Target

Target Corp. wants to be the easiest place to shop for the holidays, and plans to offer a bevy of options so guests can shop any way they want.

Chief executive officer Brian Cornell, at a company presentation Tuesday at The Target Studio in Manhattan, said, “We’ve been on a very aggressive journey….[It’s been] about making it easier to shop and making it easier for guests to shop on their terms.”

Furthermore, Cornell said apparel brand A New Day “just passed the $1 billion club,” joining some brands such as Cat & Jack, apparel for kids, in hitting that sales target. It’s other newer apparel brands include Goodfellow & Co. for men and Wild Fable for women. Heyday is the new electronics line that is priced at less than $20 for most offerings.

The ceo spoke briefly about the cadence of brand introductions. He said going forward the company will take a closer look at a brand’s life cycle and if it is at the end of its run, the company will replace it with a brand that better meets the needs of its guests.

Among the service and fulfillment options are same-day delivery in hundreds of markets across 46 states through the company’s Shipt service, expansion of its drive-up option to pick up orders to nearly 1,000 locations, and free two-day shipping with no minimum purchase or membership requirement from Nov. 1 through Dec. 22.

Cornell said Target is the “first retailer” to offer same-day delivery across 46 states, as well as drive-up service coast-to-coast. Nearly a year ago, the company acquired Shipt.com. It’s the personal shoppers from Shipt who go to the local Target to pick and pull the items for same-day delivery. Target has more than 1,800 stores across 50 states, with a “Target store located within 10 miles of 75 percent of every doorstep in America,” the company said.

The company will offer delivery from store for a flat $7 fee in select markets and a restocking option where orders for household goods placed by 7 p.m. can be delivered the next day for a fee of $2.99 or free for its Target cardholders.

“We have a suite of fulfillment options, which I think is unique to the marketplace,” Cornell said.

The ceo noted that learnings from its Herald Square small-format store in Manhattan, opened a year ago, helped with the mix of service options available for holiday. He said the Herald Square store has had more than two million visitors and is “now one of our biggest stores, [ranking] number one in sales per square feet.” Learnings include finding the right locations, having inspiring collections of products, the right service model and the need to curate the right products, the ceo said.

Other initiatives include investment in its team, whether through higher wages, training or expertise in certain merchandising categories.

Target has also planned an increase of nearly 250,000 in additional square footage in more than 500 stores for toy offerings in time for the holidays. The increased footage for toys in those stores will become permanent, committed space for the category going forward.

The move to increase its toy category is a response to the Toys ‘R’ Us liquidation. With Toys ‘R’ Us no longer in business and Sears now in bankruptcy proceedings and closing more than 142 stores, Cornell disclosed that his team had been tracking potential bankruptcies. That included looking at credit reports such as those from credit ratings firm Moody’s Investors Service and keeping tabs on markets where a Sears and Kmart and a Target store overlap. He said his team had playbooks for categories such as toys and apparel. Considerations include which locations should Target accelerate its store remodel and where it can add services so that “we are more a destination place,” the ceo said.

Cornell said, “The winners will be retailers who provide greater experience and ease.”