By Tonya Garcia
Target Corp. has announced a fresh lineup of perks and promotions for the back-to-school season at a time when parents and teachers are feeling the squeeze of inflation.
The retailer has expanded the college student discount to 20% with a Target Circle membership. And the Teacher Prep Event has been extended by nearly six weeks, from July 17 through September 10, offering 15% off school supplies and other merchandise. Tax-free weekends are returning, and the retailer is highlighting brands, including its own labels, as an affordable option for supplies.
Target /zigman2/quotes/207799045/composite TGT +2.76% will also be hosting its Deal Days event July 11 through July 13, overlapping with Amazon /zigman2/quotes/210331248/composite AMZN +3.53% Prime Day. Read more about Prime Day .
Any deals this back-to-school season will be welcomed by families feeling the squeeze of high inflation.
Commerce technology and analytics provider Inmar Intelligence found in its 2022 Back-to-School Survey that 75% of shoppers have noticed higher prices on essential items, and 66% of shoppers will be looking for discounts before they make purchases.
Many consumers plan to shop earlier due to the inflationary environment, according to the data. And some may choose certain retailers, in response to inflation and higher gas prices.
“[R]ising gas prices incentivize shoppers to accomplish more with each visit which could benefit indoor malls and department stores alongside superstores like Target and Walmart,” said Ethan Chernofsky, vice president of marketing at Placer.ai, a data analytics company that measures foot traffic.
“The continued impact of inflation could also drive specific audiences towards value-buying, positioning off-price retail, and value-oriented retailers like Big Lots, Dollar General, and others.”
Target has been doing battle with an inventory glut and unveiled in June a plan that will include markdowns.
Target stock has slumped 37.4% for the year to date while the broader S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX +2.13% is down 19.3%.