3 Key Takeaways from Target’s Just-Released Annual Report

What does the annual report reveal about Target?

Target just released Annual Report. It’s long, but I read it so you don’t have to,

Here are 3 key takeways for you.

  • “Same-store-sales” for Target’s digital properties grew 36% YoY. For Target this means that in 2016 digital was only 4.4% of sales. After a huge 2018, digital now represents a whopping 7.1% of total sales.

  • Target grew it’s small-format store count by 48% from 48 to 71. They are essentially only opening new “small-format” stores: while store count is overall oughly flat, ALL their growth in store count is in stores less than 50,000 sqft. That’s small if you’re in Texas, or if you’re Target. All categories of larger stores were flat or slightly declined. This trend will continue. This isn’t my opinion, the CEO says it in the report.

  • Target’s supply chain costs continue to skyrocket. The gross-margin contribution of their supply chain costs went from 0.7% to 1.1% in the last year, A 57% increase on a contribution-basis. No way can this trend continue, and it explains why they are investing in supply chain so much, Grand Junction and Shipt just in the last 2 years. What's next?

Now, everything is not rosy for Target. Over the years, they’ve made many missteps. Anything from launching their entire store on Amazon - giving critical data to their competition, taking too long to move off, website crashes when they finally do move off, to the whole Canada debable, and more. But then again, so many retailers and brands struggle with making good strategic decisions and then executing on them.

After all this, it’s good to see Target finding their footing.

ecommerceRick Watson