Zendesk search reference

In addition to full text search, you can search using common search operators combined with data property keywords and values to narrow your search results. This reference describes how to search for the data in your Zendesk.

This article is aimed at administrators and support managers with full access to the data in Zendesk. If you're an agent, start with Searching the data in your Zendesk and refer back to this reference article if you want to do more advanced searches.

Topics covered in this article:

Search basics in Zendesk

Search terms can include any string, including user, organization, and group names. For example, you can simply use "vip" to list all users with the vip tag. However, the results could also include other data in your Zendesk that match the term vip.

Note: It can take a few minutes for Zendesk to index new tickets, users, and other resources. If they don't appear in your search results, wait a few minutes and try again.

You can filter the results by using keywords and operators. For example, the following type keyword limits the search for "vip" to users:

type:user vip

Keywords and operators are explained later in this article.

If submitting multiple terms, search has a default AND behavior rather than an OR behavior. For example, searching for the following phrase return results only if all of the words are present.
Please upgrade my account

Other essential facts about search in Zendesk:

  • How soon can new data be searched?

    When you add new data to your Zendesk, it typically takes about 2 to 3 minutes before it's indexed and can be searched.

  • How do titles and tags affect search?

    Both the ticket or forum article title and any tags added to either help to improve search results. The title is weighted more heavily than tags.

  • How do word stems affect search?

    You must specify at least the first three letters of the search term to get results. Using the "sas" stem will return "Saskatchewan" if it exists. Using the "sa" stem won't. The rule also applies to secondary search terms. Example: "Jackson Mis".

  • How does punctuation affect search?

    Punctuation characters are generally not included in searches.

  • Are there limitations to wildcard searches?

    You can only do wildcard searches when combined with property keywords (subject:photo*). The wildcard must go at the end of the search term.

  • Who can search what?

    Administrators can search all the data in your Zendesk. Agents can search the ticket, user, and forums data that they've been granted access to. End-users can do full text searches of the knowledge base.

  • What languages are supported?

    The search supports the following languages:
    • Danish
    • Dutch
    • English
    • Finnish
    • French
    • German
    • Hungarian
    • Italian
    • Norwegian
    • Portuguese
    • Romanian
    • Russian
    • Spanish
    • Swedish
    • Turkish

Search operators

The following search operators can be used to build your search statements.

Table 1. Search operators
OperatorDescription
: The colon indicates that the given field should equal the specified value.
status:open
< Less than.
status<closed
> Greater than.
priority>normal
" " Double quotes. This is referred to as a phrase search and returns the exact words in the exact order.
subject:"Please upgrade my account"
- Minus sign. Excludes items containing a word (or property value) from the search results. For example, the following statement excludes any item containing the word 'account' from the search results:
status:pending upgrade -account 
* The wildcard operator is useful when you want to search various forms of a word. For example, searching for photo* returns results that would include photography, photographer, photograph and any other words that began with 'photo'.
However, because of the performance issues involved with doing wildcard searches, unqualified wildcard searches are not currently supported. In other words, you need to use a property keyword to make your search specific to the data you're trying to locate.
subject:photo*

Searching for properties that have no data

Properties that contain no data can be searched for using none as the value of a keyword, as in this example:
assignee:none

This returns all unassigned tickets.

You can use the none keyword value to search any of the data object properties, except the email object.
type:user organization:none

This returns the users who have not been added to an organization.

Using the type keyword

One of the tools you have available for narrowing your search results is the type keyword. It's used to explicitly declare that you want to search the following data objects:

  • ticket
  • comment
  • user
  • organization
  • group
  • entry or topic (forums)
Using the type keyword means that you are explicitly searching on the object you specify. For example, you can search for all the users that belong to the Customers organization using this search statement:
type:user organization:customers

If you instead searched for organization:customers you'd get all the tickets that have requesters who belong to this organization. This is because by default searches that do not explicitly declare an object return results for tickets (and organization is a ticket property).

