Description

“Omnichannel retailing is the natural result of a market that has widely adopted ecommerce, but refuses to abandon physical stores.
The future of omnichannel retailing will be driven by stakeholders that innovate to separate themselves from the pack, creating an experience that’s better than either in-store or online can be on their own.”

– Scott Stewart, Associate Director, Lifestyles & Retail

This Report will look at the following areas:

  • Proportion of purchases made in-store and online
  • Comparison of benefits of in-store versus online shopping
  • Category analysis of where certain products are typically purchased
  • Which retailers Canadians shop at in-person and online
  • How consumers use digital tools to prepare for in-store visits
  • How delivery and pickup methods can impact consumer behaviours.

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

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

    • Top takeaways
    • Market overview
      • Figure 1: Category outlook: omnichannel retailing, 2023-28
    • Opportunities
    • Canadians are comfortable with digital tech, opening opportunities for retailers
    • Omnichannel shopping leverages the advantages of in-store and online shopping
    • Digital tech innovations offer limitless possibilities
    • Challenges
    • Omnichannel strategies are must-have within a highly competitive market
    • Purchase channels vary by category, making it difficult to have a universal strategy
  3. The Market – By the Numbers

    • Retail sales are up, supported by rising prices
      • Figure 2: Retail trade sales, 2019-2022
      • Figure 3: Retail ecommerce sales, 2019-2022
  4. Market Factors

    • Economic challenges for the consumer market overall
    • Some experts predict a Canadian recession in 2023
    • Consumers are financially stable, but are growing more concerned
      • Figure 4: Top concerns over the next six months (NET: any top-three concern), 2022
    • Attitudes towards COVID-19 set the stage for omnichannel success
      • Figure 5: Concern about exposure to COVID-19, 2020-2022
    • The labour market makes omnichannel retail mutually beneficial
      • Figure 6: Retail job vacancies, Q1 2021-Q3 2022
    • Canadians are equipped for omnichannel habits
    • Changes in how Canadians live and work will impact omnichannel demand
    • Populations are shifting to higher density areas and homes
      • Figure 7: Distribution of occupied private dwellings by type, 2011-2021
    • Remote work has shifted to hybrid in the past year
      • Figure 8: Working location, 2021 and 2022
  5. Competitive Strategies

    • Amazon’s US strategies make it a sleeping giant in Canada
      • Figure 9: Amazon Fresh Instagram post, December 2022
    • Canadian Tire’s mobile app illustrates how retailers can leverage tech
    • Shein reverses the omnichannel shopping experience
      • Figure 10: Shein Japan Instagram post, November 2022
    • IKEA’s shift to omnichannel is reflective of the market
  6. Omnichannel Retailing – Fast Facts

  7. In-store and Online Shopping Channels

    • Most Canadians shop in-store and online
      • Figure 11: How purchases have been made in the past 12 months, 2022
    • Younger consumers make more of their purchases online
      • Figure 12: How purchases have been made in the past 12 months, by age, 2022
    • Age skews have a ripple effect on other demographic groups
      • Figure 13: Past 12 month purchases mostly online, some in-store, by race, parental status and social media usage, 2022
  8. Benefits of In-store and Online Shopping

    • Experience is in-store shopping’s key differentiator
      • Figure 14: Most significant benefits of purchasing in-store rather than online, 2022
      • Figure 15: Shoes Try On Augmented Reality (AR) Filter – Snapchat, August 2020
    • Trial drives the unique experience, but shopping in-store can also be enjoyable
      • Figure 16: Most significant benefits of purchasing in-store rather than online: experience, 2022
    • There are some potential cost benefits to shopping in-store
      • Figure 17: Most significant benefits of purchasing in-store rather than online: experience, by living location, 2022
    • In some ways, in-store shopping is more convenient than online shopping
    • Online shopping is all about convenience
      • Figure 18: Most significant benefits of purchasing online rather than in-store, 2022
    • Consumer groups perceive convenience differently
      • Figure 19: Most significant benefits of purchasing online rather than in-store: convenience, by age, 2022
      • Figure 20: Most significant benefits of purchasing online rather than in-store: convenience, moms vs dads, 2022
    • Online shopping provides some cost savings, but they are secondary to convenience
  9. Category Analysis of Shopping Channels

