Canada Post: U.S. retailers reaching Canadians at holidays

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American retailers are ramping up their marketing efforts via the Internet and through catalog distribution in order to reach out to Canadian shoppers and take advantage of what's predicted to be a strong holiday season in Canada's direct retail industry, according to Canada Post.

Revenue figures among U.S. retail partners of Canada Post's Borderfree service has increased more than 50 percent in 2006, and Canada Post forecasts a strong holiday season, estimating this rate will continue to the end of December.

Through Borderfree's suite of e-commerce technology and cross-border logistics solutions, Canada Post enables direct retailers to manage their international customer shopping experience and optimize their logistics operations.

Consumer confidence, the strong Canadian dollar and the marketing efforts of Canada Post's retail partners largely contributed to the figures. Overall retail spending in Canada during the holidays last year reached $1.9 billion, up 27 percent from the previous year.

This market is spurring an increasing trend among electronics, apparel and cosmetics retailers to double their efforts in the Canadian retail market, now estimated to be $329 billion in U.S. dollars, Canada Post said. U.S. merchants including Crate & Barrel, Sephora, Brookstone, Domestications and Casual Living  are among those using Canada Post's Borderfree service to ensure an easy "cross-border" experience.

Canada Post also mentioned that this month launched the first lookbook catalog, described as a "catalog of catalogs" which includes product lines of more than 12 U.S. retailers and is being distributed to 700,000 Canadian households.

The first retailers to participate in the lookbook include Eddie Bauer, Smarthome, Brookstone, Cabela's and Tiger Direct.

Because of intense retailer interest, Canada Post said it has released plans to offer direct retailers the opportunity to add their product selections within the pages of the lookbook for the Spring and Holiday 2007 editions. The participation deadline for the spring issue is Nov. 27.

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