Target Corp. plans to roll out fresh and frozen grocery pickup and drive-up services at 400 Midwestern stores before the end of the month, and to 1,500 of its stores nationwide before the end of the year.
The move adds fresh and frozen grocery items to its existing pickup and delivery program. The company said in a release that it piloted the expanded grocery pickup program in Kansas City and in the Twin Cities in Minnesota.
Target said the existing program features “a suite of services” that includes allowing customers to retrieve their items from an order pickup window with no additional charge. In addition, Target’s drive-up service caters to customers “who don't even want to leave the car," and staff members will bring groceries out to the parking lot within minutes.
“The speed and convenience of our fulfillment options are unmatched across the country, and they’ve become even more critical for our guests searching for easy and safe ways to shop during the pandemic,” said John Mulligan, Target’s chief operating officer, in the release. “By adding fresh grocery to the pickup services,” customers already using such offerings will get “even more reasons to shop at Target,” he noted. “During a time when even more people are looking for different ways to get the items they need, we’ll continue to invest in making Target the easiest and safest place to shop.”
Earlier in the pandemic, Target put its plans for curbside grocery pickup on hold, saying that the COVID-19 pandemic made it too much of a health risk for everyone involved. Part of the challenge, the company said in an announcement, was that the company wouldn’t have time to train people on the proper social distancing procedures.
However, by late May, Target had shifted gears again. CEO Brian Cornell boasted about the chain’s array of fulfillment options, including “our rapidly growing same-day services.” Those include in-store pickup, curbside service and Shipt, the delivery platform Target purchased in 2017.