Collectables on a high, says NPD

by TnP Staff
Published: 21 September 2018, 07:01
Quick Link:

Three in 10 toys sold in the UK between January and August were collectables

The NPD Group has revealed that collectables represent a significant slice of the UK toy market, both by volume and value. Collectables have been a main stay of the toy market for years, but recently the category has been rebooted by manufacturers adding creative new elements to meet the demands of today’s savvy young toy collectors. Sales of collectables increased by 29 per cent in the first eight months of 2018 alone and by 156 per cent since the same period in 2015. Key to success are unboxing, surprise, exclusivity, and a good sprinkling of social media shareability.

From football stickers to Shopkins, three in 10 toys sold in the UK between January and August – or 15 per cent of total spend – were collectables. L.O.L. Surprise! is not only the top-selling collectable, it’s also the number one selling toy overall, further highlighting the importance of this category to the toy market. And with an average price of £3.91, these toys are usually well within the budget of those relying on pocket-money to build their collection. 

Top five best-selling collectable toys in the UK – January to August 2018:

L.O.L. Surprise!

MGA Entertainment

FIFA World Soccer



Esdevium / Asmodée


Spin Master


Flair Preziosi

Source: The NPD Group Retail Tracking Service – U.K.

Frédérique Tutt, Toys Global Industry Analyst, The NPD Group, says: “With a sales increase of 156 per cent in the last three years, it’s no wonder that toy manufacturers are keen to tap into the current popularity of collectables, and they know it takes imagination and creativity to have a hit. Collectable ranges must tick a number of boxes if they are to appeal to today’s discerning collector, many of whom have grown up in the digital world. New launches are becoming increasingly innovative, incorporating elements such as unboxing, code-cracking and exclusivity. Some rate each toy as ‘common, rare or super-rare’, adding to the thrill of opening each new item purchased. It also provides another joy of collecting – swapping with friends and other enthusiasts.”