The traffic slump in offline stores and consumers’ tightened budget on the back of COVID-19 led demand for traditional toys and games to sink in 2020, in contrast to the positive growth since the early 2010s. Consumers had to spend more time at home, which became a double-edged sword for traditional toys and games.
Blind collectibles of dolls and accessories account for the vast majority of blind collectibles and featured great resilience in 2020, registering triple-digit growth. Myriads of manufacturers have launched blind collectibles since 2019, riding on their growth momentum, which has led to a variety of blind collectible products being interbred with all kinds of popular licenses and thus an increasing number of copious new offerings.
E-commerce witnessed a significant rise in value share within traditional toys and games in 2020 thanks to COVID-19. Confined at home at the beginning and reducing visits to offline stores due to safety concerns, consumers showed an unprecedented preference for shopping online for traditional toys and games, but the rise of e-commerce is more than a consumer behaviour shift.
Licensing plays a crucial role in shaping the growth momentum of categories, including action figures and accessories and dolls and accessories. The popularity of films such as Frozen and The Avengers and other types of entertainment content have been proven to propel sales of relevant licensed toys, but the pandemic temporarily halted the release of entertainment content and licensing activities, thereby having a negative impact on licensed toy demand.
After seeing explosive growth during 2018 and 2019, blind collectibles are projected to witness an apparent slowdown in growth over the forecast period. A tremendous number of players across various industries have jumped on the blind collectibles bandwagon, following the success of Pop Mart, with offline stores and vending machines selling blind collectibles expeditiously filtering into a wider array of shopping districts in high tier cities.
The consumer shift to e-commerce has been brought forward since the early stages of the pandemic, and it looks like it is here to stay. New ways of engaging with consumers to generate purchases, including livestreaming and short videos on e-commerce and social media platforms, will continue to see solid development over the forecast period.
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