Top 8 digital customer service platforms of 2024

Jordan Vanden Heuvel

Jordan Vanden Heuvel,

Freelance writer

10 January 20240 min read

Discover top digital customer service platforms for 2024. Boost efficiency, streamline communication, and exceed customer expectations.

Digital transformation changed every aspect of our lives — and required traditional industries to quickly shift their strategies.

The customer service industry was no exception. Gone are the days of needing to spend hours on the phone with call centers or waiting days to hear back after submitting a request on a company’s website. Customers now have endless options to connect with a brand’s customer service team. With a quick message on social media or live chat, customers can get answers in a matter of minutes. Or customers can help themselves anytime, anywhere with self-service options. 

With so many flexible options available, it’s no wonder customers are taking to multiple digital channels to engage with brands. In fact, a reported 73% of customers said they use multiple channels to get their issues resolved faster.

If you’re a brand trying to be there for customers when and where they want, your team needs the right tool for the job — your team needs a digital customer service platform. 

In this guide we’ll explore:

  • What is a digital customer service platform?

  • Top 8 digital customer service platforms in 2024

  • The importance of digital customer service

  • Be there for customers with Front

What is a digital customer service platform?

Digital customer service platforms equip support teams with the tools to provide customer service across digital channels like email, live chat, social media, messaging apps, and more. With help desk features like ticketing, live chat, and knowledge base, along with tech like AI, these platforms are built to help businesses manage their customer interactions — no matter the channel — all in one place. 

As the customer service landscape shifts, customers expect to be met on channels that are most convenient for them. Resorting to traditional support methods like providing one web form for customers to contact your team, only to get back to them in a few days is no longer effective. Instead, teams that are prioritizing providing support on multiple online channels are able to meet evolving expectations, provide faster responses, and create better customer experiences

The top 8 digital customer service platforms of 2024

Software

Starting price

Top features (may require higher plan)

Front

Starter: $19/seat/month

Omnichannel – email, SMS, live chat, social media, and more   


No-code workflow automation


Real-time ticket collaboration


Smart routing and tagging


Reporting and analytics 


Native self-service and deflection offerings via knowledge base and chatbots


100+ integrations and open API


AI capabilities to boost agent efficiency 


Award-winning support team with average CSAT score of 99%

Zendesk

Basic support team: $19/agent/month

Omnichannel customer support


Chatbots


Pre-built analytics dashboards


100+ integrations


Online support from the Zendesk team


Transactional support

Freshdesk

Growth: $18/agent/month

Omnichannel customer support 


Automation


SLA management & business hours 


Custom ticket views, ticket fields & status 


24x5 phone support

Zoho Desk

Standard: $20/user/month

Ticket management


Automation


Self service


Integrations with Zoho suite


Online support from the Zoho Desk team

Help Scout

Standard: $25/user/month

Shared inbox with email, live chat, and social channels


Automation


Knowledge base


Help widget


Email or in-app chat support

Salesforce Service Cloud

Starter suite: $25/user/month

Omnichannel customer support


Case management


Customizable reports & dashboards 


Knowledge base

Intercom

Essential: $39/seat/month

Omnichannel customer support


Automation


Fin AI chatbot


Public help center

Hiver

Lite: $24/user/month

Shared email inboxes, voice, WhatsApp channels


Live chat 


Knowledge base


Advanced analytics and reports

Front

Front is a digital customer service platform used by teams of different sizes and industries to build high-quality relationships with their customers while being their most efficient. Front doesn’t just enable teams with essential features to provide exceptional customer service — it boasts internal collaboration features that make working together as a team easy as can be.

With Front, users experience:

  • A modern, intuitive user interface that boosts their productivity instead of slowing them down.

  • Superior collaboration features that enable teams to deliver their best customer experience ever

  • Faster time to value because of quick implementation and easy adoption.

Front is a leader in customer service, and for good reason. It’s a comprehensive service solution with all the features teams need to work together and create happy customers.

Core Front features:

Omnichannel inbox: With Front, your team can manage all customer conversations in one place. Whether coming from email, SMS, social media, live chat, or WhatsApp, your team won’t miss an inquiry, and your customers will always get fast and high-quality responses. 

Centralized knowledge base: Empower your customers, teams, and partners to instantly find the information they need with a help center. With Front, companies can quickly create self-service hubs for frequently asked questions, so customers can get the support they need and want without the wait. 

