Good customer service increases customer satisfaction, and happy customers mean more business for your company. You should, therefore, focus on serving your customers well, and using customer service software can help you achieve this goal.
But you’re probably thinking buying software will cost a lot of money. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! You can use these forever free customer service tools to manage customer requests and upgrade later, if needed.
In this article, we’ve featured four top-rated customer service tools that offer a stand-alone free plan without any time limit. The products are listed alphabetically and have been selected from GetApp’s Customer Service Category Leaders report. You can read our complete product selection methodology at the bottom of the article.
Overall GetApp rating: 4.6/5 (54 reviews)
EngageBay is a cloud-based marketing platform with modules that support marketing automation, customer service, and customer relationship management (CRM). Users can select the all-in-one integrated marketing tool (with all three modules) or the stand-alone customer service module, which is forever free.
The customer service module supports an unlimited number of users and tickets. It allows the support team to categorize tickets into different groups and customize the ticket view to display only select customer data. The tool also lets agents automate repetitive customer care tasks and use canned (prewritten) responses for common customer queries.
Users get email and web chat support with the free version. Upgrade cost (for the integrated tool) starts at $8.99 per user per month.
We analyzed user reviews of EngageBay to understand what buyers like and the areas they think need some improvement. Here’s what we found.
EngageBay is suitable for businesses of all sizes, but it’s ideal for companies looking for an integrated customer experience platform to automate CRM, marketing, and customer support.
Overall GetApp rating: 4.5/5 (2,184 reviews)
Freshdesk is cloud-based customer support software. Its key features are ticketing, multichannel support (email, phone, live chat, social media, website, and WhatsApp), field service management, and analytics tools.
Freshdesk’s free plan is called Sprout and has no user limit. It lets the support team convert customers’ email and social media queries into tickets and reply to them directly via the software. The customer support team can also generate reports on ticket volume trends to analyze the total number of tickets created, resolved, unresolved, etc.
Customer support options include 24/7 email support and a knowledge base to find instant answers to general queries. Upgrade cost starts at $13.37* per agent per month (billed annually).
*Converted from INR to USD on August 11, 2020, using xe.com.
We analyzed user reviews of Freshdesk to understand what buyers like and the areas they think need some improvement. Here’s what we found.
Freshdesk is suitable for businesses of all sizes, especially those looking for scalable customer service software. It offers a trial version for all its paid plans.
Overall GetApp rating: 4.6/5 (926 reviews)
LiveAgent is a cloud-based customer support tool that offers contact management, call center management, gamification, live chat, automatic ticket distribution, file sharing, call recording, multichannel support, time tracking, and real-time visitor monitoring.
LiveAgent’s free plan supports an unlimited number of users. It provides ticket history for the past seven days, one email address (to respond to email tickets), one phone number (to provide call center support), and a live chat option. The customer service team can merge, split, export, filter, and take bulk actions on multiple tickets. Agents can also customize the support ticket fields, use canned answers, and attach documents to tickets.
The free plan offers 24/7 support via email, live chat, an agent support portal, customer support forums, and a knowledge base. Upgrade cost starts at $15 per agent per month.
We analyzed user reviews of LiveAgent to understand what buyers like and the areas they think need some improvement. Here’s what we found.
LiveAgent is suitable for businesses of all sizes, especially those looking for stand-alone customer service software.
Overall GetApp rating: 4.5/5 (1,613 reviews)
Zoho Desk is cloud-based help desk software featuring ticket management, self-service capabilities for customers, and agent productivity tools.
Zoho Desk’s free plan can support up to three users. It offers email ticketing, customer management, a private knowledge base, predefined service-level agreements (SLAs), and a multilingual help desk. It allows the support team to set bulk actions (called macros) for multiple customer tickets. These macros can include sending emails, creating tasks, or updating ticket fields.
The free plan offers 24/5 email support, and its upgrade cost starts at $9.64* per agent per month (billed annually).
*Converted from INR to USD on August 11, 2020, using xe.com.
We analyzed user reviews of Zoho Desk to understand what buyers like and the areas they think need some improvement. Here’s what we found.
Zoho Desk is suitable for businesses of all sizes, especially those looking for an extensive and customizable ticketing system.
Our list of the top four free customer service tools can get you started on your software search. To choose the one that best fits your needs, follow these steps:
Try out the features of the free versions and get feedback from your team members before deciding to upgrade.
Be sure to check out pricing information on GetApp as well as vendor websites.
Each year, we rank leading business apps from our most popular categories to form a list of Category Leaders. App scores are determined based on five factors, each worth 20 points, out of a total of 100. This piece uses the same methodology as our Category Leaders, however only includes customer service software tools that offer a stand-alone free plan that is available for use indefinitely (not just during a free trial period).
See the full scoring methodology here.
For the pros/cons sections, we performed sentiment analysis of reviews left for each product in the 18 months previous to the creation of this report. Reviews data may have changed since publication and may not reflect current conditions.
Listed pros and cons are derived from features listed on the product website and product user reviews on Gartner Digital Markets domains (Capterra, GetApp, and Software Advice). They do not represent the views of, nor constitute an endorsement by, GetApp or its affiliates. Overall user ratings and number of reviews mentioned in this article are as of July 23, 2020.