B2C e-commerce sales in Canada are expected to show 25% growth in 2006, reaching U.S.$8.3 billion ($9.4 billion in Canadian dollars), and this year the annual growth rate will reach 26.3%, according to eMarketer. Going forward, sales growth will continue to be healthy, although rates will decline somewhat. Canadian online retail has stagnated in something of a "chicken or egg" situation. Canadian online shoppers have complained for years about limited merchandise selection, missed delivery dates and poor customer service. Meanwhile, Web retailers have cited low online shopping activity as a reason for not investing in an Internet sales channel. But finally there are signs that the logjam is breaking up. Over the past year, a number of large retail chains and smaller, specialized retailers have launched online stores. And Canadian online shoppers are venturing out to buy a greater array of goods and services online, including big-ticket items like home furnishings and jewelry.
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