Why Online Retailer Casper is Getting Physical in Canada


Share post:

New York City-based sleep brand Casper has launched a series of pop-up locations to build engagement with consumers, following its runaway online success of sales in excess of $100 million last year. 

Casper launched in 2014 as a direct-to-consumer online mattress retailer, with a twist — the award-winning sleep surface is delivered in a “how did they do that?” sized box. Casper’s memory foam mattress comes in a variety of sizes, beginning at $725 (Canadian). Recently, the company has expanded its product assortment to include a “perfect pillow” pillow-in-a-pillow and soft, breathable sheets. Casper keeps its prices reasonable by eliminating commission-driven wholesale channels and related costs, including retail space. The company’s phenomenal growth saw it being declared one of Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Companies in the World” and in 2015, Casper won the title of TIME Magazine’s “Best Inventions of 2015”

Casper (Image: RYAN EMBERLEY)

On Wednesday, August 17, Casper announced that it was launching a line of dog beds, in three sizes, also available for order in Canada. 

Canadians have been particularly receptive to the Casper brand, prompting the company to engage consumers face-to-face with a series of pop-up initiatives. In the spring of 2016, Casper launched a “Canadian Nap Tour”, bringing its “Napmobile” to Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto for consumers to try products in-person. This month, Casper is continuing the pop-up trend with the launch of its “Snooze Rooms” in Toronto — last week, Casper touched down at 602 King Street West. Between August 19 and 21, Casper will be present in Liberty Village (80 Lynn Williams Street), followed by two Yorkville pop-ups between August 23 and 25 at the corners of Yonge and Bloor and Bloor and Bay Streets.


Casper co-founder and CEO Philip Krim explained how Casper’s pop-ups are marrying its e-commerce business model with experiential marketing, allowing for interaction as well as consumer product testing. Casper is targeting both existing customers and new ones, with face-to-face interaction also providing consumers the opportunity to provide realtime feedback with their product experiences. It’s not about selling at the pop-ups, he explained — Casper is looking more to engage and educate customers while gaining valuable feedback, without high-pressure sales common at some brick-and-mortar retailers. 

Casper’s pop-up initiative could also be the first step for the company to eventually open permanent brick-and-mortar locations in Canada as well, Mr. Krim said, though nothing is specifically planned at this time. The brand will continue to engage Canadians with temporary retail spaces, as it continues to expand its online sales channel both in this country, as well as internationally. 

Craig Patterson
Craig Patterson
Located in Toronto, Craig is the Publisher & CEO of Retail Insider Media Ltd. He is also a retail analyst and consultant, Advisor at the University of Alberta School Centre for Cities and Communities in Edmonton, former lawyer and a public speaker. He has studied the Canadian retail landscape for over 25 years and he holds Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws Degrees.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

More From The Author



Subscribe to the Newsletter


* indicates required

Related articles

Why Policing is Not the Answer to Shoplifting at Grocery Stores in Canada [Op-Ed]

An expert discusses the need for addressing the root causes of theft rather than criminalizing those driven by economic necessity.

Open Air Retail Centres in Canada Seeing Lower Vacancies and Increased Tenant Demand [Study/Interview]

Stephanie Hannon of Colliers discusses a new report showing how open-air centres with ’necessity retail’ are performing better than other asset classes, partly due to a lack in online competition among other factors.

Pinterest Predicts 2024 Trends in Retail and Fashion from User Activity [Feature Interview]

Pinterest's annual trending report's in the past have been remarkably accurate, given nearly 500 million users.

Overall Retail Leasing and Investment Picture in Canada Remains Stable Despite Headwinds [Feature]

Experts discussed the Canadian retail industry at the recent Vancouver Strategy and Leasing, highlighting a strong market as well as potential challenges ahead as consumers struggle.

California-Based Wetzel’s Pretzels Plans Aggressive Expansion in Canada [Interview]

The popular foodservice chain has big plans for the Canadian market, including expanding outside of traditional retail locations.

Drop in Chinese Tourists Prompts Qiviuk Knitwear to Shift Retail Strategy [Feature Interview]

A significant reduction in Chinese visitors to Canada since the pandemic, exacerbated by political tensions, has a Canadian luxury brand innovating in various ways to target its core customer.

Enhancing Retail Environments: A Contemporary Feng Shui Consultant’s Insights on Design, Colour, and Visitor Experience [Podcast]

Craig and Mark Ainley discuss the profound impact of Feng Shui and flow on retail spaces. Mark highlights how subtle cues, from sharp angles to vibrant colours, influence consumer behaviour, emphasizing the importance of creating an authentic and inviting retail atmosphere.

Top Shopping Centres in Canada Evolving Experiential Elements to Grow Foot Traffic and Tenant Revenue [Interview]

JLL’s Senior Marketing Director, Property Management, discusses how creating unique experiences tailored to local markets helps drive overall asset value through increased footfall and productivity.

Mastermind Toys Acquired by Joe Mimran’s Unity Acquisitions, 18 Stores to Close 

Unity will acquire the majority of Mastermind Toys store locations following a bankruptcy filing, with a significant number of employees continuing with the business.

Active Gaming Facility ‘Activate’ Plans Rapid Cross-Canada Expansion with New Leases [Interview]

The company, known for its unique competitive socializing concept, aims to open multiple locations in Canada while also planning a global expansion.

Alo Yoga Entering Quebec Market Amid Ongoing Canadian Store Expansion

The US-based athleisure brand, similar to Lululemon, has launched a multi-store-per-city strategy in Canada as it enters the Belle Provence. 

From ‘Greedflation’ to Government Scrutiny: A Rollercoaster Year for Canada’s Grocery Industry [Op-Ed]

Sylvain Charlebois discusses how over the past year the Canadian grocery industry has faced unprecedented political scrutiny and intervention, while also saying there's potential for a re-emergence of unethical schemes.