TIA Reports on Black Friday and Holiday Shopping
New York, NY (December 1, 2008) – Toy Industry
Association (TIA) representatives were in the stores all day on
“Black” Friday, November 28th – checking store
merchandise, sales activity, special sales offers, and other indicators
of seasonal toy sales trends. TIA representatives were also
closely following economic reports on behalf of the trade
association’s members, more than 500 North American toy
manufacturers and distributors.
“Activity was brisk in all of the stores that we visited in the
early morning hours on Friday, and the toy department seemed to be one
of the busiest departments at all of the mass market retailers, with
people literally packing their shopping carts,” said Reyne Rice,
Toy Trend Specialist for the New York–based Toy Industry
Rice noted that shoppers seemed particularly organized this year,
many shopping in pairs, dividing and conquering departments,
communicating via cell phone, and most with store flyers, computer
print-outs or other “deal lists” in hand.
“According to the National Retail Federation survey, Black
Friday kicked off the holiday shopping season quite energetically, with
shoppers spending an average of $372.57 this weekend, up 7.2% from last
year,” added TIA President Carter Keithley.
“Expectations were for a loss, so these numbers are encouraging,
and toys sales are expected to be near the top of lists for top sellers
at the mass market retailers.”
Three specific trends noted by TIA during its on-site retail
- Trend #1: Home for the Holidays
“We’re seeing a real increase in
‘hunkering’ down at home with home-based entertainment
options,” said Rice. “The ‘staycations’
which began in the summer months, and continued throughout Thanksgiving
weekend, are entering another chapter in the stay-at-home
trend.” Rice noted empty shelves in the family friendly
board games and electronic entertainment aisles.
“People are buying products that entertain them less expensively
at home, and provide multiple use, for the entire family, offering a
stronger price-value benefit,” added Rice.
- Trend #2: More Sales, More Often
Good news for shoppers who missed Black Friday sales -- many retailers
have indicated intentions to run consistent promotions all the way
through New Year’s Day.
“In the toy retail sector, Wal-Mart started sales in October, and
Toys “R” Us big book sales beginning on November 2nd.
These sales are from 50% off on many items to 25% off on bundles or
exclusive merchandise. Many retailers say they will continue to
promote sales and specials throughout the holiday season,” said
“Target, KB Toys and Kmart all had door-buster sales on Black
Friday, and continued special sales through the Thanksgiving Holiday
weekend,” she added.
- Trend #3: Online Shopping
“While today, or ‘Cyber Monday’ is often
considered the start of the online shipping season, many industry
analysts point to ‘Green Monday,’ December 15th,
as the largest online shopping day of the year, as it is the last day
consumers can typically order online and get guaranteed shipment in time
for Hanukkah and Christmas holiday celebrations,” said
“Therefore we think that today’s online sales results will
be an indicator of what to expect later this month,” he
TIA has a long history of leadership in the development of toy safety
standards, and US standards for toys are widely used as models around
the globe. As the trade association for North American producers
and importers of toys, games and entertainment products for the youth
market, TIA represents over 500 manufacturers and importers of toys who
account for approximately 85% of all toys distributed in the North
America. Those toy manufacturers are committed to providing safe, fun
and innovative playthings for children. TIA is committed to making
important safety information widely available to parents and caregivers
free of charge in order to ensure safe play.
Adrienne Citrin / Tania Zamorsky
Toy Industry Association / G.S. Schwartz & Co.
646-520-4863 / 212-725-4500 ext. 310/328