Target is making a number of adjustments to its Drive Up curbside pickup service to make it more enticing to customers. Customers will be able to add Starbucks orders to their pickup, as well as the possibility to bring back things they want to return, according to the shop, which announced the changes on Wednesday. The new features aren’t now accessible; instead, they’ll be part of a Drive-Up service expansion slated for fall 2022 (Q3), according to Target.
According to TechCrunch, the changes would first be tested by store personnel before being sent out to Target customers in select test areas. Minneapolis, Target’s hometown, is likely to be one of the first test markets. Target, on the other hand, refused to disclose which towns or how many shops will acquire the features, or when the modifications would be rolled out more widely.
Customers will be able to access the additional alternatives through the Target mobile app, which now powers Target’s Drive Up service. Customers can now place orders for curbside pickup and then notify the business when they arrive. The Starbucks ordering option could benefit from the real-time indication of the customer’s position, as the corporation will know when to start producing the drink orders.
To offer an idea of the long-term magnitude of this feature, Target first teamed with Starbucks in 1999 and now operates at least 1,300 Starbucks cafés inside its U.S. shops. (Target has approximately 1,900 shops in the United States, with “the great majority” now including a Starbucks café, according to a representative.) While the chance to enjoy a cup of coffee while waiting for curbside pickup is a pleasant reward, the ability to manage returns without getting out of the car is a highly competitive feature. To make a return, most shops currently require customers to walk into the store and visit the customer service counter or mail their things back immediately.
Amazon has a number of locations where customers can return their items in person, including Whole Foods and Kohls. In 2017, Walmart, on the other hand, began accepting internet returns in-store. In the fall of 2018, it added support for marketplace items. Target also announced that it will expand its “backup item” capabilities to include new categories, such as beauty and household items. Customers can then choose a suitable replacement if their original option is unavailable.
“Our clients continue to tell us how much they enjoy the comfort and convenience of Drive Up and have asked us to expand the service to include even more of the Target experience.” “Adding Starbucks ordering and fast returns, as well as increasing our backup item selections, will provide guests with even more of what they love about shopping at Target, swiftly and conveniently,” said Mark Schindele, Target’s chief store officer. “Continual investments in our same-day services have developed trust and relevance with our visitors by addressing their requirements — regardless of how they purchase,” he added.
Drive-Up is one of several same-day services offered by Target, which also includes traditional online Order Pickup and its grocery-focused online shopping service Shipt, which is available both within the Target app, on Target.com, and on its own branded website and app, where users can shop non-Target stores. Target revealed during its third-quarter 2021 earnings call that its same-day services combined climbed approximately 60% this year, compared to a year ago when they surged 200 percent. The latter was, of course, during the height of the coronavirus outbreak, which boosted shops’ curbside pickup possibilities significantly.
While many consumers used the curbside pickup for the first time during the epidemic to avoid buying in-store, industry analysts believe that usage will continue high even as people return to stores for in-person shopping. Since its inception, Target has continued to add new features to Drive Up, including support for Adult Beverage pickup, “Shopping Partners” (for customers who want to send someone else to pick up their order), “Forgot Something” (for add-ons after orders have been placed), and more. In November, the business announced that it has invested in capital projects to increase permanent storage space in more than 200 high-volume locations, as well as flexible fixtures to provide temporary storage areas to support the seasonal peaks.