The Future of Customer Support: Embed Live Slack Chat in Salesforce Experience Cloud

July 29, 2022
The Future of Customer Support: Embed Live Slack Chat in Salesforce Experience Cloud

Slack is the most responsive chat platform on the planet. Salesforce Experience Cloud sites are the most intuitive way to expose Salesforce data to Customers and Partners. Live chat on an experience cloud page is the perfect way for your reps to chat directly with customers! What better way to chat than Slack? Centro makes this possible with our embedded Slack widget for Experience Cloud pages and Salesforce Record. Check out this brief demo of this in action!

As more businesses run their Digital HQ using Slack and connect it to Salesforce, this is great for supporting the internal team with capabilities like Swarms and Slack-to-Case. Some businesses have gone all in with Slack Connect, and support their customers directly with creating Cases from Slack Connect channels using Slack Workflow Builder!

What about customers who are already logging in to Salesforce Experience Cloud to get support, but may or may not have Slack yet? It may be ok to ask them to join Slack Connect, but the customer may end up being frustrated with yet another login to a platform they don’t (yet) use. They’re already logging Cases in Experience Cloud, why not just have a live chat agent directly on the page that’s linked to a Slack channel or Thread? That’s where we at Centro come in.

What we’re seeing is a couple of possibilities - one is to have a general Account channel tied to the customer. This is a forum where folks can post questions to their account team, get advice, or share feedback. The Centro component allows a real-time interface to the linked channel, where the full history is kept. Here’s an example of that in practice:

Live Chat backed by Slack on the Home page of this Experience Cloud Site, powered by Centro!

What’s nice about the Agent or Reps working that channel is they can work where they want. If they live in Slack all day, they will see that channel as normal in Slack. If they prefer to work in Salesforce, the same concept of an embedded channel applies. Here are 3 views of the same channel:

Slack Channel Discussion showing up in (left to right): Slack, Salesforce Account Page, and Experience Cloud

Customers benefit from not only the structured data directly exposed in the Experience Cloud Site but can post their concerns, questions, and praise to the team directly! No need to learn another chat platform, use the internal one the team has already adopted - Slack. Customer satisfaction goes up, as responsiveness from the team increases because of the lowered cognitive load of tool switching. 

Note that while the embedded Slack channel is not a full-fledged Slack client (there are a lot of great experiences that should only happen in Slack), there’s plenty of functionality to get the basics done! We support the following currently with our embedded Slack client:

  • Basic message posting and viewing
  • @mentioning specific people or the channel
  • Emojis within messages
  • Emoji reactions to messages
  • Viewing and opening existing threads
  • Starting new threads
  • Uploading files and posting to Slack
  • Notifications of new messages from either the rep or the customer
Several key Slack features exposed in the Experience Cloud page

While this isn’t a full Slack substitute, we find most customers are satisfied with this approach, and we will continue to add functionality to this patented component!

Now when you see these screenshots, you may be wondering - did we provision a Slack license on the fly for these users? How does it know who posted from the Experience Cloud page? This is where a little more Centro magic comes in. You may configure the component to either allow users to connect to their existing Slack user OR we can pass through their Salesforce User profile (avatar and display name) our Centro Bot user! This is probably better shown than said. Note that Centro is leveraging the Salesforce Experience Cloud profile details and passing them into Slack. This also alleviates the license burden, and is a "nudge" for the user to get a full Slack license in the future:

Centro leverages the Experience Cloud Profile when posting messages to Slack

This method also lowers the bar for the adoption of this live chat agent - as you don’t require the users to go through the full Slack authorization process, which could be cumbersome if they simply want to post a message to the team supporting them. 

Let’s now move on to Case management. In this clip, you’ll see that the customer can navigate to Cases, and with this example, they file a Case, and Centro will:

  1. Create the Case
  2. Create the Slack Channel or Create a Case Slack Thread as the primary Account Channel (we demonstrate the latter)
  3. Add the appropriate team to the Channel
  4. Bind this channel or thread to the Case record in Experience Cloud

In this way, we now have a channel or thread dedicated to this Case! From here, the Agent working the case can again live in Slack or Salesforce, adding members or even creating a Swarm channel from Slack or Salesforce right on the fly to have an internal discussion about the issue, without the customer seeing that discussion.

Too many Slack channels? No problem! Upon the Case resolution, Centro can go and archive all of these linked conversations. The great part? You may still preview them from the Salesforce record for team training or record keeping.

Archived Slack Channels linked to a Salesforce Record are preview-able

Slack notifications are world-class, so if your team lives and breathes in Slack, the customer posting a new message to the Case channel or thread is no problem. What about the Agents that live and breathe in Salesforce? Centro has the capability to trigger events from new messages being posted (or emoji reactions!) that can cause other events to happen! See some examples below of events occurring after a new message is posted via the Experience Cloud component:

  • Post a Salesforce Notification to the Case owner or Account Team
  • Update the Case to have a "Last Replied by" field update
  • Update the Case to have a "Last Slack Message" field update
  • Add a new Chatter Post of the activity
  • Add a new Salesforce Activity
  • Notify the Agent or Submitter in a Slack DM 
  • Email or SMS the Agent or Submitter
Customized Salesforce Notification of New Message from Experience Cloud

There it is! Complete Service Cloud support backed by Slack in Experience Cloud powered by Centro. This article was just one way to implement these components, but as you might suspect, Centro is infinitely customizable just like Salesforce is - we adapt and snap into your customization using our Native toolset.

Want to get a personalized demo? Book one today!

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