Your products are better; your prices are affordable; and your marketing strategies are top-notch. Then why are your customers not returning?
What is it about your competitor that attracts most customers despite you having ensured that you outdo them on all fronts?
All fronts? Are you sure?
Well, answer these questions:
- Are your customers getting optimal omnichannel customer support before and after purchasing from your brand?
- Is your team reachable on maximum communication channels, such as WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook, Email, Text, Call, etc.?
- What is your customer satisfaction score (CSAT)?
- How convenient is it for your customers to get an issue resolved aka customer effort score?
- Are your representatives covering all communication channels equally and efficiently?
- What is your customer service team’s First Contact Resolution percentage?
Chances are, despite excelling at all components of your business, you are still falling short in the customer support segment.
The earliest you realize the importance of optimum customer service, the better. Even if you are a small business and don’t have the resources to set up a whole unit, you can’t leave customer support on the loose end without risking the growth of your business.
Customers expect real-time support from the first time they interact with your brand until they make a final purchase. However, if you fail to offer and provide support at any of these stages, you will most probably lose that customer (forever).
The only way to earn customer loyalty and retain maximum customers is by providing a 360-degree omnichannel customer experience. And we are here to help!
What is An Omnichannel Customer Service Software?
Customer service today is not limited to calls, emails, and chats. In fact, 76% of customers confirmed that they prefer different support channels depending on context. Brands have to create a unified experience for their customers by integrating all mediums their target audience uses.
This platform puts CX at the core and aspires to accelerate customer query acknowledgment and resolution. That means, your teams should be able to pick up the conversation from previous sessions even when they interact via different channels during the course of their buying journey.
Omnichannel customer service platforms are designed to help brands streamline their customer service operations despite the size of the team.
Such customer service software unifies various channels to help businesses manage customer communications effectively. With a robust platform, you can organize incoming queries via live chats, social media platforms, messages, emails, phones, customer service portals, etc, manage responses, and track resolutions in real-time.
An omnichannel support platform helps you ensure convenience and exceptional customer experience for your potential and existing customers, allowing you to level up your customer support front despite having a small-size team.
Top 10 Omnichannel Customer Service Software for Small Businesses
Now that you precisely know how a customer service tool can help you deliver a competitive customer experience, we are taking you to a thorough analysis of the top 10 omnichannel customer service software.
As you read, make sure you list down features you think are useful for your business and the names of software that offer them. And hey, don’t miss out on the list of criteria you should keep in mind for selecting the best platform for your business, towards the end of this article.
For improving customer experience, you need to invest in an all-in-one tool that equips your team with features, like a shared inbox, intuitive response suggestions, automation, and extensive reports and customer behavior insights. If you are looking for such a power-packed solution, Helpwise is the best and most affordable tool in the market for small and medium-sized businesses.
Helpwise is a simplified omnichannel customer support software that allows your teams to deliver hyper-personalized, low-effort yet high-impact resolutions to your customers. It directs all incoming customer queries to a centralized inbox where the automated system assigns them to respective agents, suggests contextual replies, and tags conversations.
The tool also improves context so that you can streamline conversation with a customer regardless of the incoming medium and offer a better customer experience. Its collision detection feature further ensures that no two agents are working on the same query.
Additionally, the platform is has strong automation and customizable workflows that save your agents’ time from mundane tasks, such as sorting queries and tracking previous conversations, allowing them to focus on more important tasks and improve their productivity.
Since the majority of similar tools available in the market are either too complex or too expensive or both, Helpwise resolves to be one of the most viable and robust customer service tools for small and medium-scale businesses. Besides, its powerful integration and extensive customization capabilities make this tool superior to its counterparts.
- Multiple channel integration for seamless conversation allocation.
- Shared inbox for effortless collaboration within teams.
- Assign feature allocates queries to specific team members and saves customers from reiterating information every time they connect with your team.
- Tags to categorize conversations and declutter inboxes. SLAs for timely customer responses.
