When it comes to holiday shopping, Canadians are deal seekers all season long — which signals a big opportunity for businesses to show up and help consumers maximize their shopping season.
Canadians are already accustomed to the slew of deals that surface post-holiday, and the insights in this piece will show that this isn’t just a time to reach them with these discounts, but also to build lifetime value with Canadians who are looking for the right time to buy.
The new holiday reality: It’s a marathon, not a sprint
Preparing for the holidays is starting earlier and going later, and we see the same thing happening to moments within the season like Cyber5. And now, ‘’the holidays’’ includes ‘’post-holiday’’ too, which means shopping is still happening on Boxing Day and well into January.
Deal seekers are engaged all season long, with the majority (86%) of consumers saying they will keep an eye open for deals, discounts, or promotions throughout this holiday season.1 Additionally, data shows that Canadians who shop for major sales events have different opinions on when’s the best time to do so, illustrating the importance of the entire holiday moment: 11% say before, 30% during, 11% after, and 22% say it doesn’t matter because the entire period has good deals.2
Breaking down deals before and after Cyber5 can help you reach more consumers exactly when they choose to shop. And while there’s a significant amount of holiday shopping that gets done during Cyber Week, remember to reach people with deals throughout December, as the average holiday shopper in Canada still had 50% of their shopping to complete after Cyber Week.3
Marketers have a major opportunity post-holiday to continue offering sales, as over half agree that it’s a good time to find deals, and they'll be looking for deals and promotions after the holidays.4 To add to that, insights show that 48% of consumers in Canada agreed that there are better deals available after the holidays than leading up to them.5
This extended shopping season offers a huge span of opportunities to stay prepared for, and leaning into AI-powered solutions could be your ticket to meet them exactly where they are.
Scoping out deals sparks joy for Canadians
For specific generations, part of the holiday spirit is the fun that comes with shopping. Roughly half (49%) of consumers across surveyed markets agree that shopping is a form of entertainment for them, with Gen Z (61%) and Millennials (57%) more likely to say so than Gen X (45%) and Boomers (38%).6
But regardless of whether consumers defined themselves as primarily online, in-store or omnichannel shoppers, the majority agreed that looking for deals, discounts, or promotions online is helpful (89%) and enjoyable (77%).7 This could explain, in part, why we’re seeing sales moments like Black Friday stretching out — it’s not just practical, it’s something that sparks joy.
Tap into their deal-seeking enjoyment by making it easy for Canadians to find your deals, understand the right time to buy, and clearly communicate the information they need to boost their purchasing confidence.
How to win with Canadian deal seekers
Shoppers in Canada are keen to determine whether an item is a good deal, especially as they expect to see plenty of deals throughout the holiday season.
This is your signal to offer help early on in the season. More than three quarters (77%) of Canadian consumers that plan to shop for the holidays say that they will choose brands/retailers that make their lives easier this holiday season.8
Clearly communicating your business’s offerings can increase consumer confidence and the likelihood of a purchase.
Canadian holiday shoppers are deliberate with their deal-seeking, meaning you won’t see them purchasing if it’s not well-researched and intentional. In fact, only 25% of holiday purchases were impulsive the week of Cyber5 in 2022 and 39% say they search for deals, promotions, sales, or offers online via a search engine — compared to just 17% that say that go to social media.9, 10
And as consistent proof that the customer journey is far from linear, 31% of consumers said they spent more time researching online before purchasing in the 2022 holiday season, compared to previous years.11
Clearly communicating your business’s offerings can increase consumer confidence and the likelihood of a purchase. Forty-six per cent of Canadians say finding deals around the holidays is time-consuming (which is significantly higher than last year),12 so it’s a good idea to ensure you’re removing as much friction for them as possible. For example, in 2022, 44% of Canadian consumers say that retailers could have done a better job communicating Black Friday/Cyber Monday perks and offers (such as price matching, extended returns, etc.).13
That’s a clear indication that you can succeed by ensuring your own consumers can find your deals, and feel confident about the best time to buy.
What’s the deal?
Providing clarity and context around your offers is also important to help consumers decide if a product is not only a good deal, but of good quality, too. Canadian shoppers say the quality of an item (50%) and deals/promotions (57%) are the most helpful things brands can communicate as they consider items to buy.14
It all comes down to communication. It directly impacts how consumers compare what they’re shopping for and, ultimately, their purchasing decision — particularly when it comes to a business’s return policy. In fact, 58% of consumers in Canada are checking return policies before deciding to buy a brand or product that's new to them.15
Be helpful, be clear, and most of all — keep it fun for your customers. Canadians are looking for deals and enjoying the process of finding them. Keep these holiday insights top of mind to ensure you’re top of the list when they’re ready to close the deal.