Our Automation Rules can help automate decisions about how and when to interact with your visitors. You can engage with customers proactively, hide/show the chatbox on certain pages, block specific visitors and much more!

We’ve written a number of Automation Guides to help you get going.

With our free plan, you can create one rule, but you can’t hide the chatbox. If you’d like the option to hide the chatbox or make more rules, you’ll want to upgrade here. You can see the differences between free and paid plans on our Olark plans page. You can check which plan you’re using on your Olark billing page.

As an alternative to chatbots, our Automation Rules fire off different actions based upon the logic that you define in a rule. Rules are written as If-then statements, so as you create them, try reading them out as sentences to make sure they make sense. For example, WHEN any agent is available to chat, IF one of these conditions match and the number of visits to my site is 2 or more, THEN send “Welcome back!”

Automation Rules will evaluate over and over again on each page, and if you have rules that conflict, keep in mind that it is possible for more than one rule to match if your conditions are related.

With this in mind, I’d like to introduce a few of the most common problems people have with making Automation Rules.

Common Issues


Cached cookies

Olark stores a lot of your custom settings in cookies that we deliver to the visitors. Should you make a new rule, and wish to test it right away, we recommend that you check your pages in an incognito session of your browser, or by clearing your cookies.

Matching at Least One Condition vs Matching all Conditions

any vs all example

When making any rule, you are given two options:

  1. Execute the rule if just ONE of the conditions matches
  2. Execute the rule if EVERYTHING matches.

Be extra careful when selecting these, as many issues we see result from customers using the incorrect option when creating rules with more than one condition.

Per Page Load vs. Per Site Visit vs. Per Unique Visitor

per page load, site visit, unique visitor example

For the Actions section, we give you 3 different choices in regards to how often we should fire these rules. They are:

  • Per Site Visit - Should the conditions match correctly, this rule will execute only once per visit that this visitor makes to your site.
  • Per Unique Visitor - Should the conditions match correctly, this rule will only ever execute one time for any unique visitor to your site, regardless of how many visits they make to your site.
  • Per Page Load - Should the conditions match correctly, this rule will try to execute on every single page.

NOTE: Automation Rules cannot be used to expand the chat widget on mobile devices.