Zoho Desk vs Freshdesk 2019 Comparison

The need for a functional and reliable service desk system is clear. Yet, with so many of them released each year, it can be a lengthy task to decide which one is actually for you. That is why we stacked up two of the most popular options against each other. That is right, we are going to be talking about Zoho Desk vs Freshdesk. In this review, we’ll cover things such as usability, unique features, and naturally, pricing options. There’s a lot to cover as each of them is good in their respective right. Thus, without further delay, here’s our Freshdesk vs Zoho desk analysis.

Unique Features

As we’ve mentioned before, each tool has a wide set of exclusive functions that you won't find anywhere else. While it's true that some of them are quite similar to one another, they still have enough unique DNA in them to make them exclusive.

Zoho Desk

Multi-department system

To start off, let’s look what Zoho Desk has to offer. At glance, the service desk seems generic and uninteresting. Yet, once you dig deeper, you’ll notice one small little feature called “Multi-department” system. In a nutshell, this is a tool that helps you manage different things, in different departments, using only one user interface. Now, looking at it a little bit more, you’ll immediately notice the fact that the more departments you create, the easier it gets to manage them.

The reason why it gets easier is the fact that one size doesn’t fit all and this is precisely what we mean by easier. The more mini-departments we’ve created, the more granular we made the whole system. This ensured not only efficiency at all levels but made multi-brand marketing possible. Indeed, you don’t need an additional plugin/add-on to start doing omnichannel support/marketing.


Another key feature of Zoho Desk is Zia. For those unaware, Zia is an artificial intelligence (AI) system that is designed to help your salesman push more revenue at the cost of reducing time to market. In other words, with Zia under your belt, you can significantly reduce the time it takes your products or service to reach new customers. Also as part of the AI system is Zia Ask. This sub-feature allows you to share relevant solutions that are drawn from your knowledge base directly into the customer message chat. In essence, this allows you to tackle simple issues without the need for the round-the-clock support department.

Zia is also capable of assessing sentiment rate, or more specifically, how your customers feel about certain things. It isn’t explicitly stated how Zia does this but our guess is that she draws information from similar customers that stated this information publicly and performs a qualitative analysis that helps her determine what your customers might think. Each response from your customer is evaluated in real-time and in case of potentially negative outcomes, Zia will redirect the customer to a senior manager to avoid bad service. The company recently invested more into this tech so expect even greater results.


Event-triggered automation

This is perhaps one of the greatest things humanity ever produced. As soon as there’s an incident, milestone, or achievement reached, an automatic notification will pop-up. While it might seem simple enough, let’s put it into the perspective of an actual sales company, the impressions are dramatically different.

So, for instance, Agent John Doe delivered a good consumer service but the customer felt otherwise. The buyer then proceeds to leave a poor review of the whole process, damaging your reputation at the same time. However, you get instant notification with a link to the thread and an automated response template. This issue is known to you and you can easily do a follow-up that would address all the problems. Now imagine if you are operating with millions of customers monthly. If left unanswered, the number of non-mitigated issues will rise, the amount of unhappy customer bigger, and essentially your reputation as a company, damaged.


Although not a direct feature, few companies have such a wide security system. Indeed, comparing Zoho Desk vs Freshdesk in this regard, there’s no competition. While both are secure and there’s nothing to worry about, Freshdesk goes one step ahead and introduces Granular app management, SHA 256 encoding, and even Cross-site scripting mitigation. All these systems, security mechanisms, and encryptions will not only keep your data safe but will ensure that no internal breaches are possible.

If you are working in an enterprise level company, lots of things can happen as keeping everything under control get exceedingly harder. Yet, with Freshdesk, some of these issues aren’t even possible. Say, if one of your employees decides to leak data, he’ll have a hard time decrypting the SHA-256 file, and in case you plan on setting up a third-party app, with the Granular app management system you can set up a sandbox where you can do whatever you like.

