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14 Best Intercom Alternatives To Try for Free in 2024 (with AI)

Luca MicheliMay 22, 2024
14 Best Intercom Alternatives To Try for Free in 2024 (with AI)
Contents

If you’re seeking a robust customer communication platform, Intercom is likely one of the first names that come to mind.

However, as your business grows, you may find Intercom’s pricing and customization requirements becoming overwhelming.

Fortunately, there are many Intercom alternatives and competitors that offer similar, if not superior, features at more affordable prices.

In this article, we explore the top Intercom alternatives that can help streamline your customer engagement and enhance your service delivery without breaking the bank.

Why consider an Intercom alternative then?

Perhaps you already use Intercom, but the costs are rising as your business scales.

Lack of Transparent Pricing: One user expressed frustration with Intercom’s pricing, stating, “The pricing is not transparent at all, difficult to understand, and engineered to trick you.” They shared an experience where they needed a feature that would multiply their monthly bill by five and require a yearly commitment. This lack of clarity and sudden cost increases made them reconsider their decision to use Intercom.

Frequent and Unpredictable Fee Increases: A reviewer pointed out that their costs skyrocketed without warning, saying, “We initially were paying about $1k/month. This was fair. Then, Intercom rolled out new pricing with minimal warning. We now pay $4k/month.” The constant and unexpected price hikes for features, active contacts, or new users added to their dissatisfaction.

Technical Issues and Poor Usability: Intercom’s new features have also faced criticism. One user commented, “They replaced the ‘campaigns’ feature with the hideous ‘series’, which is buggy, has bad UI, is not responsive, and leads to severe mistakes.” This lack of reliability in new tools added to the overall negative experience.

Account Management Issues: A customer shared their frustration with inconsistent account management, stating, “We’ve also had to spend a lot of time transitioning to their new chat nurturing system… After switching over, we recently had an issue with our targeting which they acknowledged was a bug.” Frequent changes in account managers and unresolved technical issues left them feeling unsupported and exploited.

Missed Opportunities Due to Poor Notification System: One user criticized the notification settings, saying, “Horrible notification settings, so many missed opportunities and sales resulting from this, which is the whole reason why we have the platform in the first place! I cannot believe you can’t toggle notifications for individual channels; this seems like such a basic feature that has still not been implemented.”

These critiques highlight the need for transparency, reliability, and customer-centric practices, driving businesses to explore better alternatives.

Top 14 Intercom Competitors to Consider in 2024

Find the 14 best Intercom alternatives for customer support, engaging, and satisfying your customers without breaking the bank. Here you can find an extensive list of alternatives to Intercom for every company stage with fair pricing and switch tools to make the transition effortless.

  1. Customerly
  2. HelpCrunch
  3. Olark
  4. Crisp
  5. Freshdesk
  6. Twillio
  7. Hubspot Service Hub
  8. Drift
  9. LiveAgent
  10. ClickDesk
  11. LiveChat
  12. HelpScout
  13. Tidio

1. Customerly

Customerly, the Best Intercom alternative for SMEs, now features a GPT-powered AI, transforming traditional chatbot interactions into astonishing experiences for both customers and teammates, all at the most competitive price.

Customerly takes your messaging game to the next level.

It’s not just a platform; it’s a smart, behavioral messaging wizard, ensuring your message hits the mark exactly when your audience needs it.

With a toolbox filled with goodies like Live Chat & Help Center, marketing automation, and customer satisfaction enhancers, Customerly is your secret weapon for boosting both communication and customer happiness.

Here are some benefits Customerly offers to improve customer satisfaction and communication.

Conversational AI that actually works

Customerly launched an AI for Customer Service capable of handling simple and complex support requests in a conversational way.

You can support 24/7 in any language in the world and reduce your first response time to just 20s.

Customerly AI is very accurate and uses personalized responses that satisfy your customers.

And the best thing? This is the only thing you have to set up your AI assistant.

Ai Assistant for automated customer support

How does Customerly AI work?

