In a bid to attract a younger demographic—and keep up with purely e-commerce rivals like Amazon—US retailer JCPenney has introduced toy shops in all of its brick-and-mortar stores while significantly expanding its online toy assortment.
Strategically placed beside the Disney Collection inside JCPenney’s children’s department, the shops feature a diverse mix of toys for all ages. Playthings include dolls, action figures, racing cars, arts and crafts, board games, plush and learning sets from top brands such as Hasbro, Mattel, Playmobil and Fisher-Price.
Among the properties featured are Barbie, Shopkins, Hatchimals, NERF, Hot Wheels and Star Wars. The shops also house a special play area where kids can try out select products.
As for its online business, JCPenney decided to expand its e-commerce offering at JCPenney.com after a successful holiday season last year that placed more emphasis on toy sales. Over the last year, in fact, the retailer has doubled its online toy offerings, adding new product categories including bicycles, video games, outdoor trampolines, costumes and science kits, while also sorting products by age group.
This fall, it will also add a large selection of interactive, STEM-based toys and significantly grow its overall toy assortment for the 2017 holiday season.
The decision to tap into toys that teach science, technology, engineering and math concepts is timely, given competitor Amazon’s 2017 summer toy list places STEM toys as hot products for the second year in a row.