Why is Target so Appealing for Canadians?

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When I first heard that Zellers was shutting down and going to be replaced by Target stores, it was bittersweet.  In 2011, Target announced that they would take over the lease agreements of 220 Zellers stores for the sum of over $1.8 billion.

Target decided to rescue (or maybe hi-jack is a better word) a sinking ship that was Zellers.

I have always liked visiting Target, and have fond memories of heading to Target with my family on road trips when I was younger.  That being said, although Zellers was disorganized and wasn't ever a nice shopping experience, it was still Zellers (remember Club Z and the mascot bear?) and quintessentially Canadian.

Related: Why Target is Better Than Wal-Mart!

Target has definitely come a long way as I remember it being somewhat disorganized too.  Then they became chic, with Target being pronounced “Tar-jay” when they involved designers like Isaac Mizrahi to design clothes for the Target line.  Now there are even more designers added to the line up, and they coined the Target motto, affordable chic.

target opens in canadaIn Vancouver proper, the closest target is still in the land of suburbia but there should be a Target coming soon in the Fall of 2013.

Why I am Attracted to Target like a Moth to a Flame

I recently went to shop at Target in Canada and it was like love a first sight.  Like we were old lovers and but were separated by chance and got a chance to reunite again.  The butterfly feeling in my stomach was there and I was so impressed with everything that Target had to offer.

Even the employees seemed really happy at Target.  You would never see that at Zellers lol.  There's a lot to be said for organization and colour.  However, maybe they were happy because of the novelty of the new store too.  Who knows. 🙂

The reason why I am attracted to Target is not because they are affordable (some things are well priced, some are not), but mainly because the store is so nicely laid out.  Everything is bright, spacious, and well lit.  Everything is organized and it really makes you want to buy, buy, buy.

Another reason I am a big fan of Target is their house brand line of furniture, bathroom decoration, and indoor and outdoor decor.  Everything is so clean and crisp and the colours are so nice.

I bought some great patio furniture (zero gravity lounge chairs for $30) because they were 50% off.  I also bought a swim suit for regular price (and I rarely buy things regular price) just because it was so nicely designed and reasonably priced for $40.  I bought a nice lamp for $30- it was very nicely made and solid.

Yes, I spent over $200 at Target.  I would not have done that at Zellers.  Ever.

Obviously, I contributed to the better than expected sales targets for Target Canada, as noted in the Globe and Mail.  Sales were highest in the home and clothing departments (haha exactly the two areas I shopped- I am such a predictable customer).

The ticker for Target is TGT and the current price is $71.58.  Their dividend yield is currently 2.41% and the P/E ratio is around 16.  The 52 week low was around $58 and it is currently sitting around the 52 week high.

So is it the same shopping in Canada versus the United States?

I'll admit, I haven't stepped foot in a Target in the United States in a long time.  Whenever I go to the states, it's to buy clothes at the Seattle Premium Outlets, and not to buy knick knacks at Target.

Krystal from Give Me Back my Five Bucks did a wonderful post comparing the prices of certain items in the United States Target and the Canadian Target.  The conclusion is that for certain things, Target in the United States is cheaper and for other things, Target in Canada is cheaper (like batteries if they are on sale).  However, for the most part it is cheaper to shop Target in the United States.  Unfortunately, everything is cheaper in the United States, even milk and eggs!  Despite Target being cheaper in the United States, I don't think I would make a targeted (haha sorry I had to) trip to shop at Target USA.

Readers, has a Target come to a town near you yet?  If so, what do you think?


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Young is a writer and former owner of Young and Thrifty and the main "twitter' behind Young and Thrifty's twitter account. She lives in Vancouver, BC and enjoys long walks on the beach, spending time with her anxious dog, and finding good deals. If you like what you read, consider signing up for email updates.


  1. krantcents on August 8, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    I like Target for household items. In the U.S., they offer a credit or debit card with an instant 5% rebate. It makes Target very competitive with the big box stores.

  2. Cassie on August 8, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    I’ve been in the store a few times and I have make a handful of purchases. Honestly, because of the colour scheme and the fact that a lot of the shelving units are strikingly similar to the ones Zellers used, Target reminds me of what Zellers could have been if it had been properly managed and marketed. It’s unfortunate to see the demise of another Canadian company.

  3. Stephanie on August 9, 2013 at 12:58 am

    I find that US Target has better selection and cheaper baby products. For example, the ever popular Aden & Anais swaddling blankets are about $20 cheaper online at target.com bit Target Canada doesn’t sell them. It was quite disappointing when I found out I couldn’t get certain things.

  4. […] Why is Target so Appealing for Canadians? @ Young and Thrifty […]

  5. Paul on August 16, 2013 at 11:34 am

    I find Target to be Walmart with brighter lights and higher prices. There were no staff in sight, and the self serve check outs were all broken.

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