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What is Customer Care?

Customer Care describes post-sale support, service, and efforts for building emotional connections across every channel to improve buyer experiences.

In today's competitive markets, the responsibility of a business towards its customers extends far beyond the conclusion of a sale. Post-sale customer care plays a pivotal role in ensuring customer satisfaction and loyalty long after the purchase is finalized. By providing comprehensive support, addressing concerns, and fostering meaningful interpersonal connections, businesses can enhance their competitive edge and establish long-term relationships with the people who drive their success.
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Customer care encompasses a range of elements tailored to meet the needs of different industries and business sizes. While the primary objective is to enhance the customer experience, it is essential to consider operational costs when implementing these elements. Effective customer care centers prioritize cost-efficient methods, such as self-service, for handling simple, everyday queries. This approach allows customer care agents to allocate their time and resources effectively towards addressing priority issues while maximizing productivity.

In other words, although every approach to customer care can be an effective solution for enhancing customer satisfaction, they don’t all require the same levels of effort or investment. Here are the most common elements of customer care, ordered from least effort/human interaction to highest:

Self-service portals

Self-service portals empower customers to manage their accounts, access information, and perform various tasks independently, without requiring direct assistance from customer care agents. These portals are typically accessible through a company's website or mobile app and provide functionalities such as checking balances, making payments, updating personal details, or tracking orders. Self-service portals offer convenience, inspire customers to take control of their interactions, and reduce the volume of routine inquiries handled by customer care agents.

FAQs and help pages

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and help pages are an essential element of customer care, serving as a primary resource for addressing common queries and providing self-help solutions at scale. By compiling a comprehensive set of FAQs and developing informative help pages, businesses can proactively address potentially hundreds of thousands of customer inquiries at once. Well-designed FAQs and help pages must be easily accessible on the company's website and intuitively structured so that customers can quickly find the information they need.


Chatbots are automated self-service tools that use artificial intelligence (AI) to interact with customers and provide instant responses to their queries. Chatbots can be integrated into websites, messaging apps, or voice-based platforms. They are trained to recognize and address frequently asked questions and perform simple tasks, such as providing product information, guiding users through processes, or troubleshooting common issues. Chatbots offer 24/7 availability, swift response times, and cost-effective scalability for businesses.

User forum

User forums serve as online platforms where customers can engage in peer-to-peer interactions and share experiences, solutions, and advice. These forums provide a space for customers to discuss common issues, exchange knowledge, and support each other. By leveraging the collective wisdom of the user community, businesses can foster a sense of belonging, encourage customer advocacy, and offload support burdens from their own customer care teams.

Live chat

ive chat customer care enables customers to engage in real-time text-based conversations with agents through a dedicated platform on a company's website or mobile app. Customers can seek support, ask questions, and receive immediate responses. Live chat platforms often support multitasking, enabling agents to handle multiple chat sessions simultaneously. This element of customer care provides convenience, quick assistance, and documented conversations that can be shared with customers and agents for reference.


Telephone-based customer care involves customers contacting a dedicated contact center where they are connected with customer care agents who can resolve their issues over the phone. Effective customer care teams optimize this channel by providing self-service options, such as interactive voice response (IVR) systems, to address common inquiries and guide customers to relevant information. This approach minimizes the need for agent intervention in routine matters, allowing them to focus on complex or high-priority issues that require human assistance.


In-store customer care refers to when customers visit a physical branch or store to access a specific service or seek assistance. For example, customers might go to a bank branch to discuss mortgage renewal, visit a technology store for product demonstrations, or seek guidance on selecting the right clothing item in a retail outlet. In-store customer care allows face-to-face interactions, fostering a personal connection and enabling immediate support.


An on-site visit (also called field service) involves having a staff member or contractor visit a customer at their home, place of business, or other on-site location to provide a service. Generally, field service involves performing needed maintenance or repairs to products purchased from the company, but may also include product delivery, installation, and consultation.

As previously addressed, customer care plays a vital role in ensuring the long-term success of a business. It goes beyond the initial transaction and focuses on fostering ongoing relationships with customers. More specifically, proper post-sale customer care results in the following:

Improved customer trust and loyalty

Effective customer care after the sale helps build trust and confidence in the brand. When customers experience prompt and satisfactory support, it reassures them that the company values their business and is committed to their satisfaction. By addressing their concerns, resolving issues, and providing personalized assistance, businesses can foster a sense of loyalty and encourage customers to become advocates for the brand. Satisfied customers are more likely to repurchase, recommend the brand to others, and remain loyal over the long term.

Enhanced brand reputation

Post-sale customer care has a direct impact on the brand's reputation. When customers have positive experiences with customer care, they are more likely to share their experiences with others, both offline and online. This word-of-mouth marketing can significantly enhance the brand's reputation, attract new customers, and differentiate it from competitors. On the other hand, negative experiences can quickly spread through social media and online reviews, damaging the brand's image. By prioritizing post-sale customer care, businesses can proactively manage their reputation and create a positive perception in the market.

