CX Lessons Learned From the 2020 Holiday Season

A look back at what went down during peak shopping season

As we attempt to kick off 2021 with fresh eyes and a new sense of resilience, the last thing we may want to do is look in the rearview mirror. 2020, who? Don’t know her.

But the truth of the matter is, 2020 likely changed the CX industry for good, and there may be nothing more ill-advised than to ignore the lessons learned during the past year. The twists and turns were endless, but the holiday season presented a whole new set of challenges. What is already a stressful time of year, was now uncharted territory.

Despite the pandemic, NRF reported that retail sales during 2020’s November-December holiday season grew at an unexpectedly high 8.3 percent over the same period in 2019 to $789.4 billion. This growth was even more dramatic for online and other non-store sales, with an increase of 23.9% year-over-year. With this increased activity comes an increased need for customer assistance throughout the buyer journey. In fact, 68% of respondents said they saw a greater increase in inquiries during the 2020 holiday season versus the 2019 holiday season.

In an effort to understand more thoroughly how retail and e-commerce CX organizations were impacted during the 2020 holiday season, and how the customer service landscape has shifted compared to the previous year, Kustomer went out and surveyed over 100 CX professionals. In this report you’ll find:

  • The extraordinary challenges that CX teams faced during the 2020 holiday season
  • How retailers are tackling the 2021 returns season
  • What long-term lessons can be learned to ensure success in the new normal
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