John Lewis have opened their Christmas shop earlier than ever before following a surge in online searches for festive products.

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The decision to open its Christmas shop 10 days ahead of last year, came after the department store chain discovered online searches for festive products had almost quadrupled in comparison to the previous year.

What has caused the premature surge in interest?

A spokesperson for the retailer proposed a theory for the unusually early surge in interest this year, suggesting that shoppers could be looking towards happier times after the stressful lockdown period, and with a global pandemic looming over their heads.

Jason Billings-Cray, John Lewis’s Christmas buyer, said: “Christmas always provides a reason for celebration and a welcome break.

"Understandably, it looks as if people are looking forward to and planning for it earlier than ever this year.

“Christmas celebrations mostly take place in our homes and we have seen how the lockdown has made people think more about their homes, so perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that people are already thinking about how they will decorate their homes this Christmas.”

Which festive products are for sale?

The retailer said the online store, which opened at lunchtime on August 24, is selling decorations such as lights and trees as well as Christmas-themed hampers, among other festive products.

Currently the products generating the most interest on the John Lewis website are Christmas trees, baubles, cards, wrapping paper, and fairy lights.

The most in demand products are expected to be the retailer’s animal shaped baubles, which come in a wide range of both countryside and exotic animals, such as squirrels, peacocks, and even lions. The price of its range of baubles vary between £5 and £60.

Those looking to make in-store purchases will have to wait until John Lewis’s festive products hit the shelves on 25 September.

Increasing interest in festive food

Reading Chronicle:

However, it’s not just decorations that have seen a surge in interest in recent weeks.

John Lewis’s sister supermarket chain, Waitrose, has also seen an influx of online searches for Christmas related products.

Searches for mincemeat have increased the most, with a 400 per cent increase from last year, while searches for mince meat mince pies have increased by more than 110 per cent since last year.

Additionally, searches for Christmas puddings have increased by up to 75 per cent.

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When will Waitrose start selling Christmas food and products?

Shoppers will have to wait until September 10, 2020 to see their favourite festive treats appear in store.