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Feb 26, 2019

Spark Joy to Grow Sales

Leen Nsouli, Executive Director, Industry Analyst ;

Office Supplies

Nine oversized black trash bags bulging at the seams lined the stairway of my apartment. It took three February weekends and several moments of quiet contemplation as I decided whether items would stay or go. Would I wear this again? Would I ever fit into this again? Would I miss this? The answer was ‘no’ more often than not. That’s how I ended up with nine bags.

Minimalism is not a new movement, but the launch of Marie Kondo’s new Netflix series “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” brought the idea of “Choosing Joy” to American households and the response has been mass participation. Marie Kondo utilizes the KonMari method, which promotes tidying five categories in order: clothing, books, paper, Komono (miscellaneous items), and sentimental items.

Organizing papers requires gathering every piece of paper and separating them into three categories: papers that need attention, papers you need to keep short-term, and papers your need to keep forever. The rest are shredded or tossed out. As consumers began to organize their papers, sales of the tools and materials that help in the process saw year-over-year gains.

In January 2019, dollar sales of filing and file storage supplies were up 3 percent and shredders grew 2 percent as consumers looked for new filing solutions. Unit sales of specialty labels increased 4 percent in January after declining 4 percent in 2018. The need to preserve documents may be contributing to gains within laminating, sheet protection, and self-stick value packs. I anticipate sales of organization solutions will continue to see a positive effect from consumers’ latest obsession with tidying, especially as organization season approaches and consumers share their progress across social media platforms.

In a time when health, wellness, and mindfulness have become essential values to consumers’ daily operation, retailers and brands have an opportunity to help the consumer take control of their “joy” by helping them remove what is distracting, and enhance what promotes a mindful life. Sometimes, we don’t realize just how many big bags of unnecessary stuff we have accumulated in our closets, homes, offices, and classrooms over the years.


Source: The NPD Group, Inc. / Weekly Retail Tracking Service/ 5 weeks ending February 2, 2019

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