5 Cracking Retail Concepts


This month we’ve been busy scouting out retailers who showcase a magical shopper experience in-store and the effect this has on their customers.  

If you’ve got a passion for retail and all things ‘experience’, here’s the lowdown on some of our favourite Christmas concepts.

Sipsmith Gin Shop

Gin has gone through a revolution in the last few years, accounting for 68% value growth within the UK spirit sector. In response to its growing popularity, Sipsmith have launched London’s first dedicated gin shop in 200 years. Based in Piccadilly, the festive gin pop-up is the perfect spot for picking up Christmas gifts for any gin lover. 

The interior features fireplaces adorned with stockings and gin bottle chandeliers, creating a cosy and festive atmosphere where shoppers can sample a wide selection of gin cocktails. The gin menu offers winter classic cocktails and hot gin drinks, featuring limited-edition distillations such as Gingerbread Gin and Mince Pie Gin, to help combat the cold weather outside. The pop-up also hosts a range of workshops on how to host the perfect Christmas party, cocktail masterclasses and a gin-inspired wreath making class.  

Sipsmith’s festive pop-up ensures that they will be the first brand that shoppers think of the next time they are shopping for gin.


Selfridges bring glam rock to the party this Christmas with their ‘Selfridges Rocks Christmas’ campaign. This theme is bold and exciting, featuring Santa dressed in various rock and roll inspired outfits. In-store events such as The Ultralounge Cabaret Club, Santa’s rock’n’roll party parade and even Astrid & Miyu piercings help to bring the theme to life.  

Inside, the store entices shoppers to a whole floor of fun-filled gift ideas which are sub-categorised into ranges such as ‘Secret Santa’, ‘Health and Wellbeing’ and ‘For the Music Lover’, making it easier for shoppers to navigate and buy gifts based on interest. Those who want personalised gifts are in luck. Selfridges hosts brands such as Veuve Cliquot and Reese's who offer personalisation presents.

When it comes to decorations, the store has made it as simple as possible to buy the correct amount needed for Christmas trees. Their clearly displayed tips help shoppers choose the right length of lights depending on the size of their tree. And for those who want to go all out this festive season, the ‘Elfridges’ personal shopper service is on hand to give advice everything from what to wear this Christmas to help on party planning.  

By creating these features, Selfridges have helped to make Christmas shopping significantly easier for their customers, ensuring that shoppers see Selfridges as the ‘one-stop’ Christmas shop.   


Hamleys flagship store is a dream come true for children to discover the finest toys before Christmas. Upon on entering the store, shoppers are greeted with floating bubbles and singing and dancing Christmas elves.

Staff are on hand to demonstrate enticing products in every corner. For example, shoppers can find a magician performing tricks using one of their most popular products which is available to purchase for inspiring magicians. 

Little guests also have the chance to meet Father Christmas, write their own Christmas wish lists, take part in festive games and go home with a special gift bag.

This is the very best example of a brand ensuring that every aspect of their store has a well thought-out experience for its target customer. The Hamleys store is so explosively fun for kids to visit, it’s no wonder that the store has become somewhat of a tourist attraction, where the interactivity ensures that kids will be asking Santa for Hamleys gifts for Christmas.  

John Lewis

Over recent years John Lewis has cemented itself as the King of Christmas advertising and this year their department store proves it. Building on the success of their Elton John TV advert, the ‘Step into Christmas’ theme continues throughout their flagship store on Oxford Street. Themed windows bring the concept to life along with a behind the scenes tour of the advert, including numerous sets and the story behind them.

The tour commences with the conception of the advert, showing the different story boards as well as a mini documentary. Staff then take you through various sets from the advert including a small recording studio, dressing room and various pianos, encouraging dwell time in the store.  

The advert’s tagline, ‘For gifts that are more than just a gift’, puts an emphasis on how a special gift could be lifechanging. This theme is recreated in-store and on their online platform, creating a truly seamless experience for shoppers to enjoy.

Fortnum & Mason

From flying Mince Pies and a glistening Champagne Fountain, to giant Hot Chocolates and a Golden Disco Lobster, Fortnum & Masons’ Christmas window displays are something to behold. Their magical Christmas experience continues in their luxurious in-store surroundings.

 Shoppers can take part in a fantastic festive line up throughout December including Christmas mixology classes, decorate your own stocking and wreath making workshops. Fortnum & Mason have also ensured there’s something for children by providing cracker making classes, biscuit decorating and storytelling with Father Christmas.

 Fortnum & Mason’s Christmas campaign is in line with their brand ethos. Their window displays and workshops reflect the classic and luxury brand that they are, adding value to their unique experiences.

This Christmas retailers have gone all out to entice shoppers through the doors. By providing experiences such as these, brands help make Christmas shopping easier and a more enjoyable experience.

2018 © The Shopper AgencyLegal InformationPrivacy Policy