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Canadian consumers spent $958 million online in 1999, reports Toronto retail and marketing consulting firm J.C. Williams Group. American consumers spent $36.6 billion in the same year, according to management consulting firm The Boston Consulting Group.

Six percent of shoppers who bump into problems at a Web site say they'll also boycott the business's brick-and-mortar stores, according to research by The Boston Consulting Group.

Free shipping just might be a magnet for Web customers, says Cyber Dialogue, which found that 76 percent of Web shoppers cited it as the main reason they'll return to a shopping site.

Robert McGarvey has covered the Web since 1995. Visit his Web site at

Edition: October 2016

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