Useful Tools

The Top 10 Intercom Alternatives in 2024

11 minutes

The Top 10 Intercom Alternatives in 2024

Establishing swift and effective communication with customers is the top priority for any business. It’s vital for the audience’s convenience and business success, as it’s a reliable way to boost lead generation and revenue. Entrepreneurs use various tools to provide 24/7 support, including a live chat.

Intercom is one of the most recognized platforms on the market designed for sales and support teams to ensure real-time communication. It allows you to assist customers when they need it the most and keeps chat histories for future reference. So, if users come back, they can pick up where they left off. The platform provides multiple communication options, including chatbots, apps, and in-app messages.

However, it’s important to note that Intercom isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. While it excels in some areas, it might not cover all your needs. Its suitability heavily depends on your business size, short-term and long-term goals, and budget. In this blog post, we will uncover the critical features of this solution and compare them with Intercom alternatives so that you can identify the best option for your team.

Intercom features and capabilities

Intercom offers businesses a wide range of live chat features, so let’s explore them individually.

  • Chat widget. It easily integrates into your website, so your website and app visitors can quickly and easily interact with your customer support team as needed.
  • Customization. You can change the widget’s color, font, and positioning to ensure it fits your website’s design and brand style.
  • Saved chat history. You can access all conversation histories, which allows your support team to provide more context-aware answers when assisting customers.
  • Canned responses. When your clients ask generic questions, your support team can use predefined responses to save time, which results in improved response times.
  • Routing. It allows customer support agents to assign specific users and tasks to their team members. It means they can direct customer inquiries to agents best equipped to answer particular client questions accurately.
  • Integrations. Intercom offers many integrations across CRM, email, ticketing, reporting tools, social channels, and internal databases so that you can effortlessly connect it with essential tools as your company evolves.
  • Ticketing system. It allows you to provide personalized, in-context resolutions regardless of the complexity of the query. Through Messenger-first tickets, your team can effectively address issues of varying complexity levels and increase customer satisfaction with your company.

Now, let’s go over the disadvantages you may encounter when using Intercom.

Intercom disadvantages

While Intercom is a powerful tool for customer support and sales teams, it has drawbacks. Now, let’s explore some disadvantages that may prompt you to explore solutions similar to Intercom.

  • Intercom pricing. While it can be an excellent choice for larger enterprises, there may be more suitable options for startups and solo entrepreneurs. Some users might find the software to be on the expensive side. Besides, if a startup needs additional features like automation, chatbots, and specific integrations, Intercom pricing can increase accordingly. The platform’s cost depends on the number of team members you have, so as your business grows and your team expands, be prepared for a hefty price increase.
  • Support limitations. Many users have reported a low level of customer support engagement when experiencing issues with the platform. It might take several hours or days for the support team to respond, which can be frustrating. Furthermore, extended wait times for the resolution of technical issues can, in turn, hamper your team’s productivity.
  • Integration issues. While Intercom offers an impressive number of integrations, you may need some help integrating the platform with other software or databases. The platform often demands a level of technical expertise, which can make it harder for you to complete all the necessary setups.
  • Complexity. With its advanced features, Intercom might be challenging to configure and take a while to learn, especially if you’re new to live chat software.
  • Limited knowledge base. Intercom’s knowledge base is less extensive than some other online chat builders, so when it comes to troubleshooting and finding solutions independently, your options may be limited to a specific set of steps. In many cases, you will still need to contact customer support for assistance.
  • Platform dependency. Since the software is cloud-based, users rely entirely on its availability and performance. Any service interruptions that occur can impact your ability to communicate with clients effectively.

Now that you understand the platform’s features and disadvantages let’s proceed to the next section, where we review the top ten Intercom alternatives.

Best Intercom alternatives

Now, let’s explore the best Intercom alternatives that cater to varying business sizes, budgets, and feature needs so you can make an informed decision.

SendPulse

SendPulse is an excellent platform for companies of all sizes looking to combine multiple effective marketing channels to engage with their audience and encourage them to convert. In addition to email marketing service, chatbot builder, landing page builder, and automation, the service allows you to add a live chat to your business website.

The live chat provided by SendPulse is fully customizable, allowing you to tailor its appearance to your preferences. You have the flexibility to determine when the chat widget will appear on your website based on customer activity or pre-defined scenarios. With the platform, you can also manage chats across various channels from one page, facilitating faster problem-solving by your team.

Furthermore, this alternative to Intercom’s live chat allows you to create deals right in the live chat by specifying customer actions that trigger the automatic generation of new deals in SendPulse’s CRM system.

A notable advantage of SendPulse’s live chats is its automation possibilities. You can integrate an automated chatbot flow into your live chat to gather user data, help customers choose a product or service, answer popular questions, speed up your response time, or even accept payments. You can also integrate ChatGPT with your live chat to add more depth to your automated live chat responses.

live chat widget
Customizing a live chat widget in SendPulse

SendPulse key features:

  • intuitive and user-friendly interface;
  • PayPal, Stripe, Mercado Pago, and Flutterwave payment systems;
  • fully customizable chat widget design;
  • testing;
  • dialog history;
  • multiple messaging platforms in one view;
  • chatbot and ChatGPT integrations;
  • canned responses;
  • real-time messaging;
  • responsive layout;
  • mobile app.

