Canadians Prefer Online Shopping To Retail Shopping

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By Vijaykumar Meti | January 24, 2013 7:48 PM EST

Canadians appear to spend more time online be it to manage their investments or shop, state two reports.

A recent report from the NPD Group, a leading market research firm, shows how Canada's super shoppers, who have made purchases in more than six categories, represent one-third of online shoppers across the country. Canadians in the age group of 25 and 44 years with an average annual income of $88,000 constitute the group.

"The 25-44 year old demographic is a sweet spot for internet retailers who have come to reap the rewards of a generation that is truly at home online," says Rick Brown, director of analytic solutions at the NPD Group. "The online super buyers that exist in this age bracket are drawn to how easy it is to research and compare the products they're interested in buying, but their dexterity in hunting for discounts means that they expect to find better deals on the web."

The report also shows a surprising fact that men tend to spend more online than women. Men shopped for an average of $371 last year in comparison to women who were seen spending $266 toward online shopping.

Men seem to prefer online shopping over manual shopping as they actually find better shopping deals online and are able to compare popular products of their choice in real-time. On the other hand, women seem to shop online for products that are not easily available in retail stores across Canada. Further, they seem to enjoy the convenience of online shopping, which is more hassle-free than manual shopping.

"Online shopping is particularly a thrill for women who have become fond of brands that are not available in Canada," Brown observes, adding: "Local retailers can combat this by making their websites as enticing as possible with attractive deals, exclusive offers, wide product varieties and a design that facilitates the browsing and check-out experiences."

Apart from saving money and finding products that are not easily accessible across the country, online shopping allows Canadians to gain access to a greater selection of items.

A similar study on women online investors across three countries by Talbot Boggs (TD), the Toronto-based business communications professional has found that the number of women in the Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. who manage investments online is increasing as they are doing it successfully.

While more than twice as many women in the U.S. and the U.K., than in Canada manage investments online, "women investors are one of our fastest growing customer segments," says Rowena Chan, vice president of TD Waterhouse Discount Brokerage.

The majority of women in all three countries said they are quite confident of managing their financial portfolios and nearly 10 percent admitted to being nervous.

"We want women online investors to feel empowered to manage their investments online, no matter their level of financial and investing knowledge," Chan avers. "There are resources to help you get started and tools and support available online and on the phone 24 hours a day seven days a week. You are investing for yourself but you don't have to do it alone - there's always resources and information available."

The report also states, how women have stuck with their portfolio despite market volatility and are confident of their long-term plan that is capable of enduring the fluctuation.

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