The Groove Report
Get a behind-the-scenes look at what we're working on.

Parsing, Parsing, Parsing

Added on Jul 21, 2014

We’ve devoted the last few weeks at Groove to improving what we feel is the most important aspect of Groove: your emails. We want you to have the most simple and elegant experience as possible when managing your emails with Groove, so we’ve been focusing our time and resources on cleaning up our email.

Parsing problems reveal themselves in the UI two ways, either by sending blank or empty replies in the place of a customer’s response, or producing a seemingly endless thread of response history making emails nearly impossible to read.

This week we’ve tackled some of our biggest parsing bugs to bring a cleaner, simpler email experience to your inbox.

Mozilla Thunderbird Parsing

We’re proud to announce this week that we’ve nipped one of our most notorious bugs, a particularly pesky parsing bug resulting in empty replies coming in from emails sent using the client Mozilla Thunderbird.

You might recognize this bug by responseless emails, seemingly only echoing your most recent reply.

Thunderbird bug

In the past, if plagued with an email affected by the dreaded Thunderbird bug, you could only solve the mystery of the missing reply by digging through your emails at the source for the original email. Thunderbird emails now parse nicely into Groove, so you won’t have to search through your email client for lost customer replies for any more of your Thunderbird using customers.

Parsing Plain Text Emails

You might have noticed you’ll receive an email thread from a certain customer that appears to be nothing more than an infinite thread of comment history, making customer responses very difficult to read or reference.

Plain Text Emails bug

The majority of these parsing issues were caused by a few different versions of Outlook, that we nipped in the bud back in the beginning of June. We noticed a few lingering cases attributed to plain text emails. We’ve recently ironed the bulk of these remaining cases, considerably improving even more of your email readability.

Please Note: We haven’t completely eliminated the parsing cases causing these comment history issues, but you’ll definitely see the # of emails affected by this parsing problem diminish after this update.

Custom Parsing for Yahoo

You also might have noticed a handful of emails trickle in with totally blank replies.

Yahoo bug

We found a majority of those blank emails were a result of customers replying inline via Yahoo. We built a custom parser specifically for the Yahoo client to eliminate missing messages coming from Yahoo Users.

Better Visibility for CCs and Multiple Emails

We’ve always listed any CCs on an email right under the customer name and subject headline, but any extra email addresses included in the To: field instead of under CC would not appear in Groove. While your responses wouldn’t go to the unknown email addresses, it still wasn’t clear what parties were included in the initial email thread.

This week we’ve improved the CC functionality. Now any additional addresses included in the To: field will now show up alongside CCed emails, so you can see every email address listed on a ticket thread, and have even more control over who receives your replies.

Better Visibility for CCs

Tons of Tiny Tweaks and One Big Win
for Customer Satisfaction Ratings

Added on Jun 22, 2014

The past two weeks, our development team has been hard at work developing and testing Groove Trends for its pending release, but we’ve still had time to make some small yet notable enhancements to the Groove UI. This week’s improvements include a couple tweaks to the multiple mailbox feature, better attachment control, and inserting comments from customer satisfaction ratings right inside the ticket thread.

Multiple Mailbox UI Improvements:

We’ve made a couple of changes for accounts that have multiple mailboxes filtering into Groove. For one, if a Mailbox has a privacy setting, you’ll see a lock icon next to the Mailbox name to quickly view which Mailboxes are private.

Mailbox UI Improvements

For accounts with multiple mailboxes filtering into a single inbox, we’ve included a built in Mailbox Label so you can tell at a glance which mailbox an email comes from.

Mailbox UI Improvements

Better Attachment Control: Before last week, if you submit a reply before an attachment fully loaded, Groove would submit the ticket without the attachment. Now, anytime a file is attached, Groove will hold the ticket’s submission until the attachment is fully loaded so you’ll never miss sending an attachment again.

Better Attachment Control

Customer Satisfaction Ratings: We’ve made a major change to your customer satisfaction rating comments easier to view and reply to if needed. Instead of solely emailing customer comments from satisfaction ratings in email notifications, we’ve added them to the ticket thread!

You can now view your customer satisfaction ratings and comments on the ticket that was rated, right at the bottom of the rated ticket response, either for your reference or in case you’d like to reply to their comments.

Customer Satisfaction Comments

Bug Squashes: Some major bugs met their much anticipated demise this week, including an encoding bug affecting many international accounts. We’ve also increased the speed of our support widget considerably, to alleviate some of the more recent loading issues stemming from widget traffic.

Submission Status Control, Labeling Improvements, Updated Keyboard Shortcuts, and a UI Spruce-up for Notes

Added on Jun 9, 2014

Oh my! We've spent the last week rolling out little wins left and right to improve your customer experience. If you’d like to know how we got ourselves on track (and get on track yourself), check out last weeks blog post from our Journey to 100k Blog: Why Bug Reports and Feature Requests Don’t Overwhelm Us Anymore for insights into our fantastic new bug and feature organizational system.

