Todd DeMott, Intercard North America sales team member and experienced operator:
The March and April months are extremely important to the success of the summer season. Since 90% of arcade revenue is generated by merchandise the key to getting an arcade ready is knowing what you will be using in your cranes and redemption counter for the summer season. Keep an eye on upcoming summer blockbuster movies and know when to unveil the hot plush items at the right moment. Getting merchandise out on your floor too late or too early can make or break a season.
Most hot items and trends have a 12-week shelf life before the market is saturated, or kids have moved on to something else. Have other goods pre-selected as backups if current trends die or supply runs out. You never want to be in the middle of your summer stretch and be scrambling to find good-earning merchandise.