|eCommerce is growing fast in Canada and retailers can still take advantage of this promising window of opportunity to increase their sales online. According to the eMarketer report “Canada Retail Ecommerce Forecast“, published in February 2011, Canada has an expected online sales growth of between 12% and 14% on average over the next four years.|
1. More and more Canadians from all demographics are shopping online
- According to Statistics Canada, Canadians used the Internet in 2009 to place orders for goods and services valued at $15.1 billion, up from $12.8 billion in 2007.
- In 2009, about 39% of Canadians aged 16 and over used the Internet to place more than 95 million orders. This was up from 32% and the 70 million orders placed in 2007, when the survey was last conducted.
- The increase resulted from more online shoppers and a higher volume of orders.
2. Online shopping in Canada is expected to continue to grow
- eMarketer estimates consumers in Canada spent $16.5 CAD billion ($16.0 billion) in 2010 on both domestic and foreign sites for products and services (including travel). By 2015, that amount will nearly double to $30.9 CAD billion ($30.0 billion).
3. Online sales continue to grow faster than brick-and-mortar sales.
- B2C eCommerce will enjoy a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.6% according to eMarketer’s projections, and US retailers are well aware of the opportunity and are moving fast.
4. Statistic Canada research shows online stores complement brick and mortar stores
- In 2009, 52% of Canadians went online to “window shop,” that is, to research or browse products, up from 43% in 2007.
- Among all window shoppers in 2009, 69% reported subsequently making a purchase directly from a store, up from 64% in 2007.
- The Internet complements traditional retail for certain categories such as consumer electronics (cameras and DVD players), appliances and furniture, as well as clothing, jewellery and accessories.
5. Big American retailers are successfully entering the online market in Canada even with higher shipping costs passed on to the customer
- Fuelled by the recession in the states more and more American companies are now successfully selling their products in Canada further providing evidence that there is room in the Canadian online market place for new retailers.
- Canadian retailers should act now to carve out their space in the online market space as more and more American retailers offer their products in Canada
6. Canadians would rather spend at Canadian retailers
- Despite the American competition, a study released this year by American Express, says that Canadians are not only looking for value in terms of price and quality of a product, but also value in the more personal sense, whether that includes considerations like eco-friendly products, ethically-produced items, or products manufactured or sold from within the country
7. Having an online store allows your brand to extend its reach
- We live in a wide country and it is impossible to reach Canada’s entire potential market through brick and mortar stores.
- Offering shipping anywhere in Canada allows Canadian customers anywhere to become acquainted with your brand and purchase your products.
8. eCommerce allows businesses to generate revenue through their website and measure online marketing ROI
- Without an eCommerce capable website it is difficult to measure whether your website and online marketing tactics are creating any type of financial return.
- Using marketing tactics to drive traffic to an eCommerce website allows you to measure which tactics are the most effective in generating online sales.