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Customer service is the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase. According to Turban et al. (2002),[1] "Customer service is a series of activities designed to enhance the level of customer satisfaction that is, the feeling that a product or service has met the customer expectation." Its importance varies by products, industry and customer; defective or broken merchandise can be exchanged, often only with a receipt and within a specified time frame. Retail stores often have a desk or counter devoted to dealing with returns, exchanges and complaints, or will perform related functions at the point of sale; the perceived success of such interactions being dependent on employees "who can adjust themselves to the personality of the guest,"[2] according to Micah Solomon From the point of view of an overall sales process engineering effort, customer service plays an important role in an organization's ability to generate income and revenue.[3] From that perspective, customer service should be included as part of an overall approach to systematic improvement. A customer service experience can change the entire perception a customer has of the organization. Some have argued[4] that the quality and level of customer service has decreased in recent years, and that this can be attributed to a lack of support or understanding at the executive and middle management levels of a corporation and/or a customer service policy. To address this argument, many organizations have employed a variety of methods to improve their customer satisfaction levels, and other KPIs. Customer service may be provided by a person (e.g., sales and service representative), or by automated means. Examples of automated means are Internet sites. An advantage with automated means is an increased ability to provide service 24-hours a day, which can, at least, be a complement to customer service by persons.[6] Another example of automated customer service is by touch-tone phone, which usually involves a main menu, and the use of the keypad as options (i.e. "Press 1 for English, Press 2 for Spanish", etc.) However, in the Internet era, a challenge has been to maintain and/or enhance the personal experience while making use of the efficiencies of online commerce. Writing in Fast Company, entrepreneur and customer systems innovator Micah Solomon has made the point that "Online customers are literally invisible to you (and you to them), so it's easy to shortchange them emotionally. But this lack of visual and tactile presence makes it even more crucial to create a sense of personal, human-to-human connection in the online arena."[7] Automated means can be based entirely on self service, but may also be based on service by more or less means of artificial intelligence. An automated online assistant with avatar providing automated customer service on a web page. Examples of customer service by artificial means are automated online assistants that can be seen as avatars on websites.[6] It can avail for enterprises to reduce their operating and training cost.[6] These are driven by chatterbots, and a major underlying technology to such systems is natural language processing.[