Internet Marketing

Online Canadian Statistics, eh!

13. 07. 2006

In the last few months, Canada has received a lot of press regarding Internet usage. Here are a few key highlights.

Internet Usage:

  • Canada spends more time online than the U.S., as of 2006 (Marketing Sherpa)
  • Canada ranks 8th for online population by country, with 18.9 million people over the age of 15 online as of May 2006. 23 million Canadians access the Internet each month, that’s over 70% of the population. Individuals spend roughly 38.4 hours a month online. In Q1 2006, for any given month, Canadians conducted on average 55 searches vs. 41 in the U.S. (comScore Networks)
  • Canadians send the most time online (40.8 hours per month), Americans ranked fifth in the world (29.6 hours) (ComScore Media Metrix, November 2006)
  • French Canadians have a higher rate of net usage. 65% French-speaking vs. 58% English (Networld Media)
  • 80% penetration of household Internet broadband subscribers (comScore Networks)


  • 32% of 1,312 Canadians who had made online purchases in the past six months had purchased five or more times while 68% had made one to four purchases (survey by J.C. Williams Group)
  • Ecommerce sales were $39.2 billion CAD in 2005, up 38.4% from 2004 for both private and public sector sales over the Internet. (Statistics Canada)
  • In 2007 Internet sales hit an estimated C$62.7 billion, up 26% from 2006. B2B sales accounted for 62% of online sales in 2007, e-commerce sales climbed to 38% from 32% in 2006. (Statistics Canada)
  • The percentage of Canadian retailers with a website grew to 42% in 2005 from 38% in 2004 (Statistics Canada)
  • Overall ecommerce sales increased by 38% last year (2006). Note that Statistics Canada defines an ecommerce sale as an order made online, which may or may not have been paid online (Statistics Canada)
  • eCommerce still represents a relatively small fraction of total economic activity, at about 2% of total operating revenue (2007). Only about 8% of Canadian private sector companies sell goods and services online. (Statistics Canada)
  • 38% of respondents in the past six months had bought online and picked up their purchase in a retail store (J.C. Williams survey)
  • 2005 had 18.5 million Internet users (person aged 3+ who accessed the Internet at least once per month) with a penetration of 56.4% of the population. 2006 should hit 19.3 million with a penetration of 58.3% and 2007, 20.3 million and 60.8% respectively (May 2006 Marketing Sherpa)
  • Credit card safety was the top barrier to online shopping (J.C. Williams survey)

Search Engines:

  • Canadians perform 33 million search engine queries every day vs. 405 million performed by Americans (Harris Interactive)
  • 80% of Internet traffic starts at search engines
  • Major Canadian portals include;,,
  • Major search engines and directories include; ,
  • Major French language search engines and directories include;
  • WebsideStory (US, Feb. 2006) reported that MSN Search commanded a 6.03% conversion rate, higher than the conversion rates of Yahoo! (4.07%) and Google (3.83%)

Social Networking:

  • Over half of Canadian Internet users have visited social networking site according to TNS Canadian Facts.

References & more resources:

June 18, 2007 - Social Networking in Canada

October 20, 2006 - Happy 300 Millionth, USA June 29, 2006 - E-Commerce Thrives in Canada

May 31, 2006 - How to Market to Canadians Online – Advice, Data, Legal Info and Useful Hotlinks

May 4, 2006 - 694 Million People Currently Use the Internet Worldwide According To comScore Networks

April 15, 2005 - Canada's E-Commerce in Earlier Stage Than U.S.

If you have any other stats that you think will contribute to the value of this page, please email me. This page will be updated on a regular basis.

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