What is customer service?
Customer service is “The provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase” (Wikipedia). It’s also defined as “All interactions between a customer and a product provider at the time of sale, and thereafter”
Types of customer service Traditional
Traditional customer service provides a single point of contact for customers to gain assistance in troubleshooting, get answers to questions, and solve known problems. Customer service is delivered through the traditional methods of face-to-face, email, and phone.
- In Person
- Live Chat
- Contact us forms
Social media is the modern form of customer service. Companies with a presence on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook are used to communicate with customers who have opinions to share or to ask questions about a product or service.
Self-service is a type of service driven by self-help technologies which allows customers to locate information independent of the involvement of a direct service employee. Self-service could be existing information or information provided by fellow customers. Some of the most common types of self-service are FAQ, How-tos, and Knowledge Base.
- How-to Articles
- Videos or Screencasts
- Knowledge Base
- Customer Forums
- User Communities
Customer Service Software
Customer service software is a model for managing a company’s interactions with current and future customers. It involves using technology to help direct customers to agents. Many organizations have recently moved into the cloud-based market and software as a service (SaaS or on-demand software). SaaS is a delivery model in which software is hosted on the web. Salesforce.com was the first company to provide enterprise applications through a web browser, and has maintained that position.
Customer Service Trends
Salesforce.com has expanded into the “social enterprise arena” through acquisitions such as Desk.com, one of the leading service and support solutions for small and growing support teams. The all-in-one customer service application offers a range of customer services such as traditional (email, phone, chat), social (Twitter, Facebook) and self-service (Support Center, Knowledge Base).