Salesforce Service Cloud vs Zendesk

Salesforce Service Cloud
With the Service Cloud you can meet customers wherever they are—including social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. Your agents also benefit from employee social networks that help them work together like never before. And because you get all the features a social contact center needs, your customers experience amazing service on any channel.
Zendesk is web-based help desk software with an elegant support ticket system & a self-service customer support platform. Agile, smart and convenient. Zendesk free open-source alternatives are osTicket, OTRS, Mantis

Latest news about Salesforce Service Cloud and Zendesk:

14.12.16. Salesforce adds messaging to Service Cloud. Salesforce launched LiveMessage, a tool that helps customer service reps manage messaging traffic just like any customer interactions in Service Cloud. It supports SMS/MMS and Facebook Messenger, but over the next year the company expects to add support for other message apps, as well. This new functionality is built with technology that came from the HeyWire acquisition in September. All of the message traffic, regardless of the tool, appears in a tabbed view in Service Cloud, just as it does with phone or web chats.

27.10.16. Zendesk expands beyond the help desk. Customer service app Zendesk unveiled a new product Zendesk Explore that provides analytics to measure and understand the entire customer experience. With Zendesk Explore, you get instant access to the customer analytics that matter—and the deeper understanding of your customers and business that comes with it. It's taking data from Zendesk’s myriad tools or third-party systems like customer data in Salesforce, buying history in Shopify or web analytics from Google Analytics and pulling it all together into one central place. It can deliver this information, regardless of role to get a much fuller view of the customer than you can get with bits of information trapped inside application silos.

03.05.16. Zendesk introduced Zendesk Message. Zendesk, the leading customer support software, adds the new feature - Message - the messaging product that helps businesses engage customers on their favorite messaging platforms. The first of these messaging platforms is Facebook Messenger. Zendesk Message is easy to use and designed specifically for messaging. Since messaging interactions tend to occur in short bursts, we made it easy for agents to move quickly from one conversation to the next, while keeping it easy to assign, own, and resolve conversations. Agents will be able to easily reference important events in a long conversation stream with features like timeline.

22.03.16. Salesforce Service Cloud adds new field service product. Until now Salesforce left field service to third parties like ServiceMax. Calls have come into customer service and have been processed in Service Cloud. While there is a connection to the customer record to let sales see when the customer is having issues, there has been no direct way to connect this information to people out in the field; Salesforce wanted to close this gap. And yesterday they introduced a new field service product they have dubbed Field Service Lightning. Besides, Salesforce key competitors like Microsoft and Oracle have entered this market recently and Salesforce saw this was as a significant missing piece.

14.10.15. Zendesk acquired Business Intelligence service BIME Analytics. Customer support giant Zendesk has acquired BIME Analytics for $45 million. BIME Analytics is a business intelligence startup with a software-as-a-service approach. It turns data from many different sources into trends and insights. The startup provides dozens of data connectors in order to aggregate data from multiple sources — Bigquery, CSV, Excel, Intercom, Google Analytics, Salesforce and more. You can name a data point for business intelligence purposes, and chances are BIME already supports it. Then you can create interactive dashboards, advanced visualizations or exploit the results using SQL queries. Everything is fast and distributed, you won’t have to manage servers to do these data manipulations.

02.09.15. Salesforce released its next generation Service Cloud. Salesforce is updating its Service Cloud, which caters to customer service agents and their managers. The company released its new Service Cloud Lightning Console and a new Service Wave Analytics App with the promise it would help customer service agents do their jobs better through improved experiences and analytics. It gives service teams “deeper, more actionable insights” that could help service agents and managers optimize channels, improve agent efficiency and spot or address emerging trends. It includes KPIs like average handling time, customer satisfaction and first call resolution and connects to Service Cloud workflows and records. Analytics dashboards from Service Wave can give service agents a 360 degree view of the customer. 

20.11.14. New Zendesk Voice raises the bar for phone support. Helpdesk service Zendesk updated its phone support feature Zendesk Voice. The new version, built upon the Twilio platform, is now available in 39 countries. Leveraging Twilio’s global network of data centers, calls are delivered quickly and clearly. You can launch a call center in minutes by using built-in functionality that allows agents to make and receive calls from within the browser, or forward calls to another line. By bringing customer information, contact history and internal knowledge bases right into the agent desktop, providing phone support has never been easier.

