After you've familiarized yourself with Answer Bot's messaging capabilities, you're ready to start using Flow Builder to create flows to interact with your customers.
Each of your active brands has its own customized flow.
This section includes the following topics:
- Understanding flow steps
- Getting to know the Flow Builder interface
- Creating a new flow
- Editing steps in a flow
- Inserting messages into a flow
- Deleting steps and flows
- Leaving feedback
Understanding flow steps
A conversation flow consists of a sequence of steps, created and configured by you in Flow Builder. Each step represents a message that your Answer Bot is able to show to your end user during a conversation. Before you begin using Flow Builder, it's important to understand the types of steps available, and how they work.
There are four step types you can add to your conversational flow.
- Send message, which displays a piece of text to the end user during a conversation.
- Transfer to agent, which escalates the conversation to an agent. In a Web SDK implementation, Answer Bot can also capture information from the end user through ticket fields.
- Show Help Center articles, where Answer Bot presents up to six Help Center articles to the end user during a conversation.
- Present options, where the Answer Bot displays up to six preconfigured quick replies that the end user can interact with during a conversation.
The table below describes each step type, its usage, and rules. To familiarize yourself with the customer’s side of these steps, see The end user experience.
|Step name||What can I use it for?||Configuration rules|
|Send message||This is a piece of text that is presented to your end users. It can be a greeting, useful information about your business, or a response to a commonly-asked question. See Automated direct replies for an example of the end user experience.||Message steps can be added anywhere in your flow. After they're displayed, they move the conversation immediately to the next step in the flow.|
|Transfer to agent||Adding in this step hands the conversation off to a human agent. For Web SDK implementation, it can also be used to collect information about the end user prior to an escalation. See Agent transfer for an example of the end user experience.||
In this step, you can configure:
|Show Help Center articles||The Show Help Center articless step directs your end users to existing articles that may help them self-solve their questions. See Article recommendations through Flow Builder for an example of the end user experience.||
A maximum of six articles can be configured per step.
Show Help Center articles is an end step, which means you cannot add any more steps after it.
Note: To use this type of step, you must have an active Help Center with publicly-available articles.
This step displays up to six preconfigured quick replies that can be offered to your end users conversation.
These options can be used to represent commonly-asked questions, branch the conversation, or help your end users navigate through a conversation flow. See Quick reply options for an example of the end user experience.
|You cannot end a flow with a Present options step – it must be followed by one of the other step types.|
Getting to know the Flow Builder interface
There are four components on the Flow Builder page. Each plays an important role in building your conversation flow:
- Flow, your conversation represented in a decision tree format, as a series of connected steps representing the interaction Answer Bot can have with an end user. You can select a step to configure Answer Bot's responses, and add steps to the conversation.
- Configuration panel, where you customize each step in your flow. This panel appears on the side of the screen when you select a step in the flow, or add a new step to a flow. You can select the type of step you want to add to your flow, add and edit automated messages, and build lists of options for your customers to choose from.
- Previewer, for previewing the end user experience created by your flow, before releasing it to your customers. Click the Preview tab in the Configuration panel to view.
- Footer, which appears at the bottom of the screen, under the Flow. The Publish button is here, along with information about the flow, including the publishing status of the current flow (draft or published), and the last edited time.
Creating a new flow
However, you may want to create a new flow from the ground up. Your flow can be as simple as a single step offering a customized greeting, or include multiple branches based on customer responses. To create a new flow from scratch, you’ll need to first delete the brand’s default flow.
To create a new flow
- In Admin Center, click the Flow Builder icon ().
- Locate the brand you want to create a flow for, and click Configure.
- In the Flow, click Add the first step.
- In the Configuration panel, use the Select action drop-down to choose the type of step you want to begin the flow and configure the step as needed
- Add the next step by clicking the Add a step icon (), then follow the instructions in step 4, above.
- Repeat until you've added all of the required steps, then click Publish in the footer.
As you are building your flow, don't forget to use the Previewer to test how the conversation will be seen by your end users.
Editing steps in a flow
You may need to change your flow by editing or deleting steps. You cannot edit a step's type. However, you can edit some of the details in a step's configuration.
To edit a step in a flow
- Click the step you want to edit. Its details appear in the Configuration panel.
- Edit the elements you want to change:
- Displayed message (all step types): Update the text in the Bot says box.
- Options (Present options step): Update the options in the text box. To delete an option, click the trash can icon. To add an option, click Add an option.
- Suggested articles (Show Help Center articles step): To delete a suggested article, click … and select Delete. Use the Select article search box to add additional articles.
- Information collecting fields (Handoff steps): To delete a field, click … and select Delete. Use the Fields drop-down to add additional fields.
- Click Publish when you've finished making your changes.
Inserting messages into a flow
In some instances, you can add a message into the middle of an existing flow if needed.
To add a message step into a flow
- Hover over the connecting line between a message step and its subsequent step.
- Click the Add new icon ().
- In the Configuration panel, use the drop-down menu to select Send message, then enter the message text.
- Repeat as needed, then Publish your updated flow.
Deleting steps and flows
Deleting a step removes all subsequent steps from the flow as well.
To delete a step in a flow
- Click the step you want to delete. It appears in the Configuration panel.
- At the top of the Configuration panel, click …, then select Delete. If there are subsequent steps, click Delete steps in the warning box.
- Click Publish when you've finished making your changes.
We’d love to hear what you think about Flow Builder and Zendesk messaging -- good and bad -- and how you’re using it in your account. At the top of the Channels, Web SDK configuration, and Flow Builder pages in Admin Center, you’ll find a banner with a link to the Features and feedback board for messaging (or you can use the link included here) where you can submit new ideas and vote on existing ideas. Before submitting a new idea, you should check to see if it's already been added.