Which help desk to Use to automatically build a knowledge base up over time as you answer customers incoming requests?
This is another question I’ve answered lately privately.
A lot of smart people are using Kayako for help desks. One of my hosting providers started to use Kayako about a year ago and Kayako made my help requests (all too frequent so I’m not recommending them here) there a whole lot easier.
Kayako have a free month long trial and after that you can pay monthly ($40 for the full package) for a hosted version or buy outright at $500 (you probably have to pay for upgrades after awhile so I’m not sure the cost of ownership is any less).
Details of Kayako pricing.
Another help desk I’ve looked at which is much less expensive is Will Barden’s Three Pillars Help Desk. There is a version at $47 and $77. If you join Will Barden’s email lists he sometimes even makes a special offer of Pro for Basic cost to his list.
What’s great about Three Pillars is that it is a one time fee with source code and hosted on your own servers. So if you have inhouse programmers, you can customise Three Pillars Help Desk as you go.
What we are using right now for support at Foliovision is Basecamp – as we are already deep in there and our clients all know how to use it – and have experimented with the help desk in Freshbooks which we are using for accounting. Basecamp is not public facing (you need to be a registered use to log in) nor does it allow redistribution of tickets to team members which is why we are still looking at other solutions.
If you are using WordPress on your main site, there is a very simple solution (as we build bigger and bigger sites, simple solutions have more and more appeal), it’s WordPress plugin called Ask Me. Ask Me lets you get questions and answers up on your site in a hurry. A larger Ask Me database would benefit from a simple category system. There is nothing to prevent Sara (the creator of Ask Me) or your programmer from adding that feature.
My advice – pick any one system get to know it well and use it to the maximum. We and our clients get huge value out of WordPress as we know WordPress so well. There are better tools for many of the things we do with WordPress. But the time we would lose getting to know each of them would be far more costly than the time we spend writing plugins and adapting WordPress to our purposes.