Customer Experience Excellence report 2021

Customer Experience Excellence report 2021

Though COVID-19 has paused in-person shopping, Spain’s customers stay loyal to the physical outlet, and the experience of purchasing in-person. But online buying behaviors are here to stay – COVID-19 has forced businesses to embrace new technology and offer the personalization of a physical purchasing experience online.

Brands across the region have been forced to pivot to a seamlessly blended experience that can imitate in-store shopping while prioritizing safety and security. This has meant vast digital disruption across the board, with some truly remarkable experiences being launched to meet customer needs.

The stand-out pillars of customer experience across 2021 have been Personalization, Integrity and Time and Effort. Integrity is a key pillar here as customers have increased their demands on brands to be socially conscious as well as meeting their service needs. It matters more than ever how brands act, rather than what products they sell – values are what drives true advocacy. As ever, personalized, streamlined experiences are key drivers of satisfaction and loyalty.

Retail has seen a boost in performance during 2021. Many non-food retail companies have managed to transform their value proposition to have less dependence on physical space, developing new services to guide customers to their purchase, and designing limited physical spaces with security at their core.

Fragrance and personal care retailer Douglas has opted for omnichannel by launching services such as "Click & Collect" to minimize contact while still providing a physical shopping experience. To facilitate a more streamlined service that prioritizes the health and safety of customers, the chain has also signed an exclusive agreement with home delivery company Glovo, to help reduce delivery times and optimize experience.

Taking advantage of the exercise trend embraced by many consumers during lockdowns, Nike is the second most popular brand in CX rankings this year. Its success can be attributed to its swift ability to pivot to online channels and streamline its in-person offering. The company has focused on continuous market assessment to stay ahead of customers and meet their needs proactively, adjusting its sales channels to create a coherent, connected, and thoroughly modern shopping experience. This includes exciting new technology that allows customers to play interactive games in their latest sneaker lines.

The brand has also found success in its customizable shoe designs, collecting data about what customers want both aesthetically and from their experience. Nike’s ability to do all of this, while remaining a brand customers value for its integrity, has made it a big hitter throughout 2021.

Coming in third in the rankings, El Corte Inglés has managed to use data-driven customer insights to focus on adding value for brands and customers alike. It has implemented a loyalty program to offer exclusive discounts, gifts and personalized recommendations based on customer profiles, which has boosted its ratings as a provider of personalized services. Ultimately, the brand has focused on improving its app – as a key customer touchpoint, the app is intuitive, simple to use and customer friendly.

Stand out pillars for El Corte Inglés are Personalization, Time and Effort and Integrity, showcasing a pattern across well-performing brands in the COVID era. One customer said of the brand: "I have been shopping online for more than 20 years and am very satisfied by the quantity of products El Corte Inglés offer. There’s excellent quality and the option to finance them without interest, and recently I have seen a great improvement in the ease of online purchase, and the speed in the delivery of purchases. In addition, they always offer me products that fit with what I am looking for."

What’s next for customer experience as we move forward? Measurement may set aside the strong from the weak. Many companies that lead customer experience include the customer vision as a key part of their strategy, but keep working to measure the key levers that build an excellent experience – and what that means in business terms.

In line with this, the future of POS will likely be driven by customer expectations for a seamless, personalized experience across online and offline channels. POS may no longer be a single physical location, as new technologies such as cameras, sensors, and artificial intelligence create opportunities for meaningful customer experiences anywhere. Add to this the evolution of ad and marketing tech, and companies could see themselves playing catch-up with early adopters.

Companies should face up to the challenge of developing their capabilities – not only technologically, but across their marketing teams by upskilling their employees to maximize the benefits.

With reduced marketing budgets and greater caution from companies to return to pre-pandemic spending levels, growth can come from the ability to design more contextual and emotional customer experiences, through the correct orchestration of employees, technologies, data, digital capabilities associated with the customer function.

Angel Fernández Madueño
Senior Manager CX Strategy & Digital Customer
KPMG in Spain


Leading CX brands in Spain


Leading online retailer




El Corte Inglés




Apple Store




Leading online delivery service