As in 2012, the wholesaling, manufacturing and retail trade sectors accounted for the majority (61%) of the value of e-commerce sales. About 13% of companies sold products or services over the Internet in 2013, up from 11% in 2012.
In 2013, almost all growth in the value of online sales was attributable to large companies, as defined in the note to readers. These businesses generated approximately $ 87 billion in online sales or 64% of the value of total online sales.
Nearly one-quarter (24%) of the value of total sales of businesses that sold online in 2013 came from online sales. Overall, 80% of the value of online sales was attributable to customers in Canada, 15% to customers in the United States and the rest to customers in other countries. Most of the value of sales (64%) made by Canadian companies went to other companies, not to individuals.
Higher rates of e-commerce adoption have been observed in some sectors of the economy. In 2013, 22% of businesses in the wholesale sector and 18% of businesses in the retail sector sold online.
Just under half of the businesses (47%) purchased goods and services online in 2013.
Safe practices, incidents, and repercussions
In 2013, businesses used a variety of tools to protect their data and digital technologies from unwanted access and attacks. Just over three-quarters (76%) of companies used anti-virus or anti-spyware, 62% used a firewall, and 53% used an anti-spam filter to block unwanted email. The percentage of companies using these technologies may be higher since companies may not always know that these features can also be integrated with other software packages.
Just under half (49%) of small businesses regularly backed up critical business data, compared to 89% of large businesses.
In 2013, 6% of businesses were victims of security breaches via the Internet. Among the repercussions of a violation, the most frequently mentioned were the cessation of service (51%) and the loss of productivity (43%).
In 2013, 14% of large companies reported being victims of an Internet security breach.
Increased functionality of websites
In 2013, 46% of businesses had a website, which is virtually the same percentage as in 2012. However, 91% of larger businesses had a website.
Given that Canadians are no longer just using traditional computers to access the Internet, nearly one in five (19%) of Canadian businesses with a website had an optimized version for mobile users. A website optimized for mobile users can take advantage of features (such as touch function) that are not necessarily offered by a traditional desktop computer and is designed to display well on a portable device.
In 2013, 38% of businesses with a website had integrated social media, up from 33% in 2012. In addition, 41% of businesses used social media to attract customers to their website, making them the most frequently mentioned strategy. Businesses also used print advertising (37%) and paid search (23%) to attract people to their website.
Using digital technology
The use of mobile devices connected to the Internet, such as smartphones and tablets, increased from 53% in 2012 to 60% in 2013.
Of the companies employing at least 10 people, 31% used a CRM / CRM system and 21% used a Business Resource Planning (ERP) system. Manufacturing firms had the highest rate of use of ERP systems (35%), while firms in the information and cultural industries sector were the highest likely to have used RCMP software (62%).
Almost all businesses have used information and communication technologies (ICTs). However, the most common barriers to further integration of technology were the lack of technical expertise and specialized staff internally (30%) and the high cost of technology and its implementation (30%). ).
Medium and large firms were more likely than small firms to mention the high cost of technology and its implementation. They were also more likely to indicate incompatibility with existing systems as a barrier to further ICT integration. This reaction could be related to the relative size and complexity of ICT systems in larger firms and the additional costs of these changes.
In December 2013, 13% of companies that used ICT reported employing specialists in the field. Of firms employing at least one ICT specialist, 35% provided ICT skills training. Nearly half of firms employing an ICT specialist provided training to other employees using ICT as part of their daily tasks.
Internet usage and connection type
In 2013, 89% of businesses reported using the Internet. Small businesses were the least likely to report using the Internet. The reason most often mentioned by companies not using the Internet was that it was not necessary for their business.
The mobile wireless technology was used by 38% of businesses in 2013, up from 35% in 2012. The use of a cable modem to connect to the Internet (42%) remained the most frequently mentioned method. Dial-up Internet access was still used by 3% of companies; however, it could be a secondary connection.
Interaction with governments online
In 2013, 46% of businesses completed or returned tax forms online, 36% made payments to government agencies online, and 6% applied for grants or benefits online. Medium and large firms were more likely than small firms to have done each of these activities.