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Intercom Alternatives

Several years ago, the invention of chatbots and live chat made it possible to directly interact with website visitors through the site itself. This led to many implementations of the technology, but at first, it was fairly basic. Everyone could tell that they were talking to a bot, and even worse, the bots often didn’t provide the information or customer service that visitors were looking for.

As with everything else, chatbot technology improved over time. Now, it is not only used on small e-commerce sites, but on those dedicated to enterprise-level B2B operations. These top-tier chatbots offer a wide variety of advantages, including the ability to work with platforms that allow for visitors to be identified and tracked. With this ability, you can customize chatbots for specific people or companies, determine intent, and more.

One of the top providers of this level of chat technology is Intercom. Its main competitors include Drift, Freshchat, Terminus Chat, and more. Notably, Intercom is not an old-fashioned intercom system provider, but a modern chatbot like the others.

Many people look for Intercom alternatives in order to get more affordable pricing. Freshchat pricing is often attractive to these companies. For those with minimal needs, Freshchat is one of the free Intercom alternatives. The Freshchat login page for the free tier gives you several basic features. However, if you want more capabilities, you’ll need a paid plan. They start at $15 per agent per month, and go through several levels until reaching the top tier of $69 per agent per month with annual billing.

There are many options for interacting with or administering Freshchat. You can get the Freshchat Android app or use the Freshchat web option. When interacting with customers, you can use the Freshchat WhatsApp option to reach them through this messenger service. Other messenger apps are also supported. Some of these run through the wchat Freshchat server.

One good way to further compare Intercom vs Freshchat is to look on Reddit. Comments there can touch on things not normally mentioned in reviews.

Intercom Pricing Change

Intercom has a reputation for changing its prices on a fairly frequent basis. However, these aren’t always the minor adjustments that would be considered typical for a company. The latest intercom pricing change, for example, would increase some users’ costs by over five times. As can be expected, this alone leads many people to look for alternatives.

On top of that, Intercom pricing is hard to understand. Because of this, many search for “Intercom pricing explained.” While those who take the plans meant for startups likely won’t feel the need to dig too far for answers, those who are considering the $499-$999/month options will surely want to know what justifies these extreme rates. Unfortunately, Intercom’s explanations are murky and hard to understand. Not only that, the prices they list aren’t the totals of what they charge. Each active contact costs extra money on top of the standard Intercom users pricing.

Because of these things, many users find their Intercom app bills ballooning out of control. The answer to “is Intercom free” is most definitely “no!” It is very much the opposite.

Those whose main consideration is price typically only need to see the listed rates to get motivated to look for an open source Intercom alternative, or any other alternative. It’s important to note that Intercom alternatives open source aren’t necessarily free either, but they are typically more affordable.

Of course, there are other things to compare besides price. The simplicity of the plans offered by alternatives can be a big draw, even if they aren’t low-cost. It’s much easier to budget when you can see all costs at a glance.

Company culture is another factor that plays a large role during these times. The Intercom company, like many others, professes a customer-centric outlook and promises to help your business be more profitable. Since that’s fairly generic, you should look at reviews to find out whether or not they live up to it better than all of the others who say the same thing. Search for “Intercom Reddit” and “Intercom alternatives Reddit” to find comments from actual users about this and many competing platforms.

It can also be a good idea to look at what supporting materials each contender offers. Intercom has the “Intercom University,” which teaches several methods for improving your business. Some competitors have similar materials available, but others do not. Whether this is important depends on how much you need this type of extra support.

Another important thing to note is that there is a free Intercom trial available. If you try it, it’s possible that you’ll decide that it’s worth paying for Intercom chat.

Intercom Alternatives 2020

There are many Intercom alternatives 2020, ranging from basic to enterprise-level. These include Tidio, GoSquared, Crisp Chat, Chatwoot, and many more. Intercom is the most expensive, with the top option coming in at over $999 per month. It also charges according to how many leads and contacts are in the account.