Pricing:

  • a free plan;
  • paid plans start at $10 monthly.

You can create a SendPulse account and send up to 10,000 chat messages for free each month.

Help Scout

Help Scout is an excellent platform for customer support that doesn’t require any special skills or knowledge. It offers an intuitive and user-friendly interface and avoids complex jargon or ticket numbers, making it easier to understand.

With Help Scout, you can conveniently access all customer messages and provide swift responses. The service’s live chat window only appears when a customer support agent is available so that the customers can receive a quick response. If that’s not the case, customers can seamlessly switch to email or another communication channel.

This Intercom competitor also allows you to encourage users to find answers on their own by recommending articles from your knowledge base or FAQs based on their browsing history. Customers can instantly communicate with your customer support agents in real time for more severe issues.

Designing a live chat
Designing a live chat in Help Scout

Help Scout key features:

  • self-help support;
  • customization of user experience;
  • cross-channel support;
  • personalization;
  • tagging;
  • real-time messaging;
  • canned responses;
  • file sharing;
  • routing;
  • AI assistance;
  • 100+ integrations​​;
  • conversation history.

Pricing:

  • a 15-day trial;
  • paid plans start at $25 per user monthly.

Zendesk

Zendesk is a user-friendly platform that combines sales and support solutions. Its live chat features allow businesses of different sizes to deliver quality responses to customer inquiries.

The platform offers comprehensive customization options, including color, font, and style adjustments that you can tailor to your brand style. It also lets you gather customer information before the chat begins, including customer name, activity, visits, and chat history. It is a great way to personalize interactions and provide the most relevant assistance.

With Zendesk’s shortcut feature, your team can build templated responses to frequently asked questions to improve your response time.

customer inquiries
Managing customer inquiries; source: Zendesk

Zendesk key features:

  • AI-powered responses;
  • sentiment identification;
  • proactive messages;
  • 1,200 integrations;
  • history of interactions;
  • custom pre-chat forms;
  • shortcuts feature;
  • unified omnichannel solution;
  • chat widget customization;
  • prewritten responses;
  • chatbots.

Pricing:

  • a 14-day trial;
  • paid plans start at $69 per user monthly.

Drift

Drift is a conversational marketing software designed to automate client communication through chatbots and live chat. It facilitates quick real-time interaction with customers, helping business owners provide their customers with the necessary assistance.

This Intercom competitor offers extensive customization options for your live chat widget, allowing you to change its style, format, fonts, colors, and styles to reflect your brand image. The platform also supports personalized customer communication, allowing you to understand customer behavior and referral sources before initiating conversations.

chat widget
Customizing a chat widget; source: Drift

Drift key features:

  • real-time messaging;
  • intuitive interface;
  • conversational playbooks;
  • chatbots;
  • routing;
  • customization;
  • personalization;
  • meeting scheduling.

Pricing:

  • no free plan or trail;
  • paid plans start at $2,500 monthly (billed annually).

Customerly

Customerly is an AI-powered live chat software designed to elevate your users’ experience across onboarding, interactions, and conversions. This service offers an excellent auto-reply feature that directs users to your help center, ensuring faster resolution of issues. Also, Customerly’s video live chat and screen share feature is helpful for showcasing products, arranging demos, and addressing customer concerns.

With the service’s chat previews, you can instantly see what users are typing before they send the message, which grants your team more time to search for the relevant answer and send it faster. Besides, this Intercom alternative also provides canned responses to allow your team to respond to FAQs with pre-made solutions quickly.

Customerly live chat
Communication with customers through Customerly live chat; source: Customerly

Customerly key features:

  • canned responses;
  • conversation history;
  • chat triggers;
  • AI-enhanced conversation inbox;
  • video live chat and screen share;
  • chat previews;
  • file sharing.

Pricing:

  • a free plan;
  • paid plans start at $9 for three teammates monthly.

Userlike

Userlike empowers you to support your customers and provide assistance throughout all stages of their buyer journey. It is an excellent Intercom alternative as the platform’s Website Messenger allows you to establish instant connections with potential customers.

With Userlike’s live chat, your customer support agents don’t have to be online 24/7. Its offline mode allows you to automatically send forms to customers to gather the necessary information to contact them once your agents are back online. Userlike’s Proactive chat can help you initiate conversations at specific points of the customer journey, address issues at the right moments, and guide clients toward making informed purchasing decisions.

Since the platform provides omnichannel experiences, you can allow users to choose the most suitable communication platforms. Agents can manage chats across various channels within one view, which makes it faster and more convenient to reply.

chat widget
Customizing a chat widget in Userlike; source: YouTube

Userlike key features:

  • proactive chat;
  • online and offline modes;
  • registration mode;
  • multimedia messaging;
  • instant feedback;
  • full customization;
  • easy installation;
  • integrations;
  • prewritten responses;
  • chatbots.