It’s simple, connect your knowledge base to train the AI automatically and you are done.

Plus, if you want to create custom conversations with customers based on intents, you can do it with a series of missions.

As the example below shows, you can teach your AI Mission what it needs to do and this will be asked naturally as one of your support people would speak.

AI Mission for optimal customer support

Shared inbox 

Customerly’s goal is to help centralize all communications. This means you can have all data about your users, teams, and conversations in a shared inbox. 

What does this look like? 

On the left side, you can find:

  • Teammates 
  • Scheduled and mentioned messages 
  • Search bar 

This means that you can easily mention any of your teammates and assign them conversations.

You can also schedule messages for later, filter them based on several criteria and make tags showing each conversation’s progress. To save everybody’s time, you can set up your own canned responses with one short key in a second. 

This brings us to one of the most exciting features — the template builder. You can drag and drop text blocks, images, gifs, buttons, and many more without any coding knowledge. 

You can use these templates for:

If you don’t know where to start, Customerly also offers a rich library of pre-made templates that you can use.

Moving on to the right side now. Here, you can get all details about your users. This includes:

  • User information
  • Conversation history
  • Tags
  • Contact notes
  • Events
  • Lists
  • Rating 

Customerly also offers inline instant translation to help you communicate with people worldwide. If your customers need more than a written note, you can start a video call within the chat. No need to use any additional video conferencing tools. Pretty cool, right? 

Now let’s talk a bit more about Customerly’s Help center.

Help center

Customerly Help center

Did you know that the average cost for each support ticket is $5? Plus, research shows that 67% of people actually prefer self-service over a talk with a human agent. 

So why not give people all the information that they need?

Customerly helps you make a rich knowledge base that people can access within the chat widget. They don’t even have to switch tabs to open articles – they can read everything they need in a single place. Here’s how it works:

  1. Create a database of frequently discussed topics by adding relevant articles to the help center.
  2. Identify keywords within this database that people may look for.

Customerly then automatically matches customer requests to keywords and sends the right info to the customer. The best thing is that people can read all articles within the chat widget without opening new tabs.

Voila, customer crisis avoided and money saved!

What are the alternatives to Intercom Engage?

Customerly’s goal is to help companies satisfy through exceptional customer support and engage with their customers at any step of their journey, making it one of the best alternatives to Intercom Engage.

You can Engage automatically with your customers with chat triggers based on their behavior or status, and you can engage with beautifully crafted emails with Workflows.

The Workflows will let you build flows where your users will be engaged with emails and chat at any step.

You can use workflows to cover different campaigns, such as:

  • Onboarding
  • Behavioral-based followup
  • Customer reviews
  • Account recovery
  • Upgrade recovery

Customerly workflows are very easy to make. First, you need to create a list of contacts and identify the end goal of your emails. Second, you can create an email template (or simply choose from Customerly database). Finally, you must determine which emails or chats you want to automate and adjust the settings accordingly. 

To emphasize the importance of workflows, let us share some numbers. One of our clients ​​reported a 20% increase in customer engagement after implementing Customerly workflows. 

Customer Satisfaction

With Customerly, you can send quick surveys (starts with plenty of templates) to be answered directly through the live chat feature. This method provides up to 65% more responses than email surveys.

Customerly also tracks customer loyalty to your brand by emailing Net Promotor ScoreNPS—surveys that provide immediate customer feedback. 

You can use this feedback to identify what people enjoy the most and everything you need to improve.

Video Live Chat Support

Live chat widgets are available through many, if not all, Intercom alternatives on our list. Customerly, however, takes it up a notch with live video chat services to strengthen personal relationships with clients and ultimately increase revenue.

This feature provides real-time support to customers via desktop or mobile app. The built-in screen share option encourages a live step-by-step tutorial for customers to avoid any doubts or unanswered questions about their inquiries.

Team Reports

Improvements can’t be made without first measuring success. This is why Customerly believes in making reports for everything! 

