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Gadget accessories could pay off

BY Barbara White-Sax

The core drug store shopper is a likely consumer of cell phone and computer accessories, according to research from the Consumer Electronics Association.

CEA research showed that while both men and women are likely to select a car charger as a desired accessory, women are more likely to choose extra batteries, hands-free kits and extra battery chargers. CEA research also revealed that women are more likely to purchase wireless mice and pads, zip drives and extra cables.

 

The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Consumer Electronics Accessories Sell-Through Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.

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ReportersNotebook — General Merchandise, 3/14/11

BY Barbara White-Sax

SUPPLIER NEWS — Hallmark has partnered with the U.S. Postal Service to make sending greeting cards hassle-free. New postage-paid greetings, which will range in price from $2.69 to $3.99, feature the U.S. Postal Service’s Intelligent Mail bar code on the front of the envelope. More than 200 varieties of everyday postage-paid greetings will be available.

Gearing up for the summer release of superhero flick “Green Lantern,” Warner Bros. Consumer Products is teaming up with licensee Mattel for a new branded toy line. The lineup includes: The Green Lantern Ring Blast jet figure and vehicle, Battle Shifters figures, Movie Masters figures and the Colossal Cannon blaster.

Crayola is looking to dazzle kids and parents alike with a new lineup of creative activities. The new products, available this August, include Glow Explosion sand art sculptures (suggested retail price $9.99); washable glow chalk (SRP $9.99); washable colored bubble launcher (SRP $14.99); Crayola Story Studio kits, including Spiderman, Disney princess and “Cars 2” (SRP $9.99 each); The Crayola iMarker (SRP $29.99); Mess Free Color Wonder metallic paper (SRP $9.99); and 3-D dry-erase activity set (SRP $12.99).

Procter & Gamble has introduced two new products that unite the cleaning power of Mr. Clean and the fresh scent of Febreze. New Zealand Springs and Hawaiian Aloha scents are available in pourable liquids and sprays. Each is designed to clean virtually all hard surfaces.

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Drug channel needs to amp up its CE potential

BY Barbara White-Sax

The drug store channel isn’t maximizing its potential in the consumer electronics category. According to research by TWICE and the Stevenson Co., CE sales at Walgreens, Rite Aid and CVS amounted to $111 billion last year, less than 1% of the chains’ combined revenue. At Walmart, electronics comprise about 7% of sales. TWICE’s research also revealed that CE sales at all three drug chains were down last year.

“There’s much more to consumer electronics than photo,” said Steve Koenig, director of industry analysis at the Consumer Electronics Association. Koenig said drug chains should have a dedicated buyer overseeing the booming category, expand their selections and promote the category “front and center on circulars to let consumers know what’s available in their stores.”

Stephen Baker, VP industry analysis at the NPD Group agreed. “Tech continues to go small and mobile, and those products throw off a large accessory business [for which] drug stores can use their convenient locations, hours and frequent shopping trips to exploit,” he said.

Baker said that drug stores have done “a great job in leveraging their high foot traffic during the holidays to focus on low-cost, highly gifted products,” such as e-readers, MP3 players and GPS systems. “This past holiday, we saw products like tablets and netbooks in drug store channels as well. As those categories grow in awareness, those are likely to provide a tremendous holiday opportunity for the drug channel,” he said, noting that the channel should stick to products under $100. Drug stores need to maintain the momentum during the rest of the year.

 

The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Consumer Electronics Buy-In Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.

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