Who will win the battle for holiday gift procrastinators?
On Monday, Target became the latest retailer to plug its wide range of in-store, online and hybrid options for last-minute holiday shoppers.
Among those options.
- Extended hours: Now through Dec. 23, most Target stores will open at 7 a.m. and close at midnight. On Christmas Eve, stores close at 10 p.m.
- Online-delivery guarantee: New this year, place a Target.com order by 12:55 p.m. ET on Thursday, Dec. 20 and choose “Free Holiday Shipping” to get guaranteed delivery of eligible items by Dec. 24.
- Express one-day shipping: Place a Target.com order on Friday, Dec. 21, choose “Express Shipping” at checkout and receive eligible items by Dec. 24. Order cutoff times vary and fees apply.
- Free in-store pickup: Place an order with Target.com or the Target app for same-day Order Pickup until 6 p.m. local time on Christmas Eve. Most orders are ready within an hour.
- Home delivery with Shipt: Place an order through Shipt.com for groceries, gifts, decorations and more at least two hours prior to store closing on Christmas Eve for same-day delivery. The cost: $7.99 per order without subscription for orders over $35.
- E-gifts: On Christmas Day, guests can send a GiftCard via e-mail or text or choose an instant gift with GiftNow. Introduced last year, GiftNow sends an e-gift right away for later delivery. The recipient can accept the gift, change the size or color, or swap it for something different before the gift ships.
Among competitors, Walmart this year extended its shipping cutoff date to enable shoppers to order select items until Dec. 22 and receive them before Christmas. For broader items, the cutoff date is Dec. 20. Other eligible items can be purchased online until Dec. 23 at 4 p.m. local time for Christmas-Eve in-store pickup.
Amazon last week extended ordering through Dec. 18 for free Dec. 24-guaranteed delivery with no minimum purchase. For Prime members, the two-day shipping cutoff is Dec. 22 for all areas and Dec. 23 for select areas. In eligible areas, same-day delivery (order by 9:30 a.m.) and Prime Now (delivery less than two hours) is available.
- Deliver Gifts—No Reindeer Required – Target
- Don’t Sweat It! Walmart Has You Covered for Last-Minute Holiday Needs – Walmart
- Amazon Extends Holiday Free Shipping Promotion to December 18 and Expands Prime FREE One-Day Shipping (or faster) to 10,000 Cities and Towns – Amazon
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Which last-minute holiday options resonate most with holiday procrastinators? How will the intensified battle to make last-minute ordering more convenient affect shopper behavior this holiday season?