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Target Cites Mobile-riffic Holiday Season

Minneapolis — Target said it hit the bull’s-eye with record-breaking m- and e-commerce results this past holiday season.

According to the No. 2 discount chain, mobile traffic comprised 60 percent of its online traffic in November and December, and purchases made with mobile phones over Black Friday weekend were two times higher than the prior year.

What’s more, Target’s digital coupon app, Cartwheel, added 2 million new users over the holiday period and passed the $1 billion mark in promotional sales since its launch in summer 2013.

Also pointing to increased mobile usage: Store maps — available in Target’s new iPhone app — were accessed more than 400,000 times, the retailer said.

The company attributed some measure of its digital good cheer to revamped websites for mobile and desktop and re-launched apps for iPad and iPhone.

The report jibes with accounts from market research firms and other national retailers including Walmart, which said fully 70 percent of its online traffic between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday was mobile. Sears similarly cited “tremendous growth” in mobile, while found that nearly 60 percent of its customers shopped using a mobile device during the holiday season, and that holiday sales from its mobile app doubled in the U.S.

Confirming the results was Adobe, which found that 19 percent of online purchases over Cyber Monday were placed from smartphones and tablets, while retail personalization provider Monetate said phones and tablets accounted for 42.5 percent of all online traffic on Black Friday, up 21 percent year over year.

The shift caught Best Buy by surprise and overwhelmed its m-commerce capabilities, causing a temporary online outage on Black Friday.

“Mobile holiday shopping traffic and sales are increasing dramatically as consumers become more comfortable shopping via mobile,” noted Monetate CEO Lucinda Duncalfe, who also cited larger screen sizes and the advent of mobile payment systems.

Target added that its e-commerce site was no slouch either over the holidays, with racking up record sales on Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday that were up 40 percent year over year, while in-store pickups of online orders also hit a new record high on Thanksgiving.