2020
8
Canada Omnichannel Retailing Market Report 2020
2021-01-23T03:01:31+00:00
OX988032
3695
132964
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Report
en_GB
“Consumers don’t think of their shopping journey as delineated – most are searching and purchasing across online and in-store channels with the use of mobile in-stores and services like click-and-collect…

Canada Omnichannel Retailing Market Report 2020

£ 3,695 (Excl.Tax)

Report Summary

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Canada Omnichannel Retailing market, including the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

The separation between online shopping channels and physical brick-and-mortar stores have been increasingly blurred over the last few years, but the sudden shift towards ecommerce from the COVID-19 pandemic has caused it to accelerate. However, consumers do not think about their shopping behaviours in these compartmentalized terms.

While physical shops still remain an important part of the shopping experience, consumers comfort and confidence with using online platforms has meant that cross channel retail is becoming increasingly fluid. 65% of Canadians are now searching and buying products across multiple channels.

Physical stores still play a vital role in the shopping experience, with consumers still considering customer service to be important. However, consumers prefer to check online for product information than asking a sales associate, indicating that customer service must be modernized to meet these new shopping habits.

Read on to discover more details or take a look at all of our Canada Retail market research.

Quickly understand

  • Search and purchase behaviours
  • Omnichannel shopping behaviours
  • Attitudes towards online and in-store shopping
  • Interest in emerging technology
  • How usage of tech innovations has changed due to COVID-19

Covered in this report

Brands: No Fills, Kraft, PC Express, Facebook, Sprinkles Cupcakes, Kiehl’s Canada, Rakuten, Walmart, Shiseido Japan.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Carol Wong-Li, a leading analyst in the Retail sector, her extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Consumers don’t think of their shopping journey as delineated – most are searching and purchasing across online and in-store channels with the use of mobile in-stores and services like click-and-collect further blurring the lines. Consumers just want their needs met no matter where they’re at. As such, marketers need to focus on leveraging channel strengths and integrating tools to deliver an efficient and seamlessness experience between touchpoints. At the end of the day, to a consumer, a brand experience is a brand experience. While the pandemic has accelerated multi-channel shopping behaviours, effort must be made by retailers to remind consumers of the benefits gained by using these tools to keep usage sticky as the current shopping experience is an abbreviated one and consumers are craving the past enjoyability of shopping. It is time for brands to modernize the concept of customer service to incorporate tech and omnichannel tools as a core part of a brand’s ability to meet consumer needs.

Carol Wong-Li
Associate Director Lifestyles & Leisure

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Key issues covered in this Report
        • Definition
        • Executive Summary 

            • Top takeaways
              • Market overview
                • Impact of COVID-19 on omnichannel shopping behaviours
                  • Figure 1: Short, medium and long-term impact of COVID-19 on omnichannel shopping behaviours
                • Opportunities
                  • Build upon the existing momentum in grocery to encourage online ordering of essential CPG categories
                    • The notion of customer service must evolve, omnichannel shopping tools need to feature as a key part of this
                      • Integrating more visual resources in retailer apps to connect with new immigrants
                        • Challenges
                          • Few are interested in tech for tech’s sake; proof of relevance is necessary
                            • Loyalty programs also need to evolve as they are less likely to hold sway in online channels
                            • The Market – Key Takeaways

                              • Consumers hold businesses to higher standards now
                                • Economic setbacks will have a cascading impact
                                  • Seniors have stepped into the spotlight in more than one way
                                  • Market Factors

                                    • A safety-first mindset dominates now and will impact expectations moving forward
                                      • Figure 2: COVID-19 exposure and life disruption concerns, March 3, 2020-December 20, 2020
                                    • Economic factors shape spending mindset
                                      • Canada’s labour recovery stalls amid rising cases
                                        • Figure 3: Canada’s unemployment rate, January-December 2020
                                        • Figure 4: Canada’s unemployment rate, January-October 2020
                                      • The transition of Gen Zs to the role of ‘primary household shopper’ will be delayed
                                        • Seniors have been in the spotlight, keep the light shining on them
                                          • Figure 5: Population aged 0-14 and over 65, 1995-2035*
                                          • Figure 6: Channels used for grocery shopping in the past month, 65+ vs overall, June 2020
                                        • Immigration is literally changing the face of the nation
                                          • Figure 7: Proportion of foreign-born population in Canada, 1981-2036
                                          • Figure 8: Self-identification of ethnicity, by generation, June 2020
                                        • The competition continues to heat up: international retailers keep coming
                                        • Competitive Strategies

                                            • Meeting consumer needs through the lens of the Technology Trend Driver
                                              • Tech platforms played a big role in meeting safety and convenience priorities
                                                • Figure 9: Frequency of online shopping, August 2020 vs April 2018
                                                • Figure 10: Shopping for groceries online and frequency of shopping online for groceries compared to a year ago, 2018 vs 2020, May 2018/June 2020
                                              • Meeting consumer needs through the lens of the Value Trend Driver
                                                • Creating value for consumers can be about fun and games
                                                  • Figure 11: No Frills Instagram post, September 2020
                                                • Looking ahead, bringing people together will come more into focus
                                                    • Figure 12: Verishop’s Shop Party: Wanna Go Shopping With Friends?, December 2020
                                                  • Meeting consumer needs through the lens of the Surroundings Trend Driver
                                                    • Localism matters
                                                        • Figure 13: Arlene Dickinson Instagram post, November 2020
                                                        • Figure 14: Kraft Peanut Butter Instagram post, May 2020
                                                    • The Consumer – Key Takeaways

                                                      • In-store buying still more commonly used, particularly for CPG categories
                                                        • Two thirds (65%) of Canadians are multichannel shoppers
                                                          • Customer service remains a differentiator for in-person shopping, but the definition must evolve
                                                            • Loyalty programs also need to evolve
                                                            • Search and Purchase Behaviours

