five Below & Beyond

If you haven’t heard the latest first world problem fake news: Five Below, the store known for selling things $5 and below, is now selling things that cost more than $5. GASP!

Founded in 2002 and headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Five Below today has 900 stores in 36 states.

18 years later, they’ve reimagined their initial concept. & While the majority of the store is still priced under $5. While many people will complain that higher prices diminish the effect of the name, what they’ve really done is open a world of possibilities for bargain shoppers.

To announce the expansion, Five Below got a new logo & their website displays this message:

We owe you an explanation

For [18] years, Five Below has been providing our customers with cool, trendy stuff for $1-$5. We’ve always done everything possible to absorb cost increases. Recently, we had to raise prices above $5 on tech items to keep providing the products you love. We’re calling this “Ten Below Tech.”

We also discovered a handful of $6-$10 toys and games we thought you wouldn’t want to miss. We’ve separated these items in a special “Ten Below Gift Shop”. Once you’ve had a look, we hope you’ll agree that these high-value gifts are priced as low as only Five Below can.

So, the big question – are we keeping our name? Yes. Most of the store remains at $5 and below.

We understand this change surprised you. We’ve already received tons of feedback – some positive, some negative, all passionate – and we want to let you know that (a) we owed you this explanation and (b) our commitment is always to offer you the best possible value on the fun, new stuff you want.

All of us at Five Below look forward to seeing you in our stores and at over the holidays and for many years to come. There is nothing more important to us than our customers

While there has been quite a bit of negative feedback, I personally think it’s completely uncalled for.

Five Below stores are broken into 8 worlds: Style, Room, Play, Create, Party, Candy, New & Now, and (the newest, most controversial one) Ten Below Tech. While the Ten Below Gift Shop isn’t considered a world, it usually has its own section in a store. Each world is a collection of like items for ease of access & within each world you can find brand name items to Five Below’s generic brand. Five Below is already partnered with companies like Disney, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Marvel, TY, Star Wars, Crayola, Lego & Pez, but can only sell certain (usually smaller) items by these brands because of Five Below’s price limitations.

The expansion to include Ten Below Tech & Ten Below Gift Shop leads me to believe further expansion are on the horizon, but let’s take a look at how far they’ve already come.

On the website, their are 586 products listed under Tech Below Tech. The highest price was $5.55. (I have seen higher priced tech items in store, but those may be sourced regionally for stores & only available in certain locations.

As for the Ten Below (Gift Shop), only 7 products are currently listed online. 5 priced at $10 & the other 2 at $6. In this section (online, at least) Five Below compares their price to the competitor’s, claiming serious discounts.

Of all I’ve researched & seen for myself I really don’t understand any of the criticism.

Burger King sells more than burgers & barely anything at Family Dollar is $1, but we, as humans, figured it out.