Who wouldn’t love to have wealthy Canadians visiting our online business and spending without care? What it takes to attract them, let alone make them buy, may surprise you. They can be a very tricky target market to serve.
The biggest misconception about the wealthy is they love to spend copious amounts of money just because they can. In reality, many of these consumers have money because their purchases are value-driven. They can afford to pay for quality, but they still want a good price. They’re also happy to drop by WalMart if they can get a good deal on a quality product.
Ipsos Reid recently conducted a study of 175 wealthy Canadians with $1 million or more in assets. This Affluent Canadians Study reported some surprising results, including the primary factor in brand choice. “Good value for the price” was the clear winner in most product categories, from clothing to alcohol.
Top Factors in the Choice of Where Affluent Canadians Shop
- High quality products: 94% (39% said it’s very important, 55% said it’s somewhat important)
- Price/budget: 88% (43% said it’s very important, 45% said it’s somewhat important)
- Availability of staff: 88% (33% said it’s very important, 55% said it’s somewhat important)
- Brand selection: 87% (25% said it’s very important, 62% said it’s somewhat important)
- Store layout and organization: 70% (15% said it’s very important, 55% said it’s somewhat important)
- Proactive customer service: 65% (21% said it’s very important, 44% said it’s somewhat important)
- Unique products: 59% (10% said it’s very important, 49% said it’s somewhat important)
- Availability of trendy/hot labels: 21% (3% said it’s very important, 18% said it’s somewhat important)
- Availability of designer labels: 19% (5% said it’s very important, 14% said it’s somewhat important)
These factors can easily translate into the online shopping experience. Even the store layout/organization can be translated into an easily navigated website. Proactive customer service could be something like live online customer service (such as WPMU Dev Chat for WordPress).
Top Major Retailer Choice of Affluent Canadians
- Walmart (72%)
- The Bay (70%)
- Sears (54%)
Experience is a Huge Factor in Some Choices
- 82% of millionaires in Canada will choose a unique travel experience over the mundane.
- 69% would rather have a special experience than buy something.
- 47% will pay more for personalized or customized service.
Number three is a key factor to focus on to ensure you’re in with this crowd. It’s something everyone can accomplish with creativity, thought, and empathy.
“Experience” can also extend to ideals. Canadians with a lot of money on hand can base their buying choices on value, but also be willing to pay a little more for environmentally friendly products, organic products, items manufactured in Canada, etc.
I’ve always taught my Son if he is ever intimidated by someone’s status, he should remember one thing: everybody poops. 😉 So it should be with online or offline retail businesses. Wealthy Canadians still need everyday products and they still shop in the same stores as everyone else. Don’t be intimidated by stereotypical visions of how wealthy people live or shop. Get to know them and become what they need you to be.
Online businesses should keep in mind that anyone could be using that keyboard, and recognizable people often prefer the anonymity of online shopping. That means we have a great chance of accessing and engaging affluent Canadians from across the country. They have the money to demand value with an excellent shopping experience, and they aren’t as concerned about the cost of shipping if their other desires are met.
Targeting this market doesn’t necessarily mean stocking high-end luxury products, it means providing them with a luxurious experience. It is within the reach of any online business to provide that for them.
These are some of the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted between December 6th and 14th, 2012.
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