Customer Service vs Customer Care: The Main Differences
Think about the last time you had a truly excellent customer service experience.
Was the experience superior to all others because the agent handled your return efficiently, or because they were kind, knowledgeable, and went the extra mile to make you feel valued by the brand?
Words matter, but actions can be even more powerful when it comes to earning loyal customers who will stick by your business.
What is customer care and how is it different from customer service?
While customer service is the practice of assisting customers who use a brand’s products or services, customer care describes the actual treatment that customers receive when they interact with a brand.
Great customer care works to build an emotional connection or bond with customers by treating them with kindness, respect, and understanding.
Though many believe that customer care should be handled exclusively by the customer service department, it’s a practice that must be adopted by every team member and department to create a consistently positive experience across the board for customers.
Trust us, the numbers speak for themselves – according to a 2022 Shopify survey, 58% of consumers say excellent past customer service influenced their decision to buy.
Plus, there are numerous benefits your brand can see when your team goes above and beyond for customers, including:
- Reduced churn rates – When customers feel valued and trust a brand to do right by them, they’ll be more inclined to enroll in subscription or auto-renew services that reduce churn.
- Fostered trust – Greater trust in a brand that cares encourages customers to share personal information that can create a more personalized experience.
- Stronger brand reputation – When your brand’s customer care generates a positive experience, 67% of shoppers will consider leaving a positive review that potential customers may see on their path to purchase.
Our favorite examples of above-and-beyond customer care
To give you a better understanding of what good customer care looks like, we’ve compiled a few of our favorite examples of brands that went above and beyond to create a meaningful experience.
Mother’s Day and Father’s Day can bring up difficult memories and experiences for some people, which is why brands like Uncommon Goods (as well as Etsy, Kitsch, and Away, to name a few) offer customers the ability to opt out of marketing emails celebrating these holidays.
Though it’s a small gesture, it means a great deal to people who aren’t ready or willing to see mom and dad-related marketing emails flood their inbox.
More than 11 million customers trust Chewy to deliver safe and effective products for their pets.
When one of these loyal customers wrote in to Chewy’s customer service to cancel a pet food subscription after her dog passed away, the brand sent her a card and flowers to express their condolences.
The kind, thoughtful gesture not only showed this pet owner that she is more than just a number to them but also that there are human beings behind the brand who truly care about customers.
StitchFix makes it easy for busy folks to discover personalized pieces in styles they love without ever entering a store.
Because shopping can be a stressful experience for some, StitchFix has updated and improved its processes and policies over the years. Today, there are styles for everyone (we’re talking men, women, kids, maternity, big & tall) available in a wide range of sizes from 1,000+ top brands like Kate Spade, Bonobos, and Calvin Klein.
Plus, in case not every piece is a hit, StitchFix offers free shipping, exchanges, and returns so that shoppers can easily swap sizes or return for alternative styles without the hassle of additional costs.
Tips for providing excellent customer care in your business
To make an impact on your brand’s customer interactions, we’re sharing a few of our top tips for providing thoughtful customer care that will go beyond a standard customer service interaction and help elevate your overall customer experience.
1. Ask for helpful feedback
Surveys and questionnaires aren’t just for tracking your top e-commerce metrics – when used appropriately, feedback opportunities for customers will give your brand insight into where you can update or improve processes to create a better experience.
Directly asking customers for feedback (and being transparent about what it’s being used for) allows them to join the conversation and truly become an important part of your brand.
2. Take accountability
Hiccups and mistakes are a part of every business, but when they happen, don’t wait for your customers to reach out to your brand for help.
By proactively addressing unfortunate situations like order delays or service outages and taking full ownership of the issue at hand, you’ll be able to maintain trust with your customers and earn their respect while protecting ticket queues from unnecessary spikes due to lack of communication.
3. Empower agents to add a personal touch
The stories we shared above from brands like Uncommon Goods and Chewy happened because of customer service agents who went above and beyond to make their customers feel valued.
To allow similar positive experiences to occur in your brand, provide mock interactions for your agents where they can test their skills so that they feel empowered to add a personal touch with real-life customers when it feels right.
However, be sure to keep all interactions appropriate – you never want to run the risk of getting a bit too personal and making a customer feel uncomfortable.
Give your customers the attention they deserve by outsourcing customer care service to TalentPop
Providing thoughtful and proactive customer care can be the difference between earning loyal customers or disappointing them entirely.
At TalentPop, we train our agents not only in top e-commerce tools and software but also to go the extra mile for customers and elevate their experience with your brand.
Offering above-and-beyond customer care often means making judgment calls that foster an emotional connection, which we empower our agents to do through intensive, thorough customer service care training.
To improve your brand’s reputation this year and create better connections with your customers, consider outsourcing customer service to TalentPop.
You can start by scheduling a call with our team today to learn how we can match your brand with dedicated agents in as little as 3 weeks.