Explore How Case Deflection Works

A case deflection means different things to different teams and industries. This article explains case deflection from a support team’s perspective.

For a support manager, a case is said to be deflected if a customer:

  • Searches on the knowledge base, clicks a result, and doesn’t contact support
  • Tries to contact support, finds a helpful articles, and doesn’t log a ticket

The definition can be different for other industries.

Two Stages of Case Deflection

Stage One

Generally organizations keep knowledge bases searchable and open to their customers, so that the customers can help themselves before calling support. In many cases the approach works. Search proves useful and customers find answers and never call support . This is called Stage 1 Deflection, highlighted in blue.

  • Total Sessions: Total number of sessions
  • Search Sessions: The sessions in which at least one search was performed.
  • Click Sessions: Search sessions in which at least one result was clicked.
  • No Click Sessions. Search sessions in which no result was clicked.
  • Support Sessions: Sessions in which at least there was at least one visit to the page defined in the Support Page URL.
  • No Search Sessions. Sessions in which a user didn’t run any search.
  • Exit. The number of sessions ended.

Formula for Stage 1 Deflection


In the figure above, there are 106 sessions.

In 42 sessions, a user searches.

In 14 sessions, the user searches and clicks a result

In 4 sessions, the user visits the Support Page after searching and clicking a result.

In 10 sessions, the user doesn’t visit the Support Page after searching and clicking a result.

So according to our formula

It can be rounded off to 24%, which you see in the image above.

Stage Two

In the few scenarios when the customers cannot find help, they usually go to a contact support page to raise a ticket or get in touch with a support agent. On the contact support page, SearchUnify suggests relevant search results when a user starts creating a case. If a customer finds a link and leaves, then this is called Stage 2 Deflection. In the above picture path highlighted in blue is stage 2 deflection.

Related: Enable Stage Two Case Deflection

  • Case Creation Sessions. Sessions in which at least one case was logged.

Formula for Stage 2 Deflection

Example In the above figure,

There are 20 Support sessions.

In 4 sessions, users perform a search and click on a result.

In 3 sessions, users leave the Support Page without submitting a case (after searching and clicking a result), as highlighted in the journey. So according to our formula:

Rounding off 42.85% gives us 43%, which is what can be seen in the equation.

Case Deflection (for Salesforce Knowledge Users)

Starting Mamba '21, a new metric has been introduced in the case deflection journey for users whose knowledge base is in Salesforce. The underlying idea is as follows:

A user can get to an article in several ways; search is only one of them. Others include clicking on a bookmarked link, opening an article shared over email, or simply finding your way to an article from the Trending List on home. You can measure deflection from these Directly Viewed Articles which haven't been access from the search results page.


In order to activate Directly Viewed Articles, go to Search Clients > Edit > Analytics Settings > Analytics Properties, turn on Show Stage 2 (Case Form Page) Deflection and enter the Support Page URL in the field above.

Turn on Add Direct Article View Journey and check Cumulative and Stage 1.

Finally, define the URL of your articles. The definition includes <SF_community_address/article/{{URL Field}}. A quicker way to fill the field is to simply use ./article.

To find the value for insertion, go to Search Clients > Edit > Content Sources > SF Content Source > Knowledge > Create HREF and drag URL Field to the blank box.

Reading the Reports

Direct Article views influence only Stage 1 Case Deflection. There is no way to click a Directly Viewed article on the case creation page so Stage 2 Case Deflection isn't impacted. Another change, when Direct Article views are turned on, is the appearance of a third tab: Cumulative Deflection, which tells the overall (from Stage 1, Stage 2, and Direct Articles) deflection number. Let's review them one at a time, starting form Stage 2 because it's the easiest.

Stage 2 Case Deflection with Direct Article Views

No impact here. The report behaves identically, irrespective of whether Direct Article views are turned on or not. To learn how it actually works, check out Stage Two.

Stage 1 Case Deflection with Direct Article Views

All sessions in which a user searched and clicked on a result or access a Direct View article and didn't visit support are considered Stage 1 Case Deflection with Direct Article views. Only two scenarios are possible.

Another difference between Stage One Case Deflection and Stage One Case Deflection with Direct Article Views is the denominator used in the equation used to calculate deflection. In the first, the denominator is Search Sessions but in the second the denominator is Total Sessions. Although the symbol used to represent them is the same, .

In this diagram,

Total Sessions = 31

Click Sessions with No Support Visit = 5

Direct Article Views with No Support Visit = 1

When rounded off to 19, it matches the number in the instance.

Cumulative Case Deflection

Here all the deflections in Stage 1 with Direct Article Views and Stage 2 are summed and divided by the total sessions.

The reports with Cumulative

Last updatedFriday, November 27, 2020