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Company > Target: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Target: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Published: Jan 18, 2023

Inside This Article


    In this blog article, we will delve into the analysis of Target Corporation's business model, SWOT analysis, and its competitors as we look forward to the year 2023. Target, a renowned retail giant, has continuously evolved its business model to adapt to the dynamic market trends. We will evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats that shape Target's strategic position in the industry. Additionally, we will explore the competitive landscape, identifying rival companies that pose significant challenges to Target's market dominance.

    What You Will Learn:

    • Who owns Target and the background of the company's ownership structure
    • The mission statement of Target and how it guides the company's operations
    • How Target generates revenue and the various sources of income for the company
    • An explanation of the Target Business Model Canvas and its key components
    • An overview of Target's competitors and the competitive landscape in which it operates
    • A detailed SWOT analysis of Target, highlighting its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in the market.

    Who owns Target?

    Ownership Structure of Target

    Target Corporation, commonly known as Target, is a retail giant that operates a chain of department stores and online platforms. As a publicly traded company, Target has numerous shareholders who collectively own the company. Let's delve into the ownership structure of Target and understand who owns this retail powerhouse.


    At the core of Target's ownership structure are its shareholders, who are individuals or institutions that hold shares in the company. Target's shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "TGT." As of the latest available information, Target has a diverse base of shareholders that includes both institutional and individual investors.

    Institutional Investors

    Institutional investors play a significant role in Target's ownership. These investors are typically large organizations such as mutual funds, pension funds, and other financial institutions. They invest substantial amounts of money into Target, thereby owning a considerable portion of the company's shares. Some of the prominent institutional investors in Target include Vanguard Group, BlackRock, and State Street Corporation.

    Individual Investors

    Individual investors, comprising retail investors and smaller financial institutions, also own a portion of Target. These individuals purchase Target's shares through brokerage accounts or retirement plans. They range from individual investors who buy a few shares to small investment firms that hold a more substantial stake in the company.

    Management and Board of Directors

    Aside from the institutional and individual investors, Target's management and board of directors also have ownership in the company. The management team, including the CEO and other top executives, often own shares of the company, aligning their interests with those of the shareholders. Additionally, Target's board of directors, who provide strategic guidance and oversee the company's operations, may also own shares as part of their compensation.


    Target Corporation is collectively owned by a diverse group of shareholders, including both institutional and individual investors. These shareholders, along with the company's management and board of directors, contribute to the ownership structure of Target. This broad ownership base reflects the widespread interest and confidence in Target's performance and its role as a leading retail brand.

    What is the mission statement of Target?

    Target's Mission Statement

    Target is a well-known retail company with a clear and concise mission statement that guides its operations and strategic decisions. The mission statement of Target is:

    "We fulfill the needs and fuel the potential of our guests. That means making Target their preferred shopping destination by delivering outstanding value, continuous innovation, and exceptional guest experiences—consistently fulfilling our Expect More. Pay Less.® brand promise."

    This mission statement encapsulates Target's commitment to meeting the needs and expectations of its customers, known as "guests." Target aims to go beyond simply providing products and services; instead, it strives to fuel the potential of its guests by offering a unique shopping experience.

    One key element of Target's mission statement is its focus on value. Target promises to deliver outstanding value, ensuring that customers receive high-quality products at affordable prices. This commitment to value aligns with Target's well-known slogan, "Expect More. Pay Less.®" It emphasizes the company's dedication to offering competitive prices without compromising on quality.

    In addition to value, Target's mission statement emphasizes continuous innovation. The company understands the importance of staying ahead of the curve in the ever-changing retail industry. By continuously innovating and adapting to new trends and technologies, Target aims to provide its guests with the latest and most relevant products and services.

    Lastly, the mission statement highlights Target's dedication to exceptional guest experiences. Target recognizes that customer satisfaction is paramount, and it strives to create an enjoyable and personalized shopping environment. From its well-designed stores to its friendly and helpful staff, Target aims to exceed customer expectations and ensure that every visit is a positive experience.

    Overall, Target's mission statement reflects its commitment to fulfilling the needs and fueling the potential of its guests. By delivering outstanding value, continuous innovation, and exceptional guest experiences, Target aims to become the preferred shopping destination for its customers.

