Qualatex's Anna Bubnova on why independent toy shops looking for new ways to engage with customers should embrace inflatables.

OPINION: Balloons bring smiles and sales

In this age of online shopping, more and more independent toy shops are looking for new ways to engage with customers.

The key to bringing more people through your door is to provide a true shopping experience and personal service that can’t be found on the Internet.

By adding balloons to existing toy offerings, retailers can capitalise on this service-driven category while maximising each sales transaction.

In comparison to other product categories, balloons require a relatively low investment. They are also very profitable, especially when sold as a coordinated bouquet that has a higher perceived value to the customer.

Colourful balloons have the ability to bring smiles all on their own or as part of a gift presentation, so they naturally go hand-in- hand with toys.

Even if a customer doesn’t come into the store with the intention of buying balloons, that can change as soon as they see balloons on display. That’s because showing inflated balloons is the best way to sell them.

To further encourage purchases, try offering packages or promotions such as ‘toy of your choice with a birthday balloon bouquet.’

As a category that’s driven by special occasions, with birthdays being the biggest of those, balloons hold great profit potential for toy retailers.

When you think of birthdays as the ‘everyday holiday’, it’s easy to imagine how many opportunities there are to capitalize ?on this huge market for balloon sales.

Additionally, licensed character balloons can be a great promotional tie-in with other licensed products and upcoming movie releases.

Qualatex Bubble Balloons, for example, are offered in many popular licensed designs. With their unique 3D appearance, these stretchy plastic balloons are a great way to draw customers in for a closer look, and ultimately a higher sale.

By adding balloons? to your offering, you’re providing an extra service and convenience to customers to enhance their gift-buying experience.

With a little training, which Qualatex can provide, it’s easy for any toy shop ?to start professionally selling inflated balloons and enjoying increased profits.

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