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What can retailers learn from LEGO?

What can retailers learn from LEGO?

Written by

Abbie Dawson


November 11, 2022


Latest research

We scour the latest YouGov data to find out which retail brand is Britain’s favourite and what others can learn from them.

The chillier months are upon us, and it’s no surprise retailers are feeling frosty about the challenges Christmas shopping could face this coming season. The latest predictions suggest there’ll be a drop in Christmas trading not seen since 2011, due to rising costs.  

Paul Martin, head of retail at KPMG in the UK, said:

"It is likely that that the usual festive boost won’t be enough this year to counteract the ongoing issues that retailers are facing with rising costs, squeezed margins and fall back in demand."  

What does the research say?

Research from YouGov found that 60% of Britons are expected to spend less on Christmas because of the rising cost of living, with most parents of children under 10 saying they will have less to spend on presents this year. 

Chief Executive of Tesco, Ken Murphy, said: 

"We think it's going to be a Christmas that people are going to want to celebrate, but clearly they're going to want to celebrate it in an affordable way."

Despite consumer confidence waning, it’s not all doom and gloom. Many retail brands remain as popular as ever, but who comes out on top? 

The verdict

Luckily, YouGov has popularity ratings for all the main retail brands. Based on millions of responses, and growing daily, YouGov Ratings provides a way to determine the nationally representative popularity score for thousands of things, from brands and products to companies and people.

It’s perhaps unsurprising that at a time where many households are feeling the pinch that B&M, Poundland and Home Bargains all come in the top 10 for “all adults”. Argos (73%) comes in at number 2, whilst the most popular retail brand for all adults is LEGO with an 81% popularity score. 

LEGO tops the table for both Millennials and Generation X, but is dropped to number 2 when only Baby Boomers are considered, pipped at the post by Argos (76%)

An interesting entry at spot 15 for Baby Boomers is Woolworths (57%), a retail brand that shut its doors in the UK in 2015! 

The top 10 most popular retail brands

Brand Popularity
1 Lego
2 Argos
3 B&M
4 Waterstones
5 The Co-operative Group
6 Numatic Henry Hoover
7 Poundland
8 Home Bargains
9 Halfords
10 Domestos

LEGO leading the way

LEGO’s popularity is a retail success story worth delving into. Last month, LEGO posted double-digit sales growth in the first half of the year, driven by new store openings and robust demand for its colourful plastic bricks despite rising costs and inflation hitting consumers.

This summer, their flagship London store in Leicester Square was reopened after four months of extensive refurbishment, making it the biggest LEGO store in the world. 

Lego Group senior vice president of retail Natali Stojovic said.

“We are investing in upgrading Lego stores around to the world to give visitors really fun, unique and memorable brand experiences. The refurbishment and expansion of our flagship London store will make it a must-visit destination for fans, young and old, living or travelling to London.”

So, what’s the key to LEGO’s retail success? One factor is surely their best-in-class knack for creating “memorable brand experiences”. It’s certain when you enter a LEGO store that you’ll be surrounded by retail theatre, with tons of life sized models and figurines as well as playstations. 

Adding a new meaning to bricks and mortar stores, LEGO have made their outlets a destination in their own right, allowing consumers to enjoy the  advantages of shopping in-store, trying products in person and being helped by knowledgeable staff. 


Now more than ever, it’s of great importance to give those customers who do come through the door with their hard-earned pounds a great service and experience. So what is a great customer experience? 

For us at Startle, it is something customers tell friends about. Taking something that can be seen as a commodity and turning it into a major driving factor to your retail brand’s bottomline. It’s getting music and atmosphere on your team and in all your shops.

We call it Music+.

Tell me more, tell me more - What does a great retail experience look like?

For your own brand and business, picture interactive screens that empower customers to creatively engage with products and capture imaginations, whilst your atmosphere responsively adapts throughout the day based on your business needs minute to minute. Increase dwell, drive spend, nudge repeat custom…

Walk this way, talk this way…

You have to walk the walk if you talk the talk, so here’s Doug Wooten of Charles Tyrwhitt on how we helped transform their brand’s customer experience:

“From the initial call through to our first playlist, Startle were quick and easy to deal with. We had to move quickly across 40 UK and USA sites and had devices in stores within the week ready for self-install. Followed by amazing support and a perfectly curated playlist, it couldn’t have been easier.”

Get in touch to start playing your retail customers the kind of background music that creates hair-tingling moments.

Why not download for free (and with very little effort) our retail brochure?

Hey, we've just met you and this is crazy. But here's our number +44 (0)203 397 7676. So, call us maybe? Or get in touch here.

What can retailers learn from LEGO?

Abbie Dawson

Marketing Manager at Startle. I'm in charge of our marketing activity, making sure to spread the word of Startle to as many brands as possible. When I'm not working, you'll find me vinyl shopping to add to my collection or working out at the gym (usually making enemies with a punching bag).

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Hey, we've just met you and this is crazy. But here's our number +44 (0)203 397 7676. So, call us maybe?

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