  1. Chat Reports tell you how many conversations you get, how many you answer and how many are completed in one day. 
  2. Agent Reports show team performance. They prevent problems from happening with key metrics to follow progress. 
  3. Help Center Reports show you what articles from your Help Center are used the most and which aren’t as useful. 
  4. Failed Search Reports tell you what your customers are asking without getting any results. They can indicate what articles should be added to the help center. 

You’ll be shocked to see Customerly’s affordability with all these features and more.

Pricing plans

Customerly believes that is not fair to charge by contacts but where you see the most value: customer interactions.

  • ESSENTIAL – $7/month (3 teammates – 1000 Interactions) – $2.33 per teammate
    • Ideal for solo entrepreneurs or small groups that need a centralized inbox and a good marketing tool for delivering product updates
  • STARTUP – $39/month (6 teammates – 10000 Interactions) – $6.5 per teammate
    • This plan is intended for small teams that need unified communication and more marketing automation features. It encompasses everything in the basic plan plus marketing and email automation with a long list of integrations available.
  • PRO – $82/month (10 teammates – 20000 interactions) – $8.2 per teammate
    • Customerly’s most popular plan for established companies offers a complete suite for automation. Everything on the startup plan includes video calling, NPS, in-app surveys and preset canned responses.
  • ENTERPRISE – $249/month (15 teammates – 50000 Interactions)
    • Large teams benefit most from this option because it offers unlimited chat history and a tailored number of contacts for each business. All the features from the pro plan are present in addition to team reports, live translations, tailored onboarding and extremely rapid support.

Rating: 4.6/5

“I love that you can set up a knowledgebase along with a live chat for all visitor inquiries. Gone are the days when I’d have to use multiple software.”

These are companies that switched from Customerly to Intercom and found a great Intercom alternative at a fairer price.

Fatture in cloud: Leading Italian Invoicing Software counting 500K active users, switched from Intercom 6 years ago and increased ARPU with dedicated customer satisfaction tools.

Here is Daniele, CEO at Fatture in Cloud, who sent us a video review of their experience in searching for an intercom alternative and their successes by using Customerly toolset.

Paymo: Helps small businesses manage their projects from planning to invoicing and everything in between. “We wanted to switch from Intercom because it became unbearably expensive, and we tried to find a reliable app that could offer the same features at a more affordable price.”

Nibol: Their mission is to make people free to work and connect anywhere they feel happier. “Customerly not only has Messaging, Live Chat, NPS, and Help Centre exactly as we needed, it also has a team that constantly supports us in making the best use of the tool”. Switched from Intercom in 2022.

Customerly Review

2. HelpCrunch

Best Intercom alternative for handling multi-channel support.

HelpCrunch dashboard

HelpCrunch is another highly-rated Intercom alternative to consider. This platform prides itself on its multi-channel customer support. 

You can stay connected to your customer base on one dashboard—regardless of the conversation’s origin.

People usually love HelpCrunch because of its transparent pricing, customer-centric support team and customizable chat. 

You can also use the help center as a full-time self-service solution for customers, reducing support costs.

Key features:

  1. You have access to unlimited chats and contacts.
  2. The free migration tool helps transfer data smoothly.
  3. Integration ability connects HelpCrunch to other apps and tools.
  4. One shared space controls and centralizes chats on many channels.

Drawbacks:

  • Many users reported frequent bugs in vital systems such as notifications and untimely messaging triggers.
  • Cancelation results in immediate termination of a subscription with no refund for the remainder of the subscription period.

Cost:

  • FREE TRIAL – 14 days
  • BASIC – $12 pp/month
  • PRO – $20 pp/month

“Excellent price point and has all the most important features I was looking for. Support has been excellent for me so far to help me get started. It also has a multilingual feature that I absolutely need for my Canadian customers.”

HelpCrunch review

Rating: 4.8/5

3. Olark

Best Intercom alternative for small businesses in search of a live chat solution.

Olark dashboard

Olark is a live chat software system that allows you to engage with customers instantly. Website visitors can easily contact your business directly through a chatbot on your website with this live chat feature. 

