We went to one of Target’s new urban stores and saw the company’s vision for the future of retail

Target's new Herald Square location opened earlier in October.

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Target’s new Herald Square location opened earlier in October.
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Mark Matousek/Business Insider

    Target is launching smaller, more streamlined stores in major metropolitan areas. The stores are tailored to their locations with customized inventory and decor. They also highlight products from Target private labels and partnerships. When we visited the new Herald Square location, we noticed how Target was trying to appeal to a younger, more fashionable demographic while introducing features that hint at the future of retail.

In an effort to appeal to customers who live in major metropolitan areas, Target is opening small-format stores in some of the biggest US cities including New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. The stores are designed to reach consumers who live in densely populated areas, far from full-size Target stores.

In addition to their condensed size, the small-format stores feature customized inventory and decor, and some will offer same-day delivery services. Target plans to have more than 130 small-format stores running by the end of 2019.

We visited the new Herald Square location in New York last week to see how Target adapted its sprawling megastores to an urban environment.


We arrived at New York’s new Herald Square location, at 112 W. 34th St. in Manhattan, on a Thursday afternoon.

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The store’s first floor highlighted Target clothing lines, like its collaboration with Print All Over Me.

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Founded in 2014, Print All Over Me allows its customers to design and purchase vibrantly colored clothes and accessories.

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Source: Architectural Digest


The first floor also highlighted A New Day, a women’s clothing line the company launched in August.

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The label’s offerings appear to be aimed at a younger, more fashionable, more urban demographic than one typically associated with Target.

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At the opposite entrance were items meant to appeal to the tourists who often frequent Herald Square.

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A selection of fresh and portable food was available for customers looking for a quick snack or lunch they could take on the go.

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After taking the escalator down to the lower floor, we immediately noticed the store’s Halloween offerings, including candy …

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… costumes …

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… and greeting cards.

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While not always displayed as prominently as on the first floor, Target’s in-house brands were often set apart from other brands’ offerings. Pasta and sauces from the Simply Balanced line were placed at the entrance to an aisle, facing shoppers.

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But Target also gave prime display space to local brands like Harry’s, a shaving company based in New York City.

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Source: New York Business Journal


The store also gave a prominent position to Shea Moisture, which was founded in Harlem.

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Source: Fast Company


Clothes, like Target’s Goodfellow brand, were given a central location on the bottom floor.

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Read more about Target’s Goodfellow line »


We were surprised at how many of the clothes seemed to be designed for and marketed to young and fashionable consumers.

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The rest of the bottom floor reflected Target’s broader in-store strategy, with a reduced number of discounted items that were displayed more subtly than they might have been.

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Beauty products have become a recent point of emphasis for Target. The company recently revamped its beauty sections to feature open plans, eye-level displays, and new lighting designs.

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The same could be said for same-day delivery, which retailers are beginning to roll out to encourage customer loyalty.

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The checkout area also had a few notable features. There was a pickup area for orders placed online.

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And the registers indicated a trend toward self-checkout.

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Overall, the Herald Square location demonstrated Target’s ability to tailor its strategy and offerings to an environment where the competition among retailers is intense.

Target's new Herald Square location opened earlier in October.

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Mark Matousek/Business Insider