Forums/Documentation/Zendesk Enterprise

Using Chat when managing multiple brands (Enterprise)

Anton de Young
posted this on July 27, 2011 16:34

Zendesk Enterprise

If you've set up to manage a multiple brand Zendesk in the Enterprise version of Zendesk (see Setting up to manage multiple brand Zendesk accounts), you need to run Chat from the hub Zendesk not the spoke accounts. This is because the agents who solve tickets are in the hub, not the spokes.


You can still provide Chat to your users in the spoke accounts, you just have to generate the Feedback Tab code in the hub Zendesk and add it to each of the spokes.

Chat is enabled as a feature of the Feedback Tab, so there's two steps to set this up. First, enable and configure Chat and then enable and configure the Feedback Tab to include Chat.

To configure Chat in the hub Zendesk
  1. Sign in to the hub Zendesk as an admin. If you're using Enterprise or custom agent roles (see Custom agent roles), any agent that has permission to set up Channels can also perform this task. Zendesk's predefined roles of Administrator and Advisor both have these permissions.
  2. Click the Manage icon () in the sidebar, then select Channels > Chat.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Channels > Chat.
  3. Enable Chat by selecting Yes.
  4. Set the Chat about my ticket? option to No.
    Note: This option allows users to chat about a ticket they are currently viewing. This feature won't not work in the spoke accounts because the agents are located in the hub Zendesk, not the spokes.
  5. Select the number of Maximum chat requests per agent.
  6. Optionally, customize the welcome message.
  7. Click Save.
To configure the Feedback Tab in the hub Zendesk
  1. Click the Manage icon () in the sidebar, then select Channels > Feedback Tab.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Channels > Feedback Tab.
  2. There are lots of options for setting up the Feedback Tab. How you set these is up to you. The option that is relevant to this task is End-users can chat with Agents?. Set that to Yes.
  3. When you've finished configuring the Feedback Tab, click Preview and grab code snippet.
    Note: On the Feedback Tab Settings page there is also a tab called Advanced Customization. This is where you can brand the Feedback Tab. However, since the Feedback Tab will be used by all of your spoke accounts, you should leave the default settings as is. In other words, don't add any branding.
  4. Select and copy the code snippet.
To add the Feedback Tab to each of the spokes
  1. Sign in to each of the spoke accounts, one at time, as a user with permission to add extensions. Zendesk's predefined roles of Administrator and Advisor both have these permissions.
  2. Click the Manage icon () in the sidebar, then select Settings > Extensions.
    Zendesk Classic: Select Settings > Extensions.
  3. Select Add Widget and then Global JavaScript.
  4. Enter a title for the widget (for example: Feedback Tab).
  5. Set the Available For option based on how to want users to access your Zendesk.
  6. Paste the Feedback Tab code you copied from the hub Zendesk.
  7. Click Submit.
  8. Repeat this for each of the spoke accounts.




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Heimen van Duinkerken
Project CS Beta Testers

You write:
There are lots of options for setting up the Feedback Tab. How you set these is up to you. The option that is relevant to this task is End-users can chat with Agents?. Set that to Yes.

But the extra options do not work in the setting do they? You can enable knowledge base search but this doesn't search the branded helpdesks?

August 08, 2011 14:14
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Anton de Young


Yes, you're right. The Feedback Tab knowledge base settings in the central help desk do not apply to the branded help desks so you wouldn't want that enabled. Thanks for catching that. I'll add more detail. 

August 08, 2011 14:25
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Emiliano Castaño

Anton, there is any update on this?

It is amazing to find so many limitations in the Enterprise plan, when this is the most expensive plan (another one is that in the central hub you cant see the requesters email).

April 14, 2012 12:53
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TJ Baker

I am only now getting to the point of implementing multiple branded help desks, and finding that I may not want to after all, sadly.

Not being able to present the KB / forum search and suggestions for each separate brand is a non-starter.

Also, if a ticket is submitted through this feedback tab, I assume it will go to the central hub?  But if our users are managed in the spoke DB, how will this work?  

Will we be able to create forum articles in the spoke from these tickets that are added in the hub?

I'm starting to feel a little less excited about this multiple branded help desk option, which was one of the main things that prompted us to update to Enterprise when we did.

April 26, 2012 15:39
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Emiliano Castaño

Anton, your last update was more than one year ago. There is any update on this topic?

