Guide

E-Commerce in Canada: A guide for Swiss companies

The Canadian E-Commerce sector has seen exceptional growth in recent years. The guide produced by the Swiss Business Hub Canada provides valuable information on the market development and key guidelines for setting up an online operation.

E-commerce in Canada

Accelerated by the rising number of internet connections, E-Commerce retailing in Canada has experienced strong growth, increasing at an annualized rate of 12.8% over the five years to 2019.

Opportunities for Swiss companies to conquer the Canadian market

E-Commerce sales grew by 7.9% in 2019 alone as more Canadians, persuaded by increasingly easy-to-use and secure websites, shifted their shopping online. The exceptional rate of growth in this industry is aided in part by the increasing internet traffic volume (e.g. number of fixed broadband and mobile connections), disposable income and reduced unemployment.

While the industry attracted many new entrants, Amazon Canada has gained a dominant market share. In 2013, the company launched its popular Amazon Prime service in Canada and has expanded in subsequent years to now dominate the industry. The membership service provides free two-day shipping, encouraging consumers to use Amazon over other E-Commerce sites.

Promising E-Commerce future in Canada

Over the next four years, to 2024, revenue growth was initially forecast to slow down, but remain strong. However, with the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic, online purchasing is expected to continue its inexorable rise.

Thirty-two per cent of Canadian online shoppers say that they planned to buy more online in the coming year, and this was before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns that forced Canadians to largely move their shopping experience from bricks and mortar to online.

Report: Key guidelines and best practice case study on e-commerce in Canada

The guide on E-Commerce in Canada, which can be downloaded below, gives valuable information to Swiss firms that have an interest in the Canadian E-Commerce market in the form of some key guidelines for setting up an online operation. These guidelines will cover the following key topics: market overview; logistics (shipping and distribution) aspects of selling online to Canadian customers; and customs regulations and taxes for online sales and Canada. A case study looking at the online experience of Nespresso in Canada concludes this report.

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