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Facebook wants to reinvent how consumers talk to retailers


New York -- Facebook hopes to transform the way customers communicate with retailers by re-inventing the customer service platform. Facebook and its partner Zendesk, a customer service platform firm, are teaming up to allow businesses to provide scalable and responsive customer service to the more than 600 million people worldwide who use Facebook's popular Messenger app. The social media giant is inviting retailers and other companies to develop software that allows customers to communicate instantly with them through Messenger.

“Messenger has changed the way people communicate with their friends, and now it’s opening new opportunities for businesses to interact with their customers,” said Adrian McDermott, Zendesk’s senior vice president of product development. “Consumers can communicate and engage with retailers within the messaging app they already use every day, on their own terms.”

Online retailers zulily and Everlane are the first two companies using the integration to support their customers. Customers can receive order information and interact with the companies through Messenger, while zulily and Everlane can engage with customers and manage support requests from Messenger in a single customer service platform through Zendesk’s Zopim integration.

By extending Zopim's live chat capabilities to Messenger, businesses now have a new way for their service teams to support customers. Customer service teams can manage multiple Messenger chats at once, collaborate with one another to solve a customer’s issue, and access chat history to easily continue a conversation after a break. Everlane, an online clothing and accessories brand, is known for its transparent relationship with its consumers and for offering top-quality merchandise at a great value.

Through Businesses on Messenger and the Zopim integration, consumers at checkout have the option to receive their order confirmations and shipping information through Messenger. They then can start a real-time dialogue with Everlane or modify their orders. Everlane is using Zopim chat to interact with customers in real-time on Messenger and provide customer service.

"At Everlane, we pride ourselves on the personal connection we have with our community," said Aaron Ginn, Everlane’s growth product manager. “Our close customer relationships are how we differentiate ourselves. Not only can our customers now connect with us through Messenger, but they also can receive personal attention and immediate service from us thanks to Zendesk's integration.”

The integration is currently being developed for zulily and Everlane and will be rolled out gradually.

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