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10 Best Kayako Alternatives for Customer Support (2024)

by Jelisaveta Sapardic·Updated
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Kayako has been a go-to help desk software for managing customer interactions. It’s best known in the industry for features like a robust ticket management system, live chat window, and analytics dashboard. Moreover, Kayako is distinguished for helping over 100 million customers merge various support channels into one.

However, issues concerning its functionality may have got you thinking about other options.

But how can you shop around for alternatives to Kayako, from the many help desk solutions out there? 

Don’t worry—we can help you to narrow down your options. 

In this article, we have compiled a list of 10 best Kayako alternatives you can compare and ultimately purchase for your support team:

NameRating Free planBest for
Tidio4.7/5 ⭐️AI & NLP Chatbot
Help Scout4.4/5 ⭐️Free TrialShared inbox
Gist4.6/5 ⭐️Custom integrations
Freshdesk4.5/5 ⭐️Free TrialTicket management
Intercom4.5/5 ⭐️Free TrialAI shared inbox
SAP Service Cloud4.5/5 ⭐️Omni-channel routing
Salesforce Service Cloud4.3/5 ⭐️Free TrialLightning service console
LiveAgent4.5/5 ⭐️Free TrialLive chat widgets
Jira Service Management4.3/5 ⭐️ITSM
Zoho Desk4.4/5 ⭐️Free TrialMulti-department ticket management

Choose the best Kayako alternative for your support needs

Learn more about Tidio Helpdesk

Interested in exploring more about ticketing systems? Check out these articles:

Before we begin with our list, first let’s find out what makes Kayako help desk software stand out among other businesses.

What is Kayako used for and what makes it popular?

Kayako is a help desk software that assists startups and medium-sized companies in offering holistic and frictionless support services to their consumers. It has a ticketing portal that can be hosted in a premise environment or available as a software-as-a-service or SaaS help desk configuration. 

When it comes to a free trial, Kayako offers it for you to try for 14 days. The support platform has two pricing options: Kayako Cloud and Kayako Classic on-Prem. However, you need to request a demo with the sales team to learn more info about the Kayako pricing.

According to Kayako reviews, the software has proven its versatility across several industries and departments in enhancing support operations, improving workflows, and tracking support requests. It also facilitates direct customer communication and serves as an inter-departmental tool support tool for IT teams. 

Here are some of the other reasons why Kayako is popular:

  • Multi-channel support services

Kayako offers a unified customer service portal to assist your clients. The platform combines several support channels like email, live chat, phone, and social media, and routes them to the assigned reps. This enables your service department to collaborate more efficiently to respond to queries. Also, multi-channel functionality allows customers to enjoy quick and real-time support when they raise a query. 

  • Superior ticketing system

Kayako ticketing system allows you to effectively handle support tickets and personalize your responses for customer interactions. The system has the ability to subscribe for notification alerts when a ticket is raised. Users can attach notes and files to give a comprehensive record of all interactions related to a query. On top of that, your support reps can easily arrange tickets in order of priority for escalation and resolution. 

  • User-friendly interface

The Kayako help desk and support software is relatively easy to set up and requires only a few steps to do so. The system creators provide video tutorials on how to navigate the user interface. You also learn how to add user accounts, set up support channels, and prepare for client interaction. Furthermore, the system is intuitive, making it an excellent option for basic client support. 

  • Scalability

Kayako understands your needs evolve as your business grows, and has designed the software to scale. Kayako’s Classic On-Prem help desk ticketing solution is designed for large teams and can handle an unlimited number of support agents and departments. It enables your organization to have as many live chat sessions as you need. 

  • Customization options

Finally, Kayako can be customized according to your needs. Your IT department can change features of live chat, tickets, and customer profiles. You can also tailor workflows to suit your operating procedures. For additional functionality, you can integrate Kayako into native support systems or delivery channels like Gmail. 

Now that we know what makes Kayako software popular, let’s take a look at some of the drawbacks of the platform. 

Why should you choose a Kayako alternative?

Kayako help desk is useful for companies to deliver multi-channel support to clients and stay updated on queries. That being said, Kayako’s shortcomings impact its effectiveness as a support tool.

These include:

  • Expensive access to full capabilities

Typically, Kayako reserves its best features for its most expensive options. So if you need multi-channel reporting and other custom fields, you have to upgrade to a more costly scale subscription plan. According to BMC, manually resolving a help desk ticket costs $22. By automating your help desk, you can reduce the cost of a fifth of your tickets to practically zero. 

