Though Canadians are some of the biggest Internet users in the world, new research suggests the country is failing to translate such use into significant economic activity.
A recent study by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and commissioned by Google Inc. found Canada’s Internet economy lags behind many G20 countries, putting it in the middle of the pack in terms of contributions to its GDP. Canada’s total Internet economy contributed to three per cent of the country’s GDP in 2010, compared to the G20 average of 4.1 per cent. Online retail, meanwhile, accounted for just 3.4 per cent of Canada’s total retail spending that year.
By 2016, the study finds, Canada will still lag, with its Internet economy contributing to 3.6 per cent of its GDP, compared to a predicted G20 average of 5.3 per cent.
These statistics suggest Canadians are still more interested in shopping at bricks-and-mortar stores than online. Still, if Canada doesn’t actively pursue e-tailing, we risk missed business opportunities and economic implications, as Sherry Cooper, Executive Vice President and Chief Economist at BMO Financial Group, said while speaking at an event in February.
Check out the video above for more insight from Sherry Cooper on the importance of developing e-tailing in Canada.