Bengaluru: Customer support platform provider Freshdesk Inc. on Wednesday announced the launch of a new product called Hotline.io, which allows businesses to provide support to their customers from within apps.
The news was first reported by technology website Venturebeat.
With the rapid rise in smartphone adoption, the number of businesses that are mobile-first and app-only have also risen. These businesses require newer, more mobile-friendly platforms for customer support, and Freshdesk is looking to tap into this area with the new product.
“Phone and email are not ideal channels for mobile app users. Mobile-first businesses face a unique set of challenges that need specific solutions. Support needs to be in-app, engagement should be real time, context must be readily available, and the solution has to be massively scalable. We built Hotline with these in mind,” said Girish Mathrubootham, chief executive officer, in a statement on Wednesday.
This is Freshdesk’s third product since its launch in 2011. The other two are Freshdesk, which is a cloud-based comprehensive customer support platform, and Freshservice, launched in 2014, which helps companies meet their internal IT support requests.
Hotline.io was built leveraging Freshdesk’s acquisition of Konotor, which helps businesses chat with their consumers inside apps, last December. Konotor was founded in 2012 and enables businesses communicate directly with their users to share announcements or promotions, and also allows users to talk to support teams—features that have been incorporated into Hotline.io
Konotor works with more than 40 million users through the apps it works with and has customers such as restaurant-discovery platform Zomato Media Pvt. Ltd, online financial services company BankBazaar.com (A&A Dukaan Financial Services Pvt. Ltd) and food-delivery service Faasos Food Services Pvt. Ltd.
Zomato is also one of Hotline’s early adopters and Freshdesk claims that companies like these have witnessed a 40% reduction in issue resolution time with Hotline.
On Tuesday, Freshdesk announced the appointment of two sales executives to the company, former Cisco veteran Bobby Jaffari as vice-president of sales, North America, and former sales director at AppNexus Arun Mani as managing director, Freshdesk Continental Europe, as it looks to expand its footrpint in mid-market enterprises and in Europe. Last November, it hired former LinkedIn India managing director Nishant Rao as its chief operating officer.
Earlier this week, Freshdesk also bought Framebench Technologies Pvt. Ltd, a company which lets users collaborate on files (documents, images, videos) in real time to allow its support teams to better interact with customers, marking its fourth acquisition in seven months. Apart from Konotor and Framebench, the five-year-old firm acquired Frilp, a social recommendation app in October, and 1CLICK.io, a video chat platform in August.
Freshdesk, which has so far raised $95 million from venture capital firms Accel Partners, Google Capital and Tiger Global Management Llc, has 50,000 customers globally, and competes with global heavyweights ZenDesk and Salesforce.com. The company is based in San Bruno, California, with offices in London, Sydney and Chennai.