Freshdesk vs Zendesk: How to Choose from Two Leaders?

For rival companies like Freshdesk and Zendesk, the ongoing competition may seem exhausting. But for us, customers, it means better service, more features, and opportunities for business.

Let’s try to compare two leaders of the help desk software market and reveal their peculiarities despite the seeming likeness.

The History and Background of the Two Help Desks

Zendesk team comes from Copenhagen, Denmark. There were the first three guys who worked as freelancers for different companies. So one day they united their efforts and brains to create a software that would bring more zen into customer management service. They officially launched a startup in 2007, October. In about one year Zendesk boasted of acquiring the 1,000th customer and moved to San Francisco.

Number of employees: over 2,000
Paid accounts: 145,000
Notable customers: Uber, Slack, Shopify, Loreal

Freshdesk was founded in 2010 in India by two friends. As the official story on their website says, it was all due to the broken TV and bad customer service that they experienced. In 2011, June, Freshdesk overtook all rivals in the Microsoft BizSpark Startup Challenge and became a winner. It took them six months to get 100 customers and use that successful start as a platform for further growth.

Number of employees: over 900
Companies using Freshdesk: over 150,000
Notable customers: Honda, Unicef, Cisco, Hugo Boss.

Pricing Plans: Freshdesk vs Zendesk

Both Freshdesk and Zendesk have five pricing plans. Freshdesk offers a free plan for an unlimited number of agents while choosing Zendesk cheapest plan you start with $5 per agent per month. If you compare help desks plans one by one, you will find Freshdesk to be slightly cheaper. And by the number of features, Freshdesk usually beats Zendesk, too.

On the other hand, the number of features has never been the core advantage in choosing software for business. It is more important to figure out what features are essential and give the most advantage to the team.

Comparing Notable Features of Notable Platforms

In addition to essential functionality, each company tries to offer its customers a range of unique advantages.


Freshdesk is the one who offers a gamification system called Freshdesk Arcade. The aim of the system is to rise agents’ productivity and make their work less routine. An administrator sets the goals and defines rewards like badges and points for completing certain tasks.

Another great Freshdesk feature is Proactive Outreach. Its main working principle is to identify possible customer issues and then resolve them in advance. The system will detect some frustration or trouble signals and help your support team reach out to them to proactively offer assistance.

Freshdesk team has also thought about reminders for their users' teams, so that's why there's a feature like to-do reminders. As to their functionality, they enable both agents and admins to create lists that contain the tasks for later. But! There's also an ability to set up a reminder which will send a notification to the chosen agent when it's time to complete the task. Let your support reps remember everything they have to do!


In turn, Zendesk developed its Benchmark tool to let companies compare key help desk metrics with 25,000 companies all over the world.

One of the Zendesk unique features is an automated ticket sharing. This feature is appreciated by big companies as it enables share tickets sharing between multiple Zendesk accounts. Freshdesk, on the other hand, allows to speed up the work by using keyboard shortcuts.

Last, but not the least important features are Essentials Card and Interaction History which always work together for providing customer context. They enable agents to always know and remember the basics and peculiarities of each customer case. And could you not agree that they are the best opportunities for making your customer support more personalized than ever?

What is common?

Lastly, both Zendesk and Freshdesk offer various customization options, the ability to adjust the Help Center and Support Portal being the most valuable. Thus, they will feel like extensions of your own websites and customers won't lose themselves in an unfamiliar environment.

Both platforms also offer a sandbox for more expensive plans as well. It's an environment for testing new features, and settings without affecting the actual workflow. So, using any of these two, you can be sure to check all the modifications knowing that they will bring only improvements to your service.

Although both Freshdesk and Zendesk have a substantial set of features and offer streamlined help desks, Freshdesk is considered to be a solution for small and medium teams, while Zendesk better serves the needs of medium and large teams.

Freshdesk is considered to be a solution for small and medium teams, while Zendesk better serves the needs of medium and large teams.

Bottom Lines

  1. Both Freshdesk and Zendesk are leaders in their industry. Choosing one software or another, you will anyway get great software with all the tools to provide first class customer support.
  2. The best way to compare Freshdesk vs Zendesk is to try both tools. During the trial period, you will see what system is more comfortable to work with.
  3. Don’t let the hesitation make you postpone the decision. However, precisely you choose the help desk, your needs may change. With migration tools switching from one help desk to another doesn’t seem such a huge problem.

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