TECHNOLOGY

Study: These retailers are filling void left by demise of Toys “R” Us

BY Marianne Wilson

Shopping for toys has evolved in the roughly one year since Toys “R” Us exited the retail scene.

Walmart ranked as the top (43%) destination for shoppers who had previously bought toys from Toys “R” Us in the past 12 months according to a Profitero survey conducted in May 2019. Amazon ranked second (33%), followed by Target (17%).  For Toys “R” Us shoppers in the U.K., Amazon is now viewed as the top choice (40%) for toys.

In findings that bode well for Amazon, the report, “The eCommerce Toy Story,”  revealed that the search for toys is now starting online, with 51% of U.S. consumers preferring  to shop for toys most often online. Seventy-seven of U.S. consumers start their search for toys on Amazon.  Seventy percent of U.K. consumers   and 56% of U.S. consumers  say online is their preferred channel to shop.   

Profitero expected a large number of shoppers to research products online and subsequently purchase in store, particularly for a category like toys, where kids and parents alike may want to try it before they buy it. But its findings showed otherwise.

“The ability to see, touch and play with a toy before buying is clearly less important versus the online benefits of convenience, price and assortment — and therefore less of a differentiator and protective moat for brick-and-mortar retailers,” the report stated. “It could be one of the reasons why Toys “R” Us lost influence, and a warning sign to other brick-and-mortar-only retailers.”

In other findings, search optimization is key,  with 70% of shoppers never clicking past page one. Also, interactive content helps drive toy sales, with video on product pages resulting in a 51% plus average sales lift. Almost half (48%) of shoppers seek video when shopping online for toys.

To download the full report, click here.

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