In a bold new program announced Tuesday, Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT) plans to match the rivals, including Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT), on pricing in online retail. The new strategy is a full year expansion of the policy implemented during the 2012 holiday shopping season.
“The new policy will combine Target’s previous price adjustment and competitor ad match policies into one cohesive Price Match Policy that now includes select online retailers. The new policy is an evolution of the price match that we offered during the holiday season. This past holiday season, Target offered guests the ability to match select online prices in our stores between Nov. 1 and Dec. 16. Qualifying online retailers included Amazon.com, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT), Best Buy Co., Inc. (NYSE:BBY) and Toysrus.com (including Babiesrus.com).”
The retailer made the policy permanent due to the positive feedback it received on the holiday price match policy, explains Mark Schindele, Target’s senior vice president of merchandising operations, in a blog post.
“We received positive feedback about the Holiday Price Match Policy, and applied those insights to the development of the new, year-round program. We know that our guests often compare prices online, so we’ve introduced the new program—we always strive to provide competitive prices online and in our stores.”
The new program offers a price match to the customers if they could provide an evidence of a lower price at Amazon.com, Walmart.com, ToysRUs.com, BabiesRUs.com or Best Buy Co., Inc. (NYSE:BBY). The customers also get a chance to win retroactive price-match if they produce a proof of a lower price (and their receipt) within 7 days of their purchase. The retailer will follow the same policy for its website, as well as for subsequent deals found in the weekly ad. Also, the customers having Target’s REDcard can still claim their 5 percent discount on top of the price match.
“We continuously monitor and evolve our programs to ensure we are exceeding expectations. Combining Target’s new Price Match Policy with the additional five percent off guests receive when they use their REDcard creates an unbeatable value”, said Mark Schindele,
The new program has few exclusions, like, the retailer would not the price by third-party vendors on these sites, such as Amazon’s “marketplace” sellers. The company’s stores in Alaska and Hawaii have not been included in the program. The online prices as a result of clearance sales or percentage-off promotions have been excluded.