How to Set Up an Open Source Helpdesk and  Customer Ticketing Platform for Your eCommerce Store?

How to Set Up an Open Source Helpdesk and Customer Ticketing Platform for Your eCommerce Store?

Providing top-grade customer support is a kind of investment that will help enhance customer loyalty and brand value. Hence it is important to provide the best customer experience for your shoppers when they face any issues in your eCommerce store. 

Most of the shop owners use support forms and mails to provide customer support. And there are quite a few stores that provide assistance through phone calls and chats. But if you are dealing with hundreds of queries and tickets from customers every day, it is important to make a proper system to deal with each and every ticket and query. Integrating a ticketing helpdesk system will be the right option to deal with the bundles of tickets in your store.

In this write-up, we will discuss how to set up the best-fitting open source helpdesk & customer ticketing platform for your eCommerce store.

What is an open-source helpdesk ticketing system?

Before choosing and setting up an open source helpdesk ticketing system in your eCommerce store, it is important to know about it. 

Open source helpdesk system’s source code is publicly available for anyone and they can download, inspect, customize, and modify it according to their needs. 

Hence, what is the advantage of choosing an open source helpdesk ticketing system?

Yes, you can either integrate as it is, or you can customize it when any requirement arises. Or you can opt for it, and make it a tailor-made system for your eCommerce store.

Now let us check how to set it up in your eCommerce store. I would like to break down the entire configuration process into small parts as follows.

  1. Create a subdomain of your eCommerce store for customer support.
  2. Integrate a helpdesk customer support ticketing system on your eCommerce store.
  3. Add a live chat for improving the customer support experience.
  4. Set up knowledge base articles for helping the customers beforehand.

These 4 steps are the key points in the process of setting up a top-notch customer support helpdesk system. Let us go through one by one.

Create a subdomain of your eCommerce store

Subdomains will help you to reduce the site loading time since eCommerce stores usually contain a large number of images, descriptions, and product data. It will make your store hang when you integrate an additional customer support ticketing system along with that. Otherwise, it will result in an increased bounce rate and poor Google search ranking.

So it will be better to make your customer support ticketing system a separate subdomain as it also needs to manage numerous tickets and agent profiles every day. This will favor managing both your main website and customer support system efficiently.

If the main website name is – maindomain.com,

The subdomain will be – support.maindomain.com.

For setting up your subdomain, go to your cPanel > Domain section > Subdomains.

You can enter the new subdomain name there. For example, say, ‘support’.

When you click on the ‘Document Root’ field, a suggested root directory will generate automatically, and this will be the location at which all the documents of the subdomain will be stored in your server.

Finally, click the Create button.

Note: There may be a slight difference in the button labels on your cPanel from the above mentioned button names. But still, all the functionality will be the same.

After creating the subdomain, it is important to map it with your main domain to make it a part of your eCommerce store.

If your store is built on WordPress, which is using WooCommerce, you can map it in just a few clicks. Check the steps below.

  • First, you need to grant permission to your subdomain. For that, go to the root folder > .htaccess.
  • Validate your subdomain in URL Rewrite Management.
  • Add a mapping subscription to the main domain. For that, go to My Site > Manage > Domains > click Add a Domain to This Site.

Click Use a domain I own. Then click Map Your Domain and enter your subdomain (eg: support.mydomain.com). Finally, click Add.

If the subdomain has already mapped on the same account, you can move on to the next step to set up your helpdesk system!

 Go to your My Site > Manage > Domains, select your subdomain, and click Make Primary. Your job is done!

If your eCommerce store is built with Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento, or any platform other than WordPress and hosted by other hosting service providers such as Cloudways, Hostinger, GoDaddy, and so on, follow the below steps.

You can use your CNAME to point to the subdomain from your main page after getting your subdomain. We can take the example of GoDaddy for mapping.

Note: The steps and buttons may vary depending on your service provider. But the main functionalities are the same.

  1. Log on to your GoDaddy account, go to the Accounts section, open the Product page.
  2. Go to the domain settings page and open your domain.
  3. Click Additional Settings > Manage DNS. 
  4. Choose Add, go to CNAME under Type, and enter the following data.
  • Host – Enter the hostname (should not exceed more than 25 characters).
  • Point to –  Enter the destination URL of the site you need to point to. For doing that, type @ to point to the root domain name.
  • TTL – This is the Time to hold cache information by the server.
  1. Save the settings.

After these above-mentioned details are added, it will set the pointer to the subdomain from your main domain. You can do it by adding a CNAME record.

After you are done with the subdomain mapping and configuration, you can move on to set up the helpdesk ticketing system.

Integrate a helpdesk customer support ticketing system

This is the core part of an open source helpdesk ticketing system. For channelizing a large amount of ticket flows into your support system and assigning them to the agents automatically, you need to integrate a helpdesk system in your eCommerce store.

When we consider the best available helpdesk systems in the market, you can choose WSDesk – ELEX WordPress Helpdesk & Customer Support Ticket System Plugin. This plugin is feature-rich and built with all the features required for a perfect helpdesk system. 

It is basically built for a WordPress website and is highly compatible with WooCommerce, which in turn works well on your eCommerce store.

The benefits you will get by opting for this simple, yet robust plugin are as follows.

  • You can manage unlimited tickets.
  • No limit to add any number of agent profiles.
  • The AJAX-based system makes the interface more user friendly for agents.
  • Makes the agent’s task easier by providing filtered views of tickets.
  • Option to set up various notifications for the agents to prioritize and work on the tickets as soon as possible.
  • Integration with Google Chat makes the agents’ team keeps updated on each and every ticket.
  • Easy integration with IMAP and Google OAuth to convert emails into tickets.
  • You can set reply templates to respond to customers quickly.
  • A detailed report to analyze the overall performance of the agents and the helpdesk system.
  • Efficient backup and restore options, and many more.