The live chat system permanently saves chat transcripts for future reference. This means that you can use keyword searches through old chats to find a solution quickly.

Using these transcripts, you can also form canned responses for shortcut replies when dealing with frequently addressed topics. 

Key features:

  1. The user-friendly interface is straightforward and fits most website designs.
  2. Live chat software quickly puts customers in direct communication with a company.
  3. Transcripts filled with product feedback track customer satisfaction.

Drawbacks:

  • The integration system is difficult to manipulate and requires the need for outside applications.
  • There is a lack of necessary customization features for individual businesses because of the one-size-fits-all approach of the software. 
  • There isn’t a mobile app for users to respond on the go.

Cost:

  • FREE TRIAL – 14 days
  • BASIC – $29 pp/month
  • PRO – unique pricing plan

Rating: 4.3/5

“Olark offered the basic features that you’ll need for your business to start chatting with customers on your website. It has an easy-to-use interface. Chat is another avenue to engage with customers who are not willing to call or email.”

Olark review 

4. Crisp

Best Intercom alternatives for small businesses to interact manually with visitors on site.

Crisp dashboard

Crisp is primarily known as one of the cheaper Intercom alternatives when it comes to customer service software. They even offer a free limited plan.

The advanced ticketing system streamlines customer communication. All support agents can view tickets simultaneously using this system. The option to create automated messages for each ticket is also helpful when the team is extra busy or out-of-office.

Key features:

  1. Crisp is affordable and offers a free basic plan for new businesses.
  2. It has an advanced ticketing system that puts all customer communications in one shared inbox.
  3. An interactive video game entertains website visitors while they wait for a response.

Drawbacks:

  • There is no keyword search option within chats and using designated search filters is complicated.
  • This customer service platform doesn’t track many essential customer satisfaction metrics and therefore lacks reporting abilities.
  • It only works well for small companies because of some missing essential features—like private inboxes and team chat widgets.

Cost:

  • ESSENTIAL – free forever plan (2 people)
  • PRO – $25/month (4 people)
  • UNLIMITED – 95$/month (20 people)

Rating: 4.5/5

“I love the feature set they have, and the support is very responsive. We are using the service for 6 months since launched MVP and going to upgrade soon as the activity is increasing. I also love their different language feature as we are servicing clients globally.”

Crisp review 

5. Freshdesk

Best Intercom alternative for businesses ticket oriented and call center support focussed.

Freshdesk dashboard

Freshdesk is good for growing businesses because the pricing plan is agent-dependent. You can easily add additional customer support staff to the account at any time and the price of the selected plan increases accordingly.

Another reason Freshdesk is one of the popular Intercom alternatives is advanced security. The company performs frequent network and system audits to ensure maximum user protection and data protection.

Key features

  1. The Freshdesk messaging system lets you see all messages in one place, no matter what media they are initiated on.
  2. Multiple service representatives can handle the same conversation together using shared ownership.
  3. Integrations are available with multiple social media outlets, including Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp.

Drawbacks:

  • It is impossible to manage customer feedback about products and services in an organized way.
  • There is no centralized location that includes all client information relevant when answering customer concerns and handling inquiries.
  • A deficit in the customer service department is known to cause a shortage of direct, quick responses.

Cost:

  • FREE – free plan (10 agents)
  • GROWTH – $18 pp/month
  • PRO – $59 pp/month
  • ENTERPRISE – $95 pp/month

Rating: 4.5/5

“The interface is intuitive and customizable, and the canned responses save a great deal of time for my team and me. The interface allows us to see all open tickets and of all closed tickets, and there is a search function that has never failed me”

Freshdesk review 

6. Twilio

Best Intercom alternative for data-based companies.

Twilio dashboard

Twilio is one of the most data-based Intercom alternatives on the list. The Twilio Segment customer data platform—CDP—provides insight into each customer with immediate first-party information.

This customizable application on this software offers a unique experience for each business. This includes everything from marketing campaigns to the flexible cloud contact center.

