A whopping 89% of Canadian SmartPhone users have purchased something online in the past year, according to new research from Leger and SAS Institute.  Merchants offering a personalized experience enjoy a much higher rate of sales and engagement.  In fact, more than half of SmartPhone users regularly click on personalized ad’s compared to a third who click on online ads in general.

Canadians use their SmartPhone to purchase: Canadian SmartPhone Shopping Statistics

  1. Apps 45%
  2. Music 27%
  3. Ringtones 21%
  4. From a company website 19%
  5. Groupon or ‘team buy’ 15%
  6. Other 14%
  7. Coffee 6%
  8. Gas 2%

What is a Personalized Digital Shopping Experience?

A personalized digital shopping experience is based on what we know about the shopper, such as location, browsing or purchase history.  We’ve reached a point where Canadians expect this type of personalization, or at least show a preference for it.

“They expect a story tailored specially for them, a level of trust and transparency with the brands they do business with and, most importantly, a great experience,” chief marketing officer for Adobe, Ann Lewnes, commented recently. “Brands delivering anything less will ultimately be ignored.”

Offering a personalized digital shopping experience may include:

  • Product or service recommendations based on past behaviour.  7 out of 10 Canadian mobile shoppers find it helpful.
  • Sending personalized promotions to shoppers while they’re shopping in your offline store.  Just under half of Canadian mobile shoppers said they would be more inclined to return to a store offering this type of personalized experience.
  • Sending promotion and product notices to mobile shoppers while they are out shopping in the area.  58% of SmartPhone users are interested in receiving them (especially those under the age of 44), with Atlantic Canada leading the shopping pack at 69%.
  • Sending mobile promotions that recommend items similar to what the shopper is looking for.  71% of Canadians surveyed said they’d make a purchase if they received this type of promotion, and 40% said they’d buy both items.
  • Providing information about products or services isn’t directly personalized, but 82% of SmartPhone shoppers in Canada said they’d find it helpful.

Other statistics support these findings.  Research from 84444 Canada, a mobile marketing company, found that 58% of Canadians want to receive mobile promotions and 38% would be inclined to buy more with the service.

Comment on Canadians Internet BusinessAre you providing a personalized experience to Canadians who purchase with their mobile phones?  Please tell us about it in the comments below.

SAS Institute Inc.
Fox Business News Personalized Online Ads Engage Consumers
Hasen, Jeff. Mobilized Marketing: How to Drive Sales, Engagement, and Loyalty Through Mobile Devices.
Original photo: H. Lundgaard

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Mobile Advertising Jumps by Over 75% in Canada {Statistics}


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Melody McKinnon
Digital Business & Marketing Manager at Online Business Canada | Website

Melody McKinnon is an internet entrepreneur with 25 years of experience in a wide range of online business models, backed by a formal business education and enhanced by training and mentorship. She has owned or managed both educational and ecommerce websites. Her book, 7 Recession Proof Online Businesses to Start From Home, is available from all major ebook retailers.

Melody has worked with many businesses & brands in a multitude of capacities. She can often be found on CanadianDigitalMedia.com, CanadiansInternet.com, CanadianFamily.net, and AllNaturalPetCare.com, as well as other quality digital publications. Her content has earned reference links from highly-respected websites, magazines and university textbooks.

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Jaylynne AB

There’s a fine line between helpful advertising and spam. I’m sure nobody wants to be bombarded but if its helping its ok.


I’m trying to learn everything I can about mobile business but like denise says it’s hard to keep up.


Holy cow! smartphone adoption is happening so fast most of us are watching it fly by without grabbing a piece of the pie.

Laura Mag

I’m surprised anyone is so open to receiving ads….gobsmacked actually. How long can that hold true? Wouldn’t people get so many they’d start to hate them?


I didn’t realize how many opportunities would come with smartphone payments until I hired an agency. Text messaging can become the next product line strategy where people make spontaneous purchases, for one thing. It’s all quite brilliant & so are you for spotting the trend in Canada.