FTW of these tiny wins include status control on your submit button, UI tweaks with labeling and notes, and keyboard shortcuts to make common replies even more convenient.

Submission Status Control: If you’re constantly in a state of follow-up flux with your customers, than this update’s for you! You can now set the default status for your ticket submit button, so you’ll no longer have to manually change your status to submit from closed to pending every. single. time.

Admins can find where to make this change in the Settings Menu, in the left side bar of Mailboxes under Preferences.

Submission Status Control

Labeling Improvements: Until recently, you might have noticed it take a while before a new label registers in your auto-suggestion menu: sometimes several tickets deep after applying the same label repeatedly, and never without a hard refresh.

We’ve made some ever-so-slight adjustments to your labeling UX to register the new label immediately, saving precious typing time on every label.

Labeling Improvements

UI Spruce-up for Notes: We’ve added some flair to the ticket list view, and you might have noticed notes becoming a bit more obvious. When another team member posts a note to a ticket, the note also appears in yellow in the ticket preview to quickly differentiate between customer updates and agent updates at a glance.

UI Spruce-up for Notes

Common Reply Keyboard Shortcuts: We have some new additions to the keyboard shortcut family we added to core-ticketing last week that makes common replies even easier to apply.

Open the Common Reply menu with Command+Shift+i, and navigate through the list with your up/down arrows.

Right Arrow expands a collapsed category and Left Arrow will collapse it again. Pressing Left Arrow within an expanded category will jump back to the category title.

To insert a highlighted reply, simply press Right Arrow, Tab, or Enter within an expanded category.

Bug Squashes: As always, our development team spent some long hours last week squashing bugs, including a pesky and prevalent dancing reply box bug annoying many of our users. They’ve also kept a careful eye to crush any formatting bugs that have arrived with last week’s Rich Text Editor release.

Rich Text Editor, Forwarding Enhancements, Keyboard Shortcuts,
and Outlook Parsing

Added on Jun 2, 2014

Summary: It’s been a busy week and we’re breaking a springtime sweat, but it’s all about to be worth it.

We’ve introduced a fancy new rich text editor by popular demand, enhanced some features in our forwarding functionality, cranked out some convenient keyboard shortcuts, and ironed out some pesky parsing problems with Microsoft Outlook.

Rich Text Editor

Back by popular demand (and finally here to stay) we’ve given Groove its very own rich text editor. Your emails are about to get a whole lot more, well, rich.

Emphasise to your heart’s content by applying bold, itallic, or underlined text to your emails, or jazz up your formatting with bullet points or numbered lists.

Rich Text Editor

Clean up the appearance of your emails by embedding links right into the body of your text, or use HTML if you’re code savvy and prefer total control.

You can even add inline images hosted online, to easily share pictures of the office pet with your customers.

Adorable Animal

In addition to the ticket inspector, we’ve added the rich text editor to text fields for common replies, your auto-reply, and email signatures (yes, that means fancy HTML signatures for you, too!)

HTML Signature

Forwarding Enhancements

Remember when a third party vendor responded with information you were afraid reached your customer since it looked the same as a reply? Or you lost track of exactly who you were responding to after a long and confusing thread of forwarded emails? You can trash those troubles and never look back with our new forwarding features.

Color Changes for Forwarding: Like notes, forwarded messages now change color so you can easily differentiate a third party reply from one that reaches your customer. Unlike notes, forwarded messages appear in green so you can tell internal communication from external communication at a glance.

Green for Forwarded Messages

Drop-down Menu for Forwards: We’ve applied a drop-down menu for the To field on your replies that includes all parties involved in a ticket thread once three or more people enter the same forwarded conversation. Now you can easily select who you send your next reply to from anyone in your communication chain.

Communication Chain

The From field auto-populates with suggestions of other agents and prior collaborators, based on both name and email address.

“From” field autocompletion

Keyboard Shortcuts

We’ve added a few keyboard shortcuts to the Groove ticket inspector to speed up your ticketing actions. You can now quickly tab through the options on the ticket form to assign an agent, group, or status to your ticket.

Use J+K or the up and down arrows to select the specific agent, group, or status you’d like to assign to your ticket. Pressing enter when the Submit As button is highlighted will send your ticket, and command+enter will send your ticket at any time.

Outlook Parsing

We’ve made some huge strides in how Outlook parses in Groove, to eliminate a couple problems experienced by a few of our customers. You should experience fewer empty emails from customers using older versions of Outlook, and your Outlook customer’s messaging history should appear a lot clearer and easier to read.

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