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What’s the Deal with Those Fidget Spinners?

-- 2017-05-25 5:00 am --

What are Fidget Spinners?

You may have seen them whirring in the palms of passing teenagers. You may have seen a mention of them on the news. You’re probably very curious about those small, distracting devices that spin and spin and spin to the delight of its owner.

Fidget spinners are the latest fad that’s taking over the country.

The basic fidget spinner looks like three spheres centered on a ring that sits on ball bearings. The devices retail from a couple bucks to over $100 depending on their design.

One thing they all have in common is that these little spinning devices are addictive, and they’re selling like hot-cakes. Some people swear that they’re good for ADHD, or for mindfulness, and have a calming effect on people with Autism, although many of these claims come with a heavy dose of skepticism.

Where did they come from?

It’s not altogether clear where exactly the fidget spinner came from.

Plenty of people have been trying to track down the genesis of the most current fad. Some claim that the design can be traced to a Canadian chemical engineer who filed a patent for a spinning device in 1993. Experts, however, aren’t sure that it’s fair to throw her the credit.

Others think the fidget spinner is the perfect marker of an evolutionary manufacturing industry that can iterate and spin designs in a short time-frame, meaning, there is no owner of the intellectual property, rather it belongs to the cloud.

Should I be selling them in my stores?

Yes! DollarDays sells them by the case and you should purchase some immediately. 

Is there any downside right now?

There are a few concerns with the fidget spinners.

First, there’s a bit of a safety concern.

One Texas mom is telling a story about how her young daughter swallowed one of the spinning devices and had to go the emergency room to have it removed, without serious injury.

There’s also a serious effort afoot to debunk claims that these devices contain any significant benefit for ADHD or Autistic individuals.

In fact, many retailers market the devices as a tool to help people focus, and help with controlling things such as PTSD, anxiety and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. But according to Scott Kollins, a clinical psychologist and professor at Duke University, "there's no evidence to support that claim."

Kollins says that there's been no research shown that proves fidget spinners are effective at addressing those issues.

"I know there's lots of similar toys, just like there's lots of other games and products marketed toward individuals who have ADHD, and there's basically no scientific evidence that those things work across the board," Kollins says.

Finally, let’s not forget the poor teachers. Fidget spinners have been dubbed the latest ‘classroom horror’ by education organizations who, of course, have a new classroom horror each and every year.

What’s the bottom line for retailers?

This fad offers a fantastic opportunity to crab some stock and sell what you can. Fads come and go, and they go quickly. So don’t base your business strategy on selling this new hot device, but enjoy the perks that come along with having the hottest trend on your store’s shelves.