- The TJX Companies operates a number of department stores around the globe.
- TJ Maxx is the company’s flagship chain in the US. That brand’s known as TK Maxx in the UK.
- Insider visited a TJ Maxx in the US and a TK Maxx in the UK to compare the stores.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
The TJX Companies is an international department store company with more than 4,500 locations around the world. It’s the corporation behind brands like Marshall’s and HomeGoods.
In the United States, its flagship store is TJ Maxx. In the United Kingdom, the chain goes by the name TK Maxx.
Insider looked into the differences and similarities between TJ Maxx and TK Maxx. Here’s what we saw while visiting two stores separated by both a single letter and the Atlantic Ocean.
In the UK, TJ Maxx changed its name to avoid being confused with the UK-based discount department-store chain TJ Hughes.
This is what you see when you enter the Leeds store. When we visited, it was surprisingly busy for a Tuesday afternoon.
The TJ Maxx went visited was located on the south side of Indianapolis.
Given that we visited during work hours on a week day, the store was relatively quiet, with just a few shoppers milling about.
At the TK Maxx, we started off by visiting the health and beauty section. There was a sign saying that there were no testers for the makeup …
… but loads of people had already opened the packaging.
There was a mix of popular brands, like Maybelline and L’Oréal, and lesser-known ones, like Becca and Pop Beauty.
The clearance makeup section was even messier.
They’d taken better steps in the fragrance department by putting products into sealed boxes.
In comparison, the section for body and bath was beautiful, with the products neatly stacked and color-coordinated.
In the US, the makeup section also carried some heavy-hitting brands like Marc Jacobs.
The aisle also had a sign warning prospective shoplifters.
The American version of the haircare, fragrance, and body and bath section was a little less eye-catching, but still well-organized.
And it had a few fancy-looking selections.
At the TK Maxx, the women’s clothing section was a bit hit and miss. Some display racks, like this, had empty spaces …
… while others were fully stocked.
Some of the displays were a bit boring, though.
There was also a Gold Label section for high-end clothes, like this Victoria Beckham dress that cost £199.99 (around $275), down from £1,299.99 (around $1,785) …
… though these weren’t displayed very attractively, either.
The Gold Label section also had a display for designer bags …
… and shoes, even though the shoe section confusingly had its own display for Gold Label shoes, too.
The TJ Maxx store in Indianapolis was dominated by a large, expansive clothing section.
As far as we could see, the Indianapolis store didn’t have a corresponding Gold Label section.
In the women’s clothing section, we wandered through row after row of garments sorted by size.
In the UK, the floor dedicated to clothing also boasted a jewelry counter …
… aisles of beautifully color-coordinated bags …
… and glasses which you had to put in a box after trying on so that staff could clean them.
In the one-story TJ Maxx in the US, the purses were all up at the front of the store, near the windows …
… and next to a rather jumbled-up jewelry counter.
In the UK, the shoe section had similar COVID-safety measures, with a sign telling you to wear disposable socks when you were trying on shoes …
… but we couldn’t find any of the disposable socks anywhere.
The shoe section was huge, and I’m glad I wasn’t looking for anything in particular because I think I would have struggled to find it.
In the US, the shoe section was similarly large …
… with tons of options.
The only difference was the TJ Maxx’s shoe section had large sections that were totally empty.
At TK Maxx, the upstairs was dedicated almost entirely to women’s items. Downstairs were men’s clothing, kid’s products, and homeware.
The men’s clothing section generally seemed much tidier than the women’s.
There were a few football t-shirts, although none for our local team.
There were lots of well known brands, and a display dedicated to ’90s-style sportswear.
At the Indianapolis store, the menswear section offered a number of selections. We noticed that it was especially heavy on flannel shirts.
The US store also had jerseys for a local team, the Indianapolis Colts.
Oddly enough, there was also sports merchandise for the Seattle Mariners, a football team located over 2,000 miles away.
The men’s department at the UK TK Maxx also had a small Gold Label section …
… as well as these £7.99 ($11) “Rick and Morty” t-shirts.
The TK Maxx had one corner of the men’s section dedicated to suitcases, too.
Finally we moved onto the homeware section.
The food section sold all sorts, ranging from tea and honey to huge jars of olives and salt in glass containers shaped like Italy.
There were also some homeware items you probably wouldn’t think of coming to TK Maxx for, like general cleaning products …
… and pet toys.
As ever, though, the clearance section was the best part of the TK Maxx homeware department.
Alongside jigsaws, paintbrushes, and greetings cards, highlights included a lone gender-reveal piñata …
… and this $550 item in a box sealed with a security tag. The back of the box was blank, and we had no clue what the item was or why it cost so much.
The home décor and goods section of the US store was probably the most robust, as well.
It was chock full of different kitchen and bath essentials …
… as well as a slew of autumnal decorations. The layout and organization was more pleasing in this section than in other parts of the Indianapolis store.
By the checkouts at the TK Maxx, there were all sorts of seemingly random items lined up together, like men’s underwear, toy cars, and bedding.
The big standout near the cash registers at the TJ Maxx was the table exhorting prospective workers to sign up for an interview.
In the US, TJ Maxx’s motto was once “get the maxx for the minimum price.” We’d say that the Indianapolis store was certainly maxed out in terms of having a wide selection of goods.
Overall, the UK store was true to its logo – we saw a lot of big brands, but they were hidden behind a lot of chaos, too.
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