17 Secrets to Saving at Target

Who’s ready to save some money at Target? Target is sometimes thought of one of the more expensive box stores, but in my experience, that’s just not the case. I cannot think of another retailer that offers so many easy and fun ways to save money on all your essentials as well as the fun stuff. Where else can you get store coupons for in store OR online for things like clothes, shoes, accessories, or school supplies?! But before we dive in – next week do you want to see hacks to saving money when shopping online? Or would you rather hear about 10 of the WORST items to buy at the Dollar Tree?!

1. Save BIG by Buying Items on the Floor (Display Items) – Your experience can vary from store to store or region to region, but sometimes the stores will sell you the display items when they are discontinued. Ask for the department manager. This is the way to save money on things like TV stands, desks, and baby furniture.

2. Brickseek. Brickseek actually began as a database for Lego collectors to find rare sets in stores. It has morphed over the years into a bargain hunters dream – letting our fingers do the walking. If you know the item # (called the DCPI at Target) you can check all your area zip codes for markdowns. While it’s not 100% accurate (no one can be right all the time!) it serves as a great guide. If anything else, once you have a few successes you will see which stores near you tend to markdown items more aggressively than others so those are the stores to frequent.

3. Target Clearance – up to 90% off – Target has AMAZING in store clearance. You can see items fall to 90% off if you’re persistent and patient. More popular household type items are typically only discounted at 15% when they go on clearance and items like food, electronics, beauty products and Legos will always see 15% off first and be slower to decrease in price. In general items get marked down every 2-3 weeks until they are gone. Seasonal items however are more aggressively marked down. Food will usually start at 30%. Items like pool floats and Christmas lights will hit 90% eventually, but the pickings may be slim. If something you really want falls to 70% off, I’d personally grab it and not take the chance of it being gone next time, but that’s up to your risk tolerance. 😉

4. Look for Those Yellow or Red CLEARANCE stickers – Those stickers make it so easy for us! Underneath the word clearance is a 9 digit number – that’s the DCPI number or the item number. Top tip: Take a photo and save it in your phone; you can look up all the items you find later on Brickseek to see if there’s more and if they’re cheaper in another store. On the next line, on the left is the original price, then off to the right is the marked down price. In the top right corner is either the number 15, 30, 50, 70 or 90 – that’s the percentage off. Remember you can always use one of the in store scanners to check the price. I’ve been surprised on more than one occasion and an item was less than the sticker said.

5. Target’s Markdown Schedule: Target nationwide follows this markdown schedule. For any questions on your individual stores, see the department manager and they may be able to give you more info.
Monday: Electronics, accessories, kids’ clothing, books, baby, stationery
Tuesday: Domestic goods, women’s clothing, pets, grocery (food items)
Wednesday: Men’s clothing, health & beauty, diapers, lawn & garden, furniture
Thursday: Houseware, lingerie, shoes, toys, sporting goods, decor & luggage
Friday: Automotive, cosmetics, hardware, jewelry

6. Save 5% with their RedCard. The RedCard is Target’s store credit card. It’s unique in that you can choose a traditional credit card (remember it’s only a savings when you pay the bill off in full each month!) OR a debit card. The debit card drafts your purchases directly from your checking account so it’s great for more of a “spend as you go” approach. You get 5% off just about anything online or in store. It also offers FREE shipping at Target.com with no minimum purchase needed.

7. Chicken in Disguise – why pay more for “brand name”? Market Pantry (Target’s store brand) is actually Tyson chicken! Look for Target Circle offers in the app for additional savings on Market Pantry chicken. Stock up when there’s a hot offer. Getting a little extra and freezing meat is a GREAT way to cut down your weekly grocery bill.

8. Those “2 for” Signs Mean NOTHING – This is an old trick used most often in grocery stores but Target does it too. When you see a sale item tagged for example as 2/$5, you DON’T have to buy 2 for the sale pricing. One item will ring up as $2.50. Of course, if you have a coupon for 2 AND it’s on sale, it may make more sense to take advantage of using your coupon along with the sale. As always, do your math!

9. Price matching! – Target will price match in store to their online price at Target.com. They also can price match to select online competitors. {Go HERE for a complete list of online competitors Target currently will price match}

10. Target Baby Box (a $60 value!) – Create a FREE Target baby registry and receive a Welcome Baby Box with $150 worth of product samples, coupons, and a 15% off coupon to purchase anything that doesn’t get purchased from your Registry. This will STACK with your 5% RedCard discount! 😉

11. Join “Hey Bullseye” – Hey Bullseye is Target’s secret shopper program. As a secret shopper, you can be eligible to receive free products in exchange for honest reviews. If this is up your alley first thing to do is join the “Hey Bullseye” program. If you are very active in the community you could receive an invitation to become a reviewer for target. If you don’t get into the Bulleye insider program at first I suggest always doing their online surveys they send after you’ve shopped in store. Those typically are sent within 24-72 after your in store visit to the email you have on file with Target Circle. {Go HERE for more info on “Hey Bullseye”}

12. Earn Gift Cards for Shopping and Browsing – Shopkick is such a fun way to earn gift cards at Target. You earn “kicks” which are points for walking into store, scanning select items and for purchasing select items. Those points or “kicks” add up fast and can be redeemed for Target gift cards. To get started, download the Shopkick app. Make sure you open it as you go in store to get walk in kicks and then check each time you go in for what you can scan for more kicks. I earn a few dollars a month easily this way.

13. Fetch Rewards – Similar to Shopkick, Fetch Rewards gives you points for scanning receipts of your purchases at just about ANY store, not just Target. The points accumulate and can be redeemed for gift cards at Target or many other places. Sign up now and get a $2 bonus just for joining! {Go HERE to sign up} and be sure to use code U8EWC. You MUST use that code to get the $2 bonus!

14. Help the Environment by Bringing your Own Bags and Receive 5¢ off per bag! – Cut down on all the plastic bags we don’t need and bring your own reusable bags. You’ll get 5¢ off per bag that gets filled with your purchases.

15. Price Adjustments – As per Target’s price match/price adjustment policy, if an item you buy goes on sale at Target within 14 days of your purