Frequenting Target: Is More Too Much?
By Rick Moss
Retail Forward released some key highlights yesterday from its ShopperScape-based report, Bull’s-eye on the Target Shopper, and headlined the finding that the cheap chic
leader is “the most-shopped retailer in the United States second only to Wal-Mart.”
Target’s greatest strengths continue to be in the more occasional shopping trip categories, such as children’s apparel, home fashions, small appliances and toys. And yet, the
retailer’s “stickiness” quotient is really high (second, of course, only to you-know-who). According to Retail Forward, “two-thirds of Target’s past six month customer base returns
to its stores on a regular basis.”
All told, if you live in this country, there’s a one in four chance someone from your household is going to hit a Target, Target Greatland or SuperTarget each month. However,
the ShopperScape research shows that only eight percent of primary household shoppers go to Target on a weekly basis, a quarter the figure of Wal-Mart. Although one might think
monthly frequency would be a satisfactory position for Target, with the expansion into food and everyday basics as its main strategy, the push to increase shopper visits continues.
Not that there’s any direct correlation drawn by Retail Forward, but it’s interesting to note that Target’s new emphasis on grocery is still not moving the needle in terms of
shopper preference for those categories; while at the same time, the retailer is losing share of shopper preference in some of the occasional purchase categories: books; consumer
electronics; CDs/DVDs and soft home fashions. Is Target taking its eye off the ball?
Discussion Question: Would becoming a weekly destination weaken Target?
Target has drawn critical praise for doing what its name implies: picking its objectives carefully and maintaining focus in its marketing and merchandise
planning. It seems to me that the stated goals of becoming more of a weekly destination takes them down the “trying to be everything to everybody” path.
Sandy Skrovan of Retail Forward describes the quintessential Target shopper as “a desirable shopper niche – young affluent families typically cushioned
from economic fluctuations such as high gas prices and inflation.” That seems like an accurate portrait and a very worthwhile market position. As Target attempts to broaden its
everyday appeal, I hope they don’t start taking this core group for granted.
- Target Is Most-Shopped Retailer in the United States, Second Only To Wal-Mart,
Retail Forward Reports – Retail Forward