Read more: Learn all you need to know about omnichannel customer service.

  • Inadequate email capacity

Customers have raised complaints about struggling to attach and receive emails. Sometimes when receiving or sending bulky email attachments, support teams have to make several attempts to complete the action. Emails with attachments above 10 MB tend to be spotty or a bit hazy. According to Commbox, close to 30% of clients still use email for their customer service needs. So, it may be prudent to find an alternative for your Kayako software. 

  • Restrictive analytics options

Users also reported Kayako not having as many analytics options as they would like. Having detailed insights into support operations can be crucial to the growth of any business, so if this is a major red flag, you may want to consider going for an alternative help desk option.

Finally, let’s look at the list of tools in more detail. 

Top 10 Kayako alternatives & competitors you should go for

We have compiled a list of impressive Kayako alternatives that offer a unique array of features and benefits. These help desk options are designed to streamline and enhance your customer care operations. 

Now, let’s take a closer look at the best alternatives to Kayako you can opt for. 

1. Tidio

tidio - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.7/5 ⭐️ (1,410+ reviews)

Tidio is a help desk and customer service software that supports online stores through innovative features. The tool provides an easy-to-navigate dashboard with a shared inbox to manage support queries across several channels like live chat, email, social media, and more. In addition, Tidio offers ecommerce enterprises a single portal where they can manage help desk operations, as well as a Departments feature to route messages to the best-fitting agents. 

Main features:


  • Free version available
  • Starter ($29/mo)
  • Flows ($29/mo)
  • Lyro AI ($39/mo)
  • Growth ($59/mo)
  • Tidio+ (starts at $749/mo)

Read more: Learn all about Tidio’s one inbox, with its functionality and benefits.

Improve customer service with a robust help desk tool

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2. Help Scout

help scout - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.4/5 ⭐️ (400+ reviews)

Help Scout is a help desk software that is simple to set up and scale for medium-sized enterprises. It enables collaborative teamwork by having multiple mailboxes and can manage several products from one unified platform. Help Scout provides custom reports that offer insights into conversation trends, productivity, customer satisfaction, performance of team members, and more. 


  • Multi-channel support
  • Subscription-based notifications 
  • External/Internal knowledge base


  • Limited analytics on support responses and consumer satisfaction
  • UI Challenges


  • Free trial available
  • Standard ($25/mo)
  • Plus ($50/mo)
  • Pro ($65/mo)

Read more: Check out the best Help Scout alternatives available on the web.

3. Gist

gist - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.6/5 ⭐️ (210+ reviews)

Gist is a unified help desk platform that is suitable for small businesses. The platform has a unique integration feature for WordPress, making it convenient for websites. Moreover, Gist offers an interactive live chat widget feature that enables support teams to generate leads and handle consumer inquiries. 


  • Event tracking and email campaign feature
  • Credit allocation feature
  • Knowledge Base


  • Lack of proper documentation 
  • Clunky user interface


  • Free version available
  • Professional ($29/mo)
  • Premium ($99/mo)
  • Gist marketing professional ($19/mo)
  • Gist marketing premium ($29/mo)
  • All in one bundle ($128/mo)

4. Freshdesk

freshdesk - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.4/5 ⭐️ (3,080+ reviews)

Freshdesk is a unified help desk solution that offers efficient ticket management, AI-powered conversations, and simple configurations. Through its unified workspace, support agents can manage and prioritize tickets at scale. Furthermore, the system provides a scalable knowledge base and custom widgets so that support queries are resolved promptly. 


  • Multi-channel support
  • AI-powered workflows
  • Internal knowledge base


  • Extended features require an upgrade to a costly subscription 
  • Lack of customizability


  • Free version available
  • Growth ($15/mo)
  • Pro ($49/month)
  • Enterprise ($79/mo)

5. Intercom

intercom - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.5/5 ⭐️ (2,940+ reviews)

Intercom is a powerful help desk that aims to transform how organizations interact with consumers. It offers several channels through which firms can connect with their clients. Using automation, Intercom lessens the cost of scaling support to their target clients. Its shared inbox is AI-enhanced, so your teams can work smarter. The AI summarizes customer conversations, creates personalized responses, and automatically fills in ticket information.


