November 30, 2020
Shop stories: Explore Toyworld in Elsternwick Village
Community is what it is all about at Toyworld in Elsternwick Village, where owners Helen and Noel Erlich have been happily immersed in all things play for 33 years.
The store on Glen Huntly Rd has kept up with shifting trends, while retaining a love of the classics.
Toyworld is Australia’s largest retail chain of specialist toy stores and Mrs Erlich said at her Elsternwick store they have built up a loyal customer base over the past three decades.
Diversity and service key to success
Toyworld Elsternwick sells everything from tabletop games to educational toys, with something for every family member from babies to fun-loving adults. And there’s plenty to make the backyard a place of play too.
While many things in toy sales change, many things stay the same, Mrs Erlich said.
“We always sell lots of the traditional basics like games and puzzles, play dough, action figures and dolls and, of course, Barbies. Families always love those,” she said.
“However, we make sure to keep up with trends and try to ensure we have what people want. Barbie changes over time and even the action figures change.
“We always research what’s new and are always making decisions about what people in this area will want. Our range diversity reflects the diversity of Elsternwick.”
Mrs Erlich believes great service is as important as a great range of products.
“Our customers return again and again because of our range, but also because we are always on hand to give advice – honest advice. And we will always try to source something if we don’t have it.”
Venturing into the world of toys
The Toyworld store was Helen and Noel Erlich’s first venture into retail.
Helen was a teacher and Noel an accountant when they decided it was time to try something new and be their own bosses.
“We decided to be more independent and I think Toyworld was attractive because of my teaching background,” Mrs Erlich said.
“I am interested in educational toys and development through play. We always combine that type of toy within our in-store range.”
The joy of keeping it local
The business couple said they love being a part of the Elsternwick Village community.
“This is very much a local business. We live here and this is our community,” Mrs Erlich said.
“We know the community we work in which helps when deciding on what to stock. We haven’t made too many mistakes when making those decisions, so we are listening and paying attention.
“Elsternwick is a lively, diverse friendly place – a village in the best sense of the word.”
And the store owner loves opening up every day.
“Not everyone can say they love going to work each morning, but I really do and a lot of that comes from this location,” she said.
Visit the store
416 Glen Huntly Rd, Elsternwick
Phone: (03) 9528 4398