Special Report

Customer Service Hall of Fame

Which companies do Americans enjoy dealing with the most? Truth is, many of the names that top this annual list of best companies for customer service will not surprise you — they’ve been highly rated for years.

The highest-rated company, Amazon.com, once again tops the Customer Service Hall of Fame list this year — for the fifth consecutive time.

Click here to see the customer hall of fame

Click here to see the customer hall of shame

In collaboration with research survey group Zogby Analytics, 24/7 Wall St. polled 2,500 adults about the quality of customer service at 150 of America’s best-known companies in 15 industries, asking if that service was “excellent,” “good,” “fair” or “poor.”

Those with the highest percentages of “poor” rankings make up the Customer Service Hall of Shame; those with the highest “excellent” ratings make up our Customer Service Hall of Fame. (See how the survey was done and full results on the last page of this article.)

For many of the companies with the top-rated customer service, this is not their first time on the list. Eight of the 10 have made the Hall of Fame at least once before. Trader Joe’s, UPS and Apple have made the list at least five times since 2009.

The companies with the highest-rated customer satisfaction are spread across a range of industries. Companies like Trader Joe’s, Chick-fil-A and American Express are in industries that generally do not rate very highly for customer service.

While only two of the highly rated companies are in the hospitality industry, several other companies on the Customer Service Hall of Fame model their customer relations after that industry.

“Nobody knows more about being hospitable than the hospitality industry,” said Micah Solomon, customer service consultant. “When you are selling a rectangular room, you have to do everything you can to move far out of the commodity zone through service, so that is what great hospitality companies concentrate on.”

Solomon explained how other companies, such as Apple and Chick-fil-A, developed their customer service. “Instead of benchmarking the direct competition, they sent their managers to the Ritz-Carlton training program. And that is where they learned many things: how to greet customers, how to probe for and serve unexpressed wishes, and so forth.”

Although many of the best-rated customer service companies have little in common, they do, by and large, offer a good working environment. According to Shep Hyken, customer satisfaction expert, keeping employees happy is essential to customer satisfaction. “There’s a correlation between your list and another list: the best companies to work for.”

In fact, two companies on our list — Apple and Chick-fil-A — were among Glassdoor.com’s 2014 best companies to work for. Almost all of the companies in the Hall of Fame had above-average Glassdoor.com reviews.

This is 24/7 Wall St.’s Customer Service Hall of Fame

Sponsored: Tips for Investing

A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit.