Last week, all of the sudden, my 6-year-old son had to have a "fidget spinner." It's basically a ball-bearing spinner (like a top) that spins for over 2 minutes and you can do tricks with it. Turns out by the end of the week, pretty much everyone in his class had one. And people who didn't have one yet were waiting for theirs to arrive in the mail. My co-workers’ kids also all have them now.
It occurred to me that this could be a part of a rare phenomenon where an unlikely and unpredictable product line just goes viral, like the pet rock or beanie babies (if we you were alive back then).
As a leader in e-commerce measurement, we’re in the unique position to actually quantify the volume happening with such trends. It’s a use case of our e-commerce insights suite that I think manufacturers should be using a lot more: identify new product trends before your competition.
Our e-commerce data confirms that fidget spinners are going viral right now. Over 30 million (projected) searches in our data last month! On Google Trends, there is almost as much search volume for ‘fidget spinner’ as there is for ‘Trump’.
In fact, based on search volume across major retailers like Amazon, fidget spinners are the fastest growing, high volume product line ever. Well, at least since we’ve been measuring e-commerce, which goes back to early 2014. The term ‘fidget spinner’ reached 10 million searches in the least amount of time. Between January and February 2017, search volume for ‘fidget spinner’ quadrupled. By the end of April, ‘fidget spinner’ had more than 25 million searches. We excluded smaller volume search terms from the analysis.
This massive growth in searches matches the trend of units sold and total sales of fidget spinners over time. The total number of fidget spinners sold online in April is 127 times greater than the number sold in January 2017. The amount of sales generated from fidget spinners in April online is 55 times greater than the total sales were in January 2017. No matter how you spin it, this product is experiencing massive growth!
For frame of reference, Fidget Spinner beat out top search terms by 300% including staples like laptops and the new Nintendo Switch.