    • Some categories are still very dependent on in-store shopping
      • Figure 21: Category analysis: I’ve done all of my purchasing in-store, among past 12 month purchasers, 2022
    • Older consumers drive in-store shopping
      • Figure 22: Category analysis: I’ve done all of my purchasing in-store, among past 12 month purchasers, by age, 2022
    • Online-only shopping is a reality for some categories
      • Figure 23: Category analysis: I’ve done all of my purchasing online, among past 12 month purchasers, 2022
    • Remote workers are more dependent on online shopping
      • Figure 24: Category analysis: I’ve done all of my purchasing online, among past 12 month purchasers, by work location, 2022
    • Younger consumers are not prepared to shop entirely online
      • Figure 25: Category analysis: I’ve done all of my purchasing online, among past 12 month purchasers, by age, 2022
    • Offering the ‘best of both worlds’
    • Clothing stakeholders have the opportunity to capitalize on omnichannel
      • Figure 26: Category analysis: mixed channel purchases, among past 12 month purchasers, 2022
      • Figure 27: How To Make a True Fit Profile 2022, June 2022
    • Learnings for other categories
  10. Retailer Usage

    • Most Canadians shop in-store at Walmart, online at Amazon
      • Figure 28: Retailers purchased from in-store in the past 12 months, 2022
      • Figure 29: Retailers purchased from online in the past 12 months, 2022
    • Cultural differences in retailer usage highlight omnichannel opportunities
      • Figure 30: Retailers purchased from in-store in the past 12 months, overall vs Chinese and South Asian Canadians, 2022
      • Figure 31: Retailers purchased from online in the past 12 months, overall vs Chinese and South Asian Canadians, 2022
    • Walmart and Best Buy have shoppers who use both channels
      • Figure 32: Distribution of in-store and online purchases made in the past 12 months, by retailers, 2022
    • Walmart exemplifies how younger shoppers want both in-store and online shopping
      • Figure 33: Walmart: distribution of in-store and online purchases made in the past 12 months, by age, 2022
    • Omnichannel shopping is about flexibility
      • Figure 34: Walmart: distribution of in-store and online purchases made in the past 12 months, by work location, 2022
    • It is possible, but challenging, to succeed with just one retail channel
    • Winners Merchants International uses value to offset lack of ecommerce
      • Figure 35: Retailers purchased from in-store in the past 12 months, 2022
      • Figure 36: Purchased from Winners, HomeSense and/or Marshalls in-store in the past 12 months, by age, 2022
    • Amazon dominates ecommerce, but needs to be exceptional to do so
      • Figure 37: Retailers purchased from online in the past 12 months, 2022
    • Men are more likely than women to shop on eBay
      • Figure 38: Retailers purchased from online in the past 12 months, men vs women, 2022
  11. Omnichannel Shopping Behaviours

    • Consumers go online before shopping in-store
    • Pre-visit research skews to men and younger consumers
      • Figure 39: Pre-visit research behaviours (% agree), men vs women, 2022
      • Figure 40: Pre-visit research behaviours (% agree), by age, 2022
    • Omnichannel shopping behaviours are the future of retail
      • Figure 41: Pre-visit research behaviours (% agree), by shopping channels, 2022
    • Half of grocery shoppers have a shopping list on their phone
    • Most young consumers grocery shop with a phone
      • Figure 42: “When I grocery shop, I have a shopping list on my phone” (% agree), by age and parental status, 2022
  12. Online Purchase Delivery and Pickup

    • In-store pickup will remain relevant moving forward
      • Figure 43: Ways of receiving online purchases, 2021 vs 2022
    • In-store pickup has strong momentum
      • Figure 44: Ways of receiving online purchases: unscheduled delivery vs in-store pickup, by generation, 2022
    • Online returns remain a weakness for that channel
    • Younger shoppers are the most likely to want easier returns
      • Figure 45: “I’d purchase more products online if it was easier to return them” (% agree), by age, 2022
      • Figure 46: “I’d purchase more products online if it was easier to return them” (% agree), by race and parental status, 2022
    • Remote workers illustrate how online returns can modernize ecommerce
      • Figure 47: “I’d purchase more products online if it was easier to return them” (% agree), by work location, 2022
    • Assessing current online return policies
  13. Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

    • Data sources
    • Consumer survey data
    • Consumer qualitative research
    • Mintel Trend Drivers
    • Abbreviations and terms
    • Abbreviations
    • Terms

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