- Automation rules feature automates repetitive tasks, such as assigning, tagging, and closing conversations.
- A customizable self-help center for customers where you can create help articles, assign categories, and optimize them for SEO.
- Mention and notes feature allows collaboration within the team to resolve customer issues swiftly and accurately.
- Easy to set up, navigate, and learn.
- Scalable and flexible.
- Collision detection to ensure only one agent works on the one query.
- Seamless integration of messaging tools, CRMs, and third-party apps, like Stripe, Salesforce, Pipedrive, etc.
- Email collaboration within a team improves efficiency and reduces average response time.
- Data-driven insights and analytics to measure the team’s performance and maintain support quality.
- Cost-effective for small and medium-sized businesses.
- 24/7 customer support for Helpwise users.
- Cost increases as the team size grows, yet it still stays cost-effective when compared to conventional customer support systems.
- Live chat functionality isn’t as feature-heavy and robust as other platforms.
- 7-days free trial
- Standard Plan: $15 per user per month
- Premium Plan: $25 per user per month
- Advanced Plan: $50 per user per month
- Enterprise Plan: Quote on Request
Freshdesk is a cloud-based customer service software designed to help you manage customer inquiries across various channels from a single platform. It equips your team with intuitive responses and personalized support to solve customer issues better.
Freshdesk also hosts an AI-powered chatbot to ensure your customer queries are acknowledged on time and a thank you detector to prevent the re-opening of tickets that are resolved.
- Ticketing to help you assign, track, and manage inquiries.
- Ticket field suggester to automatically categorize, rank, and route queries.
- Agent collision detector to help prevent two agents from working on the same ticket.
- Team inbox to streamline incoming queries from multiple channels.
- SLA management to assign deadlines to ticket resolutions.
- User-friendly interface.
- Default and custom reports and analytics.
- Customer self-service portal.
- Limited scope for customization.
- Steep learning curve for new users.
- Limited phone support for Freshdesk users.
- Free: $0 for up to 10 agents.
- Growth: $15 per user per month (basic features)
- Pro: $49 per user per month (Growth+additional features)
- Enterprise: $79 per user per month (Pro+additional features)
03. Help Scout
83% of customers in a survey agreed that they feel more loyal to brands that address and resolve their complaints. This shows how essential it is to quickly acknowledge and settle customer issues. Help Scout’s intuitive and sophisticated omnichannel customer service software allows agents to build empathetic connections with customers in no time.
Its inbox-like interface collects all queries in one view and accommodates each customer’s information and previous interactions in one thread.
- Shared inbox for easy team collaborations.
- Live chat support to assist customers in real time.
- In-app messaging to reach out to customers via content-rich messages.
- Easy-to-build knowledge base to encourage self-help.
- Seamless integrations with other apps and tech stacks.
- Multichannel support.
- Easy-to-use interface.
- Accurate reporting and analytics.
- A range of customization options.
- Pricing could be high for small businesses.
- Some users have reported issues with integrations.
- Reports may lack in-depth insights into customer behavior and interactions.
- 15 days free trial
- Standard: $20 per user per month
- Plus: $40 per user per month
- Pro: $65 per user per month
- Special discounts for non-profit organizations
Livegent’s help desk software is an omnichannel customer service software for businesses of all sizes. This software keeps all incoming communications in one place and transforms them into tickets for effective management of customer queries.
This platform also comes with an in-built call center, which allows you to offer one-on-one resolutions via phone calls. Additional call-center features like call recording, call forwarding, and IVR enhances its functionality even more.
- Ticketing system for effective inquiry management.
- In-built call center for on-call customer support.
- Social media integration to manage messages from all channels.
- Self-help knowledgebase to answer frequently asked queries.
- Multilingual software that supports 43 languages.
- Workflow automation.
- Mobile Help-Desk application.
- Comprehensive analytics and reporting.
- Effortless team collaborations.
- Steep learning curve.
- Limited customization for the user interface.
- Reports lack depth and customization.
