The new Target.com website went live last Tuesday just as Target News Now was hitting in-boxes with an item about the relaunch that began, “Just launch the new site already.” Well, now that the completely reengineered site is operational, it marks the company’s first step on an ambitious plan for multi-channel expansion, according to Target.com president Steve Eastman.
“Establishing a new platform for Target.com allows Target to reinvent our guests’ online environment and create a more user-friendly, reliable experience,” Eastman said. “With the new Target.com, we are in a better position to satisfy our guests’ constantly evolving preferences – whenever, wherever – in the same way we have earned their loyal support in our stores for decades.”
Key advancements to the site are said to be in the areas of personalization, design, layout and navigation with incremental improvement expected to be made on an ongoing basis. More than 20 technology partners were involved in the two-year undertaking.
Not everyone found the site experience to their liking. Retail technology blogger Evan Schuman slammed Targets new website in his newsletter Storefrontbacktalk, which featured a headline, “Target’s New Site: Where’s the New?” and another that said, “New Target.com Forgot the Customers.”
The first article suggested the new site basically puts Target on equal footing with other retailers who have offered the features and functionality of the new Target.com for years. The second article offered an even harsher assessment, suggesting the new site was worse than the version it replaced. Big chunks of the new site didn’t work at all and almost nothing worked as well as the site shoppers had seen a day or two before, according to the article.
“Target forgot the first rule of customer-facing development in retail IT: customers expect a new e-commerce site (or kiosk or POS system or loyalty program) to work better than the old one did,” the article stated. “If the old one worked fine, and the new one doesn't work as well, what’s the point?”
Not sure what else Storefrontbacktalk had to say about the new Target.com because the site requires a $149 annual subscription.