Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tuesday's Rant: different Targets carrying different things

Most Tuesdays I take the opportunity to rant about something I do not like about Target… because although I love ‘em to death, they ain’t perfect. Today’s rant is a continuation of yesterday's post, in which I complained that not all Target stores are carrying the same Liberty of London merchandise. Many of you have written in to complain about this as well. I also made a similar rant last year in regard to Target's Orla Kiely and Loomstate designer lines. But rather than sound like a broken record (since I feel like I've talked this issue to death) allow me to offer up a partial solution...

If you're really in love with one of the Liberty of London items, and you can confirm online that your store has it, then make a Target employee find it for you! If an item is out of stock online, but has the "find it at a store" button next to it (like the screen above) then enter your zipcode to see if any stores near you carry it. And if you go to the store that has it in stock and but you don't see it out on the shelf, then do what reader KKatt did and ask an employee to check the stockroom for you. Don't be shy; that's part of their job, to help customers.

UPDATE: Forget everything I just said. Since I posted my tip this morning, The Consumerist ran an interesting story, which you can read in full here. The gist of it, though, is that Target stores and Target.com are run separately, and that the accuracy of the "find it at a store" tool is pretty sketchy. I guess that's why Target posts the following disclaimer next to all their search results:

"NOTE: Prices, promotions, styles and availability may vary by store and online. We constantly strive to provide you with accurate item availability information, but because item quantities are constantly changing, the inventory information provided below is only an approximate indication of an item's in-stock status and an item's availability cannot be guaranteed."

So the bottom line is: call the store directly ahead of time to see if they have the item in question (instead of relying on the online "item finder" tool). And also, don't be shy to ask a Target employee for help.


Lemondrop Marie said...

Excellent suggestion! Since I live in a moderate size town I can never be sure what we'll get, even though we have a larger store.

Marie @ Lemondrop ViNtAge

Liz W said...

It is common in retail for certain stores to receive different items than others due to the size of the store or ranking. I work in clothing retail and our store is the smallest of the district so we do not receive all items available online because of our tier or ranking. Obviously for space issues. Target does seem a little odd that it doesn't carry the same stuff online as in stores in some product lines but who knows the reasoning behind it. But I absolutely agree with checking with an employee to check for an item in the back. In my work I always offer because, due to our store size, we just do not have the room to fit every item in every size out at all times, so naturally we have more in the back. Don't ever hesitate to ask because the worse they can say is no we are out of stock! Most times you can walk out with a fab find just by asking. What is that saying, it never hurts to ask?

Anonymous said...

I know from experience with Target that different stores get different assortments- ESPECIALLY with guest designer product collaborations. The best thing to do is check online (although all products may not even be there) or go to your closest major city and prepare to fight the crowds.