Rising costs drive Canadians to rethink connectivity and content needs: EY survey

  • Majority of respondents fear price rise in broadband (60%) and TV subscription services (55%)
  • 47% of Canadians are more cautious about disclosing personal data online
  • One-third of households struggle to understand service providers’ unique value propositions

Toronto, ON (Aug. 23, 2022) – The EY Decoding the Digital Home Study reveals that more than half of consumers are concerned about potential price increases by broadband (60%) and pay TV providers (55%) as the increasing cost-of-living puts more pressure on the digital home. More than one-third (38%) of Canadian households plan to cut back on content and connectivity needs by spending less time online (34%) and decreasing the number of streaming platforms they use (27%) in an effort to prioritize financial and mental wellbeing.

“Although demand for robust connectivity and winning content remains pronounced, as Canadians begin to readjust to society after lockdown periods, many households are now open to downsizing their exposure to the online world – whether in terms of spending less time online or shifting spend towards outdoor leisure experiences,” says Rohit Puri, EY Canada Telecommunications Leader. “To be relevant in the future and drive customer loyalty, service providers should reframe their strategies to offer more compelling and personalized propositions that cater to consumers’ evolving priorities.”

Online wellbeing and security are top of mind

Driven largely by mental health concerns associated with online exposure, over half of Canadian households feel governments and regulators should be doing more to combat harmful content and 41% agree that the internet should be very tightly regulated to restrict what people can access online.

At the same time, fears around data disclosure have been exacerbated, with 47% of households stating that they are more worried about the privacy of personal data now than they were before the pandemic.

“Concerns around price increases, in tandem with growing anxiety around online safety and data privacy, threaten to undermine the growing need for connectivity and content,” explains Puri. “Looking ahead, different types of service providers should collaborate to provide more safe and secure digital experiences for all ages.”

Pressure to provide seamless customer journeys

From speed and connectivity to customer support and digital experiences, one-third of consumers indicate complex and undifferentiated value propositions are a pain point for making effective provider choices. While more than half (53%) of Canadian consumers say introductory offers play a role in their supplier choices, 48% indicate that they make it difficult to determine who offers the best value for their money.

“Positive customer interactions are critical for service providers trying to compete for a share of the household wallet,” adds Puri. “Packages that are easier to interpret and understand, along with clearer value propositions and higher levels of service and support will help companies build long-term relationships with their customers.”

To learn more about the EY Decoding the Digital Home Study, click here.

About the study

The Decoding The Digital Home Study is conducted annually by the EY organization, to help organizations understand changing consumer attitudes toward technology, media and telecommunications experienced in the home – and the companies that provide these products and services. The insights from the online survey of more than 20,000 households are gathered from eight countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, the UK and the US).

About EY

EY exists to build a better working world, helping create long-term value for clients, people and society and build trust in the capital markets. Enabled by data and technology, diverse EY teams in more than 150 countries provide trust through assurance and help clients grow, transform and operate. Working across assurance, consulting, law, strategy, tax and transactions, EY teams ask better questions to find new answers for the complex issues facing our world today.

EY refers to the global organization, and may refer to one or more, of the member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients. Information about how EY collects and uses personal data and a description of the rights individuals have under data protection legislation are available via ey.com/privacy. EY member firms do not practice law where prohibited by local laws. For more information about our organization, please visit ey.com.

SOURCE: Ernst & Young LLP

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