With the release of the WhatsApp API, many shared WhatsApp inbox tools like Helpwise came into existence to simplify ecommerce customer support for businesses.
But if you’re considering alternatives to Helpwise before making the final choice, your search ends here.
We took a trial of over a dozen shared inbox tools like Helpwise with the goal to help ecommerce business owners make a more informed decision.
Before we dive into the alternatives, let’s take a quick look at Helpwise and the features that it offers.
What is Helpwise?
Helpwise is an ecommerce customer support tool that allows you to manage all your support channels methods at one place.
With shared inboxes for email, SMS, WhatsApp, live chat and social media accounts, you can easily collaborate with your team and your customers from the same dashboard.
It is also feature-rich and can be a great addition to your business toolkit for more productivity and increased team efficiency.
$20/per user/month billed annually for all support inboxes. 7 day free trial.
- Multiple support channels: Connects major support channels including Facebook, Twitter, Emails, WhatsApp, and SMS.
- Integrations: Integrates with Zapier, Hubspot, Slack, Shopify, etc
- Team collaboration: The app allows you to communicate with the team members from the same screen without having to switch over
- Workflows and automation: Setup workflows to automate processes with the help of automation rules
- Internal FAQs: Create internal help-center for new support team members
- Tracking and metrics: Track email load, key metrics and team performance from your account dashboard
- No unified inbox view: Unlike other shared inbox tools, you cannot view all shared inboxes on a single screen with Helpwise. This can be a deal-breaker for those looking for the real “shared inbox” experience.
- Cannot create manual tickets for external channels: You cannot manage and track support for customers who connect from any channel apart from the ones supported by Helpwise.
- Unstable mobile app: Currently the mobile app is in a very nascent stage and does not support most of the features that the web app does.
Top Helpwise alternatives for your business
Helpwise is a great tool but there are many businesses who offer better, more thought-out features for Shopify store owners.
Considering the differing requirements, we’ve covered both shared WhatsApp inboxes and omnichannel customer support inboxes in this list.
Brands who talk to customers on different channels like Facebook, Emails, Instagram, Twitter, etc., a shared customer support inbox would be the best fit for you.
Without any further ado, let’s get right into the list.
DelightChat is an ecommerce customer support tool built for SME brands that enables them to deliver out-of-the-box customer service. It’s designed with a conversation-first approach that enables you to manage your store’s support & painlessly resolve customer queries - all from a single screen.
- Omnichannel inbox that helps you manage WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook, Emails & Live Chat.
- DelightChat enables you to respond to customer queries & collaborate with your team, all from a single screen.
- DelightChat offers great value for money being significantly cheaper than the other options on this list.
- DelightChat doesn’t penalize you when you add more users to scale up your customer support operations.
- Most importantly, you can collaborate with your team right within the app itself. There is no need to toggle between tabs, which leads to a loss in productivity & loss of work hours.
- For now, DelightChat only integrates with Shopify that allows it to access your Shopify admin dashboard data. However, it will soon be available for other ecommerce platforms like BigCommerce, WooCommerce & Magento.
Zoko is a shared inbox for WhatsApp Business. If you support your customers on WhatsApp and are looking for a tool that allows you to share the number with your team, this will be the perfect solution for you.
This is a great fit for businesses who are active only on WhatsApp or do not receive many queries from other channels like Facebook, emails, Twitter or Instagram.
$24.99/month for 500 monthly unique customers
- If you can stay within the tier limits of their plans, Zoko can be quite an affordable solution for your business
- You can send WhatsApp messages with response buttons that allow users to interact with the message
- Improve team communication and accountability with ticket assignment depending on the type of query
- Can create WhatsApp chatbots where users can respond to bot messages with specific numbers of keywords to get the desired information
- Very basic in terms of functionality as it focuses completely on WhatsApp
- Zoko is a basic tool and you may need to consider alternatives if you’re looking for better support with integrations
- Since the pricing is based on the number of conversations, you can expect the costs to rise as the number of chats increase.
