Where do you find the best pop-up store in Knokke this summer?

Knokke is one of the most popular cities in Belgium to pop up with your business every summer.   No wonder you can visit numerous temporary pop-up stores there for the moment.   We were curious how they were set up and gave them a short mystery visit.

You can see it as a form of professional deformation, but earlier this week, we visited 7 pop-up shops in Knokke.  We scored them on 5 different topics: location, shop fitting and interior, concept, communication and last but not least the extra’s they provide.  Underneath you can read about their evaluation score.

Essentiel Beach  62/100
This temporary beach store is organized by fashion label Essentiel.  Their pop-up only sells their beach collection.  Located at the beach, we found a nice store, however without any surprising items.  The concept lacks special events and the interior is far from original.  Nothing more, nothing less.

Essentiel beach pop-up

Amused 56/100
This restaurant and vintage store is hosted just a few meters away from the main road.  Hard to find, moreover as we didn’t notice any communication outside.  The Amused summer pop-up offers a mix of food and furniture.  The restaurant is stuffed with interior products that are for sale.  Strange feeling however to visit the store/restaurant in the middle of the afternoon.  You don’t expect a restaurant to be open.  Unfortunately the atmosphere is not good to have your afternoon coffee there.  A nice concept that needs some fine tuning.

The list 68/100
The list is a high end tablet magazine that features stuff we all have on our wishlists.  This summer, the magazine cooperated with some of its clients and set up a temporary pop-up shop.   We found some very nice corners, but unfortunately also some overloaded area’s in the shop.   At the end of the store, we could enjoy a gin or coffee tasting and found stuff we never saw elsewhere.  A rather unique collection of nice products in an original concept.  This is definitely worth a visit.

Just Julia 55/100
A web retailer that comes offline in a brick and mortar store.   Just Julia is a successful webshop where you can buy lots of fashion items.  The pop-up store  however is poor, the interior very basic.  The product is the interior and the interior is the product.  Could be nice, but here we get the feeling something is missing.  The only reason to visit this store is to see one of the products in real life.

Imagine Jewels 48/100
Same feelings in this jewelry store.  Nothing special but the fact that the jewels are normally sold online only.   A basic store interior that doesn’t fit the luxury brand’s image.  We didn’t notice any communication and therefor wonder how shoppers will find out about this pop-up.

Billion dollar babes 49/100
This pop-up is located near the beach.   A standard interior and a store window that shows numerous press clippings.   That is the only thing that shows us this is a pop-up store.   The store lacks originality and creativity and could be just another fashion store in any Belgian coast city.  Why should we go there?

Velodrome 68/100
The last pop-up we visited is a bicycle shop.  The location is not that good, but it’s nice to see what they did with it.   We felt a very nice atmosphere in this shop and found out that a lot of extra activities take place in the store.   A nice setting, with good external signage.  Unfortunately, they didn’t manage to get permits in orde to be able to serve drinks and coffee.  This would have made it even more appealing.  Worth a visit however!

Velodrome pop-up

The series of mystery visits to some of the pop-ups in Knokke again showed us that not many pop-ups are worth visiting.  Many are struggling to set up a shop with a very limited budget.  Pop-up retail should be a strategic choice for your business.   And it should blow away shoppers with sensory experiences.  It should be an experience to remember and to share with your friends.   We had hoped to see such original, eye catching concepts, but we were disappointed afterwards.

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