    How does Target make money?

    Sales Revenue

    The primary way Target makes money is through its sales revenue. Target operates as a retail corporation, selling a wide range of products including clothing, electronics, home goods, groceries, and more. By offering a diverse selection of merchandise, Target attracts a broad customer base and generates revenue from their purchases.

    Online Sales

    In recent years, Target has significantly expanded its online presence to keep up with the growing trend of e-commerce. The company has invested in developing a robust online platform, allowing customers to shop conveniently from their homes. Target's online sales contribute to its overall revenue stream, providing customers with an additional channel to purchase their desired products.

    Exclusive Brands

    Target has strategically developed exclusive brands to differentiate itself from competitors. These brands, such as "Up&Up" for household essentials or "Good & Gather" for groceries, offer customers unique products that they cannot find elsewhere. By leveraging these exclusive brands, Target attracts customers who are specifically seeking out these products, driving sales and revenue.

    Store Layout and Design

    Target's store layout and design play a crucial role in generating revenue. The company focuses on creating an enjoyable and inviting shopping experience for customers. Target stores are carefully organized and aesthetically appealing, making it easy for customers to navigate through different departments and discover new products. This attention to detail enhances customer satisfaction and increases the likelihood of purchases, ultimately contributing to Target's revenue.

    Target RedCard

    Target RedCard is a loyalty program that offers customers various benefits, such as an additional discount on purchases, free shipping for online orders, and exclusive promotional offers. By encouraging customers to sign up for the RedCard, Target can increase customer loyalty and drive repeat purchases. Moreover, the RedCard program also provides Target with valuable customer data, which the company can use to personalize marketing efforts and enhance its revenue-generating strategies.

    Partnerships and Sponsorships

    Target has formed strategic partnerships and sponsorships with various brands, celebrities, and events. These collaborations help promote Target's products and brand image to a wider audience. By associating itself with popular names and events, Target increases its brand visibility and attracts new customers. Additionally, partnerships often involve exclusive product lines or limited-edition items, creating a sense of urgency and driving sales.


    Target's revenue streams primarily come from sales revenue, both in-store and online. The company also leverages its exclusive brands, store layout, and design to enhance customer experience and boost sales. The Target RedCard loyalty program, partnerships, and sponsorships further contribute to the company's revenue growth. With its diverse revenue streams and customer-centric approach, Target continues to thrive in the competitive retail industry.

    Target Business Model Canvas Explained

    What is the Business Model Canvas?

    The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management tool that helps businesses visualize and analyze their business model in a concise and structured manner. It provides a framework to understand and describe how a company creates, delivers, and captures value. The canvas consists of nine essential building blocks that cover all aspects of a business, from its key partners and activities to its customer segments and revenue streams.

    How does the Business Model Canvas work?

    The Business Model Canvas is designed to be a collaborative tool that facilitates discussion and decision-making within a business. The canvas is divided into nine sections, each representing a different aspect of the business model. By filling out each section, businesses can gain a holistic view of their operations, identify potential gaps or weaknesses, and explore new opportunities for growth.

    The Nine Building Blocks

    1. Customer Segments: This section defines the different groups of customers that a business aims to serve. By understanding their needs, preferences, and behaviors, businesses can tailor their products or services to meet specific customer demands.

    2. Value Proposition: The value proposition describes the unique value that a business offers to its customers. It highlights the benefits, features, or solutions that differentiate the company from its competitors and address the customers' pain points.

    3. Channels: This section outlines the different channels through which a business reaches its customers and delivers its value proposition. It can include physical stores, online platforms, distribution networks, or partnerships with other organizations.

    4. Customer Relationships: This block focuses on the type of relationships a business establishes and maintains with its customers. It can range from personal assistance and dedicated support to self-service and automated interactions.

    5. Revenue Streams: The revenue streams section identifies the various sources of income for a business. It outlines how the company generates revenue from its value proposition, such as through product sales, subscriptions, licensing, or advertising.

    6. Key Resources: This block refers to the essential resources a business needs to operate effectively. It includes physical assets, intellectual property, human resources, financial resources, and technological infrastructure.

    7. Key Activities: This section defines the crucial activities a business must perform to deliver its value proposition and operate its business model. It can encompass production, marketing, distribution, customer service, or research and development.

