An in-depth overview of Proactive Messages for Zendesk

Discover the new Zendesk proactive messaging. Learn about the main features and advanced flows, including the ability to show proactive messages based on specific marketing campaigns. Target customers based on their locale, or offer a premier experience to VIP users.

An in-depth overview of Proactive Messages for Zendesk

Last month Zendesk launched their Proactive messages for Zendesk Messaging. This new feature allows you to reach out to customers by showing a small popup on top of your Zendesk widget. If the customer clicks on the message or widget, you can then immediately route them to the right intent and try to proactively offer them solutions to any questions they might have.

Announcing Proactive Messages in Messaging
Rollout start Rollout end March 27, 2023 March 30, 2023 What’s changing and why? We are thrilled to announce, launch of Proactive messages for our messaging customers. It’s our latest additi…

Proactive messages basically offers the same functionality as the old Zendesk Chat triggers, albeit with a lot less options. The new feature misses visitor location, time stamps, page view count, tags or reacting to a customer initiating the chat.
What we lose in functionality, we win in ease of use. The new Admin UI is a breeze to use with a modern UI, a better flow to setup the messages and build-in reporting.

Proactive messages are currently available for the Web Widget and Mobile SDKs.

In this article we'll dive into the main feature set, and then go into more advanced flows. One more advanced flow allows you to show proactive messages to customers that match a specific marketing campaign, based on UTM Campaigns tags.
We build a specific flow based on a customers' locale, and combine Messaging authentication and tags to offer a premier experience you your VIP users.

Let's dive in.

Feature Preview

You can test out the flows described below on this page.

Some flows use specific code to make them work, especially the logged in user scenario. Take a look at the repository to see how it works:

GitHub - verschoren/zendesk_widget: Zendesk has a nice Web Widget to embed your contact channels and FAQ on any page of your website creating a consistent experience that aligns with your brand.
Zendesk has a nice Web Widget to embed your contact channels and FAQ on any page of your website creating a consistent experience that aligns with your brand. - GitHub - verschoren/zendesk_widget:…

Let's start with a basic Setup

We'll start with a pretty straightforward example. A customer visits our sample page and looks at the homepage for 30 seconds.

They're greeting with a welcome message that then shows info about this website.

The way it's setup is as follows:

Compose the message

  1. We first create a new proactive trigger and assign it to the right brand and channel.
  2. We then Set a proactive greeting and select the Bot option.
  3. We already build an Intent "About Internal Note" which we can use for this trigger.


Next up we select a trigger. Triggers are basically the rules that define when a trigger will fire. We can select both Visitor based options (title, url, repeat visitor), or Device based rules (Language).

For this basic example we'll set a rule as follows: Visitor.Page URL is . This will match our homepage exactly, and will make sure it won't fire on subpages. If you change the trigger to contains at least one of the trigger will fire on any page.

Frequency and Timing

Once we setup that trigger we can then choose when we want the message to appear.

  • We can choose to show the message upon payload or after a delay
  • We can choose between always and outside or inside business hours
  • We can choose to show the message once per user, once per session or each time.

For this basic demo I chose to show the widget after 30 seconds, ignore business hours and show it once per session. You can test it out on

Advanced Flows

In this next section we'll build three advanced flows:

  1. A way to target customers based on marketing campaigns.
  2. A premier experience for your VIP customers build on top of Authentication.
  3. Handle customer locale for better assignment and routing.