Why are incoming emails threading to the wrong ticket?

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  • Lori Anne Graziano

    How are others mesaging this to their customers to overcome people using an email that has been stored in their address book from a previous ticket and references that ticket to avoid situations of exposure to others that should not be on the thread?

  • Nicole S.
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hey Lori Anne -

    I'm sorry you haven't received any responses to your question. You may want to re-post it in the Support Q&A topic in the community, where it may get more visibility and hopefully some answers from other users.

  • Haya Elkadi

    This reply makes no sense, can someone further clarify in regards to this? 

  • Devan - Community Manager
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hello Haya Elkadi,

    I'd be more than happy to clarify things for you, but first, would you please share a little insight on the issue you are facing and what information is explicitly hard to understand?

    Best regards. 

  • Rob vanBrandenburg

    I have the same problem. An initial ticket is created on the customers' internal system, and emailed to our Zendesk instance. When the customers' system replies to an existing ticket, it cannot use the unique 'reply to' address that Zendesk uses to thread the ticket.

    In your answer you say 'the In-Reply-To or References line' - what is the 'References line', can we use that to have Zendesk match the email to an existing ticket and not use the 'reply-to' address ?

  • Elissa
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hello Rob,


    I'm sorry to hear you're having trouble with your customers' emails not threading back into the same tickets. Unfortunately if the customers' email system is erasing all of the unique information from the email, Zendesk will not be able to identify that it is connected to an existing conversation. 

    When an agent forwards a customer's email into Zendesk it is possible to manually specify ticket details such as the requester name (see more detail in this article: Specifying the requester in the forwarded email). But, that is the only situation where ticket information can be passed through email manually. It is not possible to do this when an email comes from the customer. 

    I'm sorry for the bad news! If you are finding new tickets being created that should have threaded into an existing ticket, you can always merge them as described in this article: Merging tickets.

    I hope that helps a bit!

  • Alex Kolodzey

    I am not sure that this is a reasonable explanation. What i've had to tell clients is that they did everything that was asked of them (send an email using <support address@XYZ.Zendesk.com>) but also that they actually did it wrong because of some hidden magic that they shouldn't have to worry about. I realize it's not magic; but it's not their responsibility to understand the nitty gritty and it's not easy to tell them both "use the support address when you want to talk to us about a new issue" and also "but it only works if it's a fresh email every time and you cannot rely on standard email functions because it may break if there happens to be an old ticket referenced 40-emails-deep in this thread". This makes Replying/Forwarding a useless feature of their email application in situations that it is meant for.

    I am currently having an issue where a customer either:

    • branches off from an old conversation with a related but unique issue that happens to include an old ticket email address somewhere in the chain, yet correctly using <support address@XYZ.Zendesk.com>; or
    • mistakenly uses the <support address+ID######@XYZ.Zendesk.com> before immediately re-forwarding with a it corrected to the generic <support address@XYZ.Zendesk.com>

    In both these cases they perform the correct step of using the <support address@XYZ.Zendesk.com> yet the reply gets sent to a location that no one intended.

    If the email threading system does not use the +ID#### data in the <support address+ID####@XYZ.Zendesk.com> variants, then what is the point of it? If it does use this data, then why can it not differentiate between +ID##### and the lack of it?

    All-in-all i like what Zendesk does, and this is relatively minor overall. However it doesn't really make sense. Will the Simplified Email Threading improve this, or is it unrelated?

  • Brett Bowser
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hey Alex,

    I double checked with our Product Managers and it doesn't look like simplified email threading won't resolve these issues you've brought up. I would recommend cross-posting in our Feedback on Support topic which I've linked for you.

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention!


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