Marketers have seen the customer service process evolve from an area that received only marginal attention into a primary functional area. In response to customers’ demands for responsive and reliable service, companies are investing heavily in innovative methods and processes to strengthen their service level.
For instance, one major trend in customer service is the move by companies to encourage customers to be involved in helping solve their own service issues. This can be seen in retail industries where self-service ranges from customers placing their own grocery products in shopping bags all the way to having customers do their own checkout including scanning products and making payment. Also, as we will soon discuss, customers needing information are being encouraged by companies to first undertake the effort themselves often by visiting special company-provided information areas (see Website and Phone Accessible Knowledge Base below). Only after they have explored these options are customers encouraged to contact customer service.