- 14-days free trial
- Paid plans start from $15 per user per month.
05. Zoho Desk
Zoho Desk takes empathy-embedded support to the next level with its sentiment analysis feature. Zoho has made the Desk omnichannel for customer service to allow your team to serve your customers better. The tool aims to improve your agent’s productivity through contextual support, ticket management, and AI.
Happiness ratings further determine how satisfied and happy your customers are with your services so that you can track, improve, and optimize the customer support experience.
- Multichannel and multi-brand help center.
- Contextual AI Zia for more than chatbot support.
- Self-service with knowledge repository and community.
- Advanced response editor to curate empathetic responses.
- Automation for repetitive activities.
- Easy integration with other tools.
- Robust reports and analytics.
- Custom access to team members based on designations and roles.
- Complex setup that might require technical expertise.
- Slow performance was reported by some users.
- Limited mobile app functionality when compared to desktop.
- 15-days free trial
- Standard: $14
- Professional: $23
- Enterprise: $40
Groove is one affordable shared email alternative for small businesses with small teams. The software doesn’t need the expertise to work on it. Your team can easily manage customer communications through a centralized inbox. Besides, the comprehensive knowledge base is supposed to answer customer queries and reduce incoming inquiries that need live support.
- Intuitive shared inbox for sorted customer requests.
- Live chat for real-time support.
- Unattended message logic to ensure no chat is left hanging.
- Comprehensive reports with performance metrics and conversation insights.
- Familiar and user-friendly interface.
- Private internal notes for team collaboration.
- Full access to all features in a 30-day trial period.
- Good option for small businesses with limited team capacity.
- Limited integration with communication channels and third-party apps.
- Cannot handle multiple chat sessions at a time seamlessly.
- Lack of customization options.
- Pricier according to the feature it offers.
- 30-days free trial
- Starter: $20 per user per month
- Plus: $40 per user per month
- Pro: $65 per user per month
Intercom totally takes the AI-enabled customer service game up a notch. For small businesses with a lean team, the tool makes it easy to enhance customer satisfaction through its AI-powered tools.
It has also aced a simple and effective AI-powered shared inbox to accelerate response and resolution rates on customer concerns to deliver a great omnichannel customer experience.
- Resolution bot that immediately answers common queries.
- Custom bot that is easy to build and speeds up resolutions.
- Conversation topics are analyzed by an AI tool to help you understand your customers better.
- AI-enabled inbox that generates responses and gives a quick review of previous conversations.
- Automated workflows to sort and manage tickets effortlessly.
- Customizable interface
- Customer segmentation
- Team management dashboard
- Doesn’t reveal pricing right off the bat.
- Costly for small and new businesses.
- No phone support is available for Intercom users.
- Reporting and analytics features are limited.
- Starts from $74 per month for startups.
- Established businesses need to get in touch for quotations.
Hiver is one simplest omnichannel support tool for businesses that look for a no-brainer tool. You can keep using your Gmail and live chat for customer service sans all the customer query management issues.
Hiver is built for Google workspace where it utilizes Google’s tools to enhance your workflows. You can delegate emails to support teams, collaborate internally through shared drafts, and set up rules to automate ticketing.
- Shared inbox management for effective communication management.
- Reporting and analytics to monitor team performance and SLA violations.
- Automated workflows to boost team productivity.
- Seamless integrations with third-party apps.
- Multichannel compatibility for omnichannel support.
- Easy learning curve
- Email analytics and reporting
- Customizable and scalable
- Discounted pricing for non-profit organizations
- Not suitable for businesses with complex needs.
- Have limited features when compared with other customer service tools.
- Works only with Gmail-based accounts
- 14-days free trial
- Starter: $14 per user per month
- Plus: $22 per user per month
- Premium: $34 per user per month
- Enterprise: Custom pricing based on requirements
An organized process is the heart of a successful omnichannel customer service system. Zendesk makes it possible to achieve process excellence and keep your business in sync. This flexible omnichannel call center software can be customized as per your existing business environment and scaled as you grow.