Besides these built-in features, you can customize the plugin in accordance with your requirements. The support team behind this plugin is always open for any kind of customization, even tweaking from the scratch by changes in coding.

To know about the built-in features available in this plugin and how to configure them on your store, you can go through their detailed documentation.

Add a live chat

Chatting is the most comfortable method of connecting with the customers since it adds a personal touch to the communication instead of a formally drafted mail. Even though you have a robust customer support ticketing system, it is good to have a chat widget on your eCommerce store.

Basically, this live chat can be used for presale queries from the customers and clearing their doubts while they are browsing through your products. 

There are so many free live chat plugins and software available for you to easily add to your store such as tawk.to, Drift, etc.

But if you are planning to make the chat more effective and advanced, it would be great if you incorporate a premium live chat plugin that comes up with advanced features.

WSChat – ELEX WordPress Live Chat Plugin is one of the best AI-integrated live chat plugins that helps to uplift your customer support experience. 

The reasons to choose WSChat – ELEX WordPress Live Chat Plugin for your WooCommerce store are as follows.

  • 100% security over your data.
  • Agents can track the cart details and purchase history of the customers while a conversation is going on with them.
  • Agents can suggest products directly to the customers through chat which will redirect the customers to the Cart page.
  • Option to track the live visitors and the page they are visiting.
  • You can configure to send email notifications to the agents as well as customers.
  • Option to add unlimited agent profiles. You can even import agents from your WSDesk helpdesk system.
  • It stores unlimited chat history.
  • Automatic alerts to agents as well as visitors when they receive a message.
  • Agents can initiate a chat from their side for pre-sale assistance.
  • Option to customize the chat widget that syncs with your store theme.
  • Interesting emojis.
  • Mobile optimized widget, and so on.

As I have mentioned before, this plugin is AI integrated as you can use Google’s Dialogflow tool to trigger automated responses in the form of text, image, audio, video, and any file formats.

To know how to configure the plugin and Dialogflow on your store, you can refer to the documentation.

Set up knowledge base articles 

Knowledge base articles are really important to make the customers proactive on the issues they are facing without seeking any external help. A well-framed knowledge base article is a valid resource for the customers as well as the employees in your firm. 

A precise, well explained, and up to date document always helps to reduce the number of tickets. You can also send the documents to customers while assisting them. Hence, it is important to add relevant screenshots and check whether they are matching with the latest update on your website.

It will be great if you can trigger setup documentation when a customer is about to raise a ticket. So they can solve the issue before raising the ticket. This functionality is available on WSDesk – ELEX WordPress Helpdesk & Customer Support Ticket System Plugin.

These are the key steps you need to follow while setting up an open-source helpdesk system in your eCommerce store. It is applicable for any platform such as WooCommerce, Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento, etc. But the extensions you use may change depending on the platform.

If you are looking for a fully managed hosting solution to put your complete focus on your business, you can choose a fully manageable open source helpdesk & customer ticketing platform powered by WSDesk.

Fully Manageable Open Source Helpdesk & Customer Ticketing Platform for Your eCommerce Store

This solution is exclusively for the team who needs a complete packaged service of a helpdesk support system. Here, the family of WSDesk has introduced a brand new service package exclusively for the companies and firms who require a fully managed helpdesk solution –  Open Source HelpDesk & Customer Support Ticketing System – Simple & Flexible.

This is a subscription-based service as the customers can opt for a plan according to the requirements. It is highly recommended because of the exceptional personalization options. 

This system will be set up irrespective of the platform your store is built with. It could be WordPress, Wix, Magento, Shopify, and so on, their expert team will sit with you and help to configure a perfect helpdesk solution for you.

If you are planning a migration from any other third-party help desk platforms, they will help you to pull all your customer tickets and push it to the Open Source Helpdesk & Customer Support Ticketing System. Hence, no worries about migration challenges.

Since it is an out-of-the-box solution, you can either use it exactly as it is, but they are open for any extreme personalization and third-party integrations.

Other advantages of choosing Open Source HelpDesk & Customer Support Ticketing System

  • Highly customizable according to the domain and nature of your work.
  • Ensures data privacy and security.
  • Capable to manage unlimited agents and tickets.
  • No hidden cost or additional charges for adding unlimited agent profiles.
  • Excellent customer support available 24/7.
  • Helps to set up charges for your support and consultations.
  • Expert assistance for third-party integration, setting up knowledge base articles, live chat, and solving technical issues & data breach.
  • No worries about frequent updates and version changes, as the team will manage everything on time.

You can either follow the steps I have mentioned earlier to set up an open source helpdesk & customer ticketing platform by yourself, or you can go for the fully manageable solution as per the requirement.

To sum up,

Customer support is a vital part of business growth as it helps to create a loyal customer base. Hence, provide the best professional customer support experience to your customers by incorporating Open Source HelpDesk & Customer Support Ticketing System with your eCommerce store.

Category: E-Commerce, Guides, How tos, Tutorials, Woocommerce, WooCommerce Plugin
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About Nimesh Patel

I am a Product Marketer and Growth hacker with expertise in the areas of Digital marketing; Search engine optimization (SEO), Email Marketing, Paid Campaigns on Facebook and Twitter, Content development strategies, Competitive Research & Analysis. Nimesh is Product Manager at theDotstore.com