Many have touted this to be an era of consumer choice, but it can still be extremely difficult to cut through all the marketing slang, buzzwords and other jargon used to get down to how trustworthy a brand or product really is.

BrandSpark International tries to aid in this struggle by releasing its annual winners of the BrandSpark Most Trusted Awards.

These awards are based on a survey of 6,900 Canadians and encompass a vast range of e-commerce categories as well as a range of categories for major service providers.

“In an increasingly online world, trust has never been more important,” says Robert Levy,  the president of BrandSpark. “Shoppers are seeking new and different signifiers of trust, such as online reviews and consumer-based awards on brand websites. Being a winning brand in the 2019 BrandSpark Most Trusted Awards is a major accomplishment. The program tells shoppers which companies are trusted by other Canadians. This allows consumers to make better purchasing decisions, as trust is the greatest indicator of delivering value and a good customer experience.”

Along with the winners in each category, the survey results also brought to light a few different factors that Canadian consumers rely on when determining the trustworthiness of a brand.

  • 71 per cent rely on unfiltered customer reviews being featured on a brand’s website; with many going so far as to say that they will refuse to buy from a brand without those available.
  • 75 per cent said that when a company actually listens to and responds to reviews and feedback, they feel more comfortable shopping with that brand, as they believe them to be more trustworthy.
  • 66 per cent value discounts and special offers that are customized for them based on the websites they visit.

E-commerce winners

For many shoppers, online or otherwise, Amazon.com, Inc. has absolutely changed the game. Not just in terms of how brands sell, but how consumers shop. In fact, according to a study from BrandSpark, two out of every three shoppers said it has changed how they buy things.

“It’s important for e-commerce retailers to make shoppers confident that they won’t face these issues when ordering from their site,” says Adam Bellisario, director of the BrandSpark Most Trusted Awards program. “Since shoppers can easily move to another retailer online, it’s crucial for e-commerce retailers to build trust and loyalty with their shoppers. The BMTA claim and logo is a proven way to communicate that the site has already earned the trust of the Canadian shopper.”

As you can see from the chart below, Amazon really took hold of the e-commerce industry as a whole.

E-COMMERCE CATEGORY
2019 WINNING BRAND(S)
Baby & Children’s Clothing
Old Navy / Carter’s OshKosh / The Children’s 
Place (tie)
Baby Supplies / Gear
Amazon
Beauty & Cosmetics
Sephora
Books
Amazon
Cameras & Photography Supplies*
Amazon
Electronic Gaming / Videogames
Amazon
Health & Wellness
Amazon
Home Décor
Amazon / Wayfair (tie)
Home Entertainment (Televisions, Stereos, etc.)*
Amazon / Best Buy (tie)
Home Improvement / Renovation
The Home Depot
Household Cleaning & Laundry Products*
Amazon
Housewares / Kitchenware
Amazon
Laptop / Desktop Computers
Best Buy
Major Home Appliances*
The Home Depot
Mattresses
Amazon
Men’s Clothing / Fashion
Amazon
Personal Electronics (Headphones, Bluetooth 
Speakers, etc.)
Amazon
Pet Food & Supplies
Amazon
Recreation & Outdoor Gear*
Amazon
Shoes / Footwear
Amazon
Small Home Appliances
Amazon
Sporting Goods
Sport Chek
Toys & Games
Amazon
Women’s Clothing / Fashion
Amazon / Hudson’s Bay (tie)

Service provider winners

While BrandSpark awarded a multitude of categories for service providers, we have narrowed them down to categories related to information technology.
  • Cellular Network Provider: Telus Communications/Rogers Communications Inc./Bell Canada (tie)
  • Cellular Network Provider (West): Telus Communications
  • Cellular Network Provider (Ontario): Rogers Communications Inc.
  • Cellular Network Provider (Quebec): Videotron
  • Cellular Network Provider (Atlantic): Bell Canada
  • Discount Cellular Network Provider: Koodo Mobile
  • High-Speed Internet Provider: Bell Canada
  • Music Streaming Service: Spotify Technology S.A.
  • TV Service Provider: Bell Canada