Make Protected Zendesk Help Center Articles available in Search

This article shows you how to make articles available to logged in users only, but still make them available in search by showing an excerpt of the article.

Make Protected Zendesk Help Center Articles available in Search

Zendesk Guide has a built-in feature to make articles visible to everyone, logged in users, agents only or, if you've got an Enterprise license, specific user segments. This is a useful feature for anyone who wants to have one Help Center but make content available based on who's looking at the content.

Traditionally you'd see Zendesk environments with approaches like this:

  • All articles are public, but some articles are agent only. (The default)
  • Some articles are public, but most are for logged in users only (Software with paid licenses, companies that offer membership perks,...)
  • A Help Center that is fully locked down with no public access.

These scenario's work, but they come with some caveats though:

If you make articles available to logged in users only it makes them invisible for e.g. Google Search, but also prohibits discovery for users. They'll only know these articles exist if they login, and until they do that information remains invisible!

Similarly, articles that are available to agents only are nice, but that often results in two articles: one with public information, and another with internal information.

So the question arises: can we solve this somehow?

Show excerpts for segmented articles.

Zendesk's Help Centers are highly customisable of you know a little bit of HTML and CSS. And thanks to their extensive library of helpers most customisations can be done with little to no code at all.

So imagine you can have a Help Center that shows an excerpt of articles for anyone, but the full article body whenever a user is logged in. Cool no?

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