Target's Mobile App Adds Interactive In-Store Maps In Time For Black Friday Specials

Target StoreTarget's in-store mobile app navigation tools offering enhanced search capabilities, interactive maps, and shopping lists began rolling out Monday to support consumers visiting the retailer's more than 1,900 stores. Supported by Point Inside, the technology integrates into the retailer's app to improve the experience for consumers at home and in stores. The features encourage consumers to complete their full list rather than walk out without finding something.

As one innovator in the retail sector, Target's new features allow guests to more easily build shopping lists, find product locations and determine item availability at their local store. Point Inside technology pulls in product location information, real-time inventory, point-of-sale data, and physical floor plans of the store. It allows the interactive maps to overlay item locations as a pin on the store map. It making it easier for guests to find products as they shop, the typing auto-complete function allows guests to quickly add items to their Shopping Lists.

The Shopping Lists provide the product's aisle location items in the store, so quests can quickly find the items through interactive maps. Since each store is a bit different, the project was challenging, per Pete Coleman, EVP and GM of Store Mode at Point Inside. "We ran a 40-store pilot during the summer and Target decided to roll it out nationwide in time for the holidays," he said.

Calling it an exercise in Big Data, Coleman said consumers type in generic terms like "milk" and "butter," but Point Inside's technology processes those generic terms and locate the items on the store shelf. Depending on the location, that can differ.

Alan Wizemann, vice president of product for and Mobile, said there is much more mobile innovation to come, such as the interactive Black Friday maps that will provide store layouts and door-buster locations for Target's Black Friday sale.

The features are part of Target's recently announced overhaul of its iPhone app, which now features a simpler navigation, more intuitive user experience and one-touch checkout for online purchases with Apple Pay. Target also recently revamped its desktop and mobile Web sites, and re-launched its iPad app with user-generated content and inspiration from Pinterest and Instagram as part of Target's ongoing efforts to enhance its digital offerings.

Target Store photo from Shutterstock

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