Target joins the rest of the retailing world this week in the massive sale event that comprises the Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend. Here we take a deep dive into what to expect from Target’s ecommerce offering for this year’s Turkey 5 sales.
While this may not be unique to the holiday season, brands and customers will quickly notice something about Target.com as they browse the catalog that is distinct from the nation’s other ecommerce giants, Walmart.com, eBay, and Amazon. While their competitors tout titles like “The Everything Store,” “Low Price Leader,” and “Every Day Low Prices,” Target is not that.
Target has a curated catalog of both brands and sellers. There are less than 300 sellers currently allowed to sell on Target.com. Target also does not have a buy box. This means that when you order a product, there is only a single, trustworthy seller designated to get you that product on time. If that seller does not meet shipping and listing standards of quality, that seller can and will be removed from the platform.
Target has sought to create a catalog of brands and products that they think represent the best products in their categories. When a category gets too saturated, they don’t add more products of that type. For example, if you look for true wireless headphones on Amazon, you will get roughly 10,000 brands (that might be hyperbole, but also might not be far from the truth). On Target, you will find around 10 brands to choose from. Target’s goal is to reduce the assortment for you beforehand and offer you what they feel are the best products for their customers.
You will find low prices on Target, just like you will at Walmart. But you will also find luxury items, like this $153 hair brush and products from premium brands like Luxottica. While Target addresses a broad customer segment and does offer great products like this $17 Norelco trimmer, you can also go all out and buy this $148 trimmer from BaByliss. Target offers a range to allow shoppers to choose what budget and what quality they prefer.
Given the massive growth of ecommerce recently, it’s no surprise that all online retailers are struggling to keep up from a logistics standpoint. One area where Target is not unique is that they are spreading out deals in an effort to get shoppers to buy early and space out sales that used to be confined to a single weekend. The hope is that this will relieve some of the strain on fulfilling the huge amount of orders that come in from a single day shopping bonanza.
Early Deals on Target should help relieve the strain on sellers who rely on UPS, Fedex, and USPS to fulfill orders
A survey of Target’s deals shows a huge emphasis on Electronics and Electronics appliances this year. As of 11/19, the top 8 of the first 10 promotions on their homepage fall into that category. This is part of Target’s own push to establish themselves as a premium electronics retailer with brands like Beats, Samsung, and the Instant Pot (which is frequently a Black Friday top seller on just about every marketplace). Their strategy is working—Target’s hard lines grew 32% in 2020, while apparel, one of Target’s stronger categories, had very little growth year on year.
We anticipate Target's strongest category this year will be in home furnishings and decor, specifically because of the strategies we outlined above. Compared to Amazon, Walmart, and Wayfair, Target provides a curated selection of beautiful home decor that has grown leaps and bounds over the years. Consumers seeking a simple and trustworthy home goods experience will flock to Target. It also helps that Chip and Joanna Gaines have basically given Target their stamp of approval, and exclusive rights to their brand, Hearth and Hand.
Target has grown its ecommerce arm quite a bit over the last two years and has become a formidable contender for market share, moving up to 6th place in the U.S., just behind Best Buy, and surpassing Home Depot, Kroger, Costco, and Wayfair. We see first hand the efforts of category managers at Target to seek out the best brands and ways to improve the ecommerce platform for sellers. Target is on the move and Amazon, Walmart, and Ebay will need to be agile or risk losing their slice of the ecommerce pie.
Want to learn more about selling with Target or accelerating your growth on marketplaces? Let’s get talking.
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Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces.
Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.
So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.
Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products.
An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.
An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.
Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.
At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services.
It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.
It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.
The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.
Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces.
With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.
Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.