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Article 2 min read

Customize your chat widget with the Web SDK

By Abhi Basu

Last updated July 22, 2024

Because it is often the first place a customer looks when they want help, the Zendesk Chat Widget can serve as the voice of your website. To deliver a quality customer experience it’s essential that the chat widget is customized to your specifications. In essence, it should look and feel like the rest of your brand.

Zendesk Chat already offers some simple widget customization options inside the dashboard, including the ability to style the chat button and chat window. Customers that require more advanced customization, like changing the font, can use our Javascript APIs.

These customization options give you plenty of choices for the look and feel of the chat widget, but not if you want to change the widget experience completely.

Today we’re excited to introduce a new feature that will let you build your own widget: the web software development kit (SDK).

Introducing the Web SDK

Here are a few ways you can use the new Web SDK to customize your web widget.

1. Create a unique chat experience

The Web SDK lets you build a live chat software widget, that’s unique to your website. The sky’s the limit. Here are some examples of how you can build your own chat widget:

  • Give your customers more space to chat by creating a customized windows and docking it to the side of your website.

  • Add your own logo and branding to ensure a consistent customer experience.

  • Use custom sound notifications to alert your visitor whenever a chat is incoming.

  • Create entirely new interactions for customers when they start a chat, like adding a popup animation.


2. Control the behavior of the widget

In addition to changing the look and feel of the chat widget, you can also modify its logic and behavior. For example, you can insert a pre-chat survey or use a chatbot to initially handle customer queries.

3. Use in any language

The Web SDK has no limitations on language or localization. You can use standard web tools to localize your customized chat widget across your website. You’ll also have full control over all aspects of the widget copy, so you can decide exactly what our widget says to your customers.

How to get started

To build your own widget, check out the Web SDK documentation. Any customer on Chat Premium or on trial can use the Web SDK at no additional cost.

To see sample code using the Web SDK, you can look at the example we have built using React.

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