Digital marketing has quickly become a key strategy for reaching customers. The world of digital marketing is constantly changing as trends change and technologies develop. It is important to keep up to date with the new trends and adapt marketing tactics accordingly. If you don’t, you risk falling behind while your competitors stay ahead.

What is the key to keeping up with the new trends in digital marketing? It is to know the latest marketing statistics. In this article, we have collated information on digital marketing in Canada to help you stay up to date with the latest developments and to use them to connect with your target audience.

Digital Marketing Statistics for Canadians

  • In 2021, the average Canadian spent six hours per day on digital media.
  • 5% of the population is now using the internet in Canada.
  • In 2021, 9.58 billion Canadian dollars were spent on digital marketing.
  • The share of digital marketing was 64.8% of the total spent on advertising in 2021.
  • The revenue from digital marketing was $12.323 billion Canadian dollars in 2021.
  • Most of the revenue, 46.2% came from searches, followed by social media at 26.1%
  • Audio, including podcasts and streaming, grew its revenue the most from 2020 to 2021 by 59%.
  • Google is the dominating search engine, with almost 92% of Canadians reporting they use it as their main search engine.
  • Advertising on Facebook yielded the most revenue at 53.49% of the social media market share. However, Instagram grew its traffic to external websites the most at 304.4%.
  • 94% of small businesses in Canada use social media for marketing at least once a month and 52% do so daily.
  • Majority of people do not think they can trust online advertising.
  • In 2020, 82% of Canadians shopped online and spent $84.4 billion.

Time spent on digital media per day and number of users in Canada

According to Statista, Canadians spent over six hours per day on the internet in the third quarter of 2021. On average, one hour and 46 minutes were spent on social media platforms. They also watched three hours of TV per day on average.

In 2022, there were 36.9 million internet users in Canada. This means that 96.5% Canadians are using the internet. They use it to engage with others via social platforms, online shopping and entertainment.

The growing business of digital marketing

The amount companies spend on digital marketing has been growing year on year, as has the revenue from online advertising. In 2020, about $8.45 billion was spent on digital advertising. By 2021, the spending had increased to $9.58 billion. The prediction is that in 2024, over 12 billion Canadian dollars will be spent on digital marketing.

In Canada, digital advertising accounted for 64.8% of the total spent on advertising in 2021. The growth was 32.4% compared to the previous year, and it is expected to reach 65.8% in 2022.

The year-on-year revenue from digital marketing increased 28.1% from 2020 to 2021. In 2021, the revenue was $12,323 million. 23.3% of the revenue came from consumer products and goods while wellness services represented only 1.5% of the revenue.

How was the revenue in 2021 split between different forms of digital marketing?

The largest share of the revenue came from internet searches, $5,696 million, which represent 46.2% of the total revenue. It was followed by social media with a 26.1% share of the total. Both forms were up from the previous year. The revenue from searches went up 34.8% and from social media 20.8%.

Compared to the previous year, the revenue went up in all forms of digital marketing except for classifieds, which was down 36.4%. Despite representing only 1.2% of the revenue, the biggest increase was in audio, where the revenue was up 59% from the previous year. 36% of the revenue came from podcasts and the rest from streaming.

With a 50% share, Google was the dominating force in digital advertising market in 2020 followed by Facebook with 33%.

Search engine market share in Canada

According to Statista, in September 2021, Google was by far the leader of the search engines with a nearly 92% share of the market. Bing had a share of just under 5%, Yahoo had 1.6% and DuckDuckGo 1.3%.

For an advertizer, it is important to optimize their content for search engines since revenue from them represented nearly half of the revenue from digital marketing. It is also important to note that only 2.8% of people say they click on paid advertisements. Rather, the revenue comes from people using search terms such as ”the best deals” or ”the best laptops in 2021”.

Which social media platforms bring in the most revenue through website clicks?

Despite the growing popularity of platforms including Instagram and Twitter, Facebook still holds the majority of referrals to a website from social media. In 2021, referrals from Facebook represented 53.49% of website clicks from social media. Twitter and Pinterest generated around 15% of the traffic.

However, Facebook only had an annual growth of 2.8% compared to 304.4% annual growth for clicks from Instagram and 263.3% from Reddit and the clicks from Pinterest actually went down by 34.2% compared to the previous year.

YouTube, which had a current share of 2.75% and LinkedIn with 0.88% also grew the rate of clicks with 32.9% and 31.3% respectively. Twitter and Tumblr were the other two platforms besides Pinterest were traffic was down, -14.3% for Twitter and -17.8% for Tumblr.

Instagram’s share of the digital marketing traffic is likely to grow even more when more companies get into the habit of using external links from Instagram, for example via Instagram Stories.

How do companies use social media for digital marketing?

Using social media is vital for finding your target audience, especially for small business looking to grow their client base. 94% of small business in Canada post on social media monthly and 79% weekly. Only just over half of the small business post daily and 6% does it less often than once per month.

Companies are most likely to use Instagram and Facebook with both platforms used by around 80% of businesses. Twitter and YouTube are used by around 60% of companies.

