Now we see a light at the end of the tunnel

By Philippe Guinaudeau, CEO BrandTrends

OK, we’re not going to lie, the Toy markets seem to suffer a bit now, as the lockdowns take place in many territories, despite the big peak in retail sales prior to the lockdown period; especially in games & puzzles, as well as craft activity-based toys.

Protecting their kids (and themselves) from the pandemic is the #1 priority of the parents. So, they scrupulously uphold the lockdown orders. The direct consequence is that kids have now more time to diverse their activities.

Of course, they spend more time in front of the screens. The streaming companies can claim a higher viewership and w wider scope of Entertainment consumed.

Of course, they use more learning supports, both books, the Internet and Apps, to get through their class ‘lockworks’.

But they also spend much more time playing with toys & games, individually but most importantly collectively: families take advantage of the period to re-discover their bonds and create new habits.

Several European territories are seeing streaming services capitalise on a higher viewership linked to enforced lockdowns, and we are seeing change now in consumer content consumption. But will these changes become permanent after the pandemic? Or will people be ready to return to the comfort of their previous normality and embrace experiences that will allow for social interaction?

Following the trend that Toy & Hobby Retailer has been reporting on, data from Bazaarvoice’s global network of more than 6,200 brand and retailer websites confirmed that families are seeking ways to keep children entertained and educated at home.

According to the stats, orders of toys and games have increased by 60 per cent, with online pageviews up 90 per cent.

Orders of sporting goods also increased in March, jumping up 86 per cent year-on-year, as consumers look for ways to keep fit, stay healthy and exercise indoors.

Bazaarvoice’s MD APAC Kate Musgrove said that online retailing has become increasingly important during the pandemic.

Our data confirms that people are staying at home, spending money and time doing DIY work, adapting to a new way of working, finding ways to entertain their family and enjoying more home cooked meals.

"Out of the gloom from the global pandemic, we are seeing many families taking the opportunity to strengthen their bonds and this is very heartening.

"Online retail has a hugely important role to play in helping people to adapt to the challenges imposed by the coronavirus pandemic.

"Our data confirms that people are staying at home, spending money and time doing DIY work, adapting to a new way of working, finding ways to entertain their family and enjoying more home cooked meals.

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