The Live Chat available with the eDesk Chat Add-On will help your Support Agents deliver an even better customer experience.

This help file will guide you through all of the details on how it works for your customers and your Team.

Before you start

  • The eDesk Chat is available as an Add-On. To find more information, click here. 
  • You’ll need to have a Live Chat already installed on your website or webstore. To find out how to do this, click here.

01 Accessing the Live Chat

If your account has permission to access Live Chat, you’ll see a Chat tab on the left-hand side. Click the Chat tab to open the page and this is where you will manage all of your Live Chats.

If you don’t see the Chat tab, contact your Admin user who will need to assign a role to your account that includes the chat permission. To find out more about this, click here.

02 How your Live Chat status works

If you’re a Support Agent, your chat status can affect what the customer sees when they click the Live Chat button on your website. 

  • If at least one Agent has a chat status of Online, the Live Chat box will display for the customers. 

  • If all Agents have a chat status of Offline or Away, then a Contact form will open for the customers, unless you’ve selected the option to Hide widget in Settings → Smart Tools → Widgets → Behaviour 

    You can set your chat status yourself, and eDesk can also update your chat status automatically.

03 Automatic updates to your Live Chat status

In eDesk, you can set up Chat Hours, which are a daily cutoff time for your live chat. When the cutoff time occurs each day, your chat status is set to Offline or Away automatically.  To set your own Chat Hours, go to Settings → My Account → Chat tab. If you don’t want to set Chat Hours for yourself, that’s fine too!

Note: eDesk will never set your chat status to Online automatically.  This is a safety measure to make sure your chat status is not set to Online when you are away from your desk, which could leave customers with unanswered chats.

Once your Chat Hours are set, your chat status will be updated automatically as follows: 

  • If your chat status is Online but you have no activity in eDesk for 15 minutes,  your status is changed to Away automatically.

  • If your chat status is Away, the current time is inside your Chat Hours, and you perform an action in eDesk, your status is changed to Online automatically.

  • If your chat status is Online and your Chat Hours End time occurs, then your status is set to Away automatically.

  • If your chat status is Away and your Chat Hours End time occurs, then your status is set to Offline automatically.

Note: Business hours (Settings → Company Settings → Business hours) do not affect your chat status. It’s fine for Agents to offer Live Chat outside business hours.

04 Changing your Live Chat status yourself

Change your own status:
  • To set your status to Online, click your avatar and select Online from the menu. Your avatar will go green to indicate you’re currently online.
  • To set your status to Offline, click your avatar and select Offline from the menu. Your avatar will go red to indicate you’re currently offline. 

Change another teammate's status:

  • To set a teammate's status to Online of Offline, click on the Chat icon on the left-hand side. Select the Agents tab and click on the ellipsis next to the agent you wish to change the status for. You can then choose between Set agent to Online or Set agent to Offline.
Note: in order to change your teammate's status, you need to have the Change user chat status permission enabled on your profile. Contact your admin user to give you access. To find out more, click here.

05 Live Chat with customers

Once you are Online for live chat, you can join any customer chat. This is what happens:

Step 1: A customer starts a Live Chat.

When a customer clicks the Live Chat button on your website, a Live Chatbox is opened. You can customize the appearance of the Live Chat box and Contact Form. To find out more about this, click here.

Step 2: Agents receive a notification.

The customer completes the fields and clicks a button to submit their information. All Agents with an Online chat status receive a red dot notification in eDesk.

Step 3: Open the list of Unassigned chats.

Click the Chat tab to show a list of unassigned chats.
Step 4: View the Live Chat.

Select the chat to open the conversation.

  • This is where you’ll see the messages that the customer has sent.

  • You’ll also see if another Agent has joined the chat, which will help you to avoid duplication between Agents.

Step 5: Join the chat.

  1. Click Join the chat to start chatting with the customer. Type into the window and hit return on the keyboard to send each response. 

  2. During the chat:  

  • You can leave an internal note in the ticket, which can be viewed by other Agents. Internal notes are hidden from the customer. You can mention another Agent in the note by typing @ and then selecting their name from a list. The user will then be mentioned in the ticket and will receive a notification once the chat is turned into a To Do ticket. The ticket will appear in the Mentioned category of the mailbox.

  • You can join a chat that is already in progress. Select In progress in the left-hand menu to see the chats in progress. Then select a chat and click Join the chat.

  • The customer can share files with you by dragging them into the Live Chatbox. The following file types are supported: CSV, DOC, DOCX, GIF, JPEG, JPG, PDF, PNG, TXT, XLS, XLSX.

Step 6:  Close the Live Chat.

  1. Click the Action button to open a menu.
  • Click Close this chat → Turn into a resolved ticket
    If the chat is completed and no further action is needed, a ticket is automatically created with a Resolved status.

  • Click Close this chat → Turn into a To Do ticket
    If the chat is completed and further action is required, a ticket will be created and can be found in the To Do section of the mailbox.

  • Click Show/Hide the client navigation to view the URL of the page the client is viewing. 

Step 7: Next steps.

  1. Once a chat is closed, a transcript is automatically sent to the email address that the customer entered when starting the chat. 

  2. A ticket is sent to the Mailbox for the Agent that joined the chat, or that was assigned to the chat by another Agent. The type of ticket is selected in the previous step when the Agent closes the chat. The ticket includes a transcript, identifies the person that closed the chat, and displays the customer details on the right-hand side. Click + Custom fields to include other information, and click Attach order to add a copy of the order to the ticket.

  3. If configured (see here), the Live Chat box can ask a customer to rate the chat. This rating is also included in the ticket and on the Chat page.

06 Joining more than one Live Chat at a time

If you’re an Agent that loves a challenge, you can set yourself up to be able to join multiple live chats at the same time.

  1. Go to Settings → My Account → Chat tab. 

  2. In the Max concurrent chats field, enter the maximum number of live chats that you want to join at the same time.

  3. Save your changes.

07 Other useful Live Chat information

The left-hand menu in the Chat page in eDesk offers a number of useful views:

  • Select Agents to see a list of all the Support Agents that can access live chat, together with their recent activity and whether they are currently offline or online.
  • Select In progress to see a list of the chats in progress. Click on a chat in the list if you want to spectate the chat. The customer will not be aware that any other Agents are on the chat.
  • Click Recently closed to see a list of the completed chats. From here, you can view the ticket created after the chat has finished.

Further Readings

If you want to find out more about website contact forms, click here.

Interested in learning more about helping your customers to self-serve? Click here.