Barnes & Noble Testing Toy Shops
Books are a tough sell these days and Barnes & Noble
is looking for ways to make the space in its stores more productive. One possible
answer the chain has come up with is toys.
William Lynch, CEO of Barnes & Noble,
told Reuters the company is
testing 3,000 square-foot stores-within-the-store at five locations in Connecticut,
New Jersey and New York. The chain will sell educational toys and games in the
"It could be huge for us," he told the news service. "We
think we should be the largest seller of educational toys and games in the
The toy areas within the test stores is much larger than the space
currently given to kids’ books in existing locations. The store-within-the-store
is organized in five areas based on the educational objective of the toy or
Pete Wahlstrom, an analyst with Morningstar, told Reuters that
toys had the potential to grow to 10 percent of Barnes & Noble’s business.
"On the margins, this is something that can drive traffic, and probably
targets more affluent customers that have more disposable income for the holidays," he
Discussion Questions: What do you think of the potential for educational
toy departments in Barnes & Noble stores? What will it mean for other
[Editor’s Note] William Lynch told Reuters, "We’re not trying
to create Toys R Us."