Using type:user, your search returns all user profiles for users that belong to the Customers organization. So, you're narrowing your search to the user object and excluding tickets.

Note: The quickest way to understand the difference between searching for ticket and user data is to select one of your users who has submitted tickets and then do both of these searches: type:ticket "user name" and type:user "user name".

While organizations and groups are properties of the user object, they have their own properties that can be searched as well. The following query allows you search only for organization tags, excluding tags of the same name that may be used in other elements of your Zendesk such as tickets and forum topics.

type:organization tags:premium
Similar to that, suppose that you've used the same tag in tickets and forum topics. To search for the occurrence of your tag in forum topics only, you can use the following search statement.
my_tag type:topic

Searching by date

Date properties (such as created, updated, and solved) can be combined with search operators to return data from a specific date, on or previous to a certain date, and on or after a certain date. The date format for all the date properties is YYYY-MM-DD.

To search for data on or before a certain date, use the less than (<) operator:
type:organization created<2011-05-01
To search for data on or after a certain date, use the greater than (>) operator:
due_date>2010-01-10
To search for a specific date, use the equals (:) operator:
solved:2010-01-10

Searching within a date range

You can search within a date range, for example August 1st, 2011 through August 5th, 2011, using the following search statement:
created>2011-08-01 created<2011-08-05

Searchable ticket property keywords

Here's the list of ticket properties that can be searched. For more information about searching tickets, see Searching tickets.

Table 2. Searchable ticket properties
KeywordDescription
Ticket ID
There isn't a property keyword for the ticket ID. Instead, you simply search for the ticket by its ID number in the following format:
233
created The date the ticket was created.
created:2011-05-01
updated The date of the most recent ticket update.
updated>2011-05-15
solved The date the ticket was set to solved.
solved<2011-06-01
due_date The due date of tickets with type set to Task.
due_date:2011-06-01
assignee The assigned agent.
assignee:"Susan Warren"
submitter The ticket submitter. This may be different than the requester if the ticket was submitted by an agent on behalf of the requester. You can use the user's name, email address, or the 'me' keyword. See Searching ticket user roles.
submitter:me
requester The ticket requester.
requester:amy@mondocam.com
subject The text in the ticket's subject.
subject:"upgrade account"
description The text in all the ticket's comments.
description:defective
status Possible values: new, open, pending, hold, solved, closed.
status<closed
ticket_type Possible values: question, incident, problem, task.
ticket_type:problem
priority Possible values: low, normal, high, urgent.
priority>low
group The assigned agent's group name.
group:"Level 2"
organization The name or ID of the ticket requester's organization.
organization:customers
tags Tags that have been added to the ticket.
status:pending tags:premium
via The ticket's source, which can be any of the following:
  • mail (from an email message)
  • get_satisfaction, get_sat, "get satisfaction" (from Get Satisfaction)
  • dropbox (from the Zendesk Feedback Tab)
  • chat (from Chat)
  • twitter_dm, "twitter dm", "twitter direct" (from a Twitter direct message)
  • twitter_fav, twitter_favorite, "twitter favorite" (from a Twitter favorite)
  • twitter (from any Twitter method including direct message and favorite)
  • voicemail (from a voicemail message)
  • phone_call_inbound (from an inbound phone call)
  • phone_call_outbound (from an outbound phone call)
  • phone (from voicemail or an inbound call)
  • sms, text, "text message" (from a text message)
  • api (from API call or integrated web service)
  • logmein, logmein_rescue, "logmein rescue" (from LogMeIn)
via:phone
commenter People who have added comments to tickets.
commenter:"Mike"
You can search by a user's ID, a partial name, full name, and using an email address.
cc People who have been CC'd on tickets.
cc:amanda@mondocam.com
You can search by a user's ID, a partial name, full name, and using an email address.
fieldvalue

Search for a specific value in custom ticket fields by using the fieldvalue keyword. For example:

fieldvalue:12345

This returns all the tickets that have a custom field with the value "12345."

