Report for Spielwarenmesse 2014 Is Now Available

SpielwarenmesseegSpielwarenmesse eG has released a report showing the main trends for the toy industry this year, which are identified as Fit4Life, Retromania, Mini Is King, and TechToys.

Among the report’s findings from Spielwarenmesse 2014, China had the largest number of international visitors, the total number of visitors from all around the world increased by more than 3,000, and 50 more suppliers exhibited baby and infant articles compared to last year.

An online version of the full report can be viewed and downloaded at the Spielwarenmesse website.

Hasbro Survey Finds 78 Percent of Americans Partying at Home on NYE

For the second year in a row, when the clock strikes Twelve on New Year’s Eve, the majority of Americans plan to ring in the New Year at home instead of out on the town, according to a new survey by Hasbro. Seventy-nine percent of women and 76 percent of men, up from 70 percent last year, will opt for a more low-key celebration. To make the most of a festive night at home, Hasbro recommends some friendly game night competition to get the good times rolling on December 31.

And while most (56 percent) seem to want to keep the competition light and friendly, 81 percent of people ages 18 to 24 admit to “bending the rules” in order to win when playing games. If you’re spending the night in on New Year’s with some family-friendly competition, be sure to upload pictures of your party to the Hasbro Game Night Facebook page or tweet @HasbroGameNight, #HasbroHolidays.

Google’s Zeitgeist Releases Top 10 Trending Toy Searches for 2013

Google has released its annual Zeitgeist—a “spirit of the times”—which gives us a chance to remember the people, places and topics that got us talking, and ultimately searching, before a new year begins. The list of top toy searches features new toys such as Minions and Palace Pets, but also old favorites, such as Play-Doh. Here are the top 10 trending toy searches this year:

  1. Pokémon
  2. Play-Doh
  3. Digimon Fusion
  4. Minecraft Toys
  5. Minions
  6. Palace Pets
  7. Paw Patrol
  8. Pacific Rim Toys
  9. My Little Pony
  10. Disney Planes

The 2013 Zeitgeist site provides more than 1000 top-10 lists of popular and trending searches from 72 countries, making it the most comprehensive and global list to date.

GameStop Survey of Shoppers Reveals Top Priority Gifts

Gamestop

GameStop and research partner Brierley+Partners asked 500 U.S. gift givers what was at the top of their purchase lists this holiday season. The results revealed that 42 percent of shoppers surveyed plan on purchasing video game related items for their children this holiday—including video games, consoles, and accessories.

Gift givers are not only hot on gaming presents this year, but they are also keen on ways to save more money before even making it up to the cash register. Eighty-four percent of shoppers are aware of store and website trade-in programs, and nearly 20 percent planning to use them to help defer gift costs. From old video games and consoles, to smartphones, tablets, and other electronics sitting in drawers and on shelves, GameStop offers instant store credit or cash on a vast range of products.

Additional interesting findings from GameStop’s holiday shopper-centric survey include:

  • Eighty-two percent of shoppers expect to turn to store employees when making purchasing decisions this holiday season.
  • Among shoppers who are planning on purchasing a new gaming console for the holidays, 61 percent expect their children to utilize the system the most.
  • Roughly 30 percent of shoppers expect the entire family to use the new console.
  • When making decisions on which next-generation console and games to buy, shoppers are listening to specific requests from the people they are buying for, with 84 percent taking requests for consoles, and 86 percent taking requests for specific video games.

Cyber Monday Online Shopping Extends Four Days After the Big Day

More than 130 million Americans participated in Cyber Monday this year. Cyber Monday sales reached a record $2 billion, a 20 percent increase since last year. Although Cyber Monday focuses on one day, the other four days this week continue to be peak online shopping days. Check out the infographic below, presented by Blue Fountain Media, for more information. [Read more...]

Survey Shows Children Want Game Systems, iPads for Holidays

Non-traditional items are finding their way onto children’s wish lists this year, according to a National Retail Federation (NRF) survey conducted by Prosper Insights and Analytics. For the first time, iPads are among the most popular gifts for both girls and boys, with slightly higher demand among the former.

