Target Store Exterior
27 May, 2024

The Future of Target’s Grocery Strategy and How The Bluebird Group Helps Brands Thrive

Target has long been a favorite shopping destination, known for its curated selection of products across various categories. Recently, however, there has been a significant shift in how customers perceive and utilize Target, particularly in its grocery department. Chuck Stormzand, Sr. Director of Sales at The Bluebird Group says, “historically, grocery shopping at Target was more of an afterthought—a convenience rather than a primary destination. This has changed. Today, Target shoppers are increasingly visiting the store specifically for their grocery needs, drawn by the promise of discovery, inspiration, and a fresh shopping experience. Target’s merchants are refining their approach to assorting emerging brands and their shoppers are taking notice.”
Target is doubling down on its commitment to the food business by prioritizing emerging brands. This strategy is designed to position Target as a first-to-market destination for new and innovative food products. For emerging brands, this means a unique opportunity to reach a broader audience eager for new and exciting offerings. Target's focus on velocity, incrementality, and unique solutions for guests ensures that only the most promising products make it to their shelves.

Common Mistakes by New Vendors

Navigating the complexities of retail partnerships can be challenging for new vendors, and this is where The Bluebird Group (BBG) excels. One of the most common mistakes new vendors make is underestimating the importance of understanding Target’s fee structures. BBG emphasizes the necessity of integrating these fees into profit and loss planning to avoid unpleasant surprises later.
Execution is another critical area. “We have the playbook for scale, but we remind our clients that inventory fulfillment execution is an always-on focus. It may sound fundamental but it's important to ship on time and in full, especially for brands in rapid scale mode."

The Bluebird Group's Unique Value

We asked Chuck what is unique about The Bluebird Group - “What makes The Bluebird Group unique is our deep relationships with retailers and a growth-first mindset. Our innovative and progressive approach, coupled with significant investments in data, provides a robust playbook for brands aiming to scale. Our focus on data and insights enables us to offer insightful and actionable guidance that can steer brands toward successful market penetration and growth at Target.”

Target’s Enhanced Grocery Strategy

Target’s commitment to expanding its grocery segment is evident in its recent strategic initiatives. The company plans to enhance its shopping experience by investing in new stores and upgrading existing ones to offer greater convenience and value to its customers. This includes the reintroduction of the Target Circle loyalty program with new membership options designed to personalize shopping and increase savings for guests​.
In recent quarters, groceries have become a significant revenue driver for Target. Food and beverage sales have seen substantial growth, even as other categories like discretionary items have faced declines. This shift highlights the increasing importance of groceries in Target’s overall strategy and its potential for future growth​.
Moreover, Target is leveraging its order pickup and delivery services to offer flexible fulfillment options, making it easier for guests to get what they need quickly and efficiently. This approach not only enhances guest satisfaction but also drives repeat business, as guests appreciate the convenience and reliability of these services.
Target's evolving grocery strategy and its emphasis on emerging brands present a unique opportunity for new vendors. With the expert guidance of The Bluebird Group, brands can navigate the complexities of retail partnerships and leverage Target’s expansive reach to achieve significant growth. As Target continues to innovate and enhance its grocery offerings, both the retailer and its partners are well-positioned for a successful future.