Roughly 39% of Canadians aged 16 and older shopped online in 2009, buying more than $15 billion worth of goods and services, Statistics Canada found. That’s up from the 32% who spent $12.8 billion in 2007.
But in a sign that Canadians are becoming more cost-conscious, average transaction prices actually fell to $158 in 2009 from $183 in 2007, the last time the study was conducted.
“We suspect there’s a few factors involved in that. One is the economic downturn,” StatsCan’s Larry McKeown told QMI Agency Monday.
In 2009, overall retail sales fell 2.5% and most the decline was in discretionary items.
McKeown also said young people who have grown up with the Internet are just entering their income earning years and are more comfortable using the web to purchase inexpensive everyday items.
Ninety-nine cent music sales on iTunes is a good example, he said. Roughly 26% of online shoppers reported buying music online last year, up from 22% in 2007, and that number is likely higher among younger shoppers
In general, younger people are more inclined to shop online. The percentage of people between the ages of 16 and 34 who shop online jumped from 39% to 51%.
In a bonus for retailers, though, online shopping doesn’t seem to be coming entirely at the expense of bricks and mortar outlets.
“The Internet complements traditional retail for certain categories such as consumer electronics, appliances and furniture, as well as clothing, jewellery and accessories,” StatsCan said.
Via Toronto Sun