Yesterday Minneapolis retailer Target made virtually every major news outlet with the announcement that they will now match prices customers find on identical products at online retailers. The new, simple, easy-to-use Price Match Policy that includes matching prices from top online retailers year-round, including Amazon.com, Walmart.com, BestBuy.com and Toysrus.com including Babiesrus.com). If a customer buys a qualifying item at a Target store and then finds the same item for less in the following week’s Target weekly ad or within seven days on Target.com or in a local competitor’s printed ad, Target will match the price.
The official Target blog A Bullseye View sat down with Mark Schindele, SVP, Merchandising Operations, to find out more about the new program.
What changed from the previous Price Match Policy?
The new policy will combine Target’s previous price adjustment and competitor ad match policies into one cohesive Price Match Policy that now includes select online retailers. The new policy is an evolution of the price match that we offered during the holiday season. This past holiday season, Target offered guests the ability to match select online prices in our stores between Nov. 1 and Dec. 16. Qualifying online retailers included Amazon.com, Walmart.com, BestBuy.com and Toysrus.com (including Babiesrus.com).
So was the Holiday Price Match Policy a test run for the new policy?
We received positive feedback about the Holiday Price Match Policy, and applied those insights to the development of the new, year-round program. We know that our guests often compare prices online, so we’ve introduced the new program—we always strive to provide competitive prices online and in our stores.
How will the new policy help Target offer the best value in retail?
We continuously monitor and evolve our programs to ensure we are exceeding expectations. Combining Target’s new Price Match Policy with the added 5% off guests receive when they use their REDcard creates an unbeatable value.
The move is the retailer’s latest attempt to “showrooming” — the much buzzed about trend for consumers to browse their stores to check out products, and then go online to buy the same products for less.
Although this may impact the sale of high ticket, low margin items in home electronics, baby and toys Target’s customer focused Private Brand portfolio will continue to shield it from price comparison and margin erosion in much of its store. Virtually all of home is either a Target Private Brand: Threshold, Room Essentials, etc or a licensed exclusive brand that is controlled by Target: Nate Berkus, Giada De Laurentiis , etc.