You can also search custom fields. See Searching custom ticket fields.

Searching for tickets with a user's telephone number

To locate a user's tickets based on their phone number, you can use a search statement like this:

requester:+14154187506 status:new

This works with all of the ticket user roles: submitter, requester, and assignee.

Searchable user property keywords

Here's the list of user properties that can be searched. For more information about searching users, see Searching users, groups, and organizations.

To search for user data, you need to use the type keyword. See Using the type keyword.

Table 3. User property keywords
KeywordDescription
name The user's partial or full name.
type:user name:"alex anderson"
email The user's email address.
type:user email:alex@mondocam.com

You can search for all users in an email domain. See Searching for users by email domain.

group The user's group name. This only applies to admin and agent users.
type:user group:"Level 2"
organization The user's organization name.
type:user organization:mondocam
created The date the user was added to your Zendesk.
type:user created<2011-05-01
notes All text in the notes field in the user's profile.
type:user notes:"manager"
details All text in the details field in the user's profile.
type:user details:"madison, wi"
external_id The user's external ID, if used.
type:user external_id:0098884412
phone The user's phone number. You must search for the number exactly as it was originally entered into the user's account.
type:user phone:555-111-2222
tags Tags that have been added to the user's profile.
type:user tags:premium tags:wholesale
For more information about tagging users and organizations, seeAdding tags to users and organizations.

Searchable organization property keywords

Here's the list of organization properties that can be searched. For more information, see Searching users, groups, and organizations.

To search for organization data, you need to use the type keyword. See Using the type keyword.

Table 4. Organization property keywords
KeywordDescription
name The organization's partial or full name.
type:organization name:mondocam
created The date the organization was added.
type:organization created<2011-05-01
notes All text in the notes field in the user's profile.
type:organization notes:EMEA
details All text in the details field in the organization's profile. type:organization details:information
type:organization details:london
tags Tags that have been added to the organization.
type:organization tags:premium

For more information about tagging users and organizations, see Adding tags to users and organizations.

Searchable group property keywords

Here's the list of group properties that can be searched. For more information, see Searching users, groups, and organizations.

To search for group data, you need to use the type keyword. See Using the type keyword.

Table 5. Group property keywords
KeywordDescription
name The group's name.
type:group name:"level 2"
created The date the group was added.
type:group created<2011-05-01

Searching custom user and organization fields

You can search for data in custom user fields and custom organization fields by using the key that identifies the custom field.

To locate the key for a custom field, click the Admin icon () and select User Fields or Organization Fields, then click the name of a custom field. The field key appears in the properties panel on the right.

Note: You cannot search for data in custom ticket fields the same way that you can for custom user and custom org fields. For custom ticket fields you can search for data in drop-down and checkbox fields based on their tags. For more information, see Searching custom ticket fields.

 

Field typeOperatorsExamples
Drop-down list : Find users or organizations where plan_type is platinum:
plan_type:platinum

Find users or organizations where plan_type is platinum or gold:

plan_type:platinum plan_type:gold
Text

Multi-line text

 

: Find users or organizations where product_name contains widget:
product_name:widget

Regular expression

:

Find users or organizations where product_name contains the multi-word phrase "red widget:"

product_name:"red widget"
Numeric

>, <, >=, <=, :

Find users or organizations where num_agents is exactly 5:
num_agents:5

Find users or organizations where num_agents is between 4 and 10, inclusive:

num_agents>4 num_agents<10
Decimal >, <, >=, <=, : Find users or organizations where avg_score is greater than 14.5:
avg_score>14.5

Find users or organizations where avg_score is between 10.1 and 15.3, exclusive:

avg_score>10.1 avg_score<15.3
Check box : Find users or organizations where is_active is true:
is_active:true
Date >, <, >=, <=, : Find users or organizations where subscription_date is before 2013-06-23:
subscription_date<2013-06-23

Find users or organizations where subscription_date is between 2012-05-23 and 2013-06-23, exclusive

subscription_date>2012-05-23
subscription_date<2013-06-23

Searchable satisfaction rating keywords

To search for tickets by customer satisfaction status and rating, you need to use the type keyword. See Using the type keyword. For more information on customer satisfaction, see Using customer satisfaction rating.

