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The Help Desk explained
The Help Desk explained
Beth-Ann Sher avatar
Written by Beth-Ann Sher
Updated over a week ago

The fastest, most effective, and powerful Help Desk built for support at scale. Meet the all-new Intercom Help Desk, built to help your team resolve customer issues faster in a tool they love.

It’s the only consumer-grade support tool packed with new features that are designed to handle the volume, speed, and scale of internet business. Check out this demo video to learn more about what's new. 👇

Modern consumer-grade design

The only consumer-grade support tool packed with new features that streamline workflow and collaboration, and meet user expectations. Built to handle the volume, speed, and scale of internet business. It's simple, familiar, easy to use and easy to learn. Easily zero in on just the context you need–right when you need it– for example by showing and hiding the sidebars.

Blazingly fast

Faster Help Desk performance makes every action immediate, so you can get more done in the same amount of time. With Intercom Help Desk, you’ll never be waiting for the product to load. Help Desk is built for internet scale, which means no loading screens, no spinners, no waiting. Every action is immediate so your team can give your customers faster answers and increase customer satisfaction.

Keyboard-first approach

Leveraging shortcuts, you can perform your everyday actions faster without lifting your fingers off the keyboard. This might take some getting used to but it’ll soon start saving you valuable time.

We’ve made it super simple to learn and use keyboard shortcuts with Command-K ( ⌘/Ctrl K ). This opens an action menu giving you quick access to your frequent actions without needing to remember the shortcuts.

Use direct shortcuts to the most popular actions, such as composing replies, inserting content, snoozing conversations, and moving between inboxes. Find a full list of available shortcuts or access the cheat sheet straight from the Help Desk by using ⌘/Ctrl K and selecting Keyboard shortcuts.

Table layout

Access the new table layout using shortcut key L or the toggle buttons on the bottom left for a bird’s-eye view of conversations. This is great for support or shift managers who want to get a quick overview of the inboxes and conversation status.

Every row represents a conversation and you can see the various conversation data points in the columns.

These columns are completely configurable so you can choose which information you need to see onscreen. Simply select a column to rearrange, sort or hide it:

Or scroll to the far right and select the “+” button to add more columns:

You can also take direct actions from the table such as closing and snoozing conversations, or marking them as priority.

Take action on multiple conversations at once by selecting them on the left. For example, you might notice a few conversations that are for the billing team, you could select these conversations and assign them to the correct team using shortcut key A or us ⌘/Ctrl K and select Assign to.

Look at a conversation thread or details by selecting the conversation row and a preview will pop up on the right.

Easily switch between the chat layout and table layout by using shortcut key L or the toggle buttons on the bottom left.

And you can easily see all of your open, closed or snoozed conversation and tickets filtered by state by clicking on the filter button at the top of your conversations list 👇


Dark/light mode

Choose to work in dark mode or light mode and easily switch between the two with ⌘/Ctrl K

You can also change this from your profile settings in the bottom left corner.


Set the Help Desk up in your preferred language by using ⌘/Ctrl K and selecting Switch language. You can choose from:

  • English,

  • French,

  • German,

  • Brazilian Portuguese, or

  • Spanish.

You can also add custom conversation attributes, or customize your Help Desk with apps to show the exact information you need, and perform actions in external tools without needing to leave the conversation.


Intercom does not have a desktop application that you can chat to your customers from at this time.

Support your users collaboratively

Some messages are too urgent to wait until tomorrow, or until your teammate returns from holidays. Everyone in your team is visible in the team inbox, so you can access any message for any teammate to ensure no question sits unanswered.

You'll find all new conversations in 'Unassigned' (unless they're automatically assigned using Workflows). You can pick any conversation up there and assign it to a particular teammate.

Build custom views of your conversations

Help Desk views allow you to define a set of filters, including conversation attributes, and then show all conversations that match those filters in real time. It’s easy to switch between them and keep an eye on urgent issues, your direct reports, or whichever conversations you consider most important.

Automate with Workflows

Let background automations in Workflows handle the repetitive tasks, so your team can focus on what they do best.

Search your conversations

Quickly search the Help Desk by clicking the search icon on the top left to search and filter your conversations by keyword, tag, user, assignee, and date ranges. Locate relevant conversations instantly. For example, you can filter for a specific tag you’ve created to see all conversations about that topic.

Respond to users and visitors on the move

The Intercom for iOS and Intercom for Android mobile apps allows you to reply to visitors or users, add notes, assign conversations and view their profile pages. With mobile profile pages, it's easy to reply with high-quality, personalized responses from anywhere. Learn how to support your customers on the go here.

Potential duplicate users & leads

See if the person you’re speaking with has any other lead or user profiles in Intercom. The potential duplicates feature will warn you via the Help Desk if there are any duplicate leads or users for the person you’re currently speaking with by matching them based on the following fields:

  • User or Lead’s Phone attribute matching Potential Duplicate’s Phone attribute.

  • User or Lead’s Phone attribute matching Potential Duplicate’s WhatsApp Number attribute.

  • User or Lead’s Email attribute matching Potential Duplicate’s Email attribute.

  • It is not currently possible for Intercom to merge Facebook leads or users into actual Intercom users.

You can view the details of each potential duplicate and their matching attributes.

If the conversation is with a lead and the detected duplicate is a user, you can click Merge Lead into User. This will refresh the conversation in the inbox with the details of the newly merged user, so you can see previous conversations etc.

Check for Similar conversations

If you receive a conversation and you're not sure how to proceed with the answer, you can always check Similar conversations app to see if anything like this was already asked previously and how did your teammates answered.

This feature finds conversations that contain messages that are similar to the current conversation. For example, if the current conversation contains a message "I need help with my refund" and if there are other conversations that also contains the text "I need help with my refund", then those conversations are matched.

While finding similar conversations, we adhere to the following rules:

  • We ignore bot generated messages in the conversation

  • The similar conversations must have been updated within the last 6 months.

  • We also ignore common english terms like a, the, is...etc

Useful resources to get started


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