Median Video and Audio is now live! Add full video and audio to your support experience with no invite, download, or install. Learn more

Customer Success vs Customer Service - What's the difference?

Customer Success vs Customer Service - What's the difference?

When it comes to providing excellent customer experiences, both customer success and customer service play vital roles. However, there are distinct differences between the two. In this article, we will explore these differences and explain why both are equally important for business success.

Customer Service

Customer service refers to the support and assistance provided to customers before, during, and after a purchase. It focuses on resolving customer issues and addressing their concerns promptly and efficiently. Customer service teams are responsible for answering questions, handling complaints, processing returns, and ensuring customer satisfaction.

Statistics show that customer service has a significant impact on business revenue. According to a study conducted by Oracle, 86% of customers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience. Additionally, 82% of customers have stopped doing business with a company due to a poor customer service experience.

Customer Success

Customer success, on the other hand, goes beyond basic support and aims to ensure that customers achieve their desired outcomes by effectively utilizing the product or service they have purchased. It involves working closely with customers to understand their goals, challenges, and needs, and offering tailored solutions to help them succeed.

Achieving customer success results in higher customer satisfaction, increased loyalty, and greater revenue for businesses. According to Gainsight, companies that prioritize customer success experience up to 30% higher annual growth rates compared to their competitors.

The Key Differences

While customer service and customer success are closely related, the key differences lie in their objectives and focus areas:


- Customer service: The primary objective of customer service is to resolve customer issues and ensure satisfaction.

- Customer success: The primary objective of customer success is to help customers achieve their desired outcomes and drive their long-term success.


- Customer service: Customer service mainly focuses on reactive support, addressing customer concerns and resolving problems that have already occurred.

- Customer success: Customer success focuses on proactive support, anticipating customer needs, and working with them to prevent issues before they arise.


- Customer service: The relationship between customers and service representatives is transactional and primarily centered around issue resolution.

- Customer success: The relationship between customers and success teams is consultative and collaborative, where both parties work together to achieve predefined goals.


- Customer service: Customer service is typically engaged when customers have questions or encounter problems during their interaction with a company.

- Customer success: Customer success starts from the point of purchase and continues throughout the customer's lifecycle, ensuring they achieve ongoing value and meet their goals.

Ultimately, while customer service focuses on resolving issues, customer success aims to prevent them. Both are integral to providing exceptional customer experiences and building long-term customer relationships.

In conclusion

Customer service and customer success are not mutually exclusive but complementary. Businesses need to invest in both to maximize customer satisfaction and drive long-term success. By prioritizing customer service, companies can address immediate needs and ensure customer loyalty. Simultaneously, by implementing effective customer success strategies, businesses can foster customer growth, reduce churn, and increase revenue.

Remember, exceptional customer experiences are the foundation of a thriving business in today's competitive landscape.

Totally Free

Median allows you to see what your customer see in real time. No invite, download, or install required.
Create Account

Customer Success

Hey, Spencer here 👋🏼
I hope you found this article helpful! If you have more questions or wanna chat with someone on our team feel free to snag a time here. Cheers!