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Target speeds online shopping for holiday edge

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Associated Press: Cornell is optimistic about the season

Target speeds online shopping for holiday edge
MINNEAPOLIS — Target says its ability to use its store network to get online orders faster, together with the compelling new brands it has on offer, should translate into a strong sales in the upcoming holiday season.

The retailer pointed out in a blog post Monday that it offers online shoppers a number of ways to get the products they want fast. They include:

  • Order Pickup. This service allows shoppers to place orders online and then pick them up at a nearby store. More than 95% of Order Pickup orders are ready in an hour, the company said, adding that on Black Friday its customers will be able to use the service to take advantage of nearly all of the retailer’s doorbuster deals, without having to set foot in the aisles of their local store.
  • Target Restock. This next-day essentials delivery service now available to about a quarter of the U.S. population, the company said, allowing customers to order from a selection of “household essentials” products online and have them delivered from stores to their homes. Target said the service is available in 11 major markets and smaller cities like Athens, Georgia, Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and Santa Rosa, California. Orders now placed as late as 7 p.m. local time, Monday through Friday, to qualify for next day delivery.
  • myCheckout. This service, new this holiday season, allows Target store employees to place online orders for customers right from the sales floor. The store team member can use the myCheckout app to help shoppers find the right color or size when shopping in a store, or when the item is out store, and determine whether products are available at nearby stores or online. They can then take the guests’ payment on the spot with the handheld device.
  • Ship from Store. Target can fulfill some shoppers’ online orders by pulling product from store shelves and shipping it directly to their homes, getting it to them faster by eliminating the time it would take for the product to go through a fulfillment center. Target said that last year, over the Black Friday weekend, stores fulfilled more than half of Target’s online orders. Now that 1,400 Target stores—more than 3/4th of all Target locations—are shipping guests’ Target.com orders this year, we expect that Black Friday figure to grow.
  • Google Express. Target’s customers can now use voice commands to shop Target’s store assortment on Google Express, and have items shipped to their home in just two days. The service can be accessed using Google Assistant on Google Home devices and some smartphones.

Target is also offering free holiday shipping on Target.com orders through December 23, the company said.

In an interview with the Associated Press, Brian Cornell touted the online services, as well as Target’s new exclusive brands and changes to its stores, as being some of the reasons he is optimistic about the upcoming holiday season.

“I feel really good,” Cornell told the Associated Press. “We’ve been working all year to bring our new brand offerings to life, to bring more value to the guest. We have done a lot of work to reimagine stores and move into new neighborhoods, so the holiday season is where it all comes together.

 


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