Zendesk has added Instagram messaging to its customer support offering to allow businesses to manage customer service inquiries on Instagram directly within Zendesk.

For example, with The Messenger API for Instagram, a retail company that receives a direct message from a customer about the status of their order can reply to the customer with accurate information about the shipment directly from Zendesk.

Alternatively, a customer who is scrolling through Instagram and watches a brand’s Story promoting a holiday sale can immediately message them for more information. The customer could then receive a personalised response from an agent, whether it be a promo code, website link or shipping information that will remain in the conversation history for when a purchase is made.

The API is directly integrated into the Zendesk platform. At launch, customers will be able to access these capabilities from inside the agent workspace and turn on Instagram for other software built with Zendesk. (This capability is currently available to a limited number of customers in early access with more details on broader availability to come in 2021.)

From February to August of this year, customer service inquiries through channels such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Twitter DMs, and SMS rose nearly 50%. Further, according to Zendesk’s yearly Benchmark report, messaging apps have the highest customer satisfaction rating of any channel, with a CSAT of 98%.

“At Zendesk, we work to make it easy for brands to communicate with customers across any channel, and social media is quickly becoming the preference. All social messaging conversations can easily flow into one place inside Zendesk,” Zendesk vice president of product, Mike Gozzo said.

“With its tremendous popularity, Instagram is a key addition so businesses can serve customers who reach out on Instagram in a more timely, consistent and personal manner.”