Live chat and AI-enhanced chatbots: Front Chat makes it easy for support teams to create an on-brand live chat widget for their website or app for seamless support when customers need it. And by connecting Front Chat with your knowledge base, Front’s new and improved AI chatbots can provide instant answers, 24/7.

Integrations and open API: Seamlessly integrate your essential tools to bring everything into one platform. With over 110 integrations available, your team can optimize processes, boost productivity, and save time from toggling between tools.

Collaboration tools: Front makes teamwork easy. With features like message assignments, internal comments, and shared drafts agents always know who owns what and no customer request is left behind. 

Automation: With new Front automation tools like 1-click macros, your customer service team won’t find themselves repeating the same actions over and over, like moving messages, adding and removing tags, and notifying teammates. 

AI features: Front’s AI features are purpose-built to maximize efficiency without sacrificing personalization. With AI-powered agent assistance features AI Summarize and AI Compose, teams can speed up time-consuming tasks and make the most out of their days.

Front streamlines agent and team communication so they can deliver exceptional service and delight customers at every touchpoint. Don’t just take our word for it — the numbers speak for themselves. According to Front’s Support Report, the support team has achieved a 90-day average Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) of 98% using all of the features mentioned above. And Front customers on average beat CSAT industry benchmarks by 9 points!

Learn more about how the Front support team uses Front to consistently outperform industry benchmarks for reply rate, response time, CSAT, and more. 

Front G2 rating: 4.7 / 5 

Pricing:

  • Starter: $19/seat/mo

  • Growth: $59/seat/mo

  • Scale: $99/seat/mo

  • Premier: $229/seat/mo

Zendesk

Zendesk is a customer service solution designed to enable businesses to manage and prioritize customer tickets. With advanced functionalities like automation, SLA management, and reporting, teams are equipped with productivity tools, but businesses looking for streamlined collaboration across teams may find the complex interface slows their team down.

Zendesk is well-suited for companies experiencing high ticket volume, where agents typically resolve simple inquiries individually rather than collaborating with other support agents. 

Core features:

  • Integrations

  • Ticket collaboration

  • Knowledge base 

  • Live chat 

Zendesk G2 rating: 4.3 / 5

Pricing:

  • Basic support team: $19/agent/month 

  • Basic support professional: $55/agent/month

  • Basic support enterprise: $115/agent/month

Read: Front vs. Zendesk

Freshdesk

Freshdesk is a customer support tool with help desk and ticketing capabilities, enabling service teams to handle customer requests from various channels such as email, phone, chat, and social media. Its flexible pricing and scalable features make it a popular choice for businesses looking to organize and fulfill customer inquiries.

Freshdesk is built for individual agents handling transactional queries rather than requests that require collaboration across teams, making it most effective for straightforward service needs.

Core features:

  • Custom ticket views 

  • Email ticket routing 

  • Knowledge base

  • Time tracking

Freshdesk G2 rating: 4.4 / 5

Read: Front vs. Freshdesk

Pricing:

  • Growth: $18/agent/month

  • Pro: $59/agent/month

  • Enterprise: $95/agent per month

Zoho Desk

Zoho Desk, part of the Zoho suite of applications, is a customer service platform for managing inquiries across various channels like email, phone, chat, social media, and more. 

With core support capabilities like ticket routing, knowledge base creation, and reporting, along with its ability to seamlessly integrate with other Zoho products, Zoho Desk is a popular choice for teams who are using other Zoho products for sales or marketing. 

Core features:

  • Ticket management

  • Self service 

  • AI-powered assistant Zia

  • Integrations with Zoho suite

Zoho Desk G2 rating: 4.4 / 5

Pricing:

  • Standard: $20/user/month

  • Professional: $35/user/month

  • Enterprise: $50/user/month

Help Scout

Simple and easy to use, Help Scout is a common help desk choice among small businesses. With a shared inbox, knowledge base, and a native help widget, it’s typically used by small teams to manage customer communications.

Because of its simplicity, however, it may lack crucial customer service tools like advanced reporting and chatbots, both of which are becoming increasingly important in today’s customer service landscape. 

Core chatbot features:

  • Email management

  • Automations

  • Help center 

  • Proactive messaging

Help Scout G2 rating: 4.4 / 5

Pricing:

  • Standard: $25/user/month

  • Plus: $50/user/month

  • Pro: (Annual only) $65/user/month

Salesforce Service Cloud

Salesforce Service Cloud, part of the broader Salesforce suite, is typically used by teams already using other Salesforce tools. As part of the larger suite, Service Cloud is built similarly to other Salesforce tools — tailored for large enterprise teams.

