Articles in the series
Messaging lets you have rich conversations with your customers that are persistent, with full context and history. When you enable messaging, you can connect it to your website or help center, mobile apps, and third-party channels, making it easy for your customers to self-serve or connect with your agents.
As your support needs grow, you may want to automate some of this communication, such as offering a simple greeting before handing the customer over to an agent, deflecting inquiries using knowledge base articles, or extensive customized conversation flows. Many users find that the right balance for them is somewhere in the middle, between no automation and extensive conversation bot flows.
This article provides an overview of what messaging can do, the channels you can use to deliver messaging to your customers, and guidance on how to get started.
This article includes the following sections:
Messaging allows you to support multiple conversational styles, from real-time chat functionality to asynchronous communication with your customers. It's easily scalable and highly customizable.Messaging provides the following features and benefits:
- Multiple channels. You can communicate with users seamlessly across your website, help centers, mobile apps, and social messaging channels. Choose which channels you support so you can connect with and support customers wherever they are.
- Persistent conversations. Agents and end users can interact multiple times over a period of time, across different channels, all within a single conversation. This makes it easier to refer to earlier interactions and avoid asking users to repeat themselves. The increased efficiency benefits agents and end uses alike.
- Ticket creation. Tickets are generated for requests received through messaging channels, enabling agents to follow up on more complex requests through Zendesk Support when needed.
- Integrate with the Zendesk Agent Workspace. Agents can use familiar productivity aids within the Agent Workspace to handle messaging conversations, similar to traditional channels such as email. They can respond to customers at any time and continue where they left off, and the conversation history provides agents with additional context when needed without asking the user to repeat themselves.
- Conversational automations and bots. Automations and bots can enhance your customer experience by automating deflection options and triaging support issues before (or instead of) handing the conversation over to live agents. Customers benefit from the opportunity to self-solve their issues.
- Extensive customization options. Admins can quickly set up messaging channels in Admin Center. Then, depending on how much automation they want to implement in their conversational messaging workflow, they can use the bot builder to create interactive conversation bots to greet customers, offer relevant article suggestions, gather information, and more.
Requirements and limitations
Before turning on messaging and configuring your channels, review the following requirements and limitations.
Your account must meet the following requirements to be eligible to turn on messaging.
- You must have one of the following plans:
- Any Zendesk Suite plan
- Support + Chat subscriptions with a Team plan or aboveNote: Some channels require a Zendesk Suite plan.
- Any Zendesk Suite plan
- The Zendesk Agent workspace must be activated.
- You must have at least one team member assigned to a Chat role. See About Staff roles in Zendesk Admin Center.
- You must disable any social messaging integrations you configured previously. See Social and third-party messaging resources.
Additionally, we recommend you have an account with an active, public-facing help center. Having at least 10 published articles that cover common questions enables you to use bots to recommend relevant articles from your help center.
Messaging is growing rapidly and there are some limitations to the functionality that is currently available. For more information, see Limitations in messaging functionality.
Walk through the Messaging deployment guide. The next article in the series is Designing your conversational messaging workflow, which will help ensure you're making informed decisions, are prepared with the necessary information when configuring your messaging workflows, and have clear next steps along the way.