Table 6. Satisfaction rating keywords
KeywordDescription
bad Tickets that have been rated 'bad'.
type:ticket satisfaction:bad
badwithcomment Tickets that have been rated 'bad' that also include a comment from the ticket requester.
type:ticket satisfaction:badwithcomment
good Tickets that have been rated 'good'.
type:ticket satisfaction:good
goodwithcomment Tickets that have been rated 'good' that also include a comment from the ticket requester.
type:ticket satisfaction:goodwithcomment
offered When you request a customer satisfaction rating, the ticket satisfaction rating status is set to 'offered'. The following notification is added to the ticket: Customer satisfaction feedback was offered. This means that you've asked for but not yet received a response to the rating request.
type:ticket satisfaction:offered

Searching for ticket attachments (files and screencasts)

You have the following options for searching for ticket attachments. These include files as well as screencasts (see Adding a screencast to a ticket or a Web portal article in the Zendesk Agent Guide).

Table 7. Ticket attachment keywords
KeywordDescription
has_attachment You use this keyword to search for tickets that either do or not contain file attachments. There are two valid values for this keyword: true and false.
has_attachment:true
has_attachment:false
attachment_name You can also search for a file attachment by name.
attachment_name:image001.jpg
has_screencast Like the has_attachment keyword, the has_screencast keyword can either be true or false. Screencasts is an optional feature in Zendesk that you must enable to use (see Enabling screencasting in your Zendesk.
has_screencast:true
has_screencast:false

Searching for tickets with a specific ticket form

You can search for a ticket form and get results for all tickets where that ticket form is applied.

To do so, use this search statement:

form:"<ticket form name>"

For example, the following search returns all tickets that use the Change Request ticket form.

form:"Change Request"
Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

  • Avatar
    Anton de Young

    Update 9/12/11:

    You can now search within a date range, for example August 1st, 2011 through August 5th, 2011, using the following search statement:
    created>2011-08-01 created<2011-08-05

     

    Using the via keyword, you can now search for tickets by source, which can be any of the following:

    • mail (from an email message)
    • get_satisfaction, get_sat, "get satisfaction" (from Get Satisfaction)
    • dropbox (from the Zendesk Feedback Tab)
    • chat (from Chat)
    • twitter_dm, "twitter dm", "twitter direct" (from a Twitter direct message)
    • twitter_fav, twitter_favorite, "twitter favorite" (from a Twitter favorite)
    • twitter (from any Twitter method including direct message and favorite)
    • voicemail (from a voicemail message)
    • phone_call_inbound (from an inbound phone call)
    • phone (from voicemail or an inbound call)
    • sms, text, "text message" (from a text message)
    • logmein, logmein_rescue, "logmein rescue" (from LogMeIn)

    via:phone

  • Avatar
    Christian Malcolm

    This search functionality is great and keeps getting better.  One criteria I'd like to ask about is the custom views.

    I've made a custom view with a list of criteria (tickets within the last 2 weeks).  Is there a way to do a search within that?

    Regards,

    C Malcolm

  • Avatar
    Stefan Will

    Hi Christian,

    what you're looking for is not possible at this point, although it's a great idea and something we might implement in the future.

  • Avatar
    Jeffrey Davidson

    From what I can tell, only the initial post in a ticket it searchable. If I use words in followup posts, then later search for them, the ticket will never show up. Is this the designed behavior?

