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Target unwraps holiday toy strategy

Target Corp. unveiled the first phase of its holiday plan — one that is targeted to shoppers who previously relied on Toys “R” Us for their holiday shopping.

The discounter revealed that it will be expanding its toy assortment in-stores and online. Target plans to offer more than 2,500 new and exclusive toys — nearly double compared to last year.

In addition, Target plans to launch special events and experiences across its stores, as well as step up its digital engagement. For example, the company created a “Top Toys Hub,” an online page that groups toys by categories, including nostalgia, imagination, technology and specific characters and lines of toys that offer the element of ‘surprise,’ such as Hatchimals and Pikmi Pops. Target will also feature a digital version of its toy catalog, according to the retailer.

Toy orders are also eligible for Target’s Order Pickup, Drive Up, same-day delivery shopped by Shipt, and its free, two-day shipping.

Walmart also announced its holiday strategy on Friday, Aug. 31. The discount giant plans to expand its toy assortment by 30% in stores and by 40% online, and both offerings include “hundreds of new exclusive toys.” Walmart will also bolster its holiday assortment with in-store “play dates” and online influencers, among other benefits.

Both companies expect their efforts to appeal to U.S.-based customers who would have made holiday purchases at the now defunct Toys “R” Us chain. Toys “R” Us filed for bankruptcy in September, struggling under a heavy debt load and several years of lackluster sales due to increased competition from online competitors and discounters.
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