Skip to main content
Publish date:

Target's holiday season wasn't as successful as it hoped

After a year of gains, Target's holiday performance disappointed.
Author:

Target shares dropped on Wednesday morning after the retailer announced that its holiday sales were more sluggish than expected.

After enjoying a banner year with quarter after quarter of sales growth, Target said that its comparable sales over the busy Christmas period only rose 1.4 percent.

This is well below the 3-4 percent it had predicted for itself, and in pre-market trading Wednesday Target's share price, which surged throughout 2019, dropped by 6 percent.

Much of its struggles came in electronics, sales of which dropped 6 percent, while there was a 1 percent dip in the home department, while sales of toys remained flat.

Because these categories account for a much higher portion of sales during the holidays, they have a larger impact on our overall sales growth as compared to the rest of the year

Digital sales meanwhile grew by 19 percent, which Target says was boosted by its new suite of same-day fulfillment services – namely order pick up, drive up and delivery via Shipt.

These same-day services accounted for three-quarters of Target's digital sales growth.

There were also strong sales in apparel, up 5 percent, beauty, up 7 percent, and food, up 3 percent.

Follow Bring Me The News on LinkedIn

But with electronics, toys and home Target's bread and butter during the festive period, the lack of sales growth in these departments had an outsized impact on overall performance.

"We faced challenges throughout November and December in key seasonal merchandise categories and our holiday sales did not meet our expectations," Target CEO Brian Cornell said.

"However, because of the durability of our business model, we are maintaining our guidance for our fourth quarter earnings per share. We also remain on track to deliver historically strong full-year results in 2019, including comparable sales growth of more than 3 percent and record-high EPS (earnings per share) reflecting mid-teens growth compared with last year."

Next Up

Target store

Target unveils deals for 2-day 'Cyber Monday' event

The promotion kicks off Sunday, November 28.

Screen Shot 2021-11-27 at 9.59.30 AM

Edina police warn of recent burglary trend targeting garages and vehicles

The Edina Police Department is increasing patrols in affected neighborhoods in response to the trend.

Screen Shot 2021-11-27 at 9.03.06 AM

Charges: Man shot Uber Eats driver making a delivery in Cottage Grove

Otis Donnell Shipp was charged with second-degree attempted murder after turning himself in on Wednesday.

Screen Shot 2021-11-27 at 7.36.14 AM

Waterfront hotel in Duluth sustains damage in kitchen fire

Authorities estimate the damage at around $75,000.

Screen Shot 2021-11-27 at 7.15.18 AM

Large groups of thieves target 2 Twin Cities Best Buys on Black Friday

It bears similarities to the flash-mob style thefts seen recently in California.

Karl-Anthony Towns

Timberwolves' winning streak snapped at five games

The Wolves' bid for their longest winning streak since 2014 came up short.

Screen Shot 2020-08-14 at 6.45.53 PM

Teen arrested over fatal shooting of 5-year-old boy in Brooklyn Park

Police say the teen was filming a social media video while handling a gun.

Joe Biden

President Biden coming to Minnesota to promote Bipartisan Infrastructure Law

Tuesday's trip follows passage of the $1.2 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal.

Kirill Kaprizov

Kaprizov gets into the holiday spirit to rout Jets

Kirill Kaprizov's four points led the Wild to a 7-1 victory.

Kirk Cousins

Coller: Cure to Vikings' disrupted season lies in an explosive passing game

The Vikings go to San Francisco knowing that a win would be a huge boost to their playoff hopes.

Related

Holiday season a winner for Target, persuading more shoppers through its doors

The Minneapolis retail saw comparable sales grow 5.7 percent over the festive period.

Expect to find more toys at Target this holiday season

The Bullseye is expanding its toy department at hundreds of stores.

Target to roll out no minimum, free 2-day shipping for the holidays

It's looking to usurp its rivals, Amazon and Walmart.

target store

Target announces blowout 3rd quarter results

The retailer has seen business surge during the pandemic.

No happy holidays for Target, with stores not selling as much as hoped

Slumping electronics and entertainment sales hit Target in the pocket this past Christmas.

Target gift card

Holiday shopping? Target gift cards are discounted this weekend

You have to be a Target Circle member, but that's free to join.