Finding the right customer service software for your unique needs is important. With over a decade of experience researching CX-focused SaaS tools, I'm well-versed at critically evaluating software systems and their key functionalities. I've drawn on this experience to create this detailed review of Hiver's multi-channel customer service help desk software.
By drawing on my practical experience and industry knowledge, my goal is to present a straightforward and comprehensive analysis of Hiver, giving you the details you need to determine if Hiver is the right fit for your customer service needs. Trust in my expertise, and I'll guide you through the intricacies of this software and the potential impact it could have on your customer service capabilities.
Hiver: Product Overview
Hiver offers a help desk solution that operates within your Google Workspace account and Gmail email account. By occupying a software space you're already familiar with, Hiver's software is a straightforward help desk solution to learn and master without requiring a lot of training.
Primarily favored by startups, it centralizes customer emails, allowing for efficient management and collaboration through shared labels and email notes. Hiver users benefit from a suite of functionalities including auto-assignment, customized email templates, and instant notifications.
Its compatibility with Android and iOS platforms, alongside the introduction of new features and meticulous metrics, bolsters its adaptability and user-friendliness. Positive Hiver reviews often highlight its proficiency in managing and organizing emails, ensuring that teams can function with increased synchronicity and responsiveness.
- Collision Detection: Hiver prevents multiple agents from replying to the same email, ensuring consistency in customer communication.
- Shared Inboxes: Hiver simplifies email management by centralizing emails, facilitating easier tracking and faster responses.
- Automated Workflows: Hiver optimizes productivity by automating repetitive tasks, allowing customer service agents to focus more on solving customer issues.
- Easy-to-use: Numerous user reviews have described Hiver as very straightforward to use. If you're already using Google Workspace, you'll be up and running in Hiver quickly.
- Limited Integrations: Hiver offers fewer third-party integrations, potentially complicating workflow in a diversified tech ecosystem.
- Customization: Hiver lacks extensive customization options, limiting the ability to tailor the software fully to a team’s specific needs.
Having analyzed Hiver thoroughly, it's a solid option to consider in the landscape of customer service software. Compared to competitors, it particularly shines in its intuitive design within Gmail, offering users a familiar interface that's easy-to-navigate.
With that in mind, Hiver clearly performs best in scenarios where teams primarily operate within Gmail and require efficient, organized email management functionalities without extensive third-party integrations. Its shared inbox, and other modern features like automated workflows, and collision detection, also make it a robust help desk solution for growing teams.
Hiver: A Deep Dive
Ready to dive deeper into the details? Here you'll find a summary of Hiver's key features and functionalities, product specifications, customer support, software integrations, pricing, and best use cases. I've also included a list of frequently asked questions below to address any lingering queries you may have.
These are the key functionalities that make Hiver stand out compared to other customer service and help desk software solutions:
- Deep Gmail integration: Hiver operates easily within Gmail, providing a familiar environment, reducing the learning curve, and improving user adoption rates.
- Email-centric focus: Unlike many competitors, Hiver maintains a strong emphasis on email as a primary customer service channel, ensuring detailed attention to email management.
- Automated workflow specificity: Hiver's automated workflows are notably detailed, allowing for nuanced automation rules that can cover a wide array of customer service scenarios.
Other Key Features
In addition to the key functionalities above, I also wanted to draw attention to Hiver's other main features as follows:
- Shared inboxes: Hiver centralizes emails to ensure that every team member can access necessary information, fostering a more collaborative and responsive customer service environment.
- Automated workflows: Automation in Hiver assists in handling repetitive tasks, increasing operational efficiency, and allowing agents to focus more on customer interaction.
- Collision detection: This feature in Hiver helps prevent duplicate responses by indicating when another team member is replying to a query.
- Customer satisfaction surveys: Hiver provides CSAT surveys to collect feedback, allowing teams to understand and improve customer experiences.
- Custom tags and filters: Hiver offers custom tags and filters, enhancing email organization, and ensuring that no customer queries go unnoticed.
- Service level agreement (SLA) management: The software aids in monitoring service quality through SLA management, ensuring that customer queries get resolved in a timely manner.
- Customizable views: Hiver allows the personalization of views, enabling agents to access necessary information quickly.
- Reports and analytics: Hiver’s analytics help in deriving insights on team performance and customer service efficiency, guiding improved strategies and actions.
- Role-based access: This feature ensures that team members access only the information relevant to their roles, maintaining data integrity and security.
- CRM integration: Hiver supports CRM integration with Salesforce (or other CRM systems through a Zapier integration), creating a streamlined flow of customer information and enhancing service quality.
Looking to verify specific features? Use this list to ensure Hiver covers the features your customer support team needs:
|Customer Interaction History||Yes|
|Customer Satisfaction Surveys||Yes|
|Custom Tags and Filters||Yes|
|Reports and Analytics||Yes|
|Social Media Integration||Yes (WhatsApp)|
|Service Level Management||Yes|
|Integration with CRM||Yes|
|Customer Feedback Collection||Yes|
Ease of Use
Navigating through Hiver feels intuitive, especially given its integration with Gmail. The initial setup and onboarding process is straightforward, however, as with any new tool, mastering its more advanced features, such as automated workflows, will require some time and learning.
