Tip of the Week: Email Support for Two Different Products

October 1, 2010

It is a common scenario for one company to produce more than one product – a software company with three different apps for instance; or a print shop that sells its products to two distinct audiences. In these cases, it can be helpful to keep the support experience for your customers specific, not to your company as a whole, but to the product itself.

If you are looking to use one Zendesk account to provide separate email support for multiple products, today’s tip will get you going in three steps. We will be assisting our fictional company Fruitbasket in setting up email support for its two products – apples and oranges.

1. Set up mail forwarding

First, you’ll want to have two separate support emails – in this case support@apples.com and support@oranges.com.

To funnel these two addresses into one Zendesk, the first step is to forward all email addresses directly to Fruitbasket’s Zendesk. We’ve previously detailed all of the steps on email forwarding in our support forum, so please click here for more information.

Fruitbasket is currently using support@apples.com and support@oranges.com to receive requests from its customers. To direct these requests to Zendesk, we forward the emails like this:

  • support@apples.com to apples@fruitbasket.zendesk.com
  • support@oranges.com to oranges@fruitbasket.zendesk.com

2. Creating custom views

With these email addresses in place, we can now create custom views. Fruitbasket wants to create two unique views to better organize its incoming requests and to ensure that its support agents can quickly distinguish and work on the right product. In other words, apples are receiving “apples” support and oranges are receiving “oranges” support.

In general, “Views” are a great way to help you organize your incoming tickets into folders, while allowing you to know at any given time how many requests are open for a product. In today’s tip we will be setting up one view for apples and one view for oranges.

To create a view, access the “manage” tab > “views” in the the top menu bar.

Zendesk Views

We will then select “add view” from the upper right.

Since Fruitbasket wants a view for all requests about apples, we will need to select “Ticket was received at” from under “Meet all of the following conditions” and then enter “apples” before “@fruitbasket.zendesk.com,” Fruitbasket will also need to create another view to filter all of its orange requests into one view.

Zendesk Triggers

3. Communicating back to the customer

Now that Fruitbasket has requests being organized into two different views, it is time to start replying to its customers’ questions and concerns.

Since the company’s customers will be sending requests to either support@apples.com or support@oranges.com, Fruitbasket would like its customers to receive all Zendesk tickets from the same email address where the request was originally sent.

To do this, Fruitbasket will need to enable the “pass through email addresses” feature located under the “account” tab > “mails and domains.”

Pass Through Email Feature on Zendesk

This feature makes it so that all updates on emails get sent from the same email address that was used to receive the email (as long as the email address has been correctly forwarded to Zendesk per Step 1). This means that Fruitbasket’s customers will receive updates from either support@oranges.com or support@apples.com instead of a reply from support@fruitbasket.zendesk.com.

With those three pieces in place, you should now be able to begin providing the customers of your various products with a separate support experience. To further extend this experience, you could leverage the Zendesk API for building custom support pages and forums.

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