Key features:

  1. Twilio Live is a space where you can build interactive audio and video to live-stream for clients.
  2. Twilio Frontline safely connects customers to employees from anywhere.
  3. Twilio Segment personalizes campaigns on different channels and involves a single API to collect and unify customer data on the database.

Drawbacks:

  • Recently, many Twilio phone numbers have been blocked by phone companies making it hard to get in touch with your client base.
  • The API account is not very marketer-friendly and is more geared toward developers.
  • The setup of the customer service software requires a knowledge of code and is complex.

Cost:

  • FREE TRIAL – includes limited complimentary account balance
  • FLEXIBLE – feature usage-based pricing plans
    • SendGrid Email API – $14.95/month
    • WhatsApp Business API – $0.005/message
    • Programmable Messaging – $0.0075/message

Rating: 4.6/5

“Fantastic service for the money they ask for! Twilio is a wonderful tool for building an infrastructure for making phone calls and sending SMS messages. Certainly, it has a learning curve, but overall it’s much easier to get set up and running than most of its competitors in the industry.” 

Twilio review

7. Hubspot Service Hub

Best Intercom alternatives for Sales purposes. Mainly mid-size companies.

Hubspot dashboard

Hubspot is a pretty popular name in the sales and marketing industry. It makes sense that they would branch out and offer a customer service hub to their repertoire.

This could be a practical Intercom alternative for you if you already use other Hubspot tools.  Being familiar with the desk software makes it easier to get started using the live chat, omnichannel messaging platform and inbound calling features.

Key features:

  1. Hubspot has a straightforward customer portal where customers can guide their own experience and see their chat history with service reps.
  2. VoIP calling is available to make calls to your clientele directly through the platform.
  3. The CRM used in the service hub is well-known and has already proven to be highly functional in marketing and sales.

Drawbacks:

  • The customer portal is short on features, only offering ticket tracking.
  • The conversation search feature is said to be inaccurate with mismatching results when trying to encounter an exact phrase or word.
  • Initially, it takes a while to set up your account and get used to the abundance of information and tools available.

Cost:

  • FREE – free plan for basic CRM
  • STARTER – $45/month (2 people)
  • PROFESSIONAL – $375/month (5 people)
  • ENTERPRISE – $1,200/month (10 people)

Rating: 4.5/5

“HubSpot Marketing Hub is easy to use and includes many excellent tools to help marketers do their job. Nothing feels clunky or like a disjointed, hamfisted acquisition add-on. The HubSpot team constantly adds new functionality and features, driving more value to users.”

Hubspot review 

8. Drift

Best Intercom alternatives for Sales automation.

Automation is key to Drift customer relationship management. The AI-powered customer service chatbots give assistance immediately and can be customized to fit the unique look of your business.

Drift’s main objective is growing your revenue and pipeline. That is why the live chat feature is not only used by the support agents, but also by the sales and marketing team. You have the ability to assist, up-sell and advertise all in one conversation.

Here is an extensive comparison between Intercom and Drift.

Key features:

  1. Self-service bots autonomously answer customer requests at lightning speed so nobody is ignored or put on hold.
  2. Service metrics such as CSAT score and deflection rate are calculated for the future optimization of your business.
  3. Drift mobile app for IOS and Android is a great way to keep in touch with customers on busy days.

Drawbacks:

  • The Drift code has been reported to have a relatively slow loading time on websites that delays the customer experience.
  • There is no way to organize your customer base by region unless they are located in Canada or the US.
  • Bots require constant upkeep and management and will malfunction if left unattended.

Cost:

  • FREE – free plan available (1 seat)
  • PLANS – Prices not disclosed
    • PREMIUM – small businesses (estimated $600/month for 10 seats)
    • ADVANCED – medium businesses
    • ENTERPRISE – large businesses

Rating: 4.5/5

“It is helpful that the platform is able to understand what human is saying and know what part of the website to point someone to. It can also send PDFs of white pages that someone may have an interest in seeing.”

