Christmas spending child’s play

building blocks, toysSpending on toys and games will dramatically rise over Christmas trading says the Australian Retailers Association (ARA), as new research from Roy Morgan shows where Australian children prefer to shop.

The ARA said consumers are expected to spend big on toys and games in retail stores over the peak shopping period, with a total retail spend of $46.7 billion expected in the six weeks from November 15 to December 24.

Compared with the rest of the year, in the Christmas shopping period between November 2014 and January 2015, kids outdoor games and toys saw a 143 per cent increase, while indoor games and toys purchase popularity grew by 123 per cent.

“The ARA expects spending on toys to spike significantly in the coming weeks, as Santa, along with parents and family stock up on Christmas gifts for the kids,” said ARA executive director, Russell Zimmerman.

“Christmas 2015 is shaping up to be strong despite rising home loan rates and wavering consumer sentiment, and this week will set the tone for the 3.6 per cent growth we’re expecting to see.”

Comparing the best selling items of Christmas 2013 to Christmas 2014, phones and accessories saw the greatest rise, at 109 per cent; while women’s socks rose 92 per cent; personal entertainment and cameras, 92 per cent; women’s hosiery, 88 per cent, and women’s sportswear, 70 per cent.

Where kids want to shop
Roy Morgan’s Young Australians Survey, published this week, found that 56 per cent of Australian children aged 6-13 visit Kmart in any given four weeks. Its rival discount department store giants, Target (55 per cent) and Big W (54 per cent) aren’t far behind before a drop to JB Hi-Fi (28 per cent) in fourth spot and The Reject Shop (26 per cent) in fifth.

A diverse selection of retailers spanning Rebel Sport (22 per cent), Best & Less (20 per cent), Myer (18 per cent), Officeworks (16 per cent) and Cotton On (13 per cent) completes the top 10.

“Anyone who’s seen one of Kmart’s funky, brightly-coloured TV advertisements or one of Target’s positively cinematic ‘greatest toy sale on Earth’ ads would not be surprised to learn that these two stores are among the retailers most visited by Australian kids, accompanied presumably by their parents at least some of the time,” said Roy Morgan Research CEO, Michael Levine. “These retail giants clearly know how to spark their target market’s imagination and have the budget to make it happen.”

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