Target Extending Hours to Drive Store Traffic

Target is still struggling to regain consumers' confidence after hackers got access to confidential shopper information late last year. Sales took a hit, and the discount retailer is trying to rebound.

First, the company cleaned house, from IT to CEO. Now, seeing a new opportunity to woo more shoppers, MInneapolis-based Target is extending shopping hours at more than half of its 1,800 stores.

Select stores will stay open one to two hours later — up until midnight in some cases (and only on weekends at some locations), according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. Before the change, the Minneapolis-based chain’s stores had typically closed at 10 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and at 9 p.m. on Sundays.

Pleasing Customers, Recapturing Lost Sales

The move comes at a time when Target is working to drive more traffic and win customers following last year's data breach. Target recently cut its second-quarter profit outlook, noting that new promotions had cut into its margins. It also said it will have “essentially flat” comparable store sales in the United States. The retailer is slated to report its full results for the quarter tomorrow.

The new extended hours will be in effect through the holidays, after which they will be evaluated, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Erika Winkels, a Target spokeswoman, said company data showed that some Target guests are looking for more options in terms of shopping later.

Target’s chief competitor in the discount arena, Walmart, keeps about 70 percent of its stores open 24 hours a day.

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