Customer success and customer support aren’t the same thing, but they do work together. Customer success should be thought of as proactive and customer support reactive. Success is planned; support is given after an event.

Let’s look at what customer success entails:


Instead of waiting for a problem, customer success defines potential roadblocks in advance in hopes of avoiding problems.

Customer Goal Oriented

Customer success wants to know what the customer’s goals are so that it can help the customer achieve the goals they desire.

Customer Value

Customer success wants the customer to get value out of the product or service, and helps give advice about what the customer needs.

Lifetime Value

Customer success realizes that each customer has a potential lifetime value, and helps create systems to bring the customer through the entire funnel.

Generates Revenue

Customer success is a revenue generator due to the fact that the entire process of customer success is to ensure that the customer understands how to use the product, know why they want to use the product, and who to buy it from.

Team Focused

Usually customer success is handled by an entire team consisting of marketing, sales, and even customer service and support.

Now let’s look at what customer support entails:


Customer support doesn’t even come into being until something happens that causes the customer to seek out help from customer support.

Conflict Resolution

Customer support works on ways to tone down any conflict, whether in person, on the phone, or via social media.

Customer Satisfaction

Customer support wants the customer to be satisfied after something has already dissatisfied them.

Short-Term Value

Customer support has to solve each problem as they come in the short term, so the value that is created is not as large as with customer success.

Costs Money

You have to pay a customer support team even though revenue is not typically generated by their actions.

Singularly Focused

Customer support only worries about customer support and nothing else. This is why it’s not hard to send out of house to a service.

Defining what customer success means versus customer service is important so that you can do the right thing to drive the right goal toward success. When you can think of customer success as proactive and customer service as reactive, you can tie it all together pretty easily.

Place more focus on customer success and you’ll find that you need less customer support over time, because the customer understands the product and services due to the education that customer success provided to them.

The Difference between Customer Success and Customer Support and How They Work Together
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