MINNEAPOLIS, United States — The main thing Americans seem to want for Christmas is free shipping.
Target Corp. said on Monday that it’s waiving home-delivery fees for all holiday orders, the industry’s latest shipping promotion. The move matches electronics seller Best Buy Co. and proves that the most contested battleground for retailers this holiday season is the so-called last mile — getting products to customers’ door.
The move could pressure Wal-Mart Stores Inc., whose executives declined to comment on the company’s Black Friday plans during a holiday conference call last week. More than half of shoppers who abandon their online shopping carts do so because the delivery options were too expensive, according to a survey conducted last year by Research Now on behalf of e-commerce software provider MetaPack.
Target will also offer more than 100 Black Friday deals on November 22 for holders of its proprietary “Red” card. The retailer’s 1,828 stores will open at 6 pm on Thanksgiving, just like last year, and close at midnight. That’s a change from previous years, when stores stayed open throughout the night and into Friday. This year, stores will reopen at 6 am on Black Friday.
Free-shipping deals have become increasingly essential for online sellers, even though they take a toll on the bottom line. Target has trotted out similar promotions every year since 2014.
By Matthew Boyle; editors: Caroline Salas Gage, Jonathan Roeder and Nick Turner.