                                                              • Store reliance is stronger for essential categories
                                                                • Figure 15: Purchase and search channels, August 2020
                                                              • Habits and practical considerations keep these CPG categories anchored towards physical stores
                                                                • Currently, habits are in flux, and convenience takes the spotlight
                                                                  • The time to act is now; the recommendation is to think in a more ‘generalist’ way
                                                                    • Consider building on the existing ecommerce momentum in grocery
                                                                        • Figure 16: PC Express – The Talk 30sec, May 2019
                                                                        • Figure 17: Kraft Mac & Cheese Instagram post, August 2020
                                                                        • Figure 18: Kraft Mac & Cheese For Breakfast, August 2020
                                                                      • Lean more on platforms as a way to provide an expert voice
                                                                      • Omnichannel Shopping Behaviours

                                                                        • Two thirds of Canadians are multichannel shoppers
                                                                          • Figure 19: Shopping method, August 2020
                                                                          • Figure 20: Shopping method, by generation, August 2020
                                                                        • The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of multichannel shopping behaviours
                                                                          • Figure 21: Short, medium and long-term impact of COVID-19 on omnichannel shopping behaviours
                                                                        • The line blurs with use of mobile phones in-store and offerings that directly mix online and physical stores (like click-and-collect)
                                                                          • Figure 22: Omnichannel behaviours, August 2020
                                                                          • Figure 23: Information sought when using mobile device in-store, August 2020
                                                                        • Strengthen the connection with new immigrants via more resources
                                                                          • Figure 24: Used mobile device while in-store and information sought when using mobile device in-store, new Canadians vs not new Canadians, August 2020
                                                                        • Embracing diversity will resonate with a broad audience, not just newcomers
                                                                          • Senior men are keen on click-and-collect – at least for now
                                                                            • A safety-first mindset drives increased online ordering for seniors
                                                                              • Figure 25: Purchase online and any type of pickup at physical store, men 65+ vs overall, August 2020
                                                                            • Enhancing the ‘collect’ part is key to keeping their interest in ordering products online sticky
                                                                              • Consider building more experiential elements on top of the concept of senior hours at the point of pickup
                                                                                  • Figure 26: Gardening with Edibles Facebook Live | Episode 4, November 2020
                                                                                  • Figure 27: National Parks Board Instagram post, September 2020
                                                                                • Consider tapping into the functional aspects of vending machines to increase product exposure
                                                                                  • Figure 28: Sprinkles Cupcakes Instagram post, December 2020
                                                                              • Attitudes towards Online and In-store Shopping

                                                                                • Shopping online vs in-store? It’s not a zero-sum game
                                                                                  • Figure 29: ‘I would rather shop online than in-store’ (% agree), by age, August 2020
                                                                                  • Figure 30: Factors most important for shopping in-store and online (any rank), August 2020
                                                                                • Customer service remains a differentiator for in-store shopping, though the concept must evolve with the times
                                                                                  • Consider adding senior-friendly in-store tools that provide inventory and product selection information
                                                                                    • Figure 31: Product selection as the factor most important for shopping in-store (any rank), by age, August 2020
                                                                                    • Figure 32: Use mobile device to shop or look for information while in-store, by age, August 2020
                                                                                  • Loyalty programs less likely to hold sway when shopping online
                                                                                    • Figure 33: Membership to loyalty program as a factors most important for shopping in-store and online (any rank), August 2020
                                                                                  • Loyalty programs are particularly low on the consideration list for Gen Zs
                                                                                    • Figure 34: Factors most important for shopping in-store and online (any rank), Gen Z vs overall, August 2020
                                                                                    • Figure 35: More than 50% of all purchases made in the past 12 months were done online, Gen Z vs overall, August 2020
                                                                                  • Logos are symbols of personal values for Gen Zs; solidifying link of loyalty programs with broader issues will matter
                                                                                      • Figure 36: Kiehl’s Canada Instagram post, April 2020
                                                                                    • Modernize the concept of ‘loyalty programs’ to provide offerings that align better with Gen Zs financial circumstances
                                                                                      • Figure 37: The Smartest Shopper’s Holiday Anthem | Rakuten Commercial, November 2020
                                                                                      • Figure 38: Rakuten Instagram post, December 2020
                                                                                      • Figure 39: Usage and interest in payment options, Gen Z vs overall, August 2020
                                                                                  • Interest in Omnichannel Tech

                                                                                    • Help consumers connect the dots: there’s interest in tools, but effort is needed to demonstrate relevance
                                                                                      • Most are keen for tools, though a small but not insignificant proportion aren’t so sure
                                                                                        • Figure 40: Usage and interest in discovery and informational omnichannel tools, August 2020
                                                                                      • Few are interested in tech for tech’s sake
                                                                                        • Figure 41: ‘I like getting hands-on with digital technology when shopping in physical stores’ (% agree), by age, August 2020
                                                                                      • Clearly position omnichannel tools as a core part of its service offering
                                                                                          • Figure 42: Walmart Instagram post, May 2020
                                                                                        • Appealing to women? A stronger link of omnichannel tools to experiences is necessary
                                                                                          • Women less keen on using tech for tech’s sake
                                                                                            • Figure 43: ‘I like getting hands-on with digital technology when shopping in physical stores’ (% agree), by age, August 2020
                                                                                            • Figure 44: Usage and interest in in-store specific discovery and navigation tools, by age and gender, August 2020
                                                                                          • Consider increasing link to experiential elements to win them over
                                                                                              • Figure 45: Shiseido Japan Instagram post, January 2021
                                                                                          • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                            • Data sources
                                                                                              • Consumer survey data
                                                                                                • Abbreviations
                                                                                                  • Terms

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