You can restrict new tickets and replies to occur just from the portal. There are a few steps to make this happen as, generally, SmarterTrack is designed for new tickets and replies to be made via email.
1. First, you'll probably want ticket replies to be sent from a no-reply@ type of address versus from a support@ or other address. This is to let the person know that they can't really just email that address. If you want to keep using a support@ type address, we'd advise you to put a disclaimer on messages sent from that account that the account isn't monitored. Many companies do this for email addresses that aren't used for day-to-day communication. That said, you will probably want to keep the SMTP account(s) for the Department(s) so that agents can reply to tickets and so those replies are sent via email.
2. For the Department(s) you want to do this for, you'll want to make sure that there are no POP accounts added for the Department(s). Do this from the Email settings of SmarterTrack. On the POP tab, delete any POP account set up for the Department.
3. Next, staying within Email, click on the Templates tab. Here, you can edit 2 templated system messages that are used when a specific Department doesn't allow emails:
- Email Rejected Due to Policy
- Email Rejected Due to New Ticket Requirements
For both of these messages, you'll want to modify the messages to say something like "To start a new ticket, or to reply to an existing ticket, please visit the Tickets area of our Support Portal", then link them to your portal. You can, of course, say that however you like and totally customize that message as you see fit.
4. Next, you'll want to change some permissions settings for the Department and the Brand.
- For the Department, edit the Department and click the Tickets tab. Change the role permissions for "New Tickets in Portal" to whatever role you want. Generally, setting it to All Users means that anyone can start a ticket from the portal without having to log in. Any other role selection would require a login. That said, requiring a login means they can log in to the Portal and see the tickets their user has submitted, so requiring a role and a registration may be what you want to do. (NOTE: if this IS what you decided to do, you may want to change your "Email Rejected" messages to let people know they'll want to log in and create an account in order to submit tickets.)
- For your Brand, edit the Brand and click the Permissions tab. Change the "View Ticket Requires" role to the same thing you set for the Department.
5. Finally, and Staying on your Brand, click the Portal Options tab. Make sure you've selected "Enable new user registration" so that users are able to register accounts for your portal.
Doing this, customers will have to submit tickets from your portal, and then reply to those tickets from the portal. New tickets, and any ticket replies, won't be accepted via email, and you will have notified customers what they need to do to start, or reply, to tickets. You'll allow them to register for an account so that they can see all tickets they have as well as the ticket status for each.
I hope that answers your question. Please let us know if you run into any issues.