It’s time to say goodbye to online shopping and hello to the local high street once again as non-essential stores are back open for business.

It’s official, we no longer want to be popping to the post office every other week to return items we don’t like and clothes that don’t fit right.

Research conducted by Opening Times using Google search data shows that a lot of us are desperate to get back into our favourite stores in person.

Using this data we are unveiling what the top ten most in-demand stores are post-lockdown across the UK.

What are the most in-demand stores post-lockdown?

The most in-demand stores post-lockdown are Primark, IKEA, Matalan, Dunelm, Next, Sports Direct, TK Max, Homebase, John Lewis, and the Card Factory.

These stores received the most Google searches throughout April 2021, just as the lock-down rules lifted and non-essential shops were allowed to open again.

Let’s explore each of these further.


As one of the only fashion brands to not have made the pivot to online retailing, it is no surprise that Primark is leaps and bounds ahead in search volume to get back into the stores. This Irish fast-fashion retailer decided to stick to their guns and not sell online, but wait until the lockdown rules had lifted.

With this, people waited eagerly to be able to get back into their favourite fast-fashion store across the UK. Some stores even experienced hour-long queues of keen shoppers and extended their opening hours to accommodate for it.

With over 74,000 searches for Primark opening times on Google during April, it is no surprise that Primark is at the top of the list as the store that the nation has been most excited to get back into post-lockdown.


Is there anything better than walking around an IKEA store and collecting all the household goodies that you didn’t even realise you needed?

Clearly not, as IKEA received 60,500 searches for IKEA opening times during April, and comes in at a solid second as one of the nation’s most loved stores to get back into.

Let’s be honest, shopping at IKEA just isn’t really the same when you don’t get your tiny pencil and hot dog at the end, I can speak for us all when I say that we welcome IKEA stores opening once again.


Matalan is another firm favourite. With 230 stores across the UK, you can see why so many of us have been keen to get back into our local Matalan store. From clothes to homeware, Matalan has got a bit of everything.

Matalan acquired 40,500 Google searches for Matalan opening times during April and takes the third position as one of the most in-demand stores post-lockdown across the UK.


Dunelm is another store to welcome back its visitors with open arms. Even post lockdown we are all still keen to uplift and freshen up our home interior and make the most of what Dunelm has to offer.

With 33,100 Google searches for Dunelm opening time in April, the fourth most in-demand store ties with Next, Sports Direct, and TK Maxx. All four of these stores had the same search volume for their store opening times.


Next has 550 stores in the UK and is a British favourite. Selling a blend of fashion, lifestyle and homeware they provide a bit of everything. Next has operated online throughout the pandemic, however, clearly, we are keen to get back into their stores.

Joining Dunelm, Next also received 33,100 Google searches for Next opening times during April.

Sports Direct

Now that we are having some sunshine it’s no surprise that there has been a high search volume for Sports Direct opening times. Whether you are keen to get outside for some outdoor sports or if you’re feeling the quarantine 15 and want to get your body moving, Sports Direct has something for everyone.

Joining the others as the fourth most searched store in April, Sports Direct had a solid 33,100 Google searches for their store opening times across the UK.

TK Maxx

TK Maxx joins the others with 33,100 Google searches as the lockdown rules lifted. Everyone loves TK Maxx and the weird and wonderful goodies that can be found in their stores.

Not only can you find some great things but you can also come across a great bargain in TK Maxx. Whilst they do sell their products online, you often come across those hidden treasures in the store itself.


As one of the few stores to remain open throughout the lockdowns, Homebase has been able to welcome customers and provide home improvement tools and equipment.

With so many people finding a new passion for DIY home interior and decorating during the lockdowns Homebase continues to be in high demand with a Google search volume of 22,200.

John Lewis

John Lewis follows in ninth place with 14,800 Google searches for John Lewis opening times. A British favourite, it’s no surprise that John Lewis is in high demand.

Whilst they have operated online during the pandemic, John Lewis is still one of the most in-demand stores to re-open in the UK. They also used this time to launch their ‘Anyday’ own brand range to appeal to a broader group of shoppers.

Card Factory

This one might come as a bit of a surprise with the rise of online card delivery stores like Funky Pigeon and, but the numbers don’t lie and in tenth place, the most in-demand store is the Card Factory.

After over a year and a half of lockdowns, quarantine, and social distancing, sending a card to your loved ones still stands strong. The search volume results support this with 9,900 Google searches for Card Factory opening times.

So there we have it. Across the UK the most in-demand stores post-lockdown are a blend of fashion retailers, homeware stores and topped off with a favourite card store to send messages of love and good health.