Australian Newsagency Blog

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Cute drives traffic and revenue for engaged retailers

Mark Fletcher
August 2nd, 2018 · 5 Comments

We are in a period of glory days for all things cute. You only have to look at the shelves of K-Mart, Target, Typo, Smiggle and other retailers to see the value they place in cute products to drive traffic and revenue.

Cute comes in many sizes, shapes and colours, and in different products including cards, games, toys, gifts, wrap and more.

What is interesting abut cute is that people purchase cute items because they are cute, nor necessarily because they have an immediate need or because of product function. This is what makes cute products valuable.

The Guardian published an article in 2016 that explored the science of cute. A quick online search soon reveals pen ty of articles about cute and why cute products sell. While rooted in Asian, and, in particular, Japanese, culture, interest in cute is worldwide.

In a newsagency today you can leverage cute through existing product categories of cards, gifts, plush and toys, even more. To maximise the opportunity, however, you need to promote outside the business, to connect with people who might otherwise not visit the shop to see what you have to offer in the cuteness space.

Using a keyword analysis tool, I can see that there are in excess of 100,000 cute related searches online in Australia ever month. man of these searches relate to products. People are looking for cute products. This is a need we can serve in our evolving newsagency businesses. Sure, it is hard to play in a space that is not easily understood. However, there are groups, suppliers and others ho can help.

Take a moment and do your own research. be aware of what other retailers around you are selling. Test some products yourself. Test, too, a cute approach to product displays – there are many inspiring images online to guide you.

Testing is important because playing in the space of cuteness is all about playing in a way with products and opportunities outside what may be usual in your business. You are unlikely to have a relevant reference point. This is why I suggest playing, experimenting.

Cute is popular right now. Find ways to embrace not and you may tape into a new source of customers for your business and that has to be goal #1 right now.


Category: Management tip · marketing · marketing tip · Newsagency management · newsagency of the future · Newsagency opportunities

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Colin // Aug 2, 2018 at 8:59 PM


    Great stuff, but many phrases you use should be fully understood by all.

    K-Mart, Target, Typo, Smiggle and other retailers … means mega competition, immense price pressure, don’t even think about being behind the curve.

    Cute is popular right now .. means it won’t be tomorrow. When the tide turns, you won’t be able to sell off profitably over many months.

    100,000 cute related searches online …means be prepared to compete on price with Amazon and the like, forget 100% mark ups.

    If you are in a buying group who advised you buy months ago, congrats, if not, beware.


  • 2 Mark Fletcher // Aug 3, 2018 at 6:57 AM

    Colin you can label K-Mart, Target, Typo, Smiggle and others how you want. While they are competitors, certainly for Typo and Smiggle there is no price pressure whatsoever. There is pressure through ranging, placement and in-store pitch. But we can deal with that. In terms of being behind the curve, newsXpress was our front on this ahead of every major. It was in cute more than two years ago an the has grown well.

    My assessment is that cute will run for much longer yet. It is broadly based in terms of products, demographics, suppliers and more. This is what makes it valuable today and into the future.

    You are entitled to your negative view. I think if what you have written is your complete response on this then you will miss an opportunity. however, that is a choice you can make.


  • 3 Colin // Aug 3, 2018 at 7:37 AM


    My point was that if a newsagent has not been in cute then exercise some caution before diving in now. You yourself admit that NewsXpress have been into cute for 2 years. Hardly today’s news is it?

    I was not being negative about the product nor your stores. If you are doing well with products, good for you. That doesn’t make it a rallying call for 2000 newsagents to do the same.

    You comment on my store is unfounded. You don’t know it and for your information we have and do stock cute. Sometimes it has done well, currently other products are outperforming cute.


  • 4 Mark Fletcher // Aug 3, 2018 at 8:00 AM

    Colin I did not say you were negative about my stores. This post is not about my stores. You are negative about cute and an opportunity today. I see plenty of upside still, through a range of products. In the US and Europe, retail investment in cute is growing apace. I have not commented on your store.


  • 5 Andrew T // Aug 3, 2018 at 2:02 PM

    Do not engage Mark Fletcher in any rational argument/critique as he always seems to have a hissy fit and bitch slaps anyone down who criticises him

    Appalling behaviour


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