Salesforce vs Zendesk: 4 Critical Differences


Salesforce vs Zendesk Feature Image

Customer relationship management has become an integral part of any organization to establish a market presence and increase sales. Building stirring relations with customers ensures their loyalty towards brands and helps businesses to grow further. Currently, the market has to offer numerous CRM platforms for organizations to choose from. Out of which, Salesforce and Zendesk are the two most popular options.

This article will provide a comprehensive understanding of both Salesforce and Zendesk CRM platforms. It will mention all the services and features the two platforms offer to offer clarity on Salesforce vs Zendesk.

Table of Contents

Introduction to Salesforce

Salesforce vs Zendesk: Salesforce Logo
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The United States-based Salesforce is a cloud computing service as a software (SaaS) providing company. It is a global leader in developing customer relationship management platforms that help enterprises automate critical business processes, including sales, marketing, customer service, and many more. Salesforce was founded by Halsey Minor, Marc Benioff, and Parker Harris in the year 1999. Over the years, Salesforce has brought in many groundbreaking innovations in the CRM sector that have made it a trusted platform.

Many global leaders like Toyota, American Express, Spotify, Loreal, Canon, and NBC Universal use Salesforce CRM to meet their business requirements. The company has also integrated artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies with its CRM platform to provide impactful predictive analytics tools that help sales representatives better understand the target audience, leading to increased sales. The company also provides an array of dedicated CRM products for various industries like finance, manufacturing, retail, healthcare, tourism, and education.

Salesforce vs Zendesk: Salesforce Dashboard
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Key Services offered by Salesforce

Salesforce being one of the world’s largest CRM platforms offers various services to its clients that can be used to upscale operation and automate critical business processes. Below are a few services that are offered by Salesforce.

Sales Cloud

This service enables users to automate their sales operations. Sales Cloud comes with several features like customer history, real-time text suggestions, and many more that allow sales representatives to better communicate with customers. Sales Cloud features many powerful analytics tools that generate accurate sales predictions, enabling businesses to plan informed business strategies. 

Health Cloud

This is a unique service specifically designed for the healthcare industry. Salesforce Health Cloud caters to all the CRM needs of healthcare companies, including hospitals, MedTech, pharmaceutical, and medical equipment manufacturers. It is a HIPPA certified platform that ensures the best available security of patient data. Health Clouds displays critical patient information like patient history, medication, appointment details on a single dashboard that enables healthcare workers to provide a personalized experience to their patients. 

Salesforce Open CTI

Open CTI is a javascript API that allows integration of various third-party computer telephony integration systems with the Salesforce CRM platform. It is a cloud-based service that does not require the installation of any specialized hardware at the workstation. Open CTI enables businesses to save a lot of money and time as it uses softphones that can be displayed on the user’s screen. The service offers many useful features like automated call logging, voicemail drop, on-screen customer details popup, click to dial, and many more. 

Experience Cloud

Salesforce has developed this platform with the intent to connect employees with customers and partners. Experience Cloud allows companies to collect data from open-source platforms to meet their business needs. It has the capability of connecting human resources and IT teams to optimize their workflow. 

Salesforce Einstein

Einstein is an artificial intelligence-enabled predictive analytics tool that can be integrated with the Salesforce CRM platform. It generates accurate predictions regarding sales like customer conversion scores that help sales representatives tactfully handle sales calls that lead to increased revenue generation. The artificial intelligence service uses data collected from the actions taken by customers like website views, engagement, comments, orders, and replies to generate sales forecast reports. It is also capable of recognizing the difference in actions that caused a successful and failed sale attempt. 

Introduction to Zendesk

Salesforce vs Zendesk: Zendesk Logo
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Zendesk is a software company that specializes in developing cloud-based customer service solutions to help companies improve the quality of their customer support. The company also provides sales automation support tools that enable businesses to effectively deal with target audiences to increase conversion rate and revenue generation.

Zendesk was founded in Denmark by Alexander Aghassipour, Mikkel Asger Svane, and Morten Primdahl in the year 2007 and currently has its headquarters in San Francisco. The company has been gaining popularity over time because of its powerful CRM solution that is being used by many businesses across the globe, including Accent Group,, Automattic, Browser Stack, Aurora, MTV Artists, and many more. 

Salesforce vs Zendesk:
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Key Features of Zendesk

Features of Zendesk CRM
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Some of the Key Features of Zendesk CRM Software are as follows:

1) Internal Desk Help

Internal Help Desk Software from Zendesk helps you manage employee interactions and respond to queries and support requests quickly. It also includes tools to assist your staff in becoming more productive by increasing morale and decreasing costly downtime.

