Tip of the Week: Automatic Ticket Tagging

September 23, 2011

Tags are one of the most powerful tools in Zendesk. With them you can load your tickets with additional data and then create custom workflows using that data. This week we thought that we’d look at the automatic tags feature.

In your ticket settings (Settings > Tickets) there’s an option to automatically add tags to tickets. It’s a companion setting to enabling the inclusion of tags in tickets.

What exactly does this do? When a ticket arrives in your help desk, the text in the ticket description is scanned. Zendesk looks for words longer than two characters and then compares those words to the tags that have already been used in your account. The top three matches are added as tags to the ticket.

So why is this so powerful? Because it’s a great tool for automatically routing incoming support requests based on frequently used words in a ticket requester’s message.

As an example, let’s imagine that someone sent this message to MondoCAM Support.

All my friends have better cameras than me.
I posted my pics to fb and flickr and so far
only 14 wows and one stinkin neat. Could this
camera make my friends look uglier than they are?
Could I return this thing for a refund?

Based on the types of tickets MondoCam receives and the tags they use, Zendesk will automatically add the following tags to the ticket:

With these tags, MondoCAM can use a trigger that routes requests like this to the appropriate department. A trigger like that might look like this:

You can probably imagine many other scenarios where this would help you streamline your workflow.

Before we call this done, let’s go back over an earlier point. Zendesk adds the top three words (longer than two characters) that have already been used as tags. So, in our example tags were created for camera, return, and refund. This is because all of those words have been used as tags in the MondoCAM account. Where automatic tagging can go awry is if you accidentally use useless high frequency words as tags. For example, if you accidentally create tags out of words like ‘and’ and ‘the’, these will get picked up as tags in tickets. If this does happen, you can fix the problem by deleting those useless tags. Select Manage > Tags, then select the tag you want to get rid of, and then select Remove tag from all topics and open tickets. The basics of creating and managing tags is described in the Zendesk User’s Guide.

One last note, tags are only added to tickets that come from end-users via the ticket channels. Tags will not be added if an agent submits a ticket from within the help desk.

Automatic ticket tagging is available in all the Zendesk subscription plans.

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