People staying indoors to stay away from chronic fine dust have changed recent sales trends, increasing the popularity of toys and exercise machines while hurting demand for drones, data from a major retailer showed Tuesday.
According to E-Mart Inc., South Korea's No. 1 hypermarket chain, sales of toys rose 8.2 percent between March 1-April 11 compared with the same period last year. Sales during the same number of days in 2017 was 8 percent down from the same period the year before.
Sales of toys for girls during the same period rose a solid 6.4 percent from the previous year.
Consumers refraining from outdoor activities also bought more exercise machines to use in their homes. Sales of such machines increased 8.5 percent, and sales of other exercise-related accessories rose 10.5 percent.
Comparatively, sales of drones, which have become popular as an outdoor hobby, fell 27 percent.
The trends are leading retailers to revise their marketing strategy for Children's Day and Parents' Day in May, also known as the Family Month.
"We expect sales of toys to keep increasing due to fine dust and the popularity of TV characters," said Kim Sung-ho, in charge of toy sales at E-Mart. "We are trying to secure enough stock ahead of Children's Day." (Yonhap)