Kids indoor toys contain a range of products like board games, building and construction toys, dolls, puzzles, toy cars, soft toys, playing cards, action figures, ride-ons, etc. These toys can be classified by age groups, namely infants, toddlers, pre-schoolers, grade-schoolers and teenagers.
Recent developments in the kids indoor toys market have largely concentrated on the toddlers to grade-schoolers segments. Several products are meant to cater to specific age groups. Soft toys and smart toys that promote cognition are targeted at infants and toddlers; toy cars, dolls, action figures and ride-ons target pre-schoolers; while board games, cards and puzzles target older age groups.
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The kids indoor toys market is a highly fragmented market and sees the participation of various global and local players across the various regional and type-based segments. The market also consists of a large unorganised sector which has proved difficult to regulate and eats a substantial pie of the market share.
While local players hold the edge in cheap access to raw materials and lower labour costs, global manufacturers benefit from their brand image. As a result, effective marketing strategies are a key for major global manufacturers. Manufacturers have leveraged the penetration of mass media among children, especially films and television, for this purpose.
For example, LEGO entered into a partnership with Universal Studios in 2018 and had launched the LEGO Batman and LEGO Ninjago movies in 2017. Similarly, Hasbro has capitalised from the Transformers movies franchise and G.I. Joe movies, while Mattel’s Barbie product line has been popularised trough 37 films since the Barbie movies franchise began in 2001.
Other forms of endorsements and sponsorships too help kids indoor toys manufacturers market their brand. For example, Mattel has partnered with drivers, racing car companies and motorsports associations to popularise its Hot Wheels line of products.
The primary target audience for the market largely remains children since their persuasion power takes precedence over their parents’ purchasing power. At the same time, certain indoor toy products for kids, like Hasbro’s Monopoly, find an audience among adults as well.
Some of the key players in the market include The LEGO Group, Hasbro, JAKKS Pacific, Toy Quest, Melissa & Doug, Toys “R” Us, MindWare, Mattel, K’NEX Industries, Simba Dickie Group, GoldLok Toys, Spin Master, Namco Bandai, KnuckleStrutz, Fat Brain Holdings, PlayMonster, Schylling, Integrity Toys, Smartivity, Sanrio Company, Nanoblock, Parent, Ravensburger, Dream International, Konami Corporation, TOMY Company, Smart Kids Toys, Vivid Imaginations, Learning Resources, MGA Entertainment, Safari, Playmates Toys, Engino.net, BanBao, GigoToys, Polydron, VTech Electronics North America, Tegu, Magformers, ExportersIndia.Com and Leapfrog Entertainment.
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Drivers and Challenges for the Kids Indoor Toys Market
The growing children’s population, coupled with the increasing tendency of parents to spend on toys, has been the key market driver. However, the increasing popularity of video games, toy drones and outdoor toys have presented challenges to the kids indoor toys market, especially in segments catering to higher age groups.
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Impact of Covid-19
Sales of indoor toys have seen a big jump during the Covid-19 pandemic as lockdowns and other social distancing measures, especially closure of schools, have meant that children are left with no alternative but to entertain themselves at home. However, this spurt is an exception and the previously forecasted growth trajectories are expected to return once the pandemic recedes.
The pandemic situation has also led to a major shift in distribution channels, with online sales surpassing retail stores and supermarkets’ sales. However, these traditional vendors are expected to bounce back in the near future.
The economic crisis being caused due to the pandemic is affecting people’s disposable incomes, which is likely to translate into reduced spending on children’s toys. However, this may also push parents to opt for affordable indoor toys as against high-end products like video games and drones.
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North America and Europe have been the largest regional segments for the market, while East Asia and South Asia have been the fastest growing segments. Consumer preference for products in these segments has also varied. Middle East and Africa, Latin America and Oceania have been the other key regional segments.
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