Home CRM for Small Business Zoho Desk | Best Customer Service Software for Small Teams

Zoho Desk | Best Customer Service Software for Small Teams

by Stewart Gauld
Last updated on April 22nd, 2023
Zoho Desk | Best Customer Service Software - Stewart Gauld

By providing exceptional customer service, your business can stand out from its competitors.

You can achieve that using a dynamic and easy-to-use customer service software like Zoho Desk that your support agents can engage on.

By learning how to use Zoho Desk, you can streamline customer interactions in regards to issues and questions they might have.

Resolving questions and problems as quickly and effectively as possible is important for achieving the highest levels of customer service.

Ultimately, you’ll be able to forge a strong customer relationship, thanks to an enviable customer service software provided using Zoho Desk.

This free customer service software is ideal for small teams (and big businesses if you choose to upgrade a paid plan).

In this section of our Zoho Desk tutorial, we’ll explain where you can manage your teams or agents.


Zoho Desk: Best Customer Service Software

Hence, in this Zoho Desk tutorial, you’ll learn how to use our favourite customer service software for small businesses.


Step 1: Getting Started with Zoho Desk

Let’s get you up and running with Zoho Desk!

Getting Started with Zoho Desk

Get started with Zoho Desk for FREE here 

*The link above is an affiliate link, which means we will get a commission if you upgrade to a paid plan (with no extra cost to you). This helps support our education-based website and we thank you in advance!

To do that:

  • Point your cursor to ‘Pricing’ and click on it.
  • Notice the free plan, which is the focus of our Zoho Desk tutorial.
  • Select ‘Try Now’.

The free plan offers crucial features, such as customer management, email ticketing, help center, private knowledge base, predefined SLAs, macros, multi-language help desk, mobile apps, and 24×5 email support.

However, if you want to leverage the advanced features of this help desk software, you’d need a standard, professional, or enterprise plan.

Some of the advanced features include reports & dashboards, tasks, events & call activities, Zia – artificial intelligence, scheduled reports, contract management, and more.

That said, small teams can meet their customer service needs with the free Zoho Desk plan.

As your business expands, you may upgrade at any time.

Read more: How To Use Zoho Mail 


Step 2: Signing Up for Free Plan

Signing Up for Free Plan To complete your Zoho Desk sign up:

  • Enter your company name
  • Type in your portal URL
  • Provide a phone number
  • Hit ‘Continue’

Next, you need to complete your Zoho Desk account information by uploading your business logo.

Notice the free support email address that you’ll utilize to receive customer emails or prospect emails.

You also have the option to choose your own email instead of the branded ones.

However, for this Zoho Desk tutorial, we’ll go with the branded email.

Click ‘Next’.

Under the free plan, you can invite three support agents.

They will be in charge of managing the tickets coming from your customers.

Besides yourself, you can add two other support agents that you wish to collaborate with on this customer service software.

Read more: Canva Free Logo Maker

To add the agents:

  • Enter their name
  • Type in their email address
  • Click ‘Invite’

After you’ve added all the agents, hit ‘Get Started’.

You’ll now arrive at your fresh Zoho Desk account.

Read more: Create FREE Business Emails with Zoho Mail


Step 3: Navigating the Tickets Dashboard

Navigating the Tickets Dashboard If you are unfamiliar with what tickets are, they represent information between your customers and agents.

Using this information, the agents resolve the issues raised by the customers.

Apart from that, these tickets help you make improvements to avoid such issues in the future.

On your Zoho Desk dashboard, you’ll see some default tickets.

Using the free plan of the best customer support software for small businesses, you can receive and respond to tickets via email.


Step 4: Locating the Support Email (Default) 

Locating the Support Email (Default)  It’s time to find your support email in this Zoho Desk tutorial.

To do so:

  • Click on ‘Setup’ located in the upper-right corner (refer to the screengrab)
  • Under ‘Channels’, select ‘Email’ 

You can now see your support email, which is going to be used by your customers to send in their queries.

Notice that your primary email is currently fetching (live and working).

On the other hand, if you wish to create a new support email, follow these steps:

  • Click on ‘New Support Email Address’.
  • Enter your preferred support email address and a friendly name.
  • Hit ‘Save’.

For small teams, one support email should suffice.

A large organization with multiple departments and support teams needs multiple support email addresses.

Note: If you own a branded domain name, we recommend setting up email forwarding. That way, you can create a branded support email, which looks more professional from the customer’s perspective. If you need assistance setting-up your domain name and branded support email, it’s wise to contact Zoho Desk support.