September 06, 2012 08:16
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Eric Hoffman

I agree, TJ.   Its feeling like a bill of goods that you can't do what you should be able to.  Very limited.

January 03, 2013 18:12
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Justin Seymour

This article is still current; sorry for any confusion! We recognize the need for a better solution here, and we're constantly making changes to the chat service to improve functionality. We're aiming to better the Enterprise chat feature in future updates. 

January 04, 2013 07:11
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Jeremy Hurlburt

When I config my hug account Feedback tab and then place it in my spoke account and then test it, I see the message "Sorry, no agents are available. You may submit a ticket below for further help."  All of my support agents are online in the hub, including me.  We are all configured to accept chats.  Am I missing a setting?

March 19, 2013 10:43
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Brandon K.

@Jeremy: We might need to take a look at your specific set up to give you a fix for this issue. I've created a ticket for you with our Advocate team and someone should be getting back to you shortly.

March 19, 2013 11:13
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Henrik Heusala

With this current chat solution in hub-spoke model, how am I supposed to get the user information to the spoke?

If I understand correctly this solution will end up with the user information from chat generated tickets going directly to the hub account. So when everything else from the same customer meaning phone calls, emails.. goes to the spoke does this mean that these tickers created from chat's will be totally separated from the spoke accounts user data etc?

How am I able to see from which spoke this chat request is coming from if we are using the same feedbacktab/form however you impelment the chat functionality from the hub account for all spokes? 

February 01, 2014 01:54
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Marci Abraham

@Henrik, did you get your issue figured out? I'm trying to implement this as well, and would like to learn from those who've gone before!

February 07, 2014 11:06
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Khoa Le


Due to the limitations of ticket sharing right now, sending customer information to the spoke will not be possible. When a ticket is shared with another Zendesk account, the end-user's information is not shared. Instead, the Zendesk account receiving the ticket will create a dummy user that serves as the ticket requester. Also note that these user attributes of this dummy user cannot be modified.


As far as seeing which spoke the chat came from since you're answering chats from the the hub, what you can set up multiple feedback tabs for the hub. What you can do is set up a feedback tab for each spoke from the hub; when setting up the feedback tab, for the tags section, you can add a tag that is the name of the spoke. By doing this, whenever a ticket is created from chat, it a tag will be added to identify which spoke it was for.

You can then utilize ticket sharing and triggers to push these tickets back to the spoke as well.

February 12, 2014 07:49
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Henrik Heusala

@Marci, Not yet, working on it though :)

@Khoa, This might work, if I understand correctly this solution would work through automatically (via triggers) sharing the chat-ticket from the hub to the spoke.

On this subject, what happens with ticket sharing this way, would I end up with having all my chat users (who "belong" to the spoke) as dummy users in the spoke?


February 13, 2014 00:07
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Khoa Le

Hi Henrik,

You are correct. When hub and spoke is set up initially, there's usually only a sharing agreement that goes from the spoke to the hub. What you'll have to do is create sharing agreements from your hub to your spokes (if they're not already set up). Once that's done, you will then be able to utilize triggers to automatically share tickets from the hub to your spokes. In this case, the dummy user will exist in the spoke account.

February 14, 2014 15:28
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Henrik Heusala

@Khoa Thanks for your answer.

In essence this would then mean that:

if a have a web shop A, web shop B and company C with their own spokes and one hub.

All customer details coming in from email, feedbacktab, facebook etc are stored in each spoke.

All customer details using the chat channel would be stored in the hub.

What I now have is all chat user details are stored in the hub while all other details are stored in the spokes and even though they are exactly the same person many times, these users are totally "separate" in systems point of view.

Is there any solution for tackling this problem and identifying these chat customers as the appropriate customers in the spokes (and their chat tickets as part of their history)?

February 15, 2014 06:34
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Khoa Le


Unfortunately, that currently is not possible. When a ticket is shared with another Zendesk account (regardless if it's a hub and spoke model or if it's simply two Zendesk accounts sharing a ticket), the Zendesk account receiving the ticket creates a "dummy" user to assume the role of the requester with the same name as the requester; however, they don't have any user attributes and their user attributes can't be modified. This means you won't be able to merge them into another user or delete them either.

Hope that clears things up for you!

March 07, 2014 06:14