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Target Store Guide

>> Thursday, February 18, 2010

Shopping at Target can be very expensive. Some grocery items are comparable with Walmart but for the most part they tend to be higher priced. It is possible, however, to shop at Target and save. But there are a few things you need to know.
  • Target publishes their own store coupons. These coupons can be stacked with manufacturer coupons to increase your savings. Target printable coupons are available on the Target website. Sometimes Target publishes coupon in Sunday inserts. And they also send direct mailers filled with coupons. If you have a Target Red Card, you most definitely will receive these coupons by mail. Make sure you register on the Target website to receive updates which will increase your chances of receiving mailed coupons.
  • Target is now offering mobile coupons - a service where you can register your cell phone to receive weekly text messages that contain special offers.
  • Target also runs gift card promotions which would be the equivalent to CVS Extra Care Bucks or Walgreens Register Rewards. These promotions require that you buy specified products to receive a Target gift card at the end of your transaction. Often these promotions are advertised in the weekly circular but there are often unadvertised offers as well. You are allowed to use coupons on these promotions.
  • Target also offers "temporary price cuts" similar to Walmart Rollbacks. It's a temporary sale on a specified product that lasts for a certain length of time.
Target Shopping Strategies
  • Target allows you to stack one Target store coupon with one manufacturer coupon per item. Look for items that have coupon matchups with both a Target coupon and manufacturer coupon. Many times the item ends up being really cheap and better yet, FREE.
  • A better strategy, if you can work it out, is to use manufacturer coupons, stacked with Target store coupons on items that are part of a gift card promotion. You'll lower your out of pocket expense with coupons and often end up getting the items for next to nothing after the gift card is applied.
EXAMPLE: Target runs a gift card promotion on Gillette Fusion razors. The razors are sale prices at $6.99 and you have to buy two to get a $5 Target gift card. There are coupons out for $4.00/1 Gillette Fusion. So you buy two razors ($13.98), use (2) $4.00/1 coupons which reduces your out of pocket expense to $5.98. At the end of your transaction you'll receive a $5 Target gift card which makes your final cost only $0.98 for both razors. If you had a Target store coupon for Gillette Fusion, you could use that as well to further reduce your out of pocket and make the razors FREE.
  • And of course you'll want to keep an eye out for temporary price cuts that can be matched with coupons (manufacturer and/or Target store coupons).
  • Target also has a price matching policy. This can save lots of time and money if you can utilize it effectively. Pay attention to advertised sales at other stores and look for items with coupon matchups and better yet, Target store coupon matchups combined with a gift card promo. Be sure to check out the price match policy .  Knowing the guidelines will save you frustration in the long run.
Target Tips:
  • Carry a copy of the Target Coupon Policy  and the Price Match Policy with you while you shop. In case you run into a new cashier that is unfamiliar with policy, you'll have something to show them. This often saves time because a manager does not need to be called.
  • Be sure to hand manufacturer coupons to the cashier first and then Target store coupons.
  • When participating in more than one gift card promotion in the same shopping trip, break up your items into separate transactions to minimize your out of pocket cost. For example, on the Gillette Fusion promo described above, if you bought four razors in one transaction with four coupons, your out of pocket would be $11.96 and you'd end up with (2) $5 gift cards. That's a great deal but you've still spent $11.96 cash. Instead, buy two razors in one transaction, pay $5.98 and get the $5 gift card. Then do your second transaction with two razors. Your subtotal on the second transaction will be $5.98, use the $5 gift card from the first transaction and you'll only pay $0.98 out of pocket plus get another $5 gift card. So your total out of pocket for both transactions is only $6.96 and you still have a $5 gift card for your next shopping trip.
  • Look for clearance deals. Most Super Target stores place clearance items on the endcaps of the main aisles. Become familiar with where your particular store places these items and make it a point to check each time you shop. You never know what you'll find.
  • Always check your receipt immediately after you shop to make sure you received the right discounts and gift cards. It's always easier to resolve a situation when it happens. I have found Target Customer Service to be exceptional in making things right. If, for some reason, you are unable to resolve a situation with the store personnel, then call the Target Guest Relations lin at (800)440-0680.
  • While it is unofficial, Target seems to have a patterned markdown schedule:
Monday – Electronics, Kids Clothing and Stationary (Cards, GiftWrap, etc
Tuesday – Domestics, Women’s Clothing, Pets and Market (food items)
Wednesday – Men’s Clothing, Toys, Health and Beauty, Lawn & Garden items
Thursday – House Wares, Lingerie, Shoes, Sporting Goods, Movies, Music, Books, Decor and Luggage
Friday – Auto, Cosmetics, Hardware, & Jewelry.

Holiday Clearance Schedule
50% off day after holiday for three days
75% off fourth day after holiday for three days
90% off seventh day after holiday for 1-2 days.

If you have any other questions, please email me or leave a comment on this post.

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