The fashion of gifting personalized products has been booming over the past few years, mostly during the holiday season but also quite prominent for special occasions like weddings, birthdays, retirements, babies, etc. The act of gifting is often quite personal in itself, so it is no wonder that as soon as it was widely available and affordable to personalize the actual product that was being gifted, people glommed onto the trend, and the resulting popularity has brought the personalized items market to where it is today: worth over 20 billion dollars globally and expected to keep growing into the next decade.
Technavio analysts note three major drivers for the personalized gifts market growth:
- The evolving culture around gifting (there are now more and more occasions during which people want to give gifts), as well as the increase in demand for personalized seasonal decorations.
- Innovative gifting solutions (like licensed content from movies) and advancements in technology for a growing base of products on which one can print.
- A growing number of retailers and distribution channels, especially online.
As an online retailer offering customizable products, it is important to keep abreast of product trends to ensure that your offering continually matches consumer demand, allowing your business to maximize its sales and revenues. A major player in the growth of the personalized gift market has been seasonal décor, including such products as plates, cups, napkins, ornaments, etc. These types of products seem to especially surge in popularity around Christmas, Hanukah, Easter, Independence Day (in the U.S.), and Halloween.
Another sector gaining a lot of popularity for product personalization is home décor, especially its sub-sector of wall décor. Wall décor actually accounted for 31.81% of the entire photo merchandising market, as of 2016. According to Technavio, “the most preferred wall décor in the market is the wall art, followed by picture frames and wall clocks. The availability of customized and personalized offerings from several vendors form an effective value proposition for the wall décor market in the US” for the forecasted period of 2017-2021.
Furthermore, a great way to research which types of products are the best selling at any time of the year is to do a simple Google (or other) search and take a look at some of the biggest players in the market. Today, many of the common best sellers that appear on multiple lists (aside from those already mentioned above) are products like personalized drinkware, t-shirts, cushions and throw blankets, baby toys and apparel, calendars, greeting cards, and posters, to name a few. Note that we’ve looked at known large players in the U.S., but when conducting your own research, consider who might be seen as an influential company in your region/market and take a look at their best-selling products first.
Of course, your specific consumer base may have very specific desires. Thus, along with researching industry trends and common best sellers to augment your current product selection, it is also important to perform analytics on your sales to see what your customer base purchases the most. Once you determine this, you can do a lot with segmenting your product catalog (ie: creating a “Best Sellers” or “Inspirations” category) and running promotions to push these already “star-performer” products in order to generate as much revenue as possible from your existing strategy.
Trends change rapidly in our fast-paced environment. But what doesn’t change is the fact that consumers love to have new choices. The end of a year is a great time to reflect and strategize some fresh offerings and new categories to serve your loyal customers better and even attract some new ones during the next year. Cheers to a 2018 filled with growth and success, from all of us at Mediaclip!