We kick off our 7th year of customer service technology coverage with our 1Q2011 Customer Service Product and Company Update. While the economy continues to have a tough ride, and other software sectors have been up and down, the market for customer service solutions has grown steadily. That growth continues. 1Q2011 was a good quarter for customer service.
Three suppliers earned our Customers.com Customer Service Stars for the 1st quarter through excellent performance across customer growth, financial performance, products, and company activity—Attensity Group, Kana, and Salesforce.com. Kana has reached a run rate of $100 million and Salesforce.com reached a run rate of over $2 billion!
Social-Service Is the Hot Trend. We call it social-service because it’s about customers using social networks to get answers to their questions and solutions to their problems by monitoring and searching social media. The term social-service fits naturally with the terms self-service and assisted-service to categorize the channels that customers use to get answers and solutions. This quarter, Astute Solutions, Attensity Group, Consona, eGain, Kana, RightNow, and Salesforce.com introduced products and product versions and/or announced jointly developed solutions that include support for social-service. From what we’ve read and heard about 2Q2011, the trend will continue.
For those of you considering investments in these products and companies, or if you’re interested in a “state of the market,” this report includes our current take on these 10 suppliers and products that are on our “watch list” (because they are the solutions customers ask us about):
- Astute Solutions ePowerCenter and RealDialog
- Attensity Group E-Service, Voice of Customer Suite, Social Media Suite
- Consona Corporation Consona CRM Knowledge Driven Support
- eGain Service
- InQuira 8
- IntelliResponse Answer Suite
- KANA 10 Service Experience Management
- Moxie Software Customer Spaces Knowledgebase (formerly nGenera CIM nGen KB)
- RightNow CX
- Salesforce.com Service Cloud
Software as a Service Deployment Models. Note that ALL of these players offer some flavor of SaaS deployment. Some, like IntelliResponse, RightNow, and Salesforce.com, have offered (only) SaaS/cloud computing deployment for years. Some of these players began offering SaaS solutions only last year.
Customer Service Supplier and Product Update
A Good 1Q2011 for Customer Service
By Mitchell I. Kramer, Sr. VP and Sr. Consultant, Patricia Seybold Group, June 9, 2011