Footwear giant Clarks has launched two standalone kids’ websites in a bid to build engagement with younger consumers and drive multichannel sales.

The sites, which are not transactional, feature the characters from Clarks’ YoToy kids’ footwear ranges - Jack Nano and Daisy Explores - and are aimed at boys and girls respectively. They were launched at the start of July to coincide with the launch of the autumn 10 YoToy ranges.

Targeted at children aged between five and eight, the sites aim to encourage children to interact with the ranges through fun and educational activities such as games and competitions, which have been designed to support the National Curriculum in areas such as literacy, numeracy and creativity.

Children are encouraged to unlock a secret game on the sites using a password obtainable from Clarks stores.

The sites also have a parents’ area where users can sign up to receive email newsletters and view more information on Clarks.

The initiative is supported by a national children’s TV ad campaign, direct marketing and window and point-of-sale displays. The marketing campaign kicked off this week and runs until August 29.

“We have a clear call to action on our ads [to drive consumers] into our stores,” said Clarks brand manager Simon Hathway.

“The objective is to drive footfall and sales and to raise awareness of the characters Jack Nano and Daisy Explores.

“We were really interested in bringing out the appeal of the characters and bringing them to life online,” he added.

Hathway said the plan was to constantly evolve the sites each season.

Clarks notched up a 4.4% increase in operating profits to £97.4m in the year to January 31. Sales rose 4.6% to £1.17bn. Over the year, the UK retail division delivered a 0.6% increase in like-for-like sales on the back of strong back-to-school sales.