Making your choice between Zoho Desk vs Freshdesk easier


Continuing our Freshdesk vs Zoho Desk, we have the usability section. Before we just into the analysis, we’d like to state that this is a very important aspect of any product. The reason is simple as no matter how many cool features you have, as long as they are hard to find and use, they are useless. Now on to the analysis.

Zoho Desk

While the majority of the system is actually well crafted, there are a few things we’d like to both praises and criticize at the same time. That is right, we’d like to talk about the user interface and the positioning of certain menus. To begin with, Zoho Desk overall visual language is quite simple and does not have a lot of fancy animations or even color schemes for that matter. What it does have is speed.

Yes, thanks to the simplistic design and lack of cool animations, the overall system is blazingly fast and does not put a strain on your hardware (CPU and RAM load is kept to a bare minimum). All reports, all widgets, and all dashboards loaded fast and without a hitch. This ensures that your work never stops and that all things load as fast as possible.

As for the UI/UX, the tool does not need any major layout revisions, although certain elements can be moved. For instance, the telephone is a div inside the current Zoho Desk browser tab and session. Once the salesperson answers the call, he/she cannot do anything inside it. It basically locks the person inside a cage and there’s very little you can do. It's a major design flaw and hopefully, they will fix the issue soon.


Looking at Freshdesk’s UI, it would be safe to state that it is indeed fresh. And not as if its green or anything. It's quite unique as it has everything laid out in a way that not only feels natural but very beneficial. Be it accessing agent data or scrolling through reports, all these movements feel natural and quite responsive. You can find basically everything in the left bar and in case you need something, you can always type a few keywords into the search bar to the right and it will find it.

Speaking of the search functionality, quite cool and bad at the same time. The good part is that it can find anything, the bad part is that it can be a mess. You see, for your search to be good and not cluttered with different things, you need to label and categorize stuff manually. Otherwise, a simple “John” search request will result in hundreds of different results. And obviously, it will take some time to sort out. Although the system does offer a filter, its far from ideal. Thus, word of advice, keep everything categorized as things can go south very fast.

On the brighter side of things, the automation options are pretty straightforward and require little knowledge to set up. In essence, all you need is good logic to set up a number of different rules that will help you streamline your work. Kudos to the developers that made this module so easy to run.

Make a decision between Zoho Desk vs Freshdesk

Pricing Options

The most interesting part of our Freshdesk vs Zoho Desk is of course pricing. However, there’s not much we can say about it. Both service desk systems offer a nice selection of different plans and it all depends on your organizations need. Yet, what we can do, is count the number of features per tariff. Do keep in mind that some features might seem irrelevant but we are focusing on quality alone. So, if it doesn’t fit within your space, it doesn’t mean its bad. Also, instead of listing each and every one of them, we’ll focus on the most popular options. A happy medium so to speak.


So, Freshdesk offers five distinct tariff plans. Each of them has more features than the previous one but we’ll be focusing on the “Estate” tariff plan. So, for a mere $49 user/month, you get access to automated ticket assignment, custom roles, enterprise reporting, portal customization, and Multiple SLAs & Timezones. Also, all Freshdesk plans come with omnichannel support. But overall, its a pretty nice package if you ask us, although it would be great if it also had Sandbox functionality. This thing is essential for testing new features, functions, or third-party apps.

Zoho Desk

As for Zoho Desk, you get a pretty similar looking package but at a lower cost. That’s right, their mid-tier tariff dubbed “Professional” is only €12 user/month and it comes with a set of cool features. So, those who opted for Zoho will get multi-channel support, automation, advanced SLAs with business hours, cloud telephony integrations, a dedicated Slack integration system, advanced reports & dashboards, and the previously mentioned Multi-department Management. There’s more to this tariff but they aren’t as prominent as these that we’ve mentioned. Overall, the plan is great and you get lots of different things at a comparatively lower price.

To Sum It Up

All in all, both service desk tools are good in their respective rights. There are a few advantages and disadvantages in each but regardless of which one you go with, you will surely accelerate your business operations. Both have a nice set of automation options and both have a good tracking system. Finally, each tool has an analytics suite and a reporting system that will allow you to plan things more effectively.

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