February 2008 | Vol. VII - No. 2
My Best Sellers: Clever Kids Toy Shop
Dolls and Fun Activities Ensure Solid Sales
Owner Michelle Beyer of Clever Kids Toy Shop in Rochester, Minn., is picky when it comes to choosing products, and her customers seem to appreciate the extra attention she gives to a small space. Dolls, plush and creative activities reign at this two-location shop that forged its beginnings as a simple kiosk and grew with a move that took it states away, she told TDmonthly Magazine. See Michelle’s best sellers below, and read her story here.
Anyone can turn his or her doodles into amazing motion pictures. The backs feature several sets of perforated pages, each with a sequence of partially finished pictures illustrating a funny story. Complete the drawings in one’s own inimitable style, tear out the pages, bind them with one of the included custom clips and flip the pages to see one’s art in action. The book comes with four sturdy clips, a set of colorful mini-markers, enough tear-‘em-out pages to make eight distinctive flip books and a how-to guide. Launch date: March 2008.
— “They are a wonderful price and they are all great,” Owner Michelle Beyer of Clever Kids Toy Shop in Rochester, Minn., told TDmonthly in late 2007. “Each book is packed full of great activities. We are the top seller of KLUTZ in Minnesota!”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 16873 (added 1/2/2008)
To help meet the demand for Webkinz sweeping the continent, Ganz has come out with a new line of Lil'Kinz. Like their larger counterparts, Lil'Kinz characters come with their own codes that are revealed after purchase. Kids adopt the little guys as their own and take them into an online world of fun and KinzKash. Kids can now make Lil'Kinz Hippo their best buddy, play some games at the arcade and stop by the "W" shop to pick up a bowl of crunch "shoots n' roots."
— “We sold over 2,000,” Gwen Boden said of how Webkinz fared in 2007. Boden is the manager of Doodlehopper in Springfield, Va.
— “Webkinz: We sell daily, hourly,” Robin Ellerman, owner of Trains-n-Toys in North Canton, Ohio, told TDmonthly.
— Over 21 percent of retailers told TDmonthly that Webkinz was their all-around best-selling item of 2007.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 16092 (added 11/12/2007)
The family of "My Name" products includes the following: Mugs, Keyrings, Drink Bottles, Piggy Banks, Door Plaques, Picture Frames, Gifted Bears, Gel Pens, Natural Crystals and Something Forever Jewelry.
— The baby mugs, children’s mugs and key chains in this line are best sellers at Clever Kids Toy Shop in Rochester, Minn., Owner Michelle Beyer told TDmonthly in late 2007.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 11419 (added 2/9/2007)
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This 12”-tall fairy-in-training is a bright, bubbly character with a tendency for turning things into pumpkins with her training wand. She is made of soft-pink plush and features pigtails woven from pink and purple yarn, as well as white mesh wings and a dress of blue lilac. “She’s the newest character on Sesame Street and this is her first appearance as a plush pal,” Shallu Chhabra, marketing and licensing manager for GUND, told TDmonthly. “GUND has taken great care in adding lots of wonderful design details — including yarn and embroidery accents and shimmery fabrics — to make Abby especially suited to the specialty toy market.” Launch date: August 2007.
— Gund’s Sesame Street characters and large puppets are best-selling items at Clever Kids in Rochester, Minn., according to Owner Michelle Beyer.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 14160 (added 7/19/2007)
Kids can make their own snuggly friend without sewing a single stitch. Just stuff the two soft fabric bodies with the included squishy “pillows,” and then choose from the ready-made felt features — ears, noses, arms, and tails — to create a distinctive animal. Sturdy Velcro tabs ensure that all of the parts attach and detach with ease, so kids can make a monkey, mouse, dog, cat, bird or bunny. Launch date: March 2008.
— Chicken Sox products are popular at Clever Kids in Rochester, Minn., according to Owner Michelle Beyer. “The price point is great and the activities are all super for young kids, ages 3 to 6 especially,” she said in late 2007.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 16875 (added 1/2/2008)
This doll features a huggable, soft body, moving eyes and long silky hair that can be brushed and styled in lots of different ways. Coralie is a quality, loveable addition to a young girl's doll collection, as well as her world of imagination and role play.
— "I have seen the doll category grow significantly this year. Corolle has been a good brand," said Diane Gervais for Amato’s in Middletown, Conn.
— "Dolls will do well for [the 4 to 8] age group. Probably Corolle," said Ginger Milligan, owner of Fantasy Island Toys in Fairhope, Ala., when predicting Christmas 2007 sales. Twelve of 54 retailers told TDmonthly Corolle would be a hot seller for girls during the 2007 holidays.
— “The product is wonderful and they have a varied price-point,” Michelle Beyer, owner of Clever Kids in Rochester, Minn., told TDmonthly in late 2007 about this best seller in her store.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 15297 (added 9/20/2007)
With this wooden puzzle, kids can hear the names of 26 letters and objects that begin with the letters.
— Puzzles by Melissa & Doug, especially the company’s sound puzzles, are best sellers at Red Wagon Toy Co. in Woodstock, Vt., Owner Kim Smith told TDmonthly in summer 2007.
— Puzzles and other products by Melissa & Doug are also best sellers at Clever Kids in Rochester, Minn. “The prices are great and the product is of high quality,” Owner Michelle Beyer told TDmonthly in late 2007.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 14795 (added 8/22/2007)
Simply turn the handle on the box and a plush Peter Pirate jumps out of the tin box. The Peter Pirate line also includes a domed keepsake box and an alarm clock. Items in the Peter Pirate collection, which also includes a domed keepsake box and an alarm clock, have a suggested retail price of $9.99 to $19.99.
— “Products by Schylling, such as Jack-in-the-Box” are best sellers at Clever Kids in Rochester, Minn., according to Owner Michelle Beyer.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 16654 (added 12/19/2007)
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Writer's Bio: Brenda Ruggiero is a freelance writer from western Maryland. Read more articles by this author
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