Drift review

9. LiveAgent

Best Intercom alternative for ticketing software at a fair price.

LiveAgent dashboard

LiveAgent is an Intercom alternative that communicates its priority through its name. A ticketing system controls live chat conversations. In these convos, live chat agents utilize customer profiles when answering customer questions.

It’s one of the great live chat Intercom alternatives with an extensive list of 135 features. Animated chat button and personalization components give LiveAgent an edge up in the market.

Key features:

  1. Agent collision detection prevents multiple agents from working on the same ticket simultaneously to increase efficiency.
  2. It’s possible to video call with customers and colleagues through the call center system.
  3. The tool offers 212 seamless integrations including Slack, Gmail and Optimal Call.

Drawbacks:

  • The fact that everything is customizable means that you need to take time to manually adjust features.
  • User experience can be complicated because chat history can’t be saved. If you accidentally log-out you need to start the exchange again.

Cost:

  • FREE – free limited plan available (1 person)
  • TICKET – $15 pp/month
  • TICKET & CHAT – $29 pp/month
  • ALL-INCLUSIVE – $49 pp/month

Rating: 4.7/5

“LiveAgent is a really eas to set up tool which heps us a lot in our day to day work. It takes a lot of work from us and offers a really simple but great overview about all your problems. It is very beneficial and worth it’s money for sure.” 

LiveAgent review 

10. ClickDesk

Best Intercom alternative for small support teams.

ClickDesk dashboard

The coolest thing about ClickDesk is the video chat feature. Customer support agents can give detailed explanations through a video chat with their customers in just one click. 

ClickDesk also offers a mobile app for its powerful live chat tool. This functionality is super flexible and supports quality customer interactions. Live chat mobile makes it simple to answer customer questions from any place at any time.

Key features:

  1. Live chat software on ClickDesk includes video and voice messaging capabilities to make explaining complex solutions easier.
  2. Social media integration increases traffic by connecting to the customer through the live chat app.

Drawbacks:

  • Various reviews described the customer support department as subpar with long wait times and no refund policy.
  • ClickDesk software always requires an internet connection and is not convenient when you are out of the office. 

Cost:

  • FREE – free plan for 10 users
  • LITE – $14.99 pp/month
  • PRO – $24.99 pp/month
  • ENTERPRISE – $39.99 pp/month

Rating: 3.6/5

“Very user friendly for the agents, no need to be tech savvy to use it, easy implementation, great knowledge base.”

ClickDesk review

11. LiveChat

Best Intercom alternative for e-commerce owners.

LiveChat dashboard

LiveChat is for those looking for a more direct help desk software without all the bells and whistles. It is made to support customers without a complicated setup or time-consuming app modifications.

LiveChat’s interactive messaging platform shares announcements, promotes new products and interacts with customers on a more personal level. On this platform you can reach out to clients with a personalized message based on their profile and behavior on your site.

Key features:

  1. It’s simple to save and reuse canned responses with a convenient hash-tag search tool to speed things up.
  2. The 14-day trial lets users explore all the features listed on the team plan for free.
  3. Tagging conversations according to their context, with department name or title of the issue filters, reports in an organized way. 

Drawbacks:

  • LiveChat pricing is relatively expensive when compared to other Intercom alternatives.
  • The chats are not customizable based on appearance and are pretty basic as far as design goes.

Cost:

  • FREE TRIAL – 14 days
  • STARTER – $24 pp/month
  • TEAM – $49 pp/month
  • BUSINESS – $69 pp/month

Rating: 4.7/5

“Live chat provides a rapid and personalized communication with your clients which helps you grab your clients attention and get business from them. Live chat has very customer focused approach and it provides the right tools to help your business.”

LiveChat review

12. HelpScout

Best Intercom alternative for small teams searching for a solid customer service tool.

HelpScout dashboard

HelpScout has been in the game since 2011. It has the quality customer service experience it takes to be a great Intercom alternative.

The highest-rated features include email-to-case, ticket response user experience and the centralized customer portal. Helpscout can help you increase company productivity by 52% through an organized inbox and task automation.

