Amazon.com relies on glamor and nostalgia to convince buyers with its first toy catalog. Another strategy that involves the sale of toys.
The company released its "Holiday of Play" catalog Wednesday. It contains 70 pages of delighted, cosily dressed children surrounded by toys, and will be mailed to millions of customers this month. It shows the breadth of toy inventory, including classics such as action figures, board games and Barbies, as well as high-end items such as Bose and PlayStation audio equipment.
When the former Juggernaut Toys R Us closed its last stores earlier this year, it began to fight giants like Walmart, Target and Kohls and online powerhouses like Amazon, all looking for a slice of the $ 3.3 billion toy market of the country were in demand.
(Amazon boss Jeffrey P. Bezos owns the Washington Post.)
"Amazon is pleased to offer customers a new way to buy toys this Christmas," the company said in a statement to The Post.
"Holiday of Play" reflects the familiar style of the Toys R Us holiday catalog, but with some modern flourishes. You will not find any prices on the pages. Buyers need to go online to find out how much the products actually cost. Instead, when the QR code is scanned, the item is placed in the buyer's online shopping cart and brought to the site within seconds. The digital versions of the catalog are available on the Kindle and online in PDF format.
The catalog is a weapon in Amazon's holiday arsenal, along with free shipping to all customers during the holidays, without the need for a minimum purchase. The lack of explicit pricing is intentional, leaving Amazon open to change pricing to stay competitive as the season gets hotter, said Linda Bolton Weiser, analyst at D.A. Davidson.
"During the holidays, retailers are trying to be nimble with prices," said Weiser. "This allows them to be flexible when they want, in which case you do not want to print the price up in the catalog."
Bolton Weiser pointed out that the products in the catalog come primarily from the year's hot toy lists and robust toy brands such as Barbie, Fischer Price and Lego. There are no risky, unknown items.
"If you want to secure a market share, do it with classic brands that are bought up for the holidays," said Bolton Weiser. "This will benefit the big toy manufacturers that have these big, classic brands, and the smaller toy companies."
Although they may seem outdated, catalogs are still a surprisingly successful marketing tool, according to the Data & Marketing Association studies, which found that in 2016, more than 100 million American adults bought a catalog that is now the largest retail purchasing power have.
Other retailers are making big changes to show their commitment to selling holiday toys. Walmart has increased his "Top Rated By Kids" program and is working with a group of 25 "Kidinfluencers" to create a list of the hottest toys of the season. The company is increasing its in-store toys by 30 percent and online toys by 40 percent. In addition, around 2,000 events will be held to introduce the new products. Target is also expanding and nearly doubling its new and exclusive range of toys over the previous year. It has expanded its toy areas and rebuilt 100 shops.
Meanwhile, Toys R Us is still limping, even past the grave. Last week, supermarket chain Kroger announced that they would host mini-pop-up toy stores called "Geoffreys Toy Box" in nearly 600 Kroger stores during the holidays in partnership with Toys R Us. Geoffrey the giraffe was the Toys R Us mascot.