Special Report

Customer Service Hall of Fame

4. Marriott
>Pct. ratings “excellent”:

According to the company’s website, the first of Marriott’s core values is to put people first: “Take care of associates and they will take care of the customers.” Survey results indicate that the company takes this motto seriously.

Marriott scored well for employee satisfaction on Glassdoor.com with 2,000 company employees rating it an average of 3.7 out of 5. Additionally, 88% of survey respondents approved of CEO Arne Sorenson. For Marriott, employee satisfaction has likely translated to customer satisfaction.

This year, 39.2% of survey respondents rated their customer experience with Marriott as excellent. Though this year’s scores were roughly the same as last year’s when 39.9% of respondents rated the customer service as excellent, the company ranked third in last year’s Customer Service Hall of Fame compared to fourth this year.

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3. Apple
>Pct. ratings “excellent”:

With 40% of customers surveyed reporting an excellent experience with the company, Apple is getting close to the top spot in the customer service Hall of Fame. The company’s customer satisfaction rating improved by nearly 5 percentage points from last year when it ranked 10th with 35.7% of respondents rating Apple’s customer service as excellent.

Having a decent product often influences how customers perceive their experience with a particular company, and Apple products consistently rank at or near the top of Consumer Reports lists for overall quality. Apple’s continuously growing sales also suggest a satisfied customer base. Apple is expected to report $49 billion in sales in the last quarter, a 30% increase from the same quarter last year.

Furthermore, based on over 5,000 Apple employee reviews on Glassdoor.com, Apple received a score of 4 out of 5 for employee satisfaction, an exceptionally high score. According to Kopalle, customer satisfaction is a direct result of “employees who are motivated, who take ownership, who take pride in what they do.” Kopalle added that Apple’s customer service employees fit this description nicely.

2. Chick-fil-A
>Pct. ratings “excellent”:

For the second year in a row, Chick-fil-A is the only fast-food chain to make the Customer Service Hall of Fame. And at the rate its customer service is improving it might take the top spot within a year or two. Of those surveyed, 47% rated the company’s customer service as excellent, nearly 10 percentage points higher than last year’s 38.6% of respondents.
An overall positive customer experience is good for business — and Chick-fil-A is proof. The company boasts on its website 47 consecutive years of sales growth, culminating with nearly $6 billion in sales in 2014.

Customer service at this fast-food chicken restaurant was superior to every other restaurant included in our survey. Most other restaurants, including Pizza Hut and Wendy’s, had between 20% to 30% of customers rating their experience as excellent.

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1. Amazon.com
>Pct. ratings “excellent”:

For the sixth consecutive year, Amazon.com has topped the customer service Hall of Fame. Less than 2% of survey respondents reported a poor experience, and 59.4% reported excellent customer service, by far the highest percentage among all companies reviewed.

The Internet retail behemoth makes a considerable effort to satisfy its customers — and its self-described “customer obsession” may partly explain the high level of customer satisfaction. Kopalle noted Amazon.com’s anticipatory shipping feature is exemplary of the company’s innovation in customer satisfaction. The service, which the company recently obtained a patent for, would use order histories to predict what a customer will need, and then ships to nearby warehouses and hubs before they even purchase the item.

Even though sales increased 25% in its fiscal 2014, Amazon.com reported a net loss of $241 million. The drop was due in part to poor sales of the FirePhone, which did not fare well on the market and cost the company tens of millions of dollars. Investors did not seem overly concerned, however, as Amazon.com’s stock price continued to increase at the time of the earnings report. In fact, the company has earned a reputation for prioritizing innovation and customer satisfaction over profits. Amazon.com claims that it saves its customers up to $2 billion in the holiday season alone with the free-shipping component of Prime membership.

Click here to see the Customer Service Hall of Shame

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