Zendesk Gather is a community forum solution that expands and improves support by empowering customers to connect and collaborate with one another. Gather empowers teams to solicit the help they need from an active and engaged community, creating a channel to harness customers’ expertise, aggregate best practices, and promote feedback.
Gather complements the knowledge base in your help center. You must have Guide before you can use Gather to set up your community. See Getting started with Guide for more information on setting up Guide.
This article covers the following topics:
- About the community structure
- Setting up the community
- Viewing and testing your community
- Activating the community
About the community structure
The community is where you can create and comment on posts to pose questions, provide answers, or share ideas.
Posts are associated with discussion topics.
Community posts can include ideas, tips, or any other community items. Answers can include observations, clarifications, praise, or any other response that's part of a typical community discussion.
Setting up the community
If you do not have a live help center, but are working on your help center in setup mode, the community is activated by default in setup mode. You can set up and test your community at the same time as the rest of your help center and then activate the help center when you're ready.
If you already have a live help center, and you are adding a community, the community is not activated by default. You need to activate it to work with the content. If you do not want the community to be visible to end users while you are setting it up, you need to remove the links to your community in your theme.
Set up the community
- Think about how to make the community successful. See Best practices: Six things to think about before setting up a community.
- Create community discussion topics. See Adding discussion topics.
- Consider seeding your discussion topics with posts. See Making posts in the community.
- Understand how to manage the community that you are creating. See Managing community discussion topics and Managing community posts.
- Think about other community features that might be useful to your organization, for example, community moderators. See Creating community moderator groups.
When you have your community set up, you're ready to view and test it.
Viewing and testing your community
If you don't have a live help center, and you are working on your help center in setup mode, you can use either of these options to view and test the content in your community.
If you have a live help center, and you are adding a community, follow these steps to view and test your community.
- Activate your community.
- Hide your community links using the Themes page in the Customize design () page in Guide (see customizing your help center theme).
- Use the community directly to view and test your content (managing community topics).
After you've finished testing, remember to remove any content that you don't want to be visible to customers.
Activating the community
To activate the community
- In Guide, click the Settings () icon in the sidebar, then select Gather settings.
- Select Activate community.
- Click Save.
The community is now live to end users in your help center. You can disable the community by deselecting the Activate community check box.