Target is rolling out new features to its stores in an effort to help shoppers feel safer amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The big-box chain announced today that it has introduced contactless self-checkout through the use of Wallet, the mobile payment option in its namesake app, as well as new technology that would allow customers to avoid waiting in line during the busy holiday shopping season.
This year, guests are invited to visit Target.com/line to see if there is a line outside their local Target outpost, and if so, they’ll be able to reserve a spot. The retailer will notify them via text when it is their turn to enter the location.
“Year over year, the investments we’ve made in our business and team have made Target the easiest place to shop in America,” CEO Brian Cornell said in a statement. “As we’ve navigated the pandemic, that focus has evolved to ensure we’re also creating the safest place for our guests to shop.”
What’s more, the Minneapolis-based company shared that it has enhanced its contactless same-day services: It’s doubling the number of Drive Up spots by adding nearly 8,000 more, plus updated its app to allow more flexibility to switch between services. In addition, for the first time during the holidays, customers can use Shipt’s same-day delivery service not just for groceries, but also for adult and kids’ apparel — think pajamas, slippers and more.
“As we approach the holidays, guests can feel confident in choosing Target — a safe experience, incredible value and a differentiated assortment that will help them celebrate the joy of the season,” Cornell added.
The announcement comes two months after Target reported that its same-day fulfillment offerings increased 273% in the second quarter ended Aug. 1. Its fastest growth was seen in the Drive Up service, which surged more than 700%. Year-over-year sales fulfilled by its Shipt service also were up 350%, while in-store pickup sales rose 60%.
Even during the pandemic, Target customers still managed to shop in stores — and they fueled a “dramatic comp acceleration” in the apparel category as the chain’s “essential retailer” status gave it a leg up when competitors were closed due to government-mandated restrictions.