Hiver provides a solid range of customer support channels, including email, live chat, a WhatsApp channel, and a voice channel (which requires an Aircall account). Their extensive knowledge base also makes it possible for customers to resolve common issues and queries independently, reducing the demands on your support team.
The absence of native phone support features may limit organizations with customers who prefer immediate verbal assistance. However, using Hiver's Aircall integration, you can set up a voice channel to manage calls and voicemails too.
Software integrations will reduce the administrative demands on your customer support team, helping them be more productive, and handling your customer customer data efficiently. Here are the key points you need to know about Hiver's integration abilities:
- Hiver integrates natively within the Gmail ecosystem and supports integration with other tools like CRM systems.
- Other native integrations include Aircall, Asana, Jira, Okta, QuickBooks, Salesforce, Slack, and WhatsApp.
- You can also create connections between Hiver and your other favorite apps by connecting Hiver to a paid Zapier account.
- Beyond Zapier, Hiver also offers an API, opening the doors to numerous custom integrations that might be necessary for specific workflows.
- Hiver also allows for the utilization of webhooks to expand its operational capabilities and integrations.
Pricing for Hiver's Lite plan starts at $15/user/month when billed annually. This plan is considered their starter plan, and it includes the following features:
- Multi-channel engagement: email, live chat, WhatsApp, and knowledge base
- Email management features: tags, notes, conversation IDs, email templates, and recent conversations
- Team collaboration tools: collision alerts, shared drafts, approvals, permalinks, cross-team collaboration capabilities
- 2 shared inboxes with up to 10 users per inbox
- Mobile apps for Android and iOS mobile devices
- 24x7 customer support via chat or email
If you're looking for more advanced features including their voice channel, automations, analytics, company branding, and native integrations, you'll need to scale up to their Pro plan which is $39/user/month.
You can also contact Hiver directly to request a free demo or start a 7-day free trial with no credit card required. Custom quotes are also available if you need more than 50 user licenses.
Hiver: Best Use Cases
Hiver has a lot to offer, but it may not be the best fit for your particular use case. Here are my thoughts on the types of organizations that would benefit from Hiver, and those that likely wouldn't.
Who would be a good fit for Hiver?
Based on my assessment, businesses that heavily rely on email communications would find Hiver particularly beneficial. Specifically, small to medium-sized enterprises operating in the realms of e-commerce, real estate, or any industry where customer queries predominantly flow through email.
Teams that rely on close collaboration and information exchange would also find value in Hiver. Its capacity to centralize communication, automate repetitive tasks, and customize workflows aligns it closely with the operational dynamics of customer service, sales, and support teams across many different sectors.
Who would be a bad fit for Hiver?
Hiver might not resonate well with large organizations that lean towards multi-channel customer service approaches beyond email. Industries where real-time support is crucial such as IT or emergency services might not want to put their trust in Hiver’s phone channel capabilities since that functionality requires an integration with Aircall, and therefore, another added expense.
In addition, businesses that need numerous integrations with third-party applications might also find Hiver less accommodating given its relatively small list of native integrations.
How does Hiver integrate with Gmail?
Does Hiver support live chat functionality?
What kind of automation features does Hiver offer?
Can Hiver be accessed on mobile devices?
Does Hiver offer phone support?
Is there an API available for Hiver?
How does Hiver handle collision detection?
What types of reports and analytics does Hiver offer?
Hiver Company Overview & History
Hiver specializes in simplifying customer service and team collaboration through email. Rooted in the belief that businesses communicate primarily through email, Hiver has built a suite of customer service solutions that optimize email efficiency and collaboration. It is used by a variety of companies, including the likes of HubSpot, Canva, and Flexport.
Headquartered in San Jose, California, Hiver remains focused on refining the customer service experience through continuous product enhancements based on customer feedback.
Hiver Summary: The Bottom Line
Hiver's deep integration with Gmail makes it a unique platform for optimizing email management for customer service teams. It excels in minimizing clutter and enhancing team collaboration directly within a familiar platform.
Noteworthy features such as collision detection and numerous automated workflows and capabilities make it stand out by prioritizing consistency and efficiency in customer interactions. It also allows multi-channel support, including live chat, a customer-facing knowledge base, a WhatsApp channel, and a Voice Channel (leveraging their Aircall integration).
Alternatives to Hiver
Not sure if Hiver is the perfect fit for you? Here are a few similar systems you may want to consider instead:
- Zendesk: Known for its multi-channel support, Zendesk offers a more comprehensive suite of customer interaction platforms than Hiver.
- Freshdesk: Offers a robust knowledge base and community forum features, making it suitable for customer self-service environments.
- Help Scout: Prides itself on simplicity and ease of use, making it a strong contender for small businesses with straightforward customer service needs.
Or feel free to take a look at my list of the best help desk software for additional options or my tips for how to choose the best help desk software for your needs.