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Target brings back free shipping for the holidays + weekend sales

Target brings back free shipping for the holidays + weekend sales
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Craig Johnson |
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As the holiday shopping season gets closer, one major retailer is pulling out all the stops to lure customers.

Target announced Tuesday that starting November 1, its free shipping deal will return. The promotion, which requires no minimum purchase, will run until December 23, the company said. Up to 95% of orders are ready within an hour, the store said.

Target announces 2017 holiday shopping plans

The store is gearing up for a massive holiday season, which is expected to dramatically boost online sales. Retail search marketing company NetElixir projected that this year’s holiday e-commerce sales will see a 10% year-over-year growth rate.

To take advantage of the rush, Target is implementing a new “GiftNow” feature on, allowing not only the online shopper to purchase an item but the recipient to choose the details of the purchase. “Your friend will receive an e-gift email that lets her accept the gift, change the color or size, or pick out something entirely different — all before the item ships,” the store says on its website.

In 11 markets, Target Restock, the store’s next-day delivery service, will be humming along as well.

Target is still smarting from lackluster in-store sales last year when shoppers, overwhelmed from the company’s massive and nearly constant ad campaign geared toward savings, shunned the retailer, undercutting their profits. Now Target is getting away from the 10-day ad campaigns and into marketing two-day sales.

Target says that starting November 11 it will debut a new savings program called Weekend Deals, taking advantage of the two days a week that foot traffic in stores will increase.

“We’ll have big savings in stores and online Saturdays and Sundays, when guests are shopping most,” the store says in a news release. “And the deals? They’re timed perfectly to help you save on everything you need for your holiday prep (think kitchen gear right ahead of Thanksgiving). We’ll reveal the deals the week before each starts, so stay tuned to social media, TV, in-store signage and more. Believe us, they’re worth the wait.”

Target is taking a streamlined approach to sales this season, opting to make things simpler for consumers beset by splashy marketing during the holidays.

“We will have meaningful promotions,” Mark Tritton, Target’s chief merchandising officer, told reporters, according to “But priced right daily will be our regular drumbeat.”

In addition to price-matching, Target will also offer “gifting collections,” in-store displays packed with more than 1,700 items all for under $15.

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