In 2013, “Google Canada reported that back to school shoppers did approximately one third of their shopping online in August, spending an average of $163,” reports Melody McKinnon on CanadiansInternet.com, “79% of all Canadian shoppers searched online for back-to-school items and 89% of mobile users did so. The top search terms were laptops, phone plans, school supplies, and back-to-school.”
As we pointed out in our last blog, there is still plenty of time for Canadian retailers to enjoy the sales success that is commonplace during the back-to-school season. However, it’s important to note that if you are offering your customer base the ability to make purchases online, you’re bound to increase your sales numbers that much more.
It’s no secret that Canadians love to shop online. And that is especially true for teenagers and young adults. “University and college students expect to spend an average of $1,121 on back-to-school purchases this year,” McKinnon revealed in her 2014 report, “Purchases include a broader range of items since many of these older students are living on their own.”
So what are online back-to-school sales numbers like today?
“Back-to-school ecommerce sales (are) predicted to increase 14.8% to $74 Billion in 2017,” notes Grant Thomas on Business2Community.com, “This is the most lucrative sales period for ecommerce retailers in Q3, accounting for nearly 70% of all Q3 eCommerce revenue. If you haven’t made this a focus yet, it’s time to jump on it!”
Thomas goes on to point out some of the most popular items that students purchase online. Among them are apparel and accessories, computers and consumer electronics, shoes, school supplies, books, music, video, toys, hobby-related goods and sporting goods. He goes on to remind merchants, however, that students aren’t the only ones to market products to. Naturally, it’s the parents who do most of the spending.
“The biggest back-to-school shoppers are parents,” he writes, “This is ideal for businesses selling back-to-school-related items because parents will have significantly more purchasing power. This also means that businesses who may not be selling popular back-to-school items could cash in on parents who are in the buying mode.”
So how should merchants try to attract back-to-school shoppers to their website?
It’s all about creating back-to-school-themed content for your online sales. Remember that students and parents are joined by teachers and other members of the education system when it comes to consumers who have back-to-school shopping needs. Ensure that your online content is catered to meeting those needs.
“Consumers have back-to-school shopping on their minds, so feed that appetite,” Thomas insists, “Create a couple pieces of content with a back-to-school theme to, at the very least, grab the attention of your shoppers. This content can be buying guides, a list of popular back-to-school products, or even a detailed review of a single product.”
Are you taking advantage of Canada’s love for online shopping?
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