Among the other results from NRF’s 2013 Top Toys survey: 44.3 percent of holiday consumers plan to buy toys as gifts this holiday season; children are still asking for timeless items such as Barbie and dolls (No. 1 and 2 among girls, respectively) or Lego and toy cars (No. 1 and 3 among boys, respectively). And the younger generation is clearly technologically savvy, asking this year for tablets/iPads, smartphones (girls’ No. 11), and game consoles like Xbox One (boys’ No. 5) and PlayStation 4 (girls’ No. 10, boys’ No. 6).

Other popular toys for girls include Monster High Dolls, Disney Princess, and American Girl. The hot new item for boys this year is Skylanders, a hugely popular interactive video game that allows kids to play with a toy action figure at the same time. [Read more...]

Nickelodeon Introduces The Story of Me Research Study

In a presentation to advertisers, Nickelodeon released its latest research insights into today’s kids, born since 2005, who are growing up markedly different from the generation before them. For these kids, the hallmarks and traits include being closer to their parents than prior generations, being seen as smart and funny by peers and family, and creating their own relationship to technology.

Drawn from a proprietary Nickelodeon Consumer Insights study titled “The Story of Me,” the presentation at the network’s Times Square headquarters compared and contrasted the kids of today with kids of a similar age 10 years ago, as well as highlighting select third-party data about kids’ media consumption.

Today’s generation of kids is demonstrating defining characteristics that set them apart from generations prior. Select findings and highlights from the presentation include:

[Read more...]

Shoppers Share Feelings About Return Policies, Fraud

According to a survey Tada commissioned of more than 7,000 online shoppers, 59 percent claim they’ve never been denied on a return while 38 percent of respondents claim they are. These shoppers double-check the policy to ensure that not only is there ample time for returns, but that there’s free shipping both ways as well.

The National Retail Federation (NRF) conducted a survey in 2012 to determine how much return fraud is costing stores: $2.9 billion last holiday season alone. A panel of shoppers claim that they very rarely, if ever, take advantage of an overly generous return policy (90 percent would not do this). Meanwhile, 92 percent say they’ve never committed wardrobing, which is buying something with the intent to use or wear it and return it. Generation Y is the most guilty of this, as 7 percent admit to doing this with clothing and 4 percent with electronics and other items.

These shoppers were also polled to find out who ranks as having the best and worst return policies. Some retailers ended up on both lists. Tada came up with their own list of the stores with the best return policies.

NRF Finds More Gift-Givers are Giving Gift Cards

NRF LogoAccording to NRF’s Gift Card Spending Survey, conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics, holiday shoppers are opting to give gift cards. They may be small, but they’re a fool-proof option for gift givers buying for friends and family members.

The survey also revealed that people prefer receiving gift cards, and that consumers are spending more on them. The go-to gift cards that people are giving include ones to stores, restaurants, coffee houses, and gas stations.

Letting the recipient choose his or her own gift is a trend that more and more people feel comfortable with; however, there are still some people who believe that gift cards are too impersonal.

New Research Data Released on Kids Making In-App Payments

New data from youth research agency Dubit has shown that parents have a greater hold on in-app payments (IAP). The research shows that only 2 percent of kids have ever spent without their parent’s permission, and not one of the 500 kids surveyed had ever spent more than $16 on a single purchase. Furthermore, only 17 percent of children are allowed by parents to spend money in-game, and they rarely spend more than $3 in one go.

Of the 500 parents and children (ages 6 to 12) surveyed by Dubit, 71 percent of the children played mobile games, compared with 91 percent of parents. Only 17 percent allow their child to spend real money in-game. The data shows that such permissions increase as kids get older: the older the child, the more likely they are to conduct an in-app purchase.  

Eighty-seven percent of kids always ask their parents before making a purchase, and 11 percent usually ask, meaning that only 2 percent have ever bought something without their parents’ consent. Although 2 percent is still a worry, this does not appear to be a case of kids being out of control. It appears that parents acknowledge this as 41 percent of children who are allowed to make in-app payments know their parent’s app store account details. [Read more...]