The tool’s customer support software fits well with companies of all sizes and client bases, from small businesses to giant enterprises.

Key features:

  1. A collaborative shared inbox simplifies multi-departmental customer inquiries and provides a channel for private note-sharing with co-workers.
  2. The customer management section saves customer information to individual profiles so that they can be looked up during future conversations.
  3. Beacon is a Helpscout tool that suggests relative help content and gives a customer access to their company-wide chat history.

Drawbacks:

  • Duplicate help tickets and profiles are often created for the same client and require after-the-fact manual merging.
  • Finding old tickets once a case is closed can be tiresome and takes a lot of digging.
  • The list of available integrations is not as extensive as other Intercom alternatives.

Cost:

  • FREE TRIAL – 15 days
  • STANDARD – $25 pp/month
  • PLUS – $50 pp/month
  • PRO – $65 pp/month annual plan

Rating: 4.5/5 

“Very easy to set up and maintain a workflow. As a result, our customers are very happy with the human support and self-service received. Docs are awesome – our team can plan accordingly, write and publish the product documentation in one place.”

HelpScout review 

13. Zendesk

Best Intercom alternative for enterprises searching for a ticketing system.

Zendesk dashboard

Zendesk holds its efficient ticketing system in pretty high regard. It can organize, set a status and transfer tickets rapidly to decrease customer wait time.

Zendesk help desk software provides cross-channel support through a centralized CRM that is marketed mainly toward larger businesses. The software can increase ROI by strengthening employee satisfaction and saving big on licensing.

Key features:

  1. The self-service feature has an extensive knowledge base to help website visitors find the answer before contacting you.
  2. Zendesk offers more than 1000 integrations with common business apps.
  3. The ticketing system is the gold standard and is more reliable when compared to Intercom.

Drawbacks:

  • The AI chatbots are complicated to set up and control if you don’t have prior experience.
  • There is no email campaign marketing offered through Zendesk.
  • The company support staff does not always know details about all the extensive features available in the more expensive plans, leaving you to figure them out on your own.

Cost:

  • FREE TRIAL – 14 days
  • SUITE TEAM – $49 pp/month
  • SUITE GROWTH – $79 pp/month
  • SUITE PROFESSIONAL – $99 pp/month

Rating: 3/5

“It gives you the freedom and tools to develop a structure in your customer support channels while maintaining flexibility to adapt to your needs. Evaluations of competitors have shown a higher degree of personalization.”

Zendesk review 

14. Tidio

Best Intercom alternative for easiness of building chatbots.

Tidio dashboard

The main objective of this Intercom alternative is to combine customer service with sales to generate more revenue. This is done through the live chat widget, chatbot tools and the offering of various discounts during the user experience journey.

Not to mention, the free account with Tidio is one of the last-standing free Intercom alternatives available and includes a lifetime of unlimited conversations.

Key features:

  1. Facebook Messenger integration is the most popular integration used with Tidio.
  2. Customer inquiries are departmentalized based on whether they require assistance with sales, support or finance.
  3. There is a decent free lifetime plan available for 1 agent that includes basic features and software needed for quality customer service.

Drawbacks:

  • Many user reviews mention that the notification sounds on Tidio are equally loud and mismatched for the client and support team members.
  • The integrations are lackluster in comparison to other intercom alternatives.
  • The user can’t change plans once they sign up for an account and are stuck with the plan they initially chose.

Cost:

  • FREE – free limited plan available (1 person)
  • COMMUNICATOR – $19 pp/month
  • CHATBOTS – $39 pp/month
  • TIDIO+ – $289 pp/month

Rating: 4.7/5

“Being able to see when an active visitor is on the site, and being able to take over the chat when the boot is unable to continue to increase the interactions with the customer.”

Tidio review 

Why search for Intercom alternatives?

As you probably know by now, Intercom is a popular customer communication platform that is used for sales and customer support. Its most notable features include a modern messenger and interactive live chat installable on any website.

