Bricks-and-mortar retailers can take heart in new data from a recent survey showing the majority of Canadian consumers plan to do their holiday shopping in-store.
The online survey, which was conducted last month by SAS Market Research and Survey Sampling International, asked 4,061 adult consumers from Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. about their holiday shopping habits.
The research found that 85 percent of Canadians surveyed favour shopping in-store for their holiday gifts, compared to 59 percent and 70 percent of their British and American counterparts, respectively.
“Despite global e-commerce trending upward, Canadians still prefer the in-store experience during the holidays,” confirmed Augustin Nguyen, an SAS Retail Solutions Specialist with SAS Canada.
However, he cautioned that in order to engage fully with this willing clientele, retailers needed to step up. For example, retailers should be equipped with the right volume of each product in stock during the holidays, as 51 percent of respondents said that if a brand or item they wanted to purchase was not available in-store, they would go to another store to find it.
Consumers Research Gifts Online
And while consumers said they preferred to make holiday purchases in-store, it did not stop most from saying they would still research gift ideas online. Twenty-nine per cent of respondents reported using online retailers’ product suggestions to find ideas for gifts to give, and more than half of shoppers said they’d purchase an item suggested by online retailers at least some of the time.
Finally, the research showed that Canadian shoppers are looking for more personalized communications across the board, with 66 percent of survey respondents saying they prefer personalized emails from companies they do business with, and 48 percent saying they like promotional emails and offers in their inbox from companies related to their lifestyle and/or interests.
Nguyen summarized the research, saying, “During the busiest shopping season, retailers should remember that consumers are only as loyal as you give them reason to be. To compete, retailers need to leverage the power of technology and high performance analytics to understand customers personally, delivering real-time deals and recommendations both online and in-store.”
For more information, contact SAS Canada.