Many Canadian companies are planning to increase their spending on social media advertising with 84% saying they will spend more on Facebook adverts, nearly 60% investing more on YouTube and 48% on LinkedIn.

Social media demographics for digital marketers

When deciding how to spend their time and money on social media advertising, it is important to know the demographics of the people who use the different social media platforms.

  • Facebook has over 2.5 billion users worldwide. 82% of Facebooks users say they are college graduates. All genders are active on Facebook, with a small majority being women (53%). Stories on Facebook get around 500 million viewers and 74% of Facebook users log in every day. 15% of the users shop on the platform.
  • 71% of Instagram’s 1 billion users are under 35 years old, so it is the ideal platform for companies to connect with younger audiences. Women are more active on Instagram with 68% of the users being female. Videos now get 21.2% more interactions than pictures on Instagram and engagement with brands is 10 times higher than on Facebook. 11% of the users shop through Instagram.
  • YouTube has 1.9 billion active monthly users and 62% of those are men. Most popular content among men is soccer and strategy games, while women prefer to watch lifestyle videos. 75% of people have watched nostalgic content on YouTube.
  • Twitter does not have the same number of users as Facebook or Instagram, with 336 million active users. Key to engaging with customers on Twitter is responding to them. 83% of the users who sent a tweet to a company said they were more likely to do business with companies that replied to them. 53% of Twitter users have made a purchase of products they first saw on Twitter.
  • LinkedIn is a social network where professionals can connect and has 690 million active users. It has more affluent users than the other platforms, with 44% of the users earning over 75,000 USD per year. Since LinkedIn is a platform for professionals, it is a useful tool for business-to-business sales and is 277% more effective than Facebook.
  • The idea of Pinterest is to share inspirational ideas, for example, for events, home or fashion. The platform has around 250 million active monthly users and people earning a high income are more likely to use it than those on lower incomes. Over 4/5 of Pinterest users say they use the platform when planning life events such as weddings, christenings and graduations.

Email marketing

Engaging with your audience via email is another important tool for digital marketers. 31% of people aged 25-34 say they open all the emails they receive. Only 12% of people aged 35-44 open all their emails.

A quarter of Canadians check their email first thing in the morning and almost as many, 23.7% said they check their email whenever they pick up their phone. 17.4% say they will check a new email as soon as they receive it and over half of the population checks their email over fifteen times per day. A tenth check their email only 1-5 times per day.

Most important question for email marketers is whether people make spontaneous purchases based on emails. Four out of five people aged 25-34 have made a spontaneous purchase after receiving a marketing email. However, the figure for all age groups is lower at around 50%.

Do consumers find digital advertising trustworthy?

Majority of people do not see digital advertising as trustworthy, which probably explains why most of the revenue comes from internet searches for products or from social media platforms where consumers have the chance to engage with a company’s feed before buying.

People aged 35 or younger were the most likely to trust online advertising, with 40% perceiving them as trustworthy. People over 65 are the least likely to trust adverts they see online. The main reason for the distrust is that consumers see them as false or leading to phishing.

Online shopping in Canada in 2020

Finally, let’s have a look at the Canadian’s online shopping habits. In 2020, 82% of Canadians shopped online compared to 75% in 2018. As people are spending more money online, $84.4 billion in 2020, companies and individuals who use digital marketing the best are likely to capture a larger share of the online sales.

The biggest age group for online shopping is the 25-44-year-olds where 95% said they shopped online in a Statistics Canada survey on online shopping. People aged 15-25 group were the second biggest consumers, with 90% shopping online in 2020. 83% of 45-64-year-olds said they had shopped online. The group that was least engaged with online shopping was the over-65 group where only 55% said they had shopped online.

In 2020, 76% of the people who answered the survey said they had bought physical goods online and 68% had bought digital goods and services. Only 9% had bought accommodation services, but that figure was likely impacted by the pandemic.

The survey also asked those who had not shopped online to state why they didn’t make online purchases. Out of the 18% who had not bought online, 73% said they had not shopped online because they had no need or interest to do so. 23% said they had concerns over the security of online shopping and 18% said they wanted to see the product in person before parting with their money. 16% also said they found online shopping too difficult.

Summary

With 96.5% of Canadians using the internet in some capacity and six daily hours spent on the Internet, companies cannot underestimate the power of digital marketing. While paid advertising doesn’t create many sales, the emphasis is more on sales via audience engagement.

Companies and individuals looking to increase their revenue from digital marketing will benefit more from creating website content that performs well on search engines as well as engaging with their target audience on social media platforms.

Frequently Asked Questions

In 2021, the average Canadian spent six hours per day on digital media.

94% of small businesses in Canada use social media for marketing at least once a month and 52% do so daily.

The revenue from digital marketing was $12.323 billion Canadian dollars in 2021.

Advertising on Facebook yielded the most revenue at 53.49% of the social media market share. However, Instagram grew its traffic to external websites the most at 304.4%.

Audio, including podcasts and streaming, grew its revenue the most from 2020 to 2021 by 59%.

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