How Do You Define Great Customer Service?

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Filed under - Definitions,

What is the definition of Great Customer Service and how does it compare with Good Customer Service?

This is one of the areas where a dictionary definition does not help you.

Dictionary definition

Wikipedia defines customer service as “the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase”. In my dictionary, ‘Great’ is defined as “a quantity considerably above average”.

A practical definition from the professionals

I was at a conference and I posed a question of the 80 or so customer service professionals in the audience – “How do you define Great Customer Service?”

The examples provided gave a fascinating insight into the difference between Great and Good Customer Service.

The 3 themes that seemed to emerge were:

  • “Great customer service is all about exceeding customer expectations.”
  • “It doesn’t matter who you speak to in in organisation you get a consistently good experience or problem resolution.”
  • “The best service is no service.”

I have coupled this with some insight from a number of previous workshops that I have held and have created this handy table that highlights the differences:

Good Customer Service Great Customer Service
Meets expectations Exceeds expectations
Self-service Proactive differentiation
One size fits all Personalised service
Easily forgotten Creates a lasting impression
80% of calls answered in
20 seconds
95% of calls answered in 15 seconds
Efficient Fast
Customer satisfaction Customer delight
Communication Rapport
Low customer effort Easy to deal with
Customer owns the problem Employee owns the problem
May require several inbound contacts First contact resolution
Customer selects communication channel Able to easily switch between communication channels


With thanks to Jonty Pearce at Call Centre Helper

Author: Megan Jones

Published On: 3rd Jun 2016 - Last modified: 7th Apr 2022
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