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More Canadians shopping online

The recession may have dented traffic at the malls, but it didn’t daunt online shoppers.

Four in 10 Canadians aged 16 and over used the Internet to place more than 95 million orders last year, up by a third from 2007 levels when they placed 70 million orders, Statistics Canada said Monday.

The most popular items were concert and plane tickets last year along with clothes, books and magazines. Younger people are more likely to buy clothes, jewellery and accessories while men are twice are likely to buy consumer electronics online than women.

Total ecommerce rose 18 percent last year from 2007 as Canadians placed orders for goods and services valued at $15.1-billion. Residents in British Columbia and Alberta are the most frequent online shoppers.

About half, or 51 percent, of Canadians aged 16 to 34 bought something online last year.

Consumers are placing more orders, but the average value per order has declined – to $158 in 2009 from $183 in 2007.

Security concerns seem to be fading. Eight in ten online shoppers paid directly over the Internet for some or all of their purchases.

Statscan’s Internet use study was sponsored by Industry Canada and conducted in November, 2009 as a supplement to the labour force survey. About 23,000 people over 16 were asked about their Internet use over a 12-month period.

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