Facebook (Meta) Launches Good Ideas Shop in Ottawa’s historic ByWard Market

Ottawa is one of just a few global cities pioneering the new 'street shopping for online stores' initiative.
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According to Facebook, 8 out of 10 Ottawans say they plan to shop local this holiday season – and Facebook (now branded as Meta) wants to help them discover their purchases through a “shoppable window display.” Well, Meta’s got its eye on Ottawa, because on Tuesday, December 14, Meta unveiled its Good Ideas Shop in Ottawa’s historic ByWard Market.

Meta is putting its weight behind 6 local online businesses to give Ottawa residents the ability to discover local gift ideas and purchase them from the display through their “Good Ideas Shop” program.

It’s a cute way to bridge the gap between online-focused business and the physical world just in time for Christmas.

The Good Ideas Shop launched in the UK this year. Meta says the program provides free on-demand training, resources and inspiration for small businesses.

“Small independent businesses and our local high streets have never been more important in our daily lives.

The festive season is such an important time for them and us as shoppers. It’s been a tough few years for them, and they need our love and support.”

Mary Portas
Retail Consultant and Broadcaster

Mary Portas: Retail Consultant and Broadcaster via META website

What’s Good Ideas Ottawa All About?

Essentially, it’s a popup ‘window shop’ that lets holiday shoppers get to know online business the way they would a street shop while perusing their downtowns. It gives much needed visibility to online stores, while helping differentiate them in a sea of e-commerce options.

Ottawa’s in good company too, among only a handful of cities where Meta has pioneered the project, including New York City, Dallas, and Seattle, after its pilot project in Aberdeen.

Of course, passersby have the option to snap a QR are conveniently purchase directly from the window shop.

Is this a sneak peek into Meta’s vision of future shopping in the metaverse? Rendering the outside of a shop is a lot easier than the interior, after all…

Which Ottawa Stores are Involved?

Here’s a list of the participants of the Facebook Good Ideas Shop initiative, all Ottawa-run business that can be patronized online, and now, while strolling through the market.

Saint Lyon, which sells comfortable and stylish athletic wear at attractive price. They also give a percentage of profits to a charity of the customer’s choice.

Want to amp up your composting in 2022? The Box of Life is company that produces “worm studio” composters designed specifically for apartments and smaller living areas. This makes it easier than ever for everyone to reduce waste, no backyard required.

Nurture with Botanics uses local and natural ingredients in the creation of their wellness products, which include teas and skincare.

You a knitthusiast? Brenda’s gotcha covered. Brenda Made This is the local Ottawa area kitter extraordinare who can keep you loaded up with made-to-order knits and knit patterns.

Gather Café + Kitchen will be showing off its vegan delectables, of both the sweet and savoury variety, proving once and for all that vegans do it better.

Last but not least, for the coffee drinkers (that’s everyone, right?) they’ve got Birch Bark Coffee, an Indigenous-owned coffee company that focuses on the improvement of on-going social issues for Indigenous families. Birch Bark Coffee proudly offers organic, SPP certified, Fair Trade coffee.

Best way to get involved? Simply head out to the market this season, check out the wares, and make sure to scan the QR at the Good Ideas Shop to help out local Ottawa creators and entrepreneurs hit.

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