Messagebird is a customer service automation tool that helps you create flows and chatbots for responding to customers. It supports channels like Live Chat, WhatsApp, Voice and more from a centralized dashboard.
With the help of conversation flows and auto-response bots, automating your support is completely possible with Messagebird.
Free upto 50 conversations. Then $50 to $150 monthly based on number of conversations
- The app is priced competitively and offers a lot of features for the price
- It offers good documentation for the supported APIs and integrations
- Offers SMS capabilities in the CRM and can be a plus for those looking for text messaging
- You can automate part of your customer conversations with the conversation flow builder
- The customer support team is slower than you’d expect and generally responds after 24 hours.
- Clumsy UI that takes a lot of time to get used to and isn’t designed intuitively
- Message deliverability is lower compared to competitors so your customers may miss messages
TimelinesAI is a popular shared WhatsApp inbox designed to help you manage multiple WhatsApp Business numbers from the same dashboard.
It works best for teams that interact a lot with clients through different channels over a long period of time, and you want to keep all this knowledge in the same place, shareable and available for all team members.
$25/month billed yearly for 1 WhatsApp number and 5 team members
- Manage and collaborate with team members from the same chat screen
- Add multiple WhatsApp numbers to TimelinesAI for seamless communication
- Chat history is backed up in the cloud
- Integrates with existing CRMs like Pipedrive and others through Zapier
- Can only work with WhatsApp and does not integrate with social media or Email channels
- As your team grows, the cost of using Timelines can grow as well
- Customizations of any sort are locked for business plan users
Trengo is a very well-known helpdesk tool. One of the caveats of this is the cost.
While it seems cheap to start with, the costs add up as you purchase add ons and pay a monthly fee for each addon.
But if budget is not a constraint, the costs will be compensated by their mature interface and a variety of integrations that are available.
Trengo also merges your Email, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, SMS, voice, live chat and many more applications in one place.
Starts at $15/agent/month. Addons for shared inboxes at additional monthly cost
- Intuitive UI for quick onboarding
- A seamless shared inbox experience with all support channels on the same screen
- Build an internal help center within the tool to help new team members learn the processes
- Internal team collaboration is possible with higher plans. The basic plan only offers a team inbox
- Difficult to view the historical closed tickets so customers have to repeat their issues
- Costs can go sky-high if you do not actively keep track of all the addons and product usage
- Outlook and Office365 integration is not available
- Minimum of 4 seats for using Whatsapp feature.
Twillion is an official WhatsApp Business API provider. Owing to the popularity of the business API, they also launched a shared inbox tool - Twilio Flex.
They have solid API documentation as the company was first introduced as a WhatsApp BSP.
The Flex app can merge SMS, WhatsApp, live chat, and many other support channels. It is a modular tool where features can be added or removed as per business requirements.
$1/user/hour or $150/user/month
- Supports phone calls, VoIP, messaging, WhatsApp, email and more.
- Cheaper for new businesses to start out with the hourly plans
- Highly extensible if you’re technically sound
- Monitoring of sms and call status process is seamless.
- Needs technical knowledge to get started else you’ll need to connect with the support team at Twilio
- Slower customer support
- Message deliverability is lower for mass messages or emails
- Prices can go high as you add team members.
Frontapp is a collaborative team inbox tool that brings emails and messages from different channels together.
It supports a wide variety of integrations ranging from Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Email to popular business tools.
It is built for small to medium businesses with a collaborative experience in mind.
However, the tool is quite expensive compared to many on this list and it may not suit your needs if you’re looking for an affordable shared inbox.
Starts at $19/user/month for 10 members. Price per user increases as the number of team members increase
- Onboarding is fast and can be done within 2 days
- Supports a lot of integrations with apps and business tools
- Intuitive UI/UX with minimal learning curve.
