The top 10 best selling toys in the UK in the countdown to Christmas

Published on: 20th December 2018

L.O.L Surprise! scoops first, third and fourth placed top sellers in a crucial pre-Christmas trading week.

The NPD Group today unveils the UK toy market’s 10 best-sellers for the week ending 8th December, the last weekly sales data that will be published before Christmas. A favourite all year round, the L.O.L Surprise! Doll assortment has topped the list, with other variations of the hit toy also claiming third and fourth place in the table.

Featuring in the top 10 are Harry Potter’s Great Hall from Lego, interactive robots Boxer and Cozmo, Kidizoom a digital camera for pre-schoolers, and Poopsie the Magical Unicorn, which features glitter slime. The unicorn was certainly the most popular ‘animal’ in the toys sector this year, and will continue to be popular into 2019, although The NPD Group believes that llamas will challenge unicorns for popularity with kids next year.

Worth £1.2b, or 34% of annual sales, Christmas is a crucial time for retailers and toy manufacturers with £110 spent on each child on average, and the fortnight before Christmas usually accounts for 12% of annual toy sales. The toy industry has not been immune from the challenges facing the retail sector this year, so the performance this Christmas sales period will be closely analysed.

Frederique Tutt, Global Industry Analyst, Toys, NPD, commented: “This year, Christmas Day falls on a Tuesday, and the last time that happened was in 2012. If Christmas sales then are a predictor of what will happen in 2018, we’ll have seen three weeks of solid sales figures up to the big day and record spend on the high street during the weekend before Christmas. The majority of toy sales are still made in a physical store at six in 10 (61%) of toys sold, so we expect toy shops and stockists up and down the country to be busy up to the last minute.”

Collectible sales are up 32% year-on-year since 2017. From Hatchimals to football stickers, Pokémon and L.O.L Surprise, collectibles have been both a highlight and a key contributor of growth in the toy market this year. With an average price of around £4.80, they currently represent 14% of total sales in the market, and account for one out of four toys sold.


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