5 Retailer Survival Tips For Holiday Shopping Season 2020

Retail | 2 minute read

The 2020 holiday shopping season will look very different from others in recent memory, thanks to COVID-19.

Think your retail call center is ready?

You’re probably not.

With travel at an all-time low and in-store shopping becoming less accessible, consumers will be exploring new ways to make their holiday purchases.

To stay ahead of the curve, retailers will need to stay alert to changing trends in their customers’ behaviour — but most importantly, they must prepare to support them when they run into challenges.

Here are some of our best tips for retailers when navigating holiday shopping season 2020:

1. Revisit your digital marketing strategy

Whether you’re new to the digital marketing game or not, it’s time to take another look at your online retail strategy. Due to the pandemic, online shopping has exploded in popularity. Criteo reports that 88% of US consumers surveyed planned to shop for gifts online and send them to their intended recipients. 

88% of US consumers surveyed by @Criteo plan to shop for gifts online and send them to their intended recipients. #Holidays2020 #OnlineShopping Click To Tweet

2. Introduce yourself to new consumers

The good news is, consumers are more open to buying from new brands than ever. According to Criteo, 33% of US survey respondents had purchased from small merchants they didn’t previously know about during the peak of the pandemic; 83% intend to continue purchasing from new stores they’ve found.


Invest in your business’ online presence with targeted social posts and ads — this will help you meet online demand while attracting new customers!

3. Manage expectations

With the anticipated e-commerce boom over the holidays, communication with your customers is about to become more important than ever. Increased demand will inevitably lead to challenges, including high order volumes and delays.

Salesforce predicts that potentially 700 million gifts and parcels are at risk of not arriving in time for the holidays, so preparing your contact center with the proper tools and communication resources will be key!

4. Prepare your contact centers

Your customers will be navigating this new holiday shopping experience right alongside your business. However, they will still expect your support agents to be on standby to address any problems. 

Expect your contact center to be inundated with calls and all other inquiries from technical issues to delayed deliveries. And be sure your team has all the resources they need to tackle this increased demand.


Anything from a significant website error to a PR issue can trigger overwhelming demand for your contact center. Getting a crisis plan and the proper tools in place will help your agents control messaging, prioritize customer inquiries, and manage high call volumes.

5. Invest in new technology

The pandemic has played a huge role in shifting businesses and their workforces into virtual and digital platforms. However, just because you made the pivot earlier this year doesn’t mean you’re ready for what the shopping season has to throw at you. Don’t stop exploring new tools and technology to improve your remote delivery.

Investing in solutions such as Voice Call-Backs and Web Call-Backs (formerly Visual IVR) will not only alleviate challenges during the holiday season but also benefit your agents and customers year-round!

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Illustration - a hand holds a smartphone. A call center agent is on the screen looking concerned. There are 5 symbols floating above his head as he looks worriedly at them - a credit card, a delivery truck, a gift box, price tags, and a megaphone
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Learn How to Prepare Your Call Center for Black Friday and Cyber Monday

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