While it certainly comes with advantages to aggregate data from the Salesforce CRM into Service Cloud, it doesn’t come without its drawbacks. Because of the enterprise-level focus, Service Cloud requires significant time and training to get up and running. 

Core features:

  • Integration with Salesforce CRM

  • AI-powered service, incorporating Einstein AI

  • Workflow automation

  • Live agent chat

Salesforce Service Cloud G2 rating:  4.3 / 5

Pricing:

  • Starter: $25/user/month

  • Professional: $80/user/month

  • Enterprise: $165/user/month

  • Unlimited: $330/user/month

  • Einstein 1 service: $500/user/month

Intercom

Intercom’s customer service platform showcases chat-based support, emphasizing an interactive, conversational approach to connecting with customers in real time.

Intercom has integrated AI throughout its platform, including the launch of Fin, Intercom’s AI chatbot, enabling teams to do things like auto-fill tickets, summarize conversations, and connect customers with knowledge base articles. While teams experience a boost of productivity, customers are losing the personalized experience they desire and deserve.

Core features:

  • Fin AI

  • Analytics and reporting

  • Live chat

  • Integrations

Intercom G2 rating: 4.5 / 5 

Pricing:

  • Essential: $39/seat/month

  • Advanced: $99/seat/month

  • Expert: $139/seat/month

Hiver

With a user-friendly interface and quick set up, Hiver is a popular customer service tool choice for teams looking for a simple but effective platform. Built to enhance email collaboration, Hiver integrates into Gmail’s interface, equipping teams with features like shared inboxes, email notes, and email delegation.

Its heavy email focus makes it a good choice for teams who are primarily managing customer interactions through email, but if you’re looking for a tool to also manage customers inquiries coming from social media, Hiver may not be the best solution for you.

Core features:

  • Email management

  • Multi-channel capabilities 

  • Live chat

  • Knowledge base

Hiver G2 rating: 4.6 / 5

Pricing:

  • Lite: $24/user/month

  • Pro: $59/user/month

  • Elite: $99/user/month

The importance of digital customer service

Why digital customer service matters

Customers now expect convenient and personalized service — and they want it fast. In order for teams to provide real-time support and meet high customer expectations, they need tools to make it possible. Digital customer service platforms provide the foundational service features like ticketing and knowledge base hosting, with tools like live chat and AI-powered automations so that teams can stay competitive by providing next-level service quality. 

By adopting a digital customer service solution, teams are more likely to meet, and even exceed, customer expectations, resulting in satisfied, happier customers. And when customers are happier, they’re more likely to stick around and be loyal to brands. 

Take Oasis, for example. Oasis was growing 100% year over year, and their current solution wasn’t keeping up with their team’s, or customers’, needs. They needed a customer service partner that would scale with them — so they replaced their support solution with Front. 

Since adopting Front as their customer service platform, Oasis has saved an estimated 716 hours per month and 18 hours per person by using Front’s platform. By leveraging workflows, Oasis automated over 70 actions so their team members weren’t bogged down with mundane tasks. And with access to 110+ integrations and Front’s open API, the Oasis team was able to connect their property management system and other essential tools to Front, so they had all the information their team needed in one platform. 

By using Front’s core service features along with powerful AI-powered automations, Oasis is able to help more customers and continue to scale their business without cutting corners. 

Front is always developing new things. We want our partners to constantly change and evolve with us. And that’s exactly what Front offers.

Marina Dominguez Balanzat, Director of Reservations

The role of technology in enhancing customer service

While traditional methods of customer support were effective until recent years, they simply won’t cut it anymore. With the increased pressure to provide fast, personalized service, teams can become overwhelmed with managing administrative tasks along with taking care of customers. 

And with access to more information than ever, teams can use customer data to their advantage. By collecting support data around the customer journey, teams can better understand customers’ experiences, satisfaction levels, and their own performance, so they can take their service approach to the next level. 

Be there for customers with Front

Customers want convenient, quality service, and with the right tool, your team can easily provide memorable service that will create loyal customers.

Front is more than a customer service tool — it’s a digital customer service solution built for modern teams to not only help customers, but help one another. Unlike other solutions, Front combines the core features of a help desk solution with forward-thinking automation features built to increase efficiency without sacrificing quality. With Front, your team has all the communication and collaboration tools they need to work fast, work together, and create happier customers. 

Written by Jordan Vanden Heuvel

Originally Published: 10 January 2024

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