Target Strikes Back Against Showrooming


Target is tackling the mighty Amazon (not to mention Walmart, Best Buy and Toys R Us), and says it is instituting a price-match policy, effective immediately. 

The Minneapolis-based retailer, which began testing price-matching against specific competitors over the holidays, says the now-year-round program will make it easier for shoppers to know they are getting the best deal around.

“Guests can confidently shop at Target every day for the best value in retail,” CEO Gregg Steinhafel says in its release. “We know that our guests often compare prices online. With our new Price Match Policy and the additional 5% guests receive when they use their REDcard, Target provides an unbeatable value.” 



Experts expect competitors to play close attention. “This is good press for Target,” Tom Nawara, VP/Acquity Group, an ecommerce and digital marketing company, tells Marketing Daily. “It’s an overall move to combat showrooming, and shows they really understand how much they need to do to attract and retain omnichannel shoppers. They will get goodwill from their customers.”

Of course, he points out, price-matching won’t solve all of the problems that brick-and-mortar retailers face.  “Target instituted the program for the holidays, and its numbers were still disappointing. But it allows the store to compete on things that are commodities, the items customers can get at many stores.” That, combined with the merchandise that is unique to Target, including its private-label brands and collaborative collections, may help it stand out with shoppers.

The policy isn’t particularly easy to use. Customers need to either bring a purchase with proof of current price, or the original Target receipt and proof of current price, to the guest services department. “So we’ll see how many people actually take Target up on it,” he adds. “For a TV, it makes sense, but I don’t see people doing that to match Amazon’s price on toothpaste.”


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