How to set website-level business hours

Website business hours allow you to control the times, days, dates, and circumstances under which your chat buttons are shown to customers.

To activate website-level business hours, you must create a website and then associate it with an HTML snippet. The HTML snippet will also have an associated chat button.

Department-level business hours and exceptions override website-level business hours and exceptions. Departments without unique business hours and/or exceptions use the same settings as associated websites.

You can also set agent hours to establish an individual agent's availability during a given time range. Agent hours are applied independently of business hours.

Here's how to set website-level business hours:

  1. Create or edit a website, as follows:
    1. In the Web Admin Center, go to Organization > Websites.
    2. Select an existing website group or click Create New.

    Result: The New/Edit Website page is displayed.

  2. Name the website.

    This can be seen by customers when the Website field is included on a pre-chat form.

  3. Select Enable business hours for chat.
  4. To make chat buttons available within business hours regardless of agent status, select Ignore Agent Status.


    Important: This may result in unanswered chats. Chats may continue to be queued even when no agents are available.
  5. Select the Timezone used by the From/To time settings.
  6. Set your Business Hours, which are periods of time (day/time combinations) that reflect your regular hours of operation.
    1. Select the start and end of business hours, expressed as From/To, when chat is available for customers.

      Outside of this time period, your chat buttons display as unavailable even when agents are available. For example, if business hours are set for 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, the chat button associated with this website will become available at 9:00 AM (if agents are available, unless you ignore agent status) and will be disabled at 5:00 PM.

    2. Select the Days to which the From/To setting is applied.
    3. To set unique hours for the weekend (or any day of the week), click Add business hours and set the days and time as described above.

    Result: Outside of these time periods, chat is unavailable unless you set exceptions.

  7. Under Exceptions by date, you can alter your Business Hours (opening hours) on specific dates throughout the year, such as holidays or for special events.

    See What are exceptions to business hours? below.

    Tip: When adding exceptions, you may find it useful to copy previously used exceptions (when available). To see these exceptions, select the Show previously expired exceptions from option.
  8. Save your changes.
The settings are applied to the website.

Your website is ready to be associated with an HTML snippet. Unless this association is made, your business hours are not applied.

What are exceptions to business hours?

An exception is valid for one day only. By defining an exception, you override normal business hours. In other words, an exception defines the time when your agents are available to chat on a specific day.

Think of a business hours exception as an exception in your daily routine: You may provide support from 9 AM to 5 PM, but on an exceptional day, like Black Friday, you may want to provide chat support for longer hours. In this case, you can define an exception for that single day by defining your availability, say, from 9 AM to 9 PM.

Similarly, if you have a meeting on November 20, from 2 PM to 3.30 PM and you are not available to support your customers, you have to change your standard business hours by setting two exceptions for the day:

  • One exception for November 20 from 9 AM to 2 PM
  • Another one for November 20 from 3.30 PM to 5 PM

This way, you can let Digital DX - and your customers - know that this is an exceptional day when you are available from 9 AM to 2 PM and from 3.30 PM to 5 PM only.