Office Hours: June 22, 2021

This newsletter follows each Business Messages Office Hours meeting, summarizing news from Google and from our brand and partner ecosystem. The archive of these newsletters is available on our developer website under Partner docs (you must be logged in with approved email to access this page).


Industry news

Case studies & data:

Best Practices

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M&A activity and funding:


Top questions

Will there be an API to pull metrics? 📈

When we bring Partner Metrics into the Business Communications Developer Console, we'll expose those partner metrics through BigQuery. You'll be able to query BigQuery directly to obtain all metrics we expose through the Business Communications Developer Console as well.

Can a partner register more than one webhook? 👥

Not directly! You will need to submit an additional partner registration. Right now we have a 1:1 partner account to webhook setup.

If you have more questions please send them to bm-support@google.com or ask them at the next Office Hours.


Developer relations

New stuff

Developer sample

Check out our new developer sample! A virtual pet simulation game.

Our Developer Site has a list of all of our samples, but you can head to GitHub directly for this sample. Make sure to watch the screencast and take some ideas to build out your conversational experiences on Business Messages!

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Upcoming

Read receipts

This is a feature coming in Q3!

Receive an event to your webhook when a customer has read a message. Using the Business Messages API, programmatically inform users when you've processed messages and that you are working on a response.

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Customizable surveys

This feature is coming in Q3.

Create customized surveys through the API and in the Business Communications Developer Console. With it you can extend the feedback surveys of an agent to a total of five questions with up to two template questions and up to two custom questions.

Metrics in the Console

Metrics within the Business Communications Developer Console is coming Q3.

See CSAT, response rate, sessions and more. This data will also be available via the BigQuery API.

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User management in the Console

User management is also coming in Q3. With this extension to the Business Communications Developer Console, you'll be able to add users to the console and manage roles. Check out the screenshot!

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Tips and tricks

Building a great conversational experience takes time and iteration, but if you start by thinking about the best way to serve customers, you'll be ahead of the game.

What are the customers' needs? What is their desired action when chatting with the agent? If you can drive them to this action with the least amount of work, you'll make their (and your) lives easier.

Set expectations for users chatting with the agent by setting live agent support hours. This way, people will know when they'll be able to connect with a person in case a digital agent can't serve all their needs. Oh! And make sure a live agent follows up with customers if they do message during off hours.

Leverage rich features to help shape the chat experience for customers. Rich features like cards & carousels, rich text, suggested replies (chips), can really help improve the flow of the conversation by providing better context beyond just text. Older devices don't always support all rich features so ensure you have a fallback strategy to help keep the conversation going.

Remember that we provide the context to your webhook with an ongoing conversation. If the customer found your agent through a location based entry point, you'll have the placeID. In most cases, we also surface the user's display name and the entry point from which they came to help you better shape the conversation!

Don't forget to iterate! You can trigger surveys to better understand what your agent does well and where it falls short. Remember to analyze your conversations, address missed elements, and add user journeys!


Agents of the week

Submit your agents to get showcased at Agent of the week!