  • Avatar
    Jeffrey Davidson

    Nope - that's not quite right. I still didn't find what I expected, but it's not a non-first-post issue. Ignore me. :-)

  • Avatar
    Chris Markle

    Using the search type 'name:xxx type:organization' (or something like it), can I search for an EXACT match on the organization's name? When I try 'name:dog type:organization' I am getting all organizations with 'dog'  in the name, where I really am after the single organization named 'dog'. Can what I after be accomplished?

  • Avatar
    Anh-Tuan GAI

    Search is great BUT it would be MUCH MORE USEFULL if we can get a table view of resulting tickets to do a bulk update.

    Use case:

    • We have a custom Pivotal Tracker Story ID field for each non-Q&A ticket.
    • Some tickets share the same Pivotal Tracker Story ID (same bug or feature request)
    • When a Pivotal Story is updated we would like to update all related tickets (for example solve those tickets) by doing a search on the Pivotal Tracker Story ID.
  • Avatar
    Anton de Young

    Chris, 

    Using a search like "type:organization name:dog" will return all orgs that contain "dog" as you say. That's expected. If you want to return a specific organization you could do something like this:

    type:organization name:dog notes:10

    They key here is to add some additional unique data about the organization to the search. I just added '10' to the org notes as an example of course. It could be anything. You could also search for data in the org's details property or add a unique tag, which is probably the best way to go. Check out this topic:  Adding tags to users and organizations

  • Avatar
    Anton de Young

    Update 11/3:

    You can now search for ticket commenters and CCs. See the ticket properties table above.

  • Avatar
    David Lindner

    I would love to be able to do the following types of searches:

    • Tickets solved within 24 hours (relative to created)
    • Tickets solved within 8 business hours (relative to created)
    • Tickets not solved within 1 week (relative to created)
    • Tickets with at least one post by a user of a particular group

    Are any of those possible?

    / David

  • Avatar
    Steve Creel

    Thanks for the "CC" search addition, huge help!  I haven't had any luck searching "assignee:-me" or "-assignee:me".  Is this not supported or am I missing the proper syntax?

     

    (I'm intending to search "cc:me -assignee:me status<solved")

  • Avatar
    Laura

    +1 for @Anh-Tuan GAI's post

    "Search is great BUT it would be MUCH MORE USEFULL if we can get a table view of resulting tickets to do a bulk update."

    Totally agree!

  • Avatar
    Mikkel Svane

    @Laura, @Anh-Tuan GAI, have you tried this interface: /rules/search

  • Avatar
    Stefan Will

    @Laura, @Anh-Tuan: As Mikkel pointed out, you can actually click on "Browse tickets by properties" in the sidebar when looking at a search result. This shows you a table view of matching tickets (unfortunately you'll have to enter new filter rules since that interface doesn't use search). But it does let you do bulk updates.

     

    Zendesk_Support___My_working_tickets__6_-1.jpg

  • Avatar
    Stefan Will

    @Steve: Unfortunately negative property matches are not supported at the moment, but we will add support for those in the near future.

  • Avatar
    Robert Owen

    I'm trying to search using the URL so we can get a popup from our softphone to search for the incoming caller. I'm using http://support.flexitime.co.nz/search?query=type:user%20phone:123456789

    Where 123456789 is the phone number of one of our users but it doesn't return anything. Am I doing something wrong or is this not working? Cheers.

  • Avatar
    Stefan Will

    @Robert: Phone numbers are indexed exactly as they appear in the user's property page. E.g. if the phone number is stored as "123 456 789", you have to search for it in exactly that format (e.g. phone:"123 456 789").

  • Avatar
    Robert Owen

    Hi Stefan, thanks for your quick reply. I was entering the number exactly as it was on the users record, but didn't have quotes around the number - so that fixed the problem. Perhaps the example above should include quotes (although implicitly a string by the inclusion of dash -)

    Cheers,

    Rob.

  • Avatar
    sukarna acharya

    Hi Stefan, what value should be used to find tickets create via Web service(API). via:web_service is not working.

