Customer Service Supplier and Product Update 1Q2011

A Good 1Q2011 for Customer Service

June 9, 2011

1Q2011 was a good quarter in customer service. Most of our suppliers had good to very good quarters. Three of our suppliers—Attensity Group, KANA, and—had excellent quarters and earned Customer Service Stars. First quarters are historically seasonally slow quarters across all types of software suppliers. Not so in this first quarter. At worst, we characterized the quarters as quiet or decent for three of our suppliers. We have no issues going forward; no warning flags have been raised. Given the early news, 2Q2011 is shaping up as a very good quarter. 2011 is going to be a very good year.


Attensity Group, KANA, and earned Customer Service Stars for 1Q2011. Their performance was excellent and balanced across customer growth, financial performance, products, and company activity.

1Q2011 was good quarter for customer service suppliers. Customer growth was mostly good for the quarter. Three of the ten suppliers we monitor (Astute Solutions, Attensity Group, Consona, eGain, InQuira, IntelliResponse, Kana, Moxie Software, RightNow, improved in both new and repeat customers. Four others improved in customer acquisition but were flat or down in repeat customers. Three suppliers were down in both new and repeat customers.

Mostly good financial performance resulted. Significantly, KANA has reached a run rate of $100 million and reached a run rate of over $2 billion!

1Q2011 was a big product quarter for seven of our ten suppliers. Four introduced new products. Five introduced new product versions.

Company activity was moderate in the quarter. Two suppliers made significant acquisitions. Three signed new partners. KANA established and expanded two international facilities.

Social-service is the hottest trend in customer service. 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.

Customer Growth for 1Q2011
(Click on image to enlarge.)

© 2011 Patricia Seybold Group Inc.

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With this report, we begin our seventh year of quarterly updates on the suppliers and products in customer service. These updates focus on factors that are important in the evaluation, comparison, and selection of customer service products. More specifically, we examine the following factors in our quarterly updates:

  • Customer acquisition and overall customer growth
  • Product activity
  • Company activity including mergers and acquisitions, partnerships and alliances, and hiring
  • Company financial performance

In our evaluations of quarterly performance, we want to see continuing customer growth, ongoing improvements in products, steady company viability, and good financial performance. We don’t want to change our evaluations based on a quarter’s news, but we do want to raise a red flag when that news deviates from a positive, multi-quarter trend, or to wave a green flag when that news is particularly good. When significant product and company events occur, we identify and highlight those that could have an impact on customer service products and technologies, suppliers, and the market landscape.

Customer Service Suppliers and Products

Here are the 10 customer service suppliers and products that we cover:

  • 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
  • Service Cloud


Overall customer service performance was good for the quarter...

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