2) Analytics and Reporting

Zendesk comes with an Analytics tracking system and Reporting module that analyses data on Agent Performance, Tickets, and Customer Satisfaction in real-time. Users can alter the data using the filters and responsive Dashboard to come up with fresh conclusions. Some options are CSAT Rating, Satisfaction Prediction, Net Promoter Score (NPS) Survey, and Performance Dashboard. The CSAT rating lets agents know how happy customers are with the service, while NPS predicts how likely a customer will return for more services.

3) Triggers

Zendesk comes with pre-configured triggers that users may use or change, as well as the ability to construct unique custom triggers from scratch. The triggers can start a workflow based on particular actions or modifications made to a ticket.

4) Multi-Channel

Agents can respond with tickets from various sources, including Help Center Request Forms, Emails, Text Chat, Mobile Phone, and Social Networking Sites such as Facebook and Twitter, using Zendesk. As a result, consumers may communicate with brands via whichever channel they want.

5) Multilingual Interface and Support

Zendesk’s translated admin interface is accessible in over 40 different languages. The help center contents can be localized to display information in other languages, as indicated by the locale code in the URL. Moreover, dynamically updating ticket content in the consumers’ preferred languages eliminates the need for humans to translate—this aids in the provision of Multilingual Support.

6) Answer Bot

Answer Bot is a simple AI bot included with Zendesk, which uses Machine Learning to evaluate customer queries and give possible responses. It provides suggested responses, and if the client is pleased, the requests will not be sent to an agent. As a result, agents will have more time to answer complex questions. Further, it improves its competency over time by learning from its failures.

7) Better Security

To guarantee that client data is always safe, Zendesk employs a mix of enterprise-class security measures and thorough audits of its apps, systems, and networks. This includes Compliance Certification and Memberships, Cloud security, HR security, NDA and non-NDA artifacts, Application and Product Security.

8) Third-Party Integration

Zendesk allows organizations to have access and integrate data from a variety of third-party sources. This offers users a comprehensive 360-degree perspective of the data, which can be utilized to improve decision-making and development opportunities.

9) Self Service

Using Zendesk’s Knowledge Base and community features, businesses can create a Self-Service Customer Portal. When combined with the AI-powered bot, the Self-Service functionality can route FAQs and low-touch tickets to the portal, thus frees up company agents to focus on high-value tickets and potential leads. It increases the efficiency of the customer service process.

10) Customization

Zendesk has extensive Customization options that can be tailored effectively and consistently with a company’s style and identity. Companies may use more than 100 APIs to build and improve customizations within the Zendesk Customer Support Platform. They can also modify the logo, name, fonts, and color using the Zendesk Customization Panel.

For further information on Zendesk, click here to check out their official website.

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Key Services offered by Zendesk

Zendesk CRM platform is known for its capabilities of providing consistent support to its users. With Zendesk, businesses can quickly generate new leads regularly and seamlessly handle high amounts of incoming customers queries. To achieve such results, Zendesk offers multiple services. Below mentioned are a few notable services provided by Zendesk. 

Zendesk Service

It is a product that takes care of every customer service need of an organization. The product has an intuitive and easy-to-use interface that allows users to understand and use it to its full potential in a short time. Zendesk Service supports customer interaction over multiple channels, including messaging, live chat, social email, and voice messaging. It allows businesses to create community forums where customers can resolve their issues on their own, which saves time for customer service agents. Zendesk has used artificial intelligence technology to provide a personalized experience to customers with chatbots. 

Zendesk Sales

Formerly known as Base CRM, Zendesk Sales is a platform specifically designed to help sales representatives increase their productivity and pipeline visibility. Zendesk Sales automates various critical sales operations like customer data gathering and generating metrics. It allows sales representatives to access and analyze relevant deal data to increase sales quickly. The analytics tool of Zendesk Sales enables users to maintain focus on high-value deals without worrying about other tasks. The service can be accessed from any part of the world, even being offline. Users can use powerful pre-built dashboards or customize them to display related analytics and data according to their requirements.

Zendesk Marketplace

Zendesk Marketplace is a store where Zendesk users get access to numerous applications for customizing their Zendesk Service, Chat, and Sell. The store allows users to install and integrate various apps to improve their analytics, reporting, user productivity, time tracking, and various other tasks. A few notable integrations available on Marketplace include Mailchimp, Dropbox, and Pandadocs. The service helps both sales and service teams to understand their audience better, which leads to a consistent customer experience.  