Pricing:

  • a free plan;
  • paid plans start at $100 monthly.

Olark

Olark is a multichannel solution prioritizing empathy, equity, and inclusivity. The service’s chatbot is ADA-compliant and surpasses WCAG 2.1 AA standards, ensuring you can assist all customers visiting your company’s website, including people with disabilities. The live chat widget is compatible with screen magnifiers and web browser zoom settings.

Furthermore, the chat widget is highly customizable. You can adjust the colors, fonts, and format to match your website design. You can configure the widget to appear when customers perform specific actions on your site or after a designated time. It also offers personalization features for enhancing your conversations, including access to unlimited chat history.

live widget customization
The process of live widget customization with Olark

Olark key features:

  • unlimited chat history;
  • customizable chat widget;
  • comprehensive data security;
  • advanced real-time reporting;
  • agent groups;
  • targeted chat;
  • integrations;
  • file sharing;
  • chat routing;
  • visitor details;
  • user page tracking.

Pricing:

  • a 14-day trial;
  • paid plans start at $29 monthly.

Acquire

Acquire is a live chat software designed to reduce your customer support team’s workload. With its assistance, agents can concentrate on high-priority tasks, deliver automated responses to frequently asked questions within seconds, and efficiently direct inquiries to designated specialists.

This alternative to Intercom provides the support team with chat context, including customer information, historical conversations, and prior agent notes, allowing them to understand customer issues better.

The platform’s user-friendly interface allows you to manage conversations from various messaging channels from a single view, significantly improving response time and customer satisfaction.

multiple chats
Acquire’s interface with multiple chats; source Acquire

Acquire key features:

  • chat routing;
  • conversation history;
  • tagging;
  • unified agent view;
  • chatbots;
  • customizable widget;
  • file sharing;
  • real-time messaging.

Pricing:

  • a free demo upon request;
  • paid plans start at $500 monthly (billed annually) and $25 per agent monthly.

LiveChat

LiveChat is also an excellent Intercom alternative that helps you ensure seamless and instant customer support. The platform lets your support team preview user messages in the chat widget as they type, enabling quicker response time and improved user satisfaction.

Another great LiveChat feature is saving and reusing FAQ responses with a single click. Your team can access the suggestions by using a hash before providing answers. LiveChat also offers a tagging feature to instantly identify conversation topics, simplifying communication for new customer support agents.

live chat widget
The customization of the live chat widget in LiveChat; source: LiveChat

LiveChat key features:

  • canned responses;
  • tagging;
  • clickable responses;
  • file sharing;
  • conversation history;
  • inactivity messages;
  • sound and visual notifications;
  • chat transfer;
  • post-chat survey.

Pricing:

  • a 14-day trial;
  • paid plans start at $24 per agent monthly.

Tidio

Tidio is an excellent, free alternative to Intercom for startups and eCommerce companies. This platform lets you engage with your customers in real time, encouraging them to purchase. You can easily manage conversations with clients across multiple channels from a single page, which allows you to respond promptly to every customer inquiry.

Tidio also offers a convenient canned responses feature, enabling you to accelerate your responses by quickly accessing pre-written answers. Besides, with the live typing feature, you can see what users are typing even before they send their inquiries, allowing you to provide quick responses.

With a live visitor list, you can identify who is visiting your site and the pages they are viewing, allowing you to personalize your responses.

live chat widget
The customization of the live chat widget in Tidio; source: Tidio

Tidio key features:

  • live typing;
  • canned responses;
  • live visitor list;
  • viewed pages;
  • pre-chat surveys;
  • customer database;
  • offline message.

Pricing:

  • a free plan;
  • paid plans start at $29 monthly.

To sum it up

Choosing the most fitting live chat builder can be challenging due to your budget, feature requirements, and business size. Given the multitude of available platforms, each with comprehensive information to explore, we’ve decided to provide you with the essential facts about each of our ten best Intercom alternatives.

PlatformFree planThe cheapest paid planBest suits for
SendPulseYes$10 monthlydifferent business sizes
Help ScoutNo$25 per user monthlycompanies with small to medium teams
ZendeskNo$69 per user monthlystartups, medium-sized businesses, and enterprises
DriftNo$2,500 monthly (billed annually)enterprises
CustomerlyYes$9 for three teammates monthlystartups, medium-sized businesses, and enterprises
UserlikeNo$100 monthlydifferent business sizes
OlarkNo$29 monthlysmall and medium-sized businesses, large enterprises, and eCommerce businesses
AcquireNo$500 monthly (billed annually) and $25 per agent monthlymedium-sized businesses and large enterprises
LiveChatNo$24 per agent monthlydifferent business sizes
TidioYes$29 monthlystartups and eCommerce companies

Sign up for SendPulse to empower your customer support team with valuable tools and provide effective customer service.

Date of publication:

12 Oct. 2023

Yevheniia Trukhan

Full-time writer and part-time traveler. Passionate about helping people grow their businesses, doing some yoga, and discovering new places. Staying...

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars
Loading...
Average Rating: 5/5
Total Votes: 1
Share:
Twitter