After a long rough stretch, Toys R Us appears to be bouncing back into the toy game.
Yesterday, the children’s toy chain just opened its first new retail location in the US after shuttering all its stores just 17 months ago. The new store is also symbolic of the changing nature of the company. Toys R Us has been in business for 54 years, during which time its name has become synonymous with massive, block-shaped stores stuffed full of children’s entertainment products. Recently, the company has had to have another look at its business model. “Historically, Toys R Us stores were 40,000-square-feet, large big box locations… What we’ve looked to do here is completely re-imagine the shopping experience and the buying experience by really embracing experiential retailing,” said Tru Kids Chief Executive Richard Barry. Tru Kids is the company that operates Toys R Us.
The Toys R Us brand has been going through some modernization in recent years. The company launched a new website in October, featuring reviews and videos for shoppers to interact with online. In June, the company was reportedly looking into opening a new eCommerce site as well.
The new store in Paramus, New Jersey will only be about 6,000 square feet. This is a much smaller size than the company’s traditional stores, but the change reflects a changing retail industry. Like it or not, the days of giant retail locations with endless aisles appears to be over. Barry has commented on the importance of being “tactile” these days. Should you visit the Paramus Toys R Us, or any new locations, you’ll notice that the use of space in the stores is much more measured and deliberate.