Zendesk Sunshine

It is a new-age customer relationship management platform developed by Zendesk. The CRM platform is built on Amazon Web Services (AWS) that allows it to easily connect with data sources already available on AWS. Sunshine also enables users to create an enriched profile of customers with various information like LinkedIn profile links, job positions, and many more, including basic details. 

Key Differences between Salesforce and Zendesk

Both the companies are currently the market leaders in developing CRM platforms. Nevertheless, they have certain differences that make them stand out from each other. Below mentioned points shed light on Salesforce vs Zendesk:

Salesforce vs Zendesk: Analytics

In terms of analytics, Salesforce provides various tools that generate impactful metrics to allow sales representatives to gain a better understanding of their audience. Utilizing the abilities of artificial intelligence, Salesforce Einstein provides accurate forecasting reports regarding customer preferences and sales. After analyzing customer history and details, Einstein assigns a probability score for each customer that gives sales representatives an idea about the chances of customers to make a purchase. This feature allows users to focus more on customers with a high probability score that results in increased revenue generation. The recent acquisition of Tableau by Salesforce further strengthens its drag and drop analytics capabilities. 

Zendesk also provides a few powerful analytics tools that generate usable digital reports about customer experience after scrutinizing consumer data. It also displays forecasts based on previously collected data to help users provide a better service experience to their customers. 

Salesforce service allows users to have access to all the analytics from various departments like sales, marketing, and customer service in one dashboard that makes it easier for users to interpret. In contrast, Zendesk wins the battle in the customer experience analytics segment. So for the Salesforce vs Zendesk discussion from an analytics standpoint, Salesforce has a more in-depth approach towards providing better analytics that can help businesses drastically improve their operations.  

Salesforce vs Zendesk: Integration

Salesforce has the world’s most enormous integration support for third-party applications in the CRM industry. The integration ranges from business analytics, service automation like emails and SMS, customer support, and more. Salesforce CRM can be expanded easily by subscriptions of other Salesforce services like Marketing Cloud, Service Cloud, Sales Cloud, and many more, which can improve the capabilities and performance of Salesforce CRM exponentially.

Zendesk CRM too is a part of a vast software ecosystem that allows it to integrate with other Zendesk services like Zendesk Support, live chat and messaging, and many more. It also supports a lot of third-party integrations like Mailchimp and Pandadocs. 

So for the Salesforce vs Zendesk discussion from an integration standpoint, both the platforms have incredible integration capabilities that make it harder to decide which is the best. Users looking for a CRM platform with multiple integration choices won’t go wrong after selecting either one of the two. 

Salesforce vs Zendesk: Features

Salesforce offers a wide range of features that helps businesses meet all their marketing and sales needs. With the power of artificial intelligence, Salesforce provides features like personalized customer emails and SMS, creates complete customer history, and easy drag and drop functionality that considerably helps users to increase their engagement and sales. 

On the contrary, Zendesk has a lighter approach towards providing features. Zendesk offers comparatively more straightforward and easy-to-use functionalities like lead management that allows users to view records according to their chosen filters. The Zendesk CRM platform emphasizes sales and does not offer many features for marketing. 

So for the Salesforce vs Zendesk discussion from the features standpoint, Salesforce provides a better 360° customer visibility that enables users to market their product well and also use impactful tools to increase sales. In comparison, Zendesk offers easy-to-use features with limited capabilities. 

Salesforce vs Zendesk: Pricing

Salesforce offers its services at a price beginning from $25 per month that goes up to $300 per month. The most expensive plan offers every feature that Salesforce provides, whereas the minimum subscription will offer limited access to features. 

Zendesk CRM can be purchased on a monthly subscription basis starting from $19 with limited features and goes up to $99 per month that lets its customers use the platform to its maximum capability.


There can not be one clear winner in this comparison as both platforms come with unique and distinctive capabilities. Businesses with a motive of integrating sales and marketing operations with customer support should have a better experience while using Salesforce. At the same time, enterprises that have a sole motive of providing a better customer experience and improving customer service should find Zendesk as a better option to satisfy their requirements. It is up to companies to prioritize their needs to choose the best pick for them.

This blog talks about Salesforce vs Zendesk in great detail. It also gives a brief introduction to Salesforce and Zendesk before highlighting their key features, and services offered to their customers before diving into the differences between the two tools. For any information on Salesforce Facebook Integration & Salesforce Data Import, you can visit the former links.

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Dipayan Mitra
Freelance Technical Content Writer, Hevo Data

Dipayan has worked with several B2B SaaS companies to break down the complexities of data integration and analysis through insightful content tailored for technical and business audience.

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