Think Like An Ecommerce Leader
Insights to lead the pack
Ecommerce has changed dramatically, impacting shopping preferences and behaviour. Canada Post surveyed 5,000 Canadians to find out how.
A new normal
Canadian ecommerce sales have doubled since 2019, but growth is starting to level out. With this, a new normal is setting in.
In 2022, the average Canadian online shopper placed 26.4 ecommerce orders – up 60% since 2019.
The new values shopper
Today’s online shoppers are more reliant on digital and expect more from retailers. They shop their values and seek out brands with a shared sense of purpose.
Shoppers are more reliant on digital
Buy more items online now
Used to go to malls, but no longer do
Avoid going in-store to shop
Use curbside pickup for items available in store
Shoppers are more purpose driven
Before they buy, Canadian shoppers “often” or “almost always” consider whether retailers:
Treat their employees well
Protect the environment
Carry sustainably or ethically sourced products
Are genuinely committed to doing the right thing
Are you ready for values-driven shopping?
Master the ecommerce purchase journey
Canadian online shoppers have expectations for brands at each step of the online purchase journey. These 5 insights will help you prepare your ecommerce business for the new normal:
1. Master awareness:
Get customers to talk about you.
of Canadian shoppers often or always consult customer ratings and reviews when looking to learn about new brands and products.
2. Master discovery:
Enable product discovery for your business on search engines.
of Canadian shoppers began their most recent online purchase journey on a search engine.
3. Master consideration:
Offer free shipping.
of Canadian online shoppers say free shipping is either very or extremely influential when choosing a retailer.
4. Master conversion:
Offer a variety of payment options.
of Canadian shoppers are very or extremely influenced to purchase when multiple payment options are provided.
5. Master retention:
Keep shoppers coming back with a stand-out fulfillment experience.
of Canadian online shoppers have avoided repeat purchases from brands that did a poor job managing their expectations around delivery timing.
Build loyalty with shared values
Brand loyalty isn’t dead – but it has changed. Over the past year, nearly 1 in 5 Canadians have abandoned a brand they were previously loyal to.
Why shoppers are switching brands
Many shoppers are leaving brands that missed the mark on delivery (34%), customer service (25%) and returns (19%).
3 key reasons Canadians were dissatisfied with their customer experience:
Poor shipping and/or delivery experience
Poor customer service
Poor returns experience
A third (33%) of shoppers are leaving brands to support more local businesses, and 1-in-5 (19%) are doing so to support businesses with environmentally friendly practices.
Canadians are looking for better value alignment:
Want to support more local businesses
Want to support more environmentally friendly businesses
Want to support more minority-owned businesses
Want to support businesses that treat their employees well
Shared values build brand loyalty
Establishing shared values with customers fosters emotional loyalty. Brands that act with purpose can gain a competitive edge in the market.
Consumers with strong emotional connections to brands will visit their stores 32% more often and spend 46% more money than those without emotional bonds.1
Discover the 7 shopper segments of the new normal
We identified 7 shopper segments based on Canadian online shoppers’ mindsets towards shopping and their financial outlook.
1. Free Spirits
Free Spirits are high earners who view money as something to be enjoyed and are shopping more than usual lately. They purchase across more categories than other segments and value a great delivery experience.
2. High Rollers
High Rollers are the least cautious about how they spend their money. They make the most online purchases and are the least motivated by price, despite having below-average household incomes.
3. Established Affluents
Established Affluents are shopping less than usual lately because they have everything they need. When they do spend, they seek out quality items that last and look for brands that share their values.
Skeptics are pessimistic about their future finances and have been spending less than usual lately. They’re less certain than other segments about who they are and what they want from brands.
5. Mindful Savers
Mindful Savers are prudent about their spending and have been buying less lately in order to be ready for the unexpected. When they do shop, they carefully research their options before clicking “buy.”
6. Constrained Strugglers
Constrained Strugglers make the fewest online purchases and are the most pessimistic about their financial outlook. They’re extremely price-sensitive and cautious about how they spend their money.
Traditionalists are settled in life and aren’t making changes to their shopping patterns. They know what works for them – and they’re sticking to it.
Thrive in the new normal
Canadians are embracing new behaviours and values that are shaping their shopping choices. To thrive in today’s ecommerce, you need to adapt to meet their needs.
What do today’s shoppers want?
5,000 Canadians weighed in on our survey. Our findings will help you refine and redefine your approach to attracting, converting and retaining Canadian shoppers.
In this new report, we explore:
- How Canadian online shoppers have changed
- The 7 shopper segments of the new normal
- How to master your ecommerce purchase journey
- How brand loyalty is earned today
Ready to thrive in the new normal?Download the report
Explore helpful resources
Put our ecommerce insights to work for your business. Talk to a Canada Post representative today to leverage our ecommerce expertise.Contact an expert
About the research
All statistics cited above were sourced from Phase 5’s Canadian Online Shopper Study (May 2022), unless otherwise noted. This study is based on a survey of more than 5,000 Canadians who shop online, and it was conducted in French and English. Respondents were representative of the Canadian population on key demographic variables, including age, gender and region.
1 Davey, Neil. Emotional vs transactional loyalty: Is it more important to win customer hearts or minds?, 15 April 2021.