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Industry Information | Research and Reports

Research has indicated that members want to be provided with access to timely and relevant articles that can assist them in running their businesses. In order of descending importance, CanGift members ranked the following as areas of interest: sales and marketing, new product development, consumer and market trends (to keep abreast of changing consumer behaviours), information technology, personnel issues and channel/distribution trends.

The following articles come from topflight consulting firms. Some articles are short and some are long, but we leave it to you to decide if you want to access these through the links provided. In the end, our goal is to save you time and to help you succeed.

Facts & Figures

Click on the links to study the latest numbers for Canadian retail sales and business and consumer confidence.

May 2014 Retail Sales

June 2014 Business Confidence


Business Development


A Social Media Guide for Entrepreneurs

B2B Customers Have Feelings Too

Building Effective Business Relationships in China


Channel Distribution Trends

Channel Distribution Trends

Demystifying the Online Shopper: 10 Myths of Multi-Channel Retailing

Digital Shopping - The Topline on Online

Consumer and Market Trends

Consumer and Market Trends

2012 Retail Study: Responding to the Connected Consumer

Bricks and Mortar Stores Are Still Relevant

Consumer Business Economic Update




New Ethnic Canadians: A Sales Opportunity

The Global Impact of an Aging World

Why You Should Care About Boomers

Distribution Trends


Product Sourcing in Asia Pacific - Extended Value Chains

Streamline Your Product Portfolio and Make Money

Ten Ways to Improve Inventory Management

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Can You Sustain the Company You Started?

What Drives Entrepreneurs to Win

General Management

General management

Cutting Regulatory Red Tape

Current Business Environment in Numerous Countries

Five Financial Areas Every Entrepreneur Should Monitor


Human Resources

Human Resources

BDC Study Explores Opinions on Human Resources

Marketing & Promotion

Marketing and Promotion

Cheat Sheets for Social Marketers

Customer Experience: A Roadmap for Marketers

How to Create an Effective Advertisement




How Leaders Get the Most from Their Sales Force

Is Complexity Killing Your Sales Model?

Nine Critical Skills for Successful Salespeople


Facts & Figures (continued from above)

May 2014 Retail Sales Increase 3.3% (unadjusted)
Total unadjusted retail sales (excluding automotive and gas) posted a gain of 3.3%, down slightly from May’s increase of 4.4%. Gift, novelty and souvenir sales posted an increase of 1.9%, slightly higher than April’s increase of 1.5%. After posting decreases, furniture posted an increase of 4.4% while home furnishings rose 5.4%. Western provinces continued to report the largest gains - Alberta (+6.8%), Manitoba (+4.3%), Saskatchewan (+4.1%) and B.C. (+6.9%). Ontario increased 4.6% while Quebec rose 3.2%. Sales in Atlantic Canada were mixed.

To read the full report, click here.

(1) Includes giftware retailers

Source: Statistics Canada


Small Business Confidence Drops Sharply in June
Small business optimism fell back sharply in June, erasing the gains we had seen since March. The Business Barometer Index ended the month at 63.5, almost three-and-a-half points below its May level - which had briefly been a two-year high.

On the wholesale side, confidence was unchanged at 62.3, while the retail outlook fell marginally from 67.3 to 66.

The drop in optimism, however, was not broadly based, suggesting this may not be the beginning of a protracted trend. Regionally, falling sentiment among business owners in Ontario (61.9), Manitoba (64) and Saskatchewan (65.8) alone drove the national figures lower. Elsewhere, provincial and indicators stayed on pattern, with highest optimism found in British Columbia (73.7), Alberta (72.6) and Newfoundland and Labrador (70).

Other indicators show reasonable underlying strength persisting. New order indications are strong, while concern about lack of local demand has fallen to its lowest levels in this business cycle. Short-term hiring plans remain reasonably good for this time of year and pricing and wage growth plans are pinned near the 2% mark. The 39% of owners who say the state of their businesses are in good shape are still below last year's levels, but the trend has been upward lately.  

To read the full report, click here. (PDF format)

Measured on a scale between 0 and 100, an index level above 50 means owners expecting their business' performance to be stronger in the next year outnumber those expecting weaker performance. One normally sees an index level of between 65 and 70 when the economy is growing at its potential.

Source: Canadian Federation of Independent Business