Step 5: Understanding How to Use Tickets

Understanding How to Use Tickets In this section of our Zoho Desk tutorial, you’ll learn how to use tickets.

For that, you need to:

  • Navigate back to ‘Tickets’ (see top-left corner).
  • Notice that the status of the first ticket is currently ‘open’ (refer to the screengrab).
  • Assign an agent to manage this ticket.
  • Click on the ticket to open the conversation between the agent and the customer

Within the free plan of this customer service software, you also have access to Macros.

They are basically a set of actions that you can take when engaging with tickets.

That includes sending emails, creating tasks, updating fields, leaving comments, and more.

In the top-right area, you have two options: ‘Reply All’ and ‘Comment’.

If you select the latter, you’ll be able to add a comment internally in this conversation.

Only other agents (and not your customer) can see this.

On the other hand, if you select ‘Reply’, you can respond to the customers directly.

You also have basic email formatting options.

This includes the attachments.

After composing your email, hit ‘Send’.

On the left-hand side you can view and understand how the ticket information is displayed.

To edit these details, simply click the pencil icon.

There are other options concerned with this ticket:

  • Resolution: the outcome of this ticket. This is where you can add a note about the resolution.
  • Attachments: this shows attachments added for the ticket.
  • Approval: this is inaccessible under the free plan.
  • History: Ithe entire history of the conversation is recorded here.

Now, head back to tickets again.

You can change the status to ‘Closed’ since the first ticket has now been resolved.

You can also:

  • Delete the ticket.
  • Edit the ticket.
  • Have a quick view of the ticket

There are various view types as well, including:

  • All Tickets
  • All Views
  • Closed Tickets
  • Open Tickets
  • Spam Tickets
  • Overdue Tickets
  • Customer Responded Tickets, and more

Apart from these default view types, you can also add a custom view.

However, this feature is inaccessible under the free plan of the customer service software.


Step 6: Creating a Knowledge Base (KB)

Creating a Knowledge Base (KB) Click on ‘KB’ next to ‘Tickets’.

This is where you can add articles to provide additional information for your agents.

These articles help them navigate customer queries with ease.

Hence, it’s referred to as the private knowledge base.

For each article that you create, Zoho Desk will show you basic analytics, such as views, comments, likes, and dislikes.

Just click on the + icon next to search to write a new article.

Proceed by adding a title, body of the article, include attachments, and publish when it’s ready.

Apart from that, you can edit these articles anytime you like using the best customer service software.


Step 7: Accessing the Record of Customers

Accessing the Record of Customers Next to ‘KB’, we have ‘Customers’.

This is where you can manage all your contacts in one place using Zoho Desk.

These contacts are customers or potential customers who have sent emails to your business.

Below ‘Contacts’, we have ‘Accounts’.

If you were a B2B organization, you’d create an account of a larger organization by clicking the ‘+’ icon.

Under ‘Account Owner’ is where you can assign an agent who will be in charge of managing this account.

In the bottom-left corner, we have ‘chats’ and ‘contacts’.

If you click on ‘chats’, you can strike a conversation with people and teams across various channels.

And if you wish to locate your contacts, simply select ‘contacts’.

Notice your profile in the upper-right corner.

This is where you can customize your profile.

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Step 8: Managing Teams/Agents

Managing Teams/Agents

  • Click on ‘Setup’ (refer to the screengrab)
  • Under ‘Users and Control’, select ‘Agents’
  • Click on ‘New Agent’ to add additional agents

Here, you can also see the deactivated agents, deleted agents, all agents, etc.

At the moment, we have one active agent.

If you click on each agent, you’ll be able to see more information related to this particular agent: open tickets, on-hold tickets, closed tickets, average response time, ticket volume, average resolution time, happiness rating, and more.

This is essentially a scorecard dashboard (KPI) of your agents.

In the top-right corner, you can select the time duration for performance evaluation, which is currently set as ‘Last 7 days’.

You can change it to ‘Last 30 days’, ‘Last week’, or any other time.

Therefore, you can identify areas in your customer service that need improvement.

It could be a less-than-ideal first response time or the average response time.

Read more: Zoho CRM Tutorial for Beginners


Zoho Desk Tutorial for Beginners (Video Tutorial)

Zoho Desk is the best customer support software for small businesses.

Using its free plan, you can manage tickets, streamline customer service, and improve the agents’ performance.

This comprehensive Zoho Desk tutorial will help you get the most out of this free customer service software.

I have also embedded the full video down below that will help you get started with the Zoho desk.


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