New in Smooch this month: Smooch has joined the Zendesk family; we’re launching Forms in Web Messenger; we’ve shipped our first ever Design Kit; you can now programmatically merge two users in Smooch; we’re spilling the beans on our code review culture; we’ve got two cool events you won’t want to miss; and we’ve made a few tweaks to our APIs and SDKs.

What’s new 🎊

We've joined Zendesk!

ICYMI, we are now part of the Zendesk family 🥳. While this is definitely an unplanned — and if you asked us only a few months ago, a never-going-to-happen — outcome for Smooch, it’s one we believe will supercharge our mission to make customer relationships more human and make Smooch more powerful and transformative than we would be on our own.

Whether or not you’re a Zendesk customer, nothing will change from the Smooch you know today. Rather than changing our vision, roadmap, service or scalability, expect us to double down.

Check out our blog post to learn more about this announcement.

Forms for Web Messenger are here!

We’re excited to launch Forms, a new capability for Web Messenger.  With Forms, businesses can easily capture and structure information from customers and prospects — delivered in the context of a conversation on your site.

Embedded into the chat, forms enable end users to provide the critical information your business needs without taking customers out of the conversation. Customize any field for info like names, emails, or build tailored dropdown menus for easy and intuitive data capture.

Forms can be used in many different ways. You can send a form to ask pre-qualifying questions to a sales prospect, collect contact information, route users to the right department within the business, ask security questions, and even send mini-surveys. The possibilities are almost endless because we’ve made these forms customizable. And since forms are rendered natively with full functionality in the Web Messenger, they keep totally on brand with the look and feel you’ve given your web chat.

Check out our announcement to learn more and read our guide to find out how Forms work. Make sure to upgrade to Web Messenger v4.18.0 to use this new capability.

A new Design Kit for product and design teams

The Smooch Design team is proud to launch the first version of our Conversational Design Kit. This kit, which comes as a Sketch file, is meant to help product teams (think Product Managers and Designers) to build great conversational experiences on Web Messenger. It makes creating target designs for different conversational use cases — like concierge bots or reservation flows — easier, giving you a base canvas to work with. This new kit will also help you quickly realize the branding capabilities of Web Messenger and tailor your branding by changing just a few color swatches.

Version 0.1 covers chat frames, action buttons and form messages. We’re still in our early days and we’re excited to continually build out this tool. We hope you find it helpful and would be grateful if you shared your feedback with us at design@smooch.io. ❤️

Programmatically merge users in Smooch

We’ve added a new way to merge users when you’ve determined they’re the same person. Smooch was already merging users automatically as a result of a channel transfer or when an anonymous user logged in, but you can now trigger a merge on your end.

If the business is able to confirm that two users in fact refer to the same person, a merge can be triggered programmatically by providing the IDs of the surviving and discarded user to the Merge User API.

It’s important to note that Smooch does not perform any verification for merges triggered via the API. It is the business' responsibility to confirm that the two users refer to the same person before invoking the API. Check out our comprehensive Merge Users Guide to learn more about when mergers occur, how they work and how to handle merge events.

Why we let our interns review code

When our engineering team isn’t shipping awesome features, they’re dishing out awesome content. This month, Andrew Lavers, Technical Lead, lifts the veil on our code review process and discusses why everybody should be reviewing code — including interns.

At Smooch, our code review culture is built on mutual respect and strong, clear accountability, where colleagues assume the best of intentions in every PR comment. That has helped us develop a team culture where feedback is openly given and graciously received. Read Andrew’s post here.

Other API & SDK Updates ⚙

  • Client schema: The Get App User Channel Entities endpoint has been marked as deprecated in favor of the new externalId field on the client schema.
  • Web Messenger: v4.17.15 was released with two new API functions for managing user typing activity, Smooch.startTyping() and Smooch.stopTyping().

Check out our changelog for the complete list of updates.

Events 📅

Customer Contact Week, June 24-28

We’ll be at Customer Contact Week in Las Vegas June 24-28. We’ll be running the Chat Boutique, our conversational concierge service for exhibitors again this year and we have a few surprises for you 😉.

Webinar: The Social Media Shift to Private Messaging, June 27

We're teaming up with Falcon.io to talk about how evolving customer expectations drive the need for omnichannel engagement. Join Zendesk VP of Conversational Business Warren Levitan (former CEO of Smooch!) and Falcon's Community Marketing Lead Dino Kuckovic for a webinar on what’s up with WhatsApp, customer engagement, and AI. Register now!