Good, Old-Fashioned Online Customer Service

I decided to go to the “way back machine” and look at a (very old) report that I wrote in July 2002 called “Mastering Online Customer Experience.” Here’s an excerpt from the report:

Don’t Deploy Technology — Solve Problems. While companies hope that online service will reduce costs, they mistakenly scrutinize individual interactions instead of studying the collection of contacts required to solve a customer’s problem… Firms must monitor interactions from the customer’s point of view — from the inception to resolution of an issue.

Doesn’t that sound like something you could say today?!?

Here’s another piece of the report that’s still relevant; a  graphic that depicts how individuals make decisions about the channels they use for an interaction:

Channel Choices
Customers Explicitly Select Service Channels

The bottom line: Good advice ages well.

Written by 

I am an experience management transformist, helping organizations improve business results by engaging the hearts and minds of their customers, employees, and partners. My "job" is Head of the Qualtrics XM Institute. The Institute is still being established, but our goal is to help organizations around the world thrive by mastering Experience Management (XM). As part of this focus, I examine strategy, culture, interaction design, customer service, branding and leadership practices. And, as many people know, I love to speak about these topics in almost any forum. Prior to joining Qualtrics, I was managing partner of Temkin Group (leading CX research, advisory, and training firm), co-founder and chair of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (, and a VP at Forrester Research. I'm a fanatical student of business, so this blog provides an outlet for sharing insights from my ongoing educational journey. Check out my LinkedIn profile:

2 thoughts on “Good, Old-Fashioned Online Customer Service”

  1. Good, “old fashion” customer service isn’t going anywhere. The vehicle in which the service is attained will (and has…drastically!) changed. At the end of the day, communication, regardless of the medium, defines the customer experience. Patrick, I agree, online is a channel 🙂

    Be well,


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