Are Toys Good for Dropshipping? Not Always!!

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Growing up in the 80’s I was more than happy to play with some plastic figurines, keeping me occupied for hours, however, times have changed. Kids now are growing up in the world of TikTok and streaming services and can watch what they want, when they want and have shorter attention spans.

The same goes for toys, they are constantly evolving to grab the attention of children. There are more toys than ever to sell online so if you’re contemplating dropshipping toys you’ll want to read on.

Toys are a great niche for dropshipping because there are multiple categories and product variants to choose from as well as upsells and cross-sells for higher average order value. Toys also target the most passionate audience, parents and grandparents.

Why Are Toys Good for Dropshipping?

There are various categories and sub-niches you can target within the toy niche. You can sell sensory toys, educational toys, baby toys, wooden toys, plush toys, vintage and the list goes on and on! There are thousands of different toys and alternative variations available for you to continue testing until you find some winners.

Increasing your average order value (AOV) with upsells and cross-sells is powerful in the toy niche as there are always additional toys, accessories and variants as well as bundling specific products together.

During Q4 leading up to Christmas, most dropshippers can expect a large increase in sales and the toy niche may be the largest of all those expected increases. The screenshot below shows the search term “kids toys” in the US over the past 5 years.

Search volume for kids toys on Google trends

With pandemics and financial issues, parents will be buying their children toys for Christmas and even in a recession, you can still expect Q4 to be profitable if you’re dropshipping toys. Be prepared for this period by communicating beforehand with your supplier. Make sure they have enough stock so that you can scale your business confidently.

Parents and grandparents love to spoil with gifts and by putting the right toy in front of them, it is a difficult purchase to resist. The average user age is older on Facebook compared to TikTok and Instagram making it a successful platform to target these demographics.

Why Dropshipping Toys May Be a Bad Idea?

I think we’ve established dropshipping toys in general can be very lucrative but there are a few areas to be aware of first.

You can dropship toys, however, you will need to comply with the safety guidelines for the countries you are selling to. Be sure to research the safety requirements and only work with a supplier who can provide the necessary certifications.

If you are dropshipping toys from China using AliExpress, there are some products which may not meet the safety standards in certain countries. It can be extremely risky as many of these sellers are simply people from home essentially dropshipping themselves from other suppliers.

Buying in bulk from a reputable company on Alibaba may be a preferred option. These companies will often have reports and certifications to send to you. Without such certifications, you probably won’t get a shipment of toys through customs.

Best Toys to Dropship

There are so many different toys to sell for children of various ages that it can be difficult to know exactly which toys are ideal to dropship.

  • Unique – The toy should not be available in most retail stores and ideally be a toy the consumer has never seen before.
  • Wow Factor – Even more lucrative than unique is a wow factor! Something distinctive about the toy which stops people scrolling and makes them take notice.
  • Specific – It is not essential but targeting specific interests of children and toys will increase conversions. Whether that be an educational toy for five year old boys or wooden sensory toys for babies 6 – 12 months.

None of the above points are necessary for finding a profitable toy to dropship although they are definitely preferred. The key is to create a compelling ad creative to resonate with people and this can be done with simple toys but is far more effective with the criteria above.

Here are a few examples of popular dropshipping toys over the past few years.

Childrens wooden building blocks

These wooden blocks are now available in retail stores due to their popularity online. Rock stacking/balancing is fun and simple, supports cognitive development, problems solving and also has been marketed from a mindfulness angle.

Children's remote plane toy

An unbreakable foam remote-controlled plane. The main problem people face with remote planes is them crashing and breaking and this mitigates the problem.

Kids car toy

Most vehicle and car toys are aimed at boys and this is a simple yet cute toy which can be marketed towards girls of varying ages.

Children's car city toy

A popular toy online and I have seen a one-product store based around this specific toy. It is aimed at toddlers/young children for imaginative play as well as being educational.

Children's tracing educational toy

Here is another toy that was popular with dropshippers a few years ago and now is found in retail stores. It is a projector for children to draw pictures.

Worst Toys to Dropship

The worst toys to dropship are the opposite of the points I listed previously.

  • Generic – Boring toys without any unique qualities will make it unlikely consumers will click on your ads and limit your conversion rate.
  • Breakable – One of the worst parts of dropshipping is dealing with returns and refunds therefore I would avoid selling any fragile or easily breakable toys.
  • Complicated – If you’re selling any toys that are confusing to use you can expect a lot of customer service answering questions and queries.
  • Unsafe – If you are at all concerned with the safety of any toy it’s best just to find another toy to sell, it’s certainly not worth the risk if a toy can be dangerous or potentially unsafe.

Although it’s not a toy, I would be cautious and apprehensive about dropshipping any children’s safety products from China. This can include baby-proofing products, helmets, car seats or anything that can cause injury to a child. Alibaba has listing requirements for booster seats, baby carriers and travel systems.

I would say that if you do plan to dropship products which are a little more generic, you need to dominate the space and appear like the authority. A good example of this is a dropshipping store called “Plushie Depot” which sells plush toys. The store sells generic toys but the last time I checked they stocked over 2,000 items and appear to be quite successful.

Dropshipping toy store Plushie Depot
Online toy store Plushie Depot

Summary

If you’re on the fence and deciding if you can dropship toys, you can, but be sure to do your due diligence first. Don’t assume because an item is listed on AliExpress it can be dropshipped to the US, the UK or Australia.

I would suggest you avoid dropshipping trending toys such as, fidget spinners and poppers, and instead stick to selling high-quality toys. Creating a branded store with unique lifestyle images and videos of children using toys in real-life situations will be one of the best ways of building a successful long-term store.

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