Customer service (also known as Client Service) is the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase.
According to Turban et al. (2002), “Customer service is a series of activities designed to enhance the level of customer satisfaction – that is, the feeling that a product or service has met the customer expectation.”
Its importance varies by product, industry and customer. As an example, an expert customer might require less pre-purchase service (i.e., advice) than a novice. In many cases, customer service is more important if the purchase relates to a “service” as opposed to a “product".
Customer service may be provided by a person (e.g., sales and service representative), or by automated means called self-service. Examples of self service are Internet sites.
Customer service is normally an integral part of a company’s customer value proposition.
Some have argued that the quality and level of customer service has decreased in recent years, and that this can be attributed to a lack of support or understanding at the executive and middle management levels of a corporation and/or a customer service policy.