How Target plans to get its groove back

Don't Waste Your Money

When most people think Target, we think of a big box store at the back of a huge parking lot -- a lot that can look almost empty if it's not the holiday season.

The days when Target stores generated excitement with every new Michael Graves teapot release, back when women called it "Tar-zhay," are so 2005.

Even the popular video game Minecraft has noticed, with gamers creating a white Target store surrounded by the biggest empty parking lot you have ever seen.

No more supersizing

So Target is looking for new ways to restart the excitement, and to do that, is starting to shrink. The chain has decided to fight declining bricks and mortar sales with smaller stores, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

It is a major change. For decades, stores boosted sales by getting bigger, adding "superstores" with even more departments, more square footage, and groceries.

Target was not immune to the supersizing trend, even adding groceries, when many shoppers scratched their heads and asked "Why is Target trying to become a grocery store?"

But the Journal says instead of building 145,000-square-foot stores, Target's new stores will be roughly 45,000 square feet and will open in urban areas and college towns across the country.

Smaller trend doesn't always work

But from the "doesn't that stink" file, the fact that small big box stores sometimes don't work, leaving shoppers with no store after a couple of years

Walmart is closing 150 of its smaller Walmart Express stores, citing poor sales. If you liked the idea of a small Walmart near you, you might say "doesn't that stink?"

Target, however, feels its small store concept will work, the Journal says. Target is aiming for more urban locations (Walmarts were in suburbia) and is targeting a different crowd than Walmart: hip young millennials.

Target believes young people, weaned on easy online shopping, want small stores and not miles of aisles, or a Minecraft meme with no cars and no shoppers.

Targets CEO says we could see hundreds of these new stores in the next decade, as we change the way we shop.

Now if they could only add some new awesome Michael Graves teapots.

So don't be surprised if your next Target is smaller, and don't waste your money.


“Don't Waste Your Money” is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. (“Scripps”). The information included in this article was obtained independently by Scripps reporters.  While purchases from links inserted in this article may result in a commission for Scripps, no Scripps reporter benefited from that commission.

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