    8. Key Partnerships: This block outlines the strategic alliances or collaborations that a business forms to leverage external resources, expertise, or distribution channels. Partnerships can be with suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, or other businesses in complementary industries.

    9. Cost Structure: The cost structure section identifies the key expenses a business incurs to operate its business model. It includes both fixed and variable costs, such as production costs, marketing expenses, employee salaries, or IT infrastructure costs.

    Benefits of using the Business Model Canvas

    The Business Model Canvas offers numerous benefits for businesses of all sizes and industries. It promotes a systematic approach to understanding and innovating business models, encourages cross-functional collaboration, and fosters a shared understanding of the entire business ecosystem. The canvas helps businesses identify new revenue streams, optimize their cost structure, and align their activities with their value proposition. By visualizing the business model, it becomes easier to communicate and align the company's strategy with stakeholders, employees, and investors.

    Which companies are the competitors of Target?


    Walmart is one of the main competitors of Target. With its extensive range of products and competitive pricing, Walmart has established itself as a major player in the retail industry. Similar to Target, Walmart offers a wide variety of goods including groceries, clothing, electronics, and household items. The two companies often compete for customers seeking everyday low prices and convenience.


    As online shopping continues to grow in popularity, Amazon has become a significant competitor for Target. Known for its vast selection of products and expedited shipping options, Amazon offers a convenient and seamless shopping experience. While Target has been expanding its online presence in recent years, it still faces stiff competition from Amazon in the e-commerce space.


    While Costco primarily focuses on bulk purchases and membership-based shopping, it competes with Target in some areas. Both companies offer groceries, household items, and electronics, attracting customers who prefer to buy in bulk or seek discounted prices. However, Target differentiates itself by offering a wider range of products, including clothing, beauty, and home decor, appealing to a broader customer base.

    Best Buy

    Best Buy is a direct competitor of Target in the electronics and appliance market. Both companies offer a wide selection of televisions, computers, smartphones, and other tech gadgets. However, Best Buy specializes in consumer electronics, while Target provides a more diverse range of products. Target aims to attract customers by offering a one-stop shopping experience where they can find both electronics and other household necessities.


    Kroger, a leading supermarket chain, competes with Target in the grocery sector. While Target offers a variety of grocery items, Kroger has a more extensive selection and focuses solely on groceries. Kroger's strong presence, competitive prices, and loyalty programs make it a formidable competitor for Target in attracting customers looking for a dedicated grocery shopping experience.


    Macy's, as a well-known department store, competes with Target in the apparel and home goods categories. Both companies offer a wide range of clothing, accessories, and home decor items. While Target appeals to customers looking for affordable and trendy options, Macy's focuses on offering higher-end and designer brands. However, Target's competitive pricing and convenient locations give it an advantage over Macy's in attracting budget-conscious shoppers.

    Target SWOT Analysis


    • Strong brand recognition and customer loyalty: Target is a well-established and widely recognized brand, known for its trendy and affordable products. This strong brand identity has helped Target build a loyal customer base, which contributes to its competitive advantage in the retail industry.

    • Diverse product offerings: Target offers a wide range of products, including apparel, home goods, electronics, and groceries, catering to various customer needs. This diversification allows Target to attract a broad customer base and reduces its reliance on specific product categories.

    • Effective supply chain management: Target has implemented efficient supply chain management practices, enabling it to quickly replenish inventory and meet customer demands. This results in a seamless shopping experience and reduces the risk of out-of-stock situations, ultimately boosting customer satisfaction.


    • Limited international presence: Unlike some of its competitors, Target has a relatively limited international presence. This lack of global expansion can hinder its growth potential and limit revenue streams. Expanding into new markets could be a potential opportunity for Target to overcome this weakness.

    • Vulnerability to economic downturns: Target's business is highly influenced by economic conditions. During periods of economic downturns, consumers tend to reduce discretionary spending, which can negatively impact Target's sales and profitability. This sensitivity to economic fluctuations is a weakness that Target needs to address.

    • Data breaches and cybersecurity concerns: In recent years, Target has faced cybersecurity breaches, resulting in the compromise of customer data. These incidents not only damage the company's reputation but also expose it to potential legal and financial consequences. Strengthening cybersecurity measures and investing in data protection technologies is crucial to address this weakness.