So…why should anyone be searching for the best Intercom alternatives in 2022?

1. Cost

Intercom is expensive. Companies with limited budgets are no longer able to afford this once-novel business messenger software.

Besides, the Intercom alternatives provided on the list above have similar features and are cheap as chips in comparison!

2. Customer service

It’s been said that the Intercom customer service department needs to step its game up, especially considering the company offers customer service software!

Customers are searching for viable Intercom alternatives because of delayed responses and the passing around of tickets through departments with no answer in the end. 

3. Bugs

Bugs happen, we get it. However, fewer glitches are expected from a senior customer service platform such as Intercom.

These Intercom bugs are highly evident in their email automation tool feature. These software problems have also been reported as long-standing, among other important company features.

How to find the best intercom alternative?

Finding the best Intercom alternative really depends on what your company prioritizes from its customer service platform.

  • Does your business rely heavily on social media for inquiries or customer engagement? 

You probably want to choose an Intercom alternative that integrates well with big names in social media—Facebook, Instagram or WhatsApp for example.

           

  • Is your business expected to grow exponentially within the upcoming years? 

It’s important to consider a transparent flexible pricing plan which allows enough interactions compared to the traditional contact-based pricing plans. You won’t be charged per contact anymore but only with the contact, you are interacting with. Also, you need to be able to add service agents for a reasonable fee.

  • Are you tired of poor customer service quality from your current customer service support provider? 

Choose Intercom alternatives that focus on addressing any issues with real solutions. i.e. How to get more opens of your email campaigns.

Different Intercom alternatives will work for different businesses. You must choose a software solution that aligns with your company’s specific goals and objectives.

Intercom Alternatives Comparison Table

Standout FeaturesPro Plan Price Offers Free Plan
CustomerlyUnlimited Contacts & Intuitive Help Center & NPS Score Surveys $82/month (10 users)YES
Help CrunchUnlimited Chats & Contacts$20/month
(1 user)
NO
OlarkReport TranscriptsUnique PricingNO
CrispAdvanced Ticketing System$25/month
(4 users)
YES
FreshdeskShared Conversations $59/month
(1 user)
YES
TwilioMulti-Media Personalized Campaigns Flexible PricingNO
HubspotVoIP Direct Calling $375/month (5 users)YES
DriftSelf-Service Bots$600/month (10 users)YES
LiveAgent212 Integrations$29/month
(1 user)
YES
ClickDeskLive Chat Video & Voice Messaging$25/month
(1 user)
YES
LiveChat“#”-Driven Canned Responses$49/month
(1 user)
NO
HelpScoutCollaborative Inbox Note Sharing$65/month
(1 user
NO
ZendeskOrganized Ticketing$79/month
(1 user)
NO
TidioFacebook Messenger Integration$39/month
(1 user)
YES

Wrapping up

To conclude, it’s all about quality customer support and communication channels when trying to boost business. 

Intercom is not the only player in the game and certainly not the g.o.a.t. in customer service. With over 800 customer service software listed on the G2 website, you can be sure there is a better solution.

Take Customerly for a test drive with the 14-day free trial to really experience the difference that the best Intercom alternative can make for your customers!

FAQ

  • Who are Intercom’s competitors?

    Intercom competitors are customer service platforms offering features and software similar to Intercom but at a better price. They include customer services software companies such as Customerly, HelpCrunch and Orlark.

  • Is Intercom like Zendesk?

    Intercom and Zendesk are both customer service platforms that offer similar features but are not the same. Zendesk’s features focus on personalized messaging, while Intercom has more variety of broader software and customer service tools.

  • Can I use Intercom for free?

    Intercom offers a 14-day free trial for customers who enter their credit card details at sign-up. After the 14-day trial period, there is no free plan available with Intercom.

Luca Micheli

Luca Micheli

CEO @ Customerly

Luca Micheli is a serial tech entrepreneur with one exited company and a passion for bootstrap digital projects. He's passionate about helping companies to succeed with marketing and business development tips.

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