components for popular programming languages like Swift and Jira. AI-powered moderation works for a variety of online communities they service, like social/dating, marketplace, and education.

CometChat’s specializes in self-service, one of our evaluation metrics, in a unique way: It is designed to enable chat between two groups of users, which need not be your own agents—it could be doctors with patients or buyers with sellers on your platform.

Support staff for CometChat can be a bit slow responding to user concerns, however, when they get back to you they are helpful and capable of walking you through any issue.

CometChat integrates with EasySocial, WordPress, BuddyPress, Phorum, WoltLab, vBulletin, Social Engine, SocialScript, XOOPS, SocialStrap, SuiteCRM, JamRoom, XenForo, Canvas, and other chat-based platforms.

CometChat costs from $49/month. They also offer a free 7-day trial.

Other Helpdesk Software

Not keen on any of the above resources? You’re in luck. There are always dozens of other IT support software and helpdesk tools clattering for your business. The helpdesk software options below are just a few of your options but a little bit of digging is sure to uncover more. Don’t be afraid to spend time on research and development. You only want to settle for the tool that is absolutely right for you and your team.

What Do You Think About These Top Help Desk Solutions?

There are plenty of help desk systems to choose from—the real trouble is finding the best one for you. Once you have a list of Must-Haves, you can start narrowing down your choices by comparing it to the selection above.

Is there anything that should be on our list that you think we missed? Do you have personal experience with any of these softwares that you would like to share? Sound off in the comments of this article. We would love to hear from you.


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Ben Aston

About Ben Aston

I’m Ben Aston, a digital project manager and founder of thedigitalprojectmanager.com. I've been in the industry for more than 15 years working in the UK at London’s top digital agencies including Dare, Wunderman, Lowe and DDB. I’ve delivered everything from film to CMS', games to advertising and eCRM to eCommerce sites. I’ve been fortunate enough to work across a wide range of great clients; automotive brands including Land Rover, Volkswagen and Honda; Utility brands including BT, British Gas and Exxon, FMCG brands such as Unilever, and consumer electronics brands including Sony.

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