A business service is an activity that assists a business yet does not deliver a tangible commodity. Some examples of business services include a courier service, accounting services and a marketing firm that consults companies on how to run a successful advertising campaign. While these services may not produce a tangible product, they are vital to the operations of a company and can help increase profitability.
Business-to-business services (B2B) are the transactions between trade organizations that do not involve consumers or government agencies. For example, car manufacturing companies perform B2B transactions with wholesalers to buy tires and rubber hoses, which are needed to build cars. A broader category of B2B services includes shipping, transportation and logistics.
The term “service” can be used to describe many activities in the business world, but there are five characteristics that distinguish business services from other types of services. In a service, production and consumption occur simultaneously, so a customer’s demands and expectations can change the service that is provided.
A successful business service should provide value to the customer, and it should be available when the customer needs it. This requires a rigorous process that begins with creating the service concept and ends with measuring performance and operational metrics against goals and benchmarks. Then, the service must be augmented to meet the customer’s evolving needs. Finally, the service must be reviewed regularly to ensure that it is still adding value and to determine when it’s time to retire it.