    Regards,

    sukarna

  • Avatar
    Bill Davis

    I'm wondering if the search results are sorted by a percentage match of the criteria.  I've recently noticed that when we enter the name of the organization in the search bar that the search results typically return all the tickets before the actual organization appears.  i would think that when you type the exact name of the organization into the search bar that the organization would have the highest % match and appear at the top of the list.

    I do notice that when i go into the admin screens and use the 'People' serach that the percentage match does make teh organization appear at the top of the results, but in the agent search the organization is off the first page.

     

    Any hints, tips or future updates that would make the results appear higher in the list?

    We prefer not to type organization:namehere as it's quicker and easier to type the 'namehere' of the company.

  • Avatar
    Salim Saifi

    i trying to search    ** type:ticket requester:mukesh@clavax.com status<Solved**

    no showing  still solved ticket . is  search string  not correct .

  • Avatar
    sukarna acharya

    Hi Salim,

    I think you may try with 3 instead of Solved. Experimentally it is observed by me that for text values(i.e. new, open, pending, solved etc.) only : operator works with REST API, but with corresponding numeric values both < and > as well as :  operator works.

    For corresponding numeric values of different id values, you may check http://www.zendesk.com/support/api/tickets

    with regards.

    sukarna

  • Avatar
    Ed Wiancko

    Apparently it does not accept wild cards as the first character:

     - This works:  phone:612*

     - This is rejected:  phone:*5629

    Will this be addressed?

    Is there another way to do it?

  • Avatar
    Jakub Glodek

    Hi Ed!

    This is an expected behavior as when you do a * search, it has to go through all entries and thus would create a big performance hit on our search. I don't expect this to change. There may be options in the future for us to do a partial word/criteria search. I did find a feature request post that references this:

    https://support.zendesk.com/entries/20112168

    I also see that you already voted for it, but I wanted it linked here in case others are hitting the same issue. There is no workaround to this at this time.

    Jakub

  • Avatar
    Stefan Will

    Hi Ed,

    just to elaborate a bit on Jakub's answer: for performance reasons we don't currently support postfix wildcard searches (e.g. *foo). We might actually enable this for specific fields in the future (e.g. email addresses, phone numbers etc) - where it makes sense. There aren't any immediate plans to do this at this point though, but you might want to put in a request in our feature request forum.

    What we are working on currently is a solution for the problem discussed in https://support.zendesk.com/entries/20112168: enabling searches for "loading" to find "loaded" or "loads" etc. But that won't really help with phone numbers.

    -- Stefan 

  • Avatar
    Blao Paul

    Hello, is it possible to restrict search to a forum category?

  • Avatar
    Neil Lillemark

    Will search be augmented in the near future to be scanning PDFs that are stored inside our Zendesk pages?  Google can already find these documents if the entries are publicly accessible, so it would be ideal to have this be done inherently within your logged in session as well.

  • Avatar
    Stefan Will

    @Neil: Unfortunately searchable forum attachments are not currently on our roadmap, although it does sound like something that might be useful. If you don't mind, why don't you log a feature request in our Feature Request Forum and include a few examples of content you'd like searchable.

  • Avatar
    Jill Kaselitz

    @Blao Paul If you were to select a category and then perform your search, your search will be restricted to the category in question. For example, if you select our Using Zendesk category (https://support.zendesk.com), any search terms you enter will be restricted to this category. If that's not what you had in mind, please don't hesitate to let us know.

  • Avatar
    Mark Heath

    What capabilities does Zendesk have in terms of syndicated search?  For example, can Zendesk search be integrated with other knowledgebases (say Get Satisfaction etc) so that the user can search from the Zendesk interface but the search interrogates other search stores and return results accordingly.  I have used the Get Satisfaction Widget which allows the user to conduct another search separate to Zendesk, but would be great if these could be integrated in some way.  I understand from the documentation that this could also be achieved from integrating with Mindtouch, but would be interested to investigate the options and here from Zendesk what the possibilities are.

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