    • E-commerce growth: The increasing popularity of online shopping presents a significant opportunity for Target to further expand its e-commerce presence. By investing in digital platforms, improving website functionality, and enhancing the online shopping experience, Target can tap into a broader customer base and increase sales.

    • Sustainability and ethical consumerism: There is a growing trend towards sustainability and ethical consumerism, with customers seeking products from environmentally and socially responsible companies. Target can leverage this opportunity by emphasizing its efforts towards sustainability, such as sourcing eco-friendly products and reducing carbon emissions, to attract conscious consumers and gain a competitive edge.

    • Expansion into new markets: While Target has a strong presence in the United States, it has the potential to expand into new international markets. By carefully assessing market opportunities and adapting its business model to suit local preferences, Target can capitalize on untapped markets and diversify its revenue streams.


    • Intense competition: The retail industry is highly competitive, with numerous players vying for market share. Target faces fierce competition from both traditional retailers and e-commerce giants such as Amazon. This intense competition can pose a threat to Target's market position and profitability if it fails to differentiate itself and meet evolving customer expectations.

    • Changing consumer preferences: Consumer preferences and shopping habits are continually evolving. Target must stay attuned to these changes and adapt its product offerings and marketing strategies accordingly. Failing to meet changing consumer demands can result in a decline in sales and loss of market share.

    • Economic uncertainties: Fluctuating economic conditions, such as inflation, recession, or changes in consumer purchasing power, can impact consumer spending habits. Target is vulnerable to these economic uncertainties, which can affect its sales and profitability. Implementing strategies to mitigate risks associated with economic fluctuations is essential for Target's long-term success.

    Key Takeaways

    • Target is a publicly traded company, meaning it is owned by shareholders who own its stock.
    • The mission statement of Target is to "make Target the preferred shopping destination for our guests by delivering outstanding value, continuous innovation, and an exceptional guest experience."
    • Target makes money primarily through the sale of various products and services, including apparel, beauty products, household essentials, groceries, and more.
    • The Target Business Model Canvas explains how the company creates value for its customers through key activities such as product design, procurement, marketing, and customer service.
    • Some of the major competitors of Target include Walmart, Amazon, Costco, and Kroger.
    • A SWOT analysis of Target reveals its strengths such as strong brand recognition and diversified product offerings, weaknesses such as a limited international presence, opportunities such as expanding into new markets, and threats such as intense competition and changing consumer preferences.


    In conclusion, Target is a well-known retail corporation that has successfully established itself in the market. As for ownership, Target is a publicly traded company, meaning it is owned by its shareholders. The mission statement of Target revolves around providing a unique and enjoyable shopping experience for its customers, with a focus on quality, innovation, and value.

    Target generates its revenue primarily through the sale of a wide range of products, including clothing, electronics, home goods, and groceries. Their business model, as explained by the Business Model Canvas, encompasses key elements such as customer segments, value propositions, channels, customer relationships, revenue streams, key activities, key resources, and key partnerships. This model is designed to efficiently meet the needs of their target customers and maximize profitability.

    As for competitors, Target faces strong competition from various companies in the retail industry. Some of its primary competitors include Walmart, Amazon, Costco, and other department stores and online retailers. These companies constantly strive to attract customers through competitive pricing, convenience, and a diverse product range.

    Lastly, a SWOT analysis of Target reveals its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Target's strengths include a strong brand image, a vast network of stores, and a loyal customer base. However, weaknesses such as limited international presence and vulnerability to economic fluctuations pose challenges. Target has opportunities to expand its online presence and enhance its supply chain efficiency. However, it also faces threats from intense competition, changing consumer preferences, and economic uncertainties.

    Overall, Target continues to navigate the retail landscape successfully, leveraging its strengths, addressing weaknesses, and seizing opportunities to remain a prominent player in the industry.


    What is the Target of SWOT analysis?

    The target of a SWOT analysis is to assess and evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of a business or organization. It helps in identifying internal strengths and weaknesses as well as external opportunities and threats, providing a comprehensive understanding of the current situation and potential future scenarios. The analysis can be applied to a specific project, department, team, product, or the entire organization to make informed decisions, formulate strategies, and improve overall performance.

