Target May Be Starting a Free-Shipping War

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The retailer is offering free shipping through the holidays – no minimum purchase necessary. Will other retailers follow suit?

Target is hoping for a turnaround from last year’s disastrous holiday shopping season, which was marked by a massive data breach that left the company reeling.

The retailer is now offering free holiday shipping on nearly all orders through Dec. 20. According to Target, oversized handling fees may still apply on some purchases.

Target’s sales dropped 5.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, a result of a data breach that compromised 40 million credit card accounts, Bloomberg said. With a new CEO at the helm, free shipping, more money invested in advertising and 35,000 new products on the shelves, Target is betting on a profitable holiday season this year.

According to The Associated Press, offering free shipping on all purchases puts Target head to head with other retailers.

As for free shipping, only a handful of retailers including Neiman Marcus and L.L. Bean offer that all year round without any thresholds. But Forrester analyst Sucharita Mulpuru says more and more retailers are offering special free shipping promotions that have become a cost of doing business. Such expectations come as online king has been beefing up services for its $99 Prime Loyalty program that includes free two-day shipping on many of its items.

24/7 Wall St. predicts that Target’s new free shipping offer could start a “free shipping price war” as big retailers try to woo holiday shoppers.

I live in a small town with few shopping options. But I’m an Amazon Prime customer, so I often choose to shop there to take advantage of the free two-day shipping. I love Target, but I don’t like to pay for shipping. This new offer ensures I will do at least a portion of my shopping at Target this holiday season.

Will Target’s free shipping offer change how you shop this holiday season? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.

Free shipping is one tactic retailers use to entice us to spend with them. To see more, watch the following video.

Stacy Johnson

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