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Target shoppers wary

Target’s database breach in December 2013 not only affected the retailer’s fourth quarter comparable store sales, but also contributed to plummeting shopper penetration post-holiday.

Kantar Retail ShopperScape data indicates that just 33% of U.S. households reported shopping at Target or SuperTarget during January 2014, the lowest penetration number for Target in the past three years, and a 22% decrease in penetration compared to January 2013.

Kantar data shows that the overall trend in Target’s past four-week shopper penetration has been on a downward trajectory for the past several years. The shift away from shopping at Target in January varied among key segments of guests but was most significant among its core guests, including Gen X (shoppers 32 to 49 years old), who are more likely than any other cohort to shop Target, as well as lower-income shoppers, who tend to shop Target at a lower rate in general but whose penetration at Target declined by a full 30% from January 2013 to January 2014


“In the wake of that news, Target failed to reach a December ‘bump’ in penetration of the same magnitude as it has enjoyed in recent years,” said Rachel McGuire, Kantar Retail senior analyst and co-author of the report. “Our shopper data reflects the extent to which this issue continues to influence shopper behavior.”