- New Year gifts, souvenirs and decorations market is characterized by seasonality in distinction from allied market branches (gifts, business gifts, stationary). The wholesales start within 6 months before New Year while the retail sales begin only in November. Meanwhile in Europe the future season is planned already at the beginning of the year.
- Absence of New Year fashion.
The Russian consumer is conservative and is not used spending much money for decoration. The elder generation has got accustomed to decorating New Year tree with the same toys every year. Three fourth of population keep garlands till the next New Year. Meanwhile in Europe 60% of New year products are disposable. Russia has lack of New Year fashion unlike Europe where the main trends are usually established from the very beginning of New Year and the consumer willingly follows them. Fashion plays an important role in Europe, every year it makes suppliers change about 40% of assortment. These 40% are the novelties that are imported in Russia. If in Europe New Year gifts production and sales depend on fashion trends, in Russia the assortment is more permanent and there is constant popularity of the New Year symbols.
New Year assortment.
- New Year products are imported from Germany (10%), Finland (20-25%), Canada, Italy, Poland (5 %), China.
- The assortment is wide only in specialized companies (no less than 2-3 thousand of items). In other companies New Year goods form the additional sector.
The latest trends.
- Artificial New Year trees of any size and "wooliness", with additional effects. The latest trend is "back to nature" tendency: natural elements, such as fir cones and even trunk. Another tendency is New Year trees of unusual colors: pink, violet, silver and gold.
- Garlands for interior decoration. Tendencies are the same.
- Balls as the main New Year tree decoration. They are divided into two categories: balls made of glass (20% of sales) and plastic balls (80% of sales). The majority of companies import glass from other countries. Glass decorations of home manufacture occupy considerably big share of the New Year gifts market (popular trade marks "Iney" and "Elochka") Plastic items gain more and more market share due to its advantages over the glass.
- Electric garlands. The assortment of homemade garlands is not wide, but their prices are lower. Goods imported from Italy have the highest quality and the most interesting design.
- Masks and fancy dresses.
- Candles-cartridges are in demand. The candle price depends on the material.
- Packing: wrapping, ribbons, boxes, packages.
- Earlier beginning of consumers' activity. In 2006 New Year products were in demand since the beginning of November.
- the growing demand for expensive New Year products (characterizes the whole gift market)
- The increasing interest in exclusive and original gifts. The interest in such gifts is shown in different price segments. The consumer becomes more exigent and fastidious, particularly to the variety of assortment as well.
- The consumer is interested in thematic gifts (New Year trees, snowmen), funny gifts (singing and dancing toys, dolls, etc), collections for interior decoration which allow to decorate one room or the whole house in one style and one colour spectrum.
- Traditionally great demand for New Year symbols.