  • AI chatbots and templates
  • Auto-fill ticket information capability
  • AI shared inbox


  • Complex workflows and automation
  • Expensive


  • Free trial available
  • Essential ($39/mo)
  • Advanced ($99/mo)
  • Expert ($139/mo)
  • Proactive support plus ($499/mo)

6. SAP Service Cloud

sap - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.5/5 ⭐️ (130+ reviews)

SAP service cloud is a CRM and support solution that aims to speed up the resolution of customer issues through connected customer service management. The platform furnished support teams with AI insights, automated workflows, and useful recommendations. Moreover, users can configure the system to their needs without requiring technical expertise. 


  • Omnichannel support
  • Automated ticket categorization and sentiment analysis 
  • Agent console


  • Configurations are a bit complex
  • Requires extensive training and documentation to use


  • Request cloud contracts

7. Salesforce Service Cloud

salesforce - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.3/5 ⭐️ (3,665+ reviews)

Salesforce service cloud is a cloud-based support solution that assists organizations in managing their consumer interactions. It works to provide seamless support services through features like digital engagement, case management, collaboration, and more. According to Salesforce, users experience a 27% decrease in cost when the product is used. 


  • AI chatbots
  • Self-service customer experience 
  • Omnichannel engagement center


  • Omnichannel routing is a challenge
  • The tool is relatively expensive


  • Free trial available
  • Starter ($25/mo)
  • Professional ($80/mo)
  • Enterprise ($165/mo)
  • Unlimited ($330/mo)
  • Unlimited+ ($500/mo)

8. LiveAgent

liveagent - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.5/5 ⭐️ (1,470+ reviews)

LiveAgent is a help desk management solution whose goal is to personalize support interactions. The tool puts forward several unique features including an omnichannel universal mailbox, live chat, SMS, and call center, among others. Moreover, LiveAgent presents 130+ ticketing options and over 200 integrations to external tools. 


  • Workflow automation
  • Comprehensive analytics and help desk metrics
  • Integrations with Slack, Zapier, and others


  • Email notification issues
  • Limited mobile app functionality


  • Free trial available
  • Small business ($15/mo)
  • Medium business ($35/mo)
  • Large business ($59/mo)
  • Enterprise ($85/mo)

Read more: Learn how Wulff Beltton improved customer satisfaction with the help of Tidio.

9. Jira Service Management

jira - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.3/5 ⭐️ (5,740+ reviews)

Jira service management is a service desk solution that is designed for IT support teams to manage incoming requests and respond effectively. The software provides unique features like organizing and prioritizing service tickets, customer self-service portal and other tools, and configuration capabilities. Also, service teams can integrate the Jira help desk into the Jira software for collaboration between support and IT teams. 


  • Flexible ITSM solution
  • Asset management integration
  • Custom reporting capabilities


  • Steep learning curve
  • Few customization options


  • Free version available
  • Standard ($20/mo)
  • Premium ($40/mo)
  • Enterprise → Contact sales

Read more: Learn the main differences between help desk and service desk.

10. Zoho Desk

zoho - Kayako alternative overview

Rating: 4.4/5 ⭐️ (5,300+ reviews)

Zoho Desk is a comprehensive help desk software that simplifies complex support processes through automation. Zoho has a range of support features like shared inbox, live chat, and device synchronization to enhance your service operations. More important is the advanced ticketing system which tracks client requests across multiple mediums, products, and departments. Its contextual AI auto-tags tickets, provides sentimental analysis, and shares relevant solutions from your knowledge base. 


  • AI Reply Assistant
  • Multi-department ticket management
  • Work modes that automatically arrange open tickets


  • Requires some level of technical expertise to use
  • Initial setup can be difficult


  • Free trial available
  • Standard ($14/mo)
  • Professional ($23/mo)
  • Enterprise ($40/mo)

Key takeaway: pick the right Kayako alternative for your needs

Choosing the correct Kayako alternative from the available options is no mean task. To make an informed decision, you have to consider your business priorities, needs, and the ultimate objective of your support strategy. 

While each help desk software has unique strengths and weaknesses, we have identified Tidio as one of our top picks for Kayako alternatives. It’s a robust solution with an excellent omnichannel experience, a comprehensive ticketing system, and flexible pricing options. Why not give it a try?

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Jelisaveta Sapardic
Jelisaveta Sapardic

Tidio’s Content Writer with a passion for languages. As an avid learner interested in all things tech, Jelisaveta always strives to share her knowledge with others and help people and businesses reach their goals.

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