This Month’s Fresh Features
New in Smooch this month: More WhatsApp features; A sneak peek of Dark Mode for our native iOS SDK; A few channel updates; Our State of Messaging: Travel report is out!
What’s new 🎊
Our Web SDK now supports custom prechat capture
A few months back we announced the release of `prechat capture` within our Web SDK, allowing you to capture a user’s name and email before the start of a conversation. To quickly recap this feature: when enabled, users are greeted by a welcome message followed by a form asking for their name and email. Once the form is successfully submitted, the user is thanked for their input and a conversation is then started with your business.
We’re excited to announce that with the release of Web SDK 4.20.0, prechat capture now supports custom fields, too! 🥳
This nifty feature gives you the flexibility to define your own prechat capture fields. For example, you could ask for a booking reference, request type, company website using the new init configuration properly called `fields`. Check out this document for more information.
WhatsApp for Zendesk
Smooch is proud of the work we do connecting any software vendor to the world’s most popular messaging channels. Now that we’re a part of the Zendesk family — and by way of example — we’re thrilled to announce the update and launch of the WhatsApp for Zendesk connector! 🚀
Zendesk customers now can now take advantage of WhatsApp directly within the familiar support workflows of the Suite. The refresh also includes new features for agents to better manage real-time conversations (including a customizable auto-responder built specifically for WhatsApp), and a new notification panel to alert agents to recent responses on WhatsApp.
Customers also benefit from a faster onboarding and approval process which cuts the WhatsApp approval process down from weeks to days. Check it out here.
WhatsApp Message Us button is now available
More WhatsApp news. The WhatsApp Me button we gave you a sneak peek of last month has been shipped! 🚚
Now your customers will be able to use this button to immediately start a conversation with your business on WhatsApp. You can choose from a variety of button styles and colors best suited to your needs. Below is an example of what the button could look like on your landing page.
On desktop, clicking the button will bring the user to web.whatsapp.com. When using a mobile device, the WhatsApp native app will be opened on the user’s device if installed, otherwise they will be directed to web.whatsapp.com. Check out our handy setup instructions here.
Other API & SDK updates ⚙
- Facebook Messenger: We shipped feature that enables `Message Passthrough` on Facebook Messenger. Message Passthrough allows you to send message types that are not currently supported by the Smooch API (for example, a purchase receipt). It also allows you to reach customers outside of the 24 hour permission window using facebook message tags. Check out this section of our doc center for more information and configuration details.
- MessageBird: We’ve updated our MessageBird integration to include sending Image and GIF messages, as well as sending and receiving File messages. A full list of supported media and file types for MessageBird can be found here.
Be sure to check out our changelog for a complete list of updates.
Sneak peek 👀
iOS Dark Mode
Following Apple’s lead, we will be offering Dark Mode support for our iOS SDK in time for the launch of iOS 13 in September. Rest assured that the features within our native iOS SDK will be dark mode compatible and in line with the operating system’s sleek new look 😎. For a preview of what Dark Mode will look like, see below.
State of Messaging: Travel 🏖
We’re excited to share the release of our latest State of Messaging industry report. State of Messaging: Travel is a collection of insights from across the travel and hospitality industry. We broke down how airlines, online travel agencies, and hotels are using chat to create memorable, personalized experiences across the customer journey. Learn how hospitality brands are leveraging conversations to provide better CX, why “luxury chatbot” is often an oxymoron, and when messaging actually delivers measurable results. The report also includes an interactive component with Trippy, our digital concierge Trippy will assist you in your journey throughout the report and demonstrate the versatility of our web SDK for travel-specific use cases. Check it out here! For coverage of the report, check out Mobile Marketing Mag and Business of Apps.
Smooch in the news 🗞
Following the travel beat, this article in Travel Daily Media covers Four Seasons’ app-revamp, with notable mention of the Smooch-powered Four Seasons Chat system, which has seen 5.7 million messages since 2018.
Our Editorial Director Dan Levy had a big month before jetting off on parental leave. With messaging encryption and privacy on everyone’s minds, Dan wrote about Telegram’s role in the Hong Kong protests and China’s monitoring of WeChat in TechTalks.
In Marketing Tech News, Dan expanded on the concept of privacy and encryption to include a mention of our partner Meedan, which piloted a fact-checking fake news tip line called Check during the Indian elections earlier this year.
On the topic of Meedan, Check made a few rounds through the press this month. Ahead of the American, Canadian, and Argentinian elections (just to name a few), Check is generating buzz for its potential in aiding fact-checkers and journalists in the fight against fake news. You can read about the Smooch-Check integration on our blog, or more detailed write ups in Journalism.co.uk, Poynter, and the Columbia Journalism Review.
- The Smooch Team