Target Reveals Its Customers’ Shopping Habits Amid COVID-19
March Comparable Sales
- +40% in both essentials and food & beverage
- +20% in hardlines
- Low single digit decline in home
- -30% in apparel & accessories
Month-to-Date April Comparable Sales
- +12% in both essentials and food & beverage
- +30% in hardlines
- Up in the high teens in home
- -40% in Apparel & Accessories
“Our strategy was built to be durable and sustainable in any environment and its strength is driving our business in the face of marked shifts in shopping behaviors caused by COVID-19,” Cornell said in a statement. “Because of our strong business model, we are able to make considerable investments to support our team, put protections in place, and adjust to serve our guests who are being advised to shelter in place and avoid stores. As a result, we are seeing record-setting digital growth, strong demand for our same-day fulfillment services and broad market-share gains across each of our core categories.”
Across core merchandise categories, comp sales in its first quarter to date have grown more than 20% in essentials and food & beverage, more than 16% in hardlines and up slightly in home, as shoppers react to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Target saw an increase in traffic and comp sales in both stores and digital in late February as consumers began stock-up shopping. Around the middle of March, there was an even stronger surge, while category mix became heavily concentrated in the essentials and food & beverage categories. But by late March, sales in stores softened significantly, while digital sales spiked as consumers began to shelter in place.
Cornell told CNBC he expects some of customers’ new habits to stick, as they discover the ease of driving up and having Target employees put purchases in their trunk or having a shopper from Shipt drop bags of groceries at their door. He also said he expects customers will continue consolidate their shopping into fewer trips.
“I certainly think that going forward, for the foreseeable future, consumers are going to take advantage of that one-stop shop,” he told CNBC.