08.10.14. Salesforce to add video support and new interface. A week before Dreamforce, Salesforce announced some important updates. The first new feature will allow companies to provide one-way video support to their customers. The customer service person won't see customers, but will be able to interact with his screen. Salesforce is also updating the CRM tool and giving it a more modern interface with new tools including tools not just for monitoring the sale, but for administration, and for those who require it, stepping them through the sales process. New tools include Today - a Google Now-like program that shows you all the appointments, tasks, the latest news related to your appointments that could be relevant, weather and so forth. There is also a notes tool, which lets you create a checklist with the swish of your finger.

27.06.14. Zendesk adds business intelligence tool. Cloud-based customer service app Zendesk has released a new feature called Zendesk Insights that purports to give companies a deeper understanding of their customer interactions, using data culled from simply working with the Zendesk service. This new tool gives access to pre-built dashboards that provide insights based on their industry, so, for example, if your industry average customer satisfaction score is 85 and yours is 80, you need to work on improving that. According to Sam Boonin, who is VP of products at Zendesk, this as a differentiator from competitors, whom he claimed only provide operational reporting, whereas Insights provides operational and behavioral data, thereby giving Zendesk an advantage.

2013. Zendesk and HootSuite will help to survive in case of Zombie apocalypse. On the eve of the Halloween Zendesk (SaaS service for customer support) and HootSuite (social media scanner) propose to think together about the important things. After all, the latest movies about zombies (in particular "World War Z") let us know one simple and terrible truth: Zombie apocalypse can happen any day. And the humanity can survive only thanks to proper sharing and using information. That is why, every IT company should think about how it could help. For example, Zendesk will help crysis organizations to support citizens and answer their questions about how to fight zombies. And even when all support staff die - the online knowledge base with the most frequently asked questions will work. (Watch video above). And HootSuite will notify you about  the Zombie apocalypse explosion, give you useful information and updates on #zombie hashtag, show you places on the map where alive and dead concentrate, by the number of posts from these areas. Watch the video:

2013. Zendesk launched new self-service portal. Customer support gurus from Zendesk have come to the conclusion (from their own experience) that most customers prefer to use self-service tools and quickly find the answer to their questions, rather than email/call support. That's why they developed (as they say) the world's best self-service portal Zendesk Help Center. It combines support forums (customer community), knowledge base and customer spaces, where they can send private or public requests. It supports mobile access (both for clients and tech support staff) and provides integration with social networks Facebook and Twitter. And the coolest feature of the new tool is the template editor that allows you to "seamlessly" integrate self-service portal in your website. You can choose a template from the library and edit it at the HTML level.

2013. Zendesk and amoCRM call SaaS vendors to integrate. We won't hide the fact that SaaS has the integration problem. Thanks to SaaS technology hundreds of thousands new business apps appeared on the market and many of them do their job very effectively. But if a company uses several effective (but separate) apps, it may face situations like in the new Zendesk video. Three departments (sales, support and the engineer on scooter) are trying to solve one customer's issue. They use three different systems in which the same customer has a different ID, different communication history and different priority. So, what to do? Integrate and increase the value of each separate SaaS service! Zendesk Apps directory already includes more than a hundred of applications and one of the latest Zendesk partners is amoCRM, that tries to do the same thing.

2013. Zendesk for iPad - Built For Mountains. If you watch almost any promotional video about today's IT systems (for example the latest movie by Salesforce) - you'll see that people now work everywhere - on the street, in the subway, in the park, on the beach, in the woods, on the mountain, on a boat, on the snow - anywhere. Have you seen this in the real life? No? Me too. Zendesk (the SaaS service helping to support customers) makes fun on this trend. They released the new mobile app for the iPad together with the epic video (watch it). And the bonus (below): Harlem Shake (Zendesk Edition):

2013. Salesforce and Zoho launch support chat apps. Yesterday Salesforce said: "Customers want to get support via their phones." Stop! This is how it was before. If something happened, you took your phone and called support. And then Salesforce said that people don't want to call, but want to get support online - on the provider site or in social networks. And now, we should call again? No. Salesforce means that now people want to get convenient online support, not only via computer, but also via their small phones. That is why yesterday Salesforce launched the new mobile app Service Cloud Mobile, which includes mobile chat, mobile knowledge base interface, and even mobile browsing (co-browsing). And all these features can be embedded directly into your mobile app, providing maximum convenience for customers. The chat service costs $50/month for 1 operator.

