Target on Thursday announced it will expand customer access to same-day delivery through Shipt. Using the Target app, customers can elect to use Shipt in order to receive same-day shipping, with some orders arriving to doorsteps in as little as one hour, according to a company blog post.
Guests who shop on the Target app can choose same-day delivery for 65,000 items, including toys, baby-care products and groceries. The retailer touts that membership is not required to access fast delivery, though delivery costs $9.99 per order. For consumers looking to use fast deliveries more frequently, Target offers Shipt membership plans, which cost $99 annually for unlimited orders of $35 or more. However, for consumers who have yet to sign up for a Shipt membership, Target is offering a free four-week trial.
Leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday, Target will offer free same-day delivery of orders over $75 beginning this Sunday and running through Nov. 26 when shoppers use the app or website. Orders can be placed on behalf of someone else, to deliver a gift or assist someone who can't get to the store, per the announcement.
Target announced plans to expand same-day delivery via Shipt to all of its major product categories last December, following its 2017 acquisition of the delivery platform for $550 million. Still, Target has been able to scale its acquired delivery arm quickly, boasting an annual membership fee of $99 that beats that of Amazon Prime. Shipt has also expanded same-day delivery to CVS and Petco this year.
Prior to the acquisition, Target was struggling to keep up with competitors for Thanksgiving and Black Friday traffic, but was seeing an increase in mobile app use during that timeframe. The latest announcement about Shipt comes just in time to encourage mobile ordering during the holiday season.
Target announced in October that it would spend almost $50 million more than last year on payroll and double its fulfillment staffing during the holiday season. Along with same-day delivery with Shipt, the retailer will offer free shipping "on hundreds of thousands of items" through Dec. 21 without requiring a minimum purchase.
Will customers bypass Amazon Prime's one- or two-day delivery in exchange for the satisfaction of completing a "Target Run" the same day? The Shipt service may give the chain an advantage for accommodating last-minute shoppers.