    What are the weaknesses of Target?

    1. Data breaches: Target experienced a major data breach in 2013, where hackers gained access to the personal information of millions of customers. This incident damaged Target's reputation and customer trust.

    2. Intense competition: Target faces fierce competition from other big-box retailers like Walmart and online e-commerce giants like Amazon. This competition puts pressure on Target to constantly innovate and offer competitive prices.

    3. Dependence on the US market: Target primarily operates in the United States, which makes it vulnerable to fluctuations in the US economy. Any economic downturn can significantly impact Target's sales and profitability.

    4. Limited international presence: Unlike its competitor Walmart, Target has a limited international presence. This restricts its ability to tap into global markets and diversify its revenue streams.

    5. Perception as a higher-priced retailer: Target is often perceived as slightly more expensive compared to its competitors, such as Walmart. This perception can deter price-sensitive customers.

    6. Limited focus on certain product categories: Target has traditionally focused more on categories like apparel, home goods, and electronics, while not having as strong a presence in areas like groceries or pharmaceuticals. This limits its ability to capture a larger share of customer spending.

    7. Dependence on physical stores: Target heavily relies on its brick-and-mortar stores, which can be a weakness in an increasingly digital retail landscape. The shift towards online shopping and the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted the importance of having a strong online presence.

    8. Labor issues: Target has faced criticism regarding its labor practices, including low wages, inadequate benefits, and limited opportunities for career advancement. These issues can impact employee morale, productivity, and public perception of the company.

    9. Negative impact of global supply chain disruptions: Target, like many other retailers, relies on a complex global supply chain. Disruptions, such as trade disputes or natural disasters, can impact the availability and cost of products, affecting Target's operations and profitability.

    10. Sustainability challenges: As consumers become more environmentally conscious, Target may face challenges in meeting the expectations for sustainable practices and reducing its environmental footprint. Failure to address these concerns could result in negative public perception and potential loss of customers.

    What obstacles did Target face?

    Target has faced several obstacles over the years, including:

    1. Data Breach: In 2013, Target experienced a massive data breach where hackers gained access to the personal and financial information of approximately 110 million customers. This incident caused significant damage to the company's reputation and resulted in legal and financial consequences.

    2. Expansion into Canada: Target's expansion into the Canadian market in 2013 was met with challenges. The company faced supply chain issues, higher than expected costs, and difficulties in understanding the Canadian consumer market. These obstacles led to the decision to exit the Canadian market in 2015.

    3. Competition from Online Retailers: Target, like many traditional brick-and-mortar retailers, faced intense competition from online retailers, most notably Amazon. The shift in consumer shopping habits towards e-commerce posed a challenge for Target to adapt and remain competitive.

    4. COVID-19 Pandemic: The COVID-19 pandemic presented numerous challenges for Target as it disrupted supply chains, led to temporary store closures, and caused shifts in consumer behavior. The company had to quickly adapt to safety protocols, implement contactless shopping options, and meet the increased demand for online shopping.

    5. Labor Issues: Target has faced labor-related challenges, including employee protests and demands for higher wages and better working conditions. These issues have occasionally attracted negative media attention and put pressure on the company to address employee concerns.

    6. Gender Discrimination Lawsuit: In 2019, a former Target employee filed a lawsuit accusing the company of gender discrimination and unequal pay practices. This lawsuit highlighted the need for Target to address issues of diversity, inclusion, and gender equality within its workforce.

    Despite these obstacles, Target has also implemented various strategies and initiatives to overcome them and continue to grow as a successful retail brand.

    What are 3 examples of opportunities in SWOT analysis?

    1. Market expansion: SWOT analysis can identify opportunities for businesses to expand their market presence or enter new markets. This could include tapping into untapped customer segments, exploring international markets, or diversifying product offerings to cater to different customer needs.

    2. Technological advancements: SWOT analysis can highlight opportunities arising from technological advancements. This could include leveraging emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, or virtual reality to improve business operations, enhance customer experience, or create innovative products and services.

    3. Changing consumer preferences: SWOT analysis can help identify opportunities arising from evolving consumer preferences and trends. This could involve adapting products or services to meet changing customer demands, capitalizing on emerging lifestyle trends, or catering to the growing demand for sustainable and eco-friendly options.

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