Some of the Intercom competitors offer free options, though these are never as robust as their paid tiers. For Chatwoot, the free option allows 2 agents and 10,000 pageviews, while the $99/month option gives space for 10 agents and 300,000 pageviews. The features also vary by tier level. Because there are paid levels, it is not downloaded through the Chatwoot GitHub. Instead, you’ll need to go to the main site.

Tidio also offers a free level, as well as several other tiers. The starting prices of the tiers are quite affordable, with the most expensive options being $18 per month. However, their page notes that these are starting prices. This indicates that there are factors that can increase costs.

Crisp Chat is another option with a free tier. Once you outgrow it, you can choose from the Pro level at $25/month per website or the Unlimited level at $95 per month per site. Intercom vs Crisp pricing is a fair comparison to consider during your evaluation process.

There is no free option at GoSquared. Its most basic plan is $49/month, and its Enterprise level starts at $499 per month. This puts it closer to Intercom’s pricing than some of the other options.

To learn more about the differences between these and Intercom, search for “Intercom vs Crisp” (or whichever alternative you want to compare). You should find plenty of commentary.

Intercom vs Drift

One of the first things you’ll find when you try to compare Intercom vs Drift is that Drift doesn’t list its prices on its site. Instead, it describes its plans. While the company does show the existence of a free tier, it makes you contact them to find out how much the paid levels are. As you can guess, this means that you’ll have to go through a sales presentation to get the information. Is it worth it to do that?

A good way to decide is to look at other sources to find out what people think of each platform. Searching “Drift vs Intercom Reddit” will bring up links to several discussions on that site where people tell what they have found to be the pros and cons of each one. If you’re interested in comparing even more platforms, try a search for “Drift vs Intercom vs Zendesk.” While this expanded search is less likely to get you forum results, you should find some articles by companies that compare the three. This same principle can be used to compare Intercom against other alternatives, as well. Just switch out “Drift” for whichever platform you want to compare.

You can also look for Drift pricing on sites other than Drift’s. However, these sites may have articles that are too old to be exactly accurate. For example, Chatbots Magazine shows an article, dated October 2018, that lists Drift pricing as being $50/month for the standard version and $500/month for a pro version. However, prices may have changed since then. It also doesn’t list the prices for the intermediate (“Premium”) version. Therefore, your best bet is either to contact Drift or to look for recent commentary on a site like Reddit.

HelpCrunch vs Intercom

HelpCrunch is an up-and-coming competitor to Intercom. Thanks to both platforms offering free trials, you can directly compare HelpCrunch vs Intercom without cost. If you decide to choose HelpCrunch, you’ll find that HelpCrunch pricing is quite affordable. The standard version is just $12 per month per user, and the premium version is $20 per month per user. An enterprise version also exists, but you have to call for pricing for that level. You should also call to see if there is a HelpCrunch lifetime deal you can access.

Intercom’s prices aren’t too high for the most basic levels, with $39 being the starting price for basic chat and outbound messaging. However, once you get into versions robust enough for a large enterprise, the price goes up massively. Its “Accelerate” plan starts at $499 per month, and the top plan starts at $999 per month. Intercom prices can go much higher than that thanks to the fact that they charge for each “lead” or “user” in your account. In this case, “user” means someone who has registered on your site, not one of your sales agents.

HelpCrunch reviews look great on their site, as can be expected. Check out Reddit or another independent source to get real-world opinions and discussion.

If you need help with the HelpCrunch integration process, you’ll be able to use the HelpCrunch knowledge base to get tips for overcoming issues. You also get the help of a free personal onboarding assistant, who will help you integrate it into your system and optimize the chatbot’s features to best meet the needs of your company.

The HelpCrunch chatbot compares well with many of Intercom’s tier levels and offers all of the standard features. Details of each company’s offerings vary by the plan chosen.

As you decide on a chatbot solution, be sure to compare many different providers. You may find that one of the HelpCrunch alternatives is better for your needs, or you might find that in the end, HelpCrunch is the perfect option.