- Allows you to snooze emails making it easier to prioritize
- Possible automation with rules and advanced workflow templates
- There are a lot of complaints about customer support from Front
- The cost is very high even if you’re a small team
- Need to know the keywords to search for canned responses. Not easily accessible
Interakt is the most affordable official WhatsApp Business solution provider (BSP) on the list.
It offers a shared inbox for WhatsApp so your entire team can get online to assist with customer support. It also supports automated order notifications to users and good contact management on your admin dashboard.
INR 999/month or $15/month for unlimited logins
- Very affordable pricing compared to other providers
- Shared team inbox and a live chat widget that directly connects customers over WhatsApp
- Supports automated message templates and canned responses
- Integrates with Shopify and Woocommerce to pull order details and display it on the chat screen
- Lack of support for other channels can be a deal breaker.
Freshchat by Freshdesk
Freshchat serves businesses of all sizes from startups to large corporations.
The interface has matured over the years and the learning curve will be lower with this tool.
As per our observations, it may be better suited for larger organizations. While their free tier is good enough for most starting businesses too, the higher plans that offer more advanced features can become expensive.
$79/agent/month billed annually for basic omnichannel inbox
- Mature and familiar interface for easy transition
- Email, social, chat, phone channels can all be combined into the omnichannel helpdesk
- Seamless team collaboration
- Bots for responding to basic queries before sending it out to the support team
- Can be difficult to integrate with the website.
- Individual API integrations are priced individually so the costs can go higher as you add more integrations.
- Mobile app is slower than you might like
- Team collaboration needs improvements with features like mentions and tagging to notify them
WATI is a WhatsApp Business Solutions Provider (BSP) and customer support tool owned by Clare.ai.
Customers can apply for the WhatsApp Business API through them and use their shared inbox tool for customer support.
It also offers a no-code chatbot builder to automate customer responses and to create conversation flows.
Built for B2C businesses of all sizes, WATI is a great customer support tool if you only need to respond to customers on WhatsApp.
$40/month billed yearly for 5 agents. No free trial.
- After getting access to the WhatsApp API, the support team handles the complete integration
- The support team assists in each step of the onboarding process
- You can create team structures within WATI with its team and user management features
- Create chatbots and conversation flows to speed up responses to common questions and offer solutions instantaneously
- If you support customers on any other platform, you’d still need to purchase an additional CRM tool.
- It responds based on keywords and cannot continue conversations. For the flow builder, you need to pay an additional $49 monthly fee
Missive App is a team inbox that helps people collaborate on messages coming via email, WhatsApp, chatbots, SMS, Twitter, Facebook Messenger etc.
Missive does not offer a free trial. Instead, they have a 30 day money-back guarantee on all paid plans. They do offer a free plan, which is limited by the number of users and shared inboxes that you can manage. To access any advanced features such as integrations, automations and more, you would have to upgrade to a paid plan. All paid plans are priced per user, starting at $14/user for the Starter all the way to $26/user for Enterprise.
- Missive can be set up in a way to let you see and act on your private emails alongside ones shared with your team.
- You can create canned responses to save time answering repetitive questions & speed up the response rate.
- Prone to forgetting to reply to an email that needs more consideration? Use the snooze feature to get a reminder for your preferred date and time.
- A lot of features can be overwhelming and it can delay the onboarding of new customer service reps.
- It can be difficult to figure out if the chat has been read or not. There are no visual cues for that.
- Terminology, and functionality around closing and archiving the ticket can be confusing to understand at first.
Read on: Find the best Missive alternatives for your business.
Streamline Customer Service with DelightChat
Streamlining your customer support processes helps reduce the workload for your support team and improve the experience for your customers. In turn, customers reward you with repeat purchases and fewer complaints.
Great customer service receives word-of-mouth publicity and can help you enhance your store's revenues over the longer term!
We hope our research helped you find the best Helpwise alternative for your business. If you’re looking for the perfect ecommerce customer support solution for your Shopify business, try DelightChat free for 14 days.