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Statistics Canada says online shopping on the rise

TORONTO, Ont. – More Canadians are using online checkouts for their purchases according to Statistics Canada.

New numbers show Canadians ordered more than $15-billion worth of goods and services over the Internet in 2009.

This number is up from the $12.8-billion spent online in 2007.

More than half of Canadians age 16 to 34 made at least one purchase online and men were found to be more likely than women to have bought something through a web site.

Top online buys continue to be travel, books, clothing, jewellery and concert tickets.

At Yonge and Bloor, online shoppers appeared in all ages and sizes.

“Old turn tables for my son to model airplanes, all sorts of little things,” Steve, a man of at least six feet in height, told 680News, adding that he can compare prices on the web without travelling to different stores.

Others commented on how they found more deals over the Internet than in store

“He can pick. He has the list. He knows what he’s getting,” said Kelly about her husband Aaron, “he does all the research. He doesn’t have to rely on somebody else, and he doesn’t have to go out and do it. It comes to him.”

And some even enjoy the comfort of not having to dress up to go shopping

“I’m not always dressed as if I’m in the store,” said Bob, saying he’s more himself in “ratty clothes, and maybe the lack of showering, so no cologne shower either. Nothing.”

He said he prefers to buy most of his books and DVDs on the web, adding that he finds it “cheaper than buying it in the store. You can save up to like, 15, 25, even 30 per cent more. And if you buy a certain amount, you get free shipping.”

Stats Can said the average cost of each online purchase has gone down from $183 in 2007 to $158 in 2009, credited to a rise in the number of online shoppers, and those shoppers buying more goods.

Sujay, who bought a car online, admitted to 680News that he loves online shopping because he can sit with a bowl of chips and a glass of milk – in his underwear.

“The book comes to me, and it’s 40 per cent cheaper,” he added, saying he purchased an IT book online the night before.

However, some are still apprehensive about online shopping.

Rania, who is reluctant to provide her credit card number on the Internet, prefers the gold standard of window shopping, where she gets to “look at all the different brands that they have, all the different prices. I don’t have to go anywhere.” 

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