While the liquidation of Toys ‘R’ Us cleared the way for other retailers to enter the toy market ahead of the holiday season, the dissolution of subsidiary Babies ‘R’ Us has likewise encouraged retailers to make their claim in the baby products arena. In the past week, Target has expanded its private label Cloud Island baby brand, while Brandless announced it is entering both the baby and pet categories.
Target launched approximately 30 new items, ranging in price from $0.99 to $21.99, with most items priced below $10. New items include diapers, wipes, toiletries and feeding products.
“There is a mom out there that’s registered with Babies ‘R’ Us, and all of a sudden she’s lost,” Chief Merchandising Officer Mark Tritton told CNBC. “We’ve all known how valuable the baby guest is to [Target], how they shop across the total business…It’s one of our most important guests.”
For Brandless, the e-Commerce retailer now sells products in three baby categories:diapers,organic foods and baby health care (balm, wipes, lotion, shampoo and wash, etc.).
“Since day one, our Brandless community has asked us to expand our assortment of high-quality, affordable stuff to their babies and pets,” said Brandless CEO and Co-Founder Tina Sharkey in a statement. “It’s finally here. With this collection, we aim to lessen the need for parents to choose between the high-quality stuff they want and what they can afford.”
Both companies have gone out of their way to emphasize the affordability of the products, with Target chemist Robin Beck saying the goods are “30% to 40% less expensive” than other premium brands in a company blog post. Brandless, which built its popularity on the premise that all of its environmentally-conscious products are $3 or less, is introducing new price points for bulk products. For example, a week’s supply of Brandless premium diapers will be sold for only $9, a “significantly lower price point when compared with brands of similar quality,” the company said.
At these lower price points, both companies appear prepared to compete for a share of the baby products market. Target called out the baby category as one of its strongest performers during its strong holiday season, and the retailer has its own baby registry business: the company told CNBC that sign-ups grew by a double-digit percentage in 2018.
Brandless Unveils Subscription Service
Beyond the baby and pet products launch, Brandless rolled out a new optional subscription service. Subscribers can set the frequency of their deliveries and swap items in and out of their Brandless boxes before their order is sent. Each box comes with a complimentary surprise gift from the Brandless assortment, as well as recipes and tips from the editors on the company’s blog.
The subscription does not require a membership fee. Shipping is free on all orders above a minimum threshold of $39, or shoppers can pay a flat fee of $5 for orders with no minimum.