2012. Why Helpdesk should be Social?. Today's Friday post is dedicated to support agents and those who organize helpdesk service. Here are two interesting stories about why the customer support system should be social. The first story was created by the guys from the helpdesk-service Zendesk (watch video). It's about the support agent who is always hanging on the phone, repeating the same phrases and answering the same questions. The second story is pitched by IBM with really scary title - "The Man Without Email". Here is he:

2011. #OccupyTheEnterprise vs KLM Surprise: what will you choose?. Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff can use any news or events for his marketing purposes. In his latest speeches, Mark is  talking about the well-known social movement Occupy Wall Street. As you know, this demonstration was organized mainly via the social networks, and in particular thank to the Twitter hashtag #OccupyWallStreet. "Look, what social networks can do" - says Benioff - "they can overthrow governments. And they also can easily destroy your business. Ignoring social networks - is ignoring your customers." Benioff has launched his own Twitter hashtag #OccupyTheEnterprise and scares enterprises with it. And from the other hand, he cites the example of using social networks by the Salesforce client  - KLM airlines.

2011. Salesforce acquired social Helpdesk service Assistly. Salesforce seriously decided to become the leading provider of customer support solutions. Its own solution Salesforce Service Cloud is already almost flying to space, but its price is also too cosmic for small business. Therefore, in order to land SMBs, the company decided to buy (for $80 million) the one of the two most popular SaaS Helpdesk services - Assistly (the second - is Zendesk). Assistly fits perfectly into the Salesforce's new Social Enterprise concept. This service allows you to communicate with customers via Twitter, Facebook, client forum, live-chat as well as via traditional channels (email and phone). At the same time support people work in one simple interface. Also, Assistly is known for its original pricing: it's free for one helpdesk agent, and the additional agents can use the service on per-hour based model ($1/hour). So if no requests are coming to support - your company pays nothing for the helpdesk.

2011. Salesforce Service Cloud 3 allows to help customers via live chat, Facebook, Twitter and Facetime . The guys from Salesforce, that are engaged in developing Service Cloud, can't help repeating that traditional customer support systems (Call-centers + CRM / Helpdesk) - are already obsolete. They are built in expectation that a phone call is the primary communication channel that customers use to get support. But the world has changed. Customers want to solve their problems via the Internet - in Facebook, Twitter, forums. They want to talk to tech support via online chat or personal account at the company's website. They want to read what other users say about a product. They want to use video and screen-sharing, to show the problem to support engineer, rather than explain everything by phone. All these requirements are met in the new version of Service Cloud 3.

Salesforce Service Cloud
2009. Salesforce announced Service Cloud 2.0. Service Cloud - is the revolutionary customer service solution, that integrates helpdesk with social networks and tools. Today Salesforce unveils the second generation of Service Cloud with 3 new modules: Salesforce Knowledge, Salesforce Answers and Salesforce for Twitter. All them are tightly integrated with Salesforce CRM and built  on top of (so they can be customized for particular company needs). Starbucks, Comcast and Dell are already using these new tools.

2009. Web-based helpdesk dream team. Three web-based support applications: SaaS ticketing system Zendesk, internal issue tracker JIRA, and customer service platform Get Satisfaction — are now integrated. Much of this mashup functionality was created independently by each of these three vendors. The first link was the release of Zendesk's plugin for JIRA. The plugin allows anyone to draw in tickets in to the tracker, while any updates within JIRA will be automatically mirrored in your Zendesk. The second link is the Zendesk and Get Satisfaction integration  plugin. It enables you to send and edit Zendesk support tickets without ever leaving your Get Satisfaction.  The result is a smooth connection between a public support tool, an individualized helpdesk, and an enterprise issue tracker. Together, the trio makes up a powerful set of tools for responding to customers in either a public or private forum.