NEW YORK (AP) — In a move to bring shoppers back to its stores, Target is embarking on an ambitious redesign aimed at helping people who need to dash in for milk to get out quickly while encouraging those who want to wander the aisles to linger.
The new layout was unveiled by CEO Brian Cornell in Las Vegas Monday. It will feature a separate entrance and 10-minute parking for shoppers looking to pick up an online order or some essentials. New center aisles will be curved rather than squared off, to inspire people to explore, says Mark Schindele, senior vice president of Target Properties. LED track lighting will replace fluorescent fixtures, and brand boutiques meant to replicate a specialty-store feel will showcase rotating looks.
The first of the redesigned stores will open in suburban Houston this fall. About 40 more stores will get the remodel treatment by October, using the Houston prototype as a template. More than 600 of Target’s 1,800 total locations are scheduled for updates over the next three years. It expects the remodeled stores to see a 2 percent to 4 percent sales bump.
“We wanted the design to be flexible because that is what shopping is all about,” Schindele told The Associated Press.
The remodeling is a key part of Target Corp.’s strategy to win back shoppers and rev up sales. Unlike rival Wal-Mart, which has drawn more customers and notched higher sales at established stores, Target has seen three straight quarters of declines for that sales measure, and fewer shoppers in its stores. Investing in stores is an acknowledgement that the in-person experience remains important, even as Amazon and other online retailers draw shoppers away from traditional retailers.
At an investor meeting last month Target executives spoke bluntly about the shabbiness of many of the chain’s stores. It pledged to spend $7 billion on the remodeling plan and to accelerate its expansion of small-format stores, bolster its online operations, and launch new brands. “We’ve got to reimagine that store experience,” Cornell said then. “Today’s millennial shopper doesn’t enjoy shopping one of our tired stores that hasn’t been touched in 10 years.”
Target has also tested new store designs in Dallas and Los Angeles, but Houston’s is the most ambitious store redesign to date. Last fall, Target launched an initiative in 25 stores in Los Angeles where it tested an updated grocery presentation with new lighting and foods to prepare single meal displayed together. The new grocery presentation was later rolled out in 16 Dallas stores. Cornell said shopper feedback in Dallas and Los Angeles has been good.
The Houston prototype’s separate entrances for shoppers in a hurry and those who aren’t is among its biggest novelties.
The entrance on the right will have a dedicated pickup counter for online orders. Shoppers will also have the option of having their order brought to their car. Groceries, wine and liquor will be located here, rather than in the back where they’re usually found. Seasonal essentials, like school supplies in the fall, will also be found nearby.
Shoppers using the “inspiration” entrance on the left will see the brand name displays and a section highlighting seasonal fashion. Beauty, jewelry and accessories departments will be nearby. There will also be seating outside of Starbucks. An area to hold store events will be located between the two entrances.
Target will tweak the format based on shoppers’ responses. “This represents our current thinking,” Schindele said, “but we are going to learn a lot.”
Follow Anne D’Innocenzio: http://twitter.com/ADInnocenzio
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
- Skin Cancer in Arizona: Stats, facts and new immunotherapy drugs making strides
- Caring Crisis: Rising tide In Alzheimer’s disease leads to shortage of caregivers
- Distracted walking injuries end up not so funny
- Scary situations: 5 quick tips before you let a contractor in your home
- Four ways telemedicine is changing the health care industry
- 5 mistakes homeowners make in the spring
- Three rivers run through it: Exploring Arizona's waterways
- Smart home basics: things you need to know to get started
- 5 Surprising things causing back pain
- Arizona agriculture is a $17.1B industry
- Timeline: Arizona's roots in brewing history
- 5 reasons to love the D-backs this season
- Tips for taking your home entertainment experience to the backyard
- Tech-related injuries your parents never experienced
- Workers comp: Signs your co-worker could be a fraud
- Who's the real founder of America's pastime?
- Epidemic rising? What you need to know about Alzheimer's in Arizona
- 5 unforgettable Wooden Award winners
- Family and hard work are keys to success of modern dairy farmers
- Genetic testing could hold answers for colon cancer survival
- Cold beers and baseball: A beer lover's guide to Spring Training
- Telecommuting: 5 tips to make it work for employers and employees
- See how top CFOs feel about economic growth in the Valley
- Migraine myths that keep patients from effective treatments
- Here’s why Gaydos went tankless with his water heater
- Bocce ball and basketball: How you can help Arizona's Special Olympics athletes
- Tips on building the best wine room in Arizona
- Avoid the nightmare: 6 tips to choose a great contractor
- Breast cancer: Improved testing and treatments means more survivors
- Failed back surgery: New hope for patients living in pain