Category Advice: Lollies and Pops

It’s a format that’s been around for a long time and seems to have the ability to evolve and reinvent itself when necessary to suit the current market.

Garden Critter Pops

The lolly, or pop as they are more commonly known in the confectionery market, can come in many shapes and sizes. Whilst the majority are designed for children, others have a notable amount of appeal to older age groups.

Pops are quite simply impulsive treats. Their flavours or appearance will demand attention and the result with be a swift purchase. Many retail around the 15-20p mark whilst it’s rare for any to cost more than £1.

Generally sold from jars or self-merchandising boxes, lollies and pops are profitable and well worth the shelf space. But there is a growing army to choose from so here are some thoughts to help with your selection.

Dobsons LolliesKnow your audience

Are you an old fashioned sweet shop or do you sell to crowds of youngsters after the school day? Are your shoppers’ budget conscious or are you located in a smart shopping centre? Perhaps you are an events company and your requirements are quite different every time? These sorts of questions need to be answered if you are going to select the best choice of pops for your business. Let me explain a little more…

Children love brightly coloured pops with amazing flavours. So a bubblegum flavoured pop for example, or perhaps an American cola flavour would fit the bill nicely. As would a tongue painter lolly! Alternatively, classics such as traffic light lollies or Swizzels Drumstick lollies and Chupa Chups could be a choice.

If you are seeking appeal from an older audience or perhaps have a more traditional feel to your shop, flavours such as rhubarb and custard, bakewell tart (yes really!) and lemon & lime might be more appropriate.

Fun, visual pops such as Garden Critters, Monkey Pops and Pig Pops clearly appeal to children and can really help to bring a display to life.

Once you have defined your audience, it’s much easier to narrow down the choice. As most lollies and pops are self-merchandising in one way or another, a shelf is a great starting point with regard to retail space.


Old and new

Touched upon already, some lollies have stood the test of time and are still big sellers today whilst many more new ideas have joined the category to feed a wide array of tastes.

Kingsway Lolly Tree

The fan club continues to grow for long-time favourite lollies such as Swizzels Double Lollies and Drumsticks, whilst Chupa Chups continue to go from strength to strength. They might seem familiar but familiarity can sell very well indeed.

At the other end of the spectrum are bizarre modern inventions such as a Vimto popping candy lollipop and a Brainlicker lollipop. Something for everyone.

Having determined your target audience, developing a range that covers classic and modern will cater for the widest audience (unless you are strictly a traditional sweet shop of course).


Embrace seasonality

Whenever a new season approaches, you can be sure to see the introduction of new lollies and pops themed to it. Whether Christmas, spring, summer or Halloween, there are pops for every occasion. They might be hard lollies or more commonly made from jelly or mallow. Many become top sellers for a limited period of time and are well worth finding a space for.


And now for something new

As with any confectionery category, it’s important to introduce new ideas from time to time as they really help to refresh your range and make your shoppers look again. At Hancocks, there are just no shortage of flavours to help you do this. You might also consider recent additions such as the Kingsway Lolly Tree (which looks fantastic on the counter) or even Kingsway sugar free lollies to cater for the increased interest in sugar free sweets.

If you need any specific help in developing a suitable range of lollies and pops, please just ask us to help as we would be more than happy to.