Reduced churn

Post-sale customer care plays a crucial role in reducing churn. By providing excellent support and addressing customer needs promptly, businesses can prevent dissatisfaction and customer attrition. When customers encounter issues and receive efficient resolutions, they are more likely to remain loyal and continue their relationship with the brand. Effective post-sale customer care can identify and address potential pain points, provide proactive guidance, and offer incentives or solutions to retain customers.

While “customer care” and “customer satisfaction” both describe essential elements of a positive customer experience, the two terms are not exactly synonymous.

Customer experience

Customer experience encompasses the entire customer journey, from the moment they first interact with a brand to well after a purchase has been made. It involves all of the touchpoints and interactions a customer has with a company, both online and offline. This includes everything from browsing a website to visiting a physical store, engaging with customer service representatives, and using the product or service. Customer experience takes a fully holistic view of the customer's interactions and aims to create a positive and seamless journey that exceeds their expectations from start to finish.

Customer care

By comparison, customer care specifically focuses on the relationship-building efforts that occur after a purchase has been finalized—the point in the customer's journey where a representative or employee can help create emotional connections between he brand and the customer by addressing any issues, concerns, or questions the customer may have, or simply by following up to ensure that the customer is satisfied with their purchase.

Customer care vs. customer service

Additionally, although post-sale service is a major aspect of customer care, it should not be confused with “customer care.” Customer service refers specifically to the assistance or advice provided to customers to ensure that they get the greatest benefit out of the product or service. Simply put, customer service is about solving problems, while customer care is about establishing satisfying customer relationships.
Customer Care vs Customer Experience vs Customer Service

Effective customer care is a vital component of building strong customer relationships and fostering brand loyalty. However, it also comes with its own set of challenges:

Budgeting for increased expenses

Companies need to allocate sufficient resources to support their customer care efforts. This includes investing in the latest tools and technologies that enable efficient and effective customer support. Ongoing training programs for customer care representatives are also essential to ensure they have the necessary skills to address customer needs. Unfortunately, these investments can strain the budget, and companies must carefully balance their financial resources to provide optimal customer care.

Maintaining consistency across different channels

With the proliferation of communication channels, maintaining consistency across all touchpoints can be extremely difficult. Inconsistencies in information and responses across channels can lead to confusion and frustration for customers. It is essential for companies to implement robust systems and processes to ensure that accurate and relevant information is available across all channels, reducing the need for customers to escalate their concerns to different platforms.

Meeting high customer expectations

Today's buyers have understandably high expectations when it comes to customer care. They expect fast response times, personalized service, and quick resolutions to their issues. Meeting these expectations requires efficient and well-trained customer care teams, streamlined processes, and effective communication channels. Companies must constantly strive to exceed customer expectations by anticipating their needs and providing proactive solutions.

Managing high volume of requests

Companies with a large customer base often face the challenge of managing a high volume of customer requests. This can lead to long wait times, delayed responses, and an overall frustrating customer experience. To address this challenge, organizations must employ scalable customer care solutions—such as intelligent automation and self-service options—to handle a larger volume of requests without compromising on quality.

Providing fast, quality services

Time is of the essence in customer care, and customers expect swift resolutions to their issues. Companies must prioritize speed without compromising on the quality of service. This requires well-trained and dedicated customer care representatives who can handle customer inquiries efficiently. Additionally, having a robust knowledge base, up-to-date information, and effective escalation procedures can enable quick and accurate solutions to customer problems.

Companies must navigate these challenges to ensure that they meet customer expectations and deliver a seamless and satisfying experience. Luckily, ServiceNow provides the answer.

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The customer experience doesn’t conclude with the end of the sale; ServiceNow, a leading provider of digital workflow solutions, recognizes this fact and empowers your business with the resources and support you need to continue building positive buyer relationships for years to come. 

ServiceNow Customer Service Management (CSM) solution, gives you everything you need to streamline your customer care operations while reducing your costs, enhancing customer satisfaction and improving your bottom line. From integrating people and data into one, centralized system, to enabling self-service across channels, automating issue resolution, and supporting your customer care agents with real-time information and intelligent guidance, CSM not only only improves the customer experience but also reduces case volumes, lowers costs, and increases customer satisfaction. 
ServiceNow also extends this top-quality support and convenience into field-service operations, with Field Service Management (FSM). FMS gives on-sight agents tools to optimize your business’ approach to collaboration, scheduling, dispatching, and resource management. The integration of field service with customer service on a single platform further enhances efficiency and enables proactive service delivery and unmatched capacity for improved customer care.

Demo ServiceNow today, and see how the right tools can help you build customer relationships that last a lifetime.

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