You can connect all your data sources to the platform so that when a customer contacts, the representative has all the relevant information on display. It is also comprehensive in terms of accommodating multiple communication channels, such as voice, email, SMS, live chat, social media, mobile phones, web pages, and other messaging apps.
- Connected conversations regardless of mediums.
- Integrated self-help center and community forum.
- AI and bots offer instant answers.
- Unified agent workspace and collaboration tools.
- Intuitive analytics and reporting for actionable insights.
- Ease of use and interactive interface
- Customizable and scalable
- Advanced ticketing system
- Complexity; it can be difficult to navigate for some users.
- Costly for small and medium size businesses.
- Suite Team: $49 per user per month
- Suite Growth: $79 per user per month
- Suite Professional: $99 per user per month
- Foundational support starts at $19 per month
Gorgias takes the hybrid road to offer the best of both customer service and sales under one umbrella. This omnichannel support tool is built for e-commerce businesses.
It allows your service team to build on the sales agent’s efforts and understand customer concerns before responding. Similarly, the sales team can benefit from the support team’s data to ensure they are personalizing sales calls and not making redundant contacts.
- Centralized support tickets for error-free query management.
- Pre-sales support tools to address customers’ concerns about your product/service.
- Clean interface that displays a customer’s entire data in one place.
- Omnichannel capability to engage with customers on different channels.
- Workflow automation to streamline regular tasks.
- Predictive suggestion while typing responses.
- Personalized messaging based on customer information.
- Easy integration with many third-party applications.
- Steep learning curve
- Expensive for small businesses
- Starter: $10/month
- Basic: $60/month
- Pro: $360/month
- Advanced: $900/month
- Enterprise: Contact to get a quote
7 Things to Consider While Choosing The Best Platform For Your Business
01. Your Business Requirements
Every business is different and so are its needs and goals. Consider your business requirements before investing in a comprehensive customer service solution. Because the more features you have, the more you pay. So, look for features specific to your business and choose a platform accordingly.
02. Supported Communication Channels
Investing in omnichannel support software is only worth it if you can cater to your customers on all mediums they are using to connect with you. Hence, first, you must have a clear list of communication channels you want to be unified in one place. And second, you must ensure the platform you are prospecting supports and integrates all of them.
Some essential features of a robust omnichannel customer service software are:
- Ticket allocation and management
- Shared inbox
- Automated distribution
- Self-service portal
- Security and Compliance
Look for all the essential and additional features according to your business before finalizing the customer service software.
Pricing is a crucial factor that you must include in your checklist. For a small business, the cost of the software should justify the features you are getting. Besides, you should also consider how it will add up in the future as you increase the number of agents and features. Consider both upfront and long-term cost and see if it fits your budget before making a final decision.
Needless to say that you need to keep the future possibilities in sight while choosing the best omnichannel customer service software for your small business. As your business grows, you will need to expand your team and add on some more features to increase the team’s efficiency. Besides, the software should also be able to handle the increasing volume of customer inquiries as your business stretches. A tool with no scaling capabilities will not serve the purpose.
06. Learning Curve
Nobody should have to spend additional time and money on training the team members to use an omnichannel customer service software. Look for a tool that is easy to set up and use, has intuitive navigation, and gets easily incorporated into your existing system.
Similar to how you prioritize customer support for a great customer experience, your vendor should do the same for you (their customer). Stay away from brands that don’t offer client support and service or have a poor reputation in this domain.
Satisfactory omnichannel customer experience is paramount for the success of your small business. We have enough data and real-life evidence to confidently say that a happy customer will retain and come back to your brand. They will even recommend your products/services to more people. But one poor experience can break loyalty and damage your reputation in no time, especially since social media has the power to influence customers’ buying decisions on a large scale.
Hence, selecting and investing in good omnichannel customer service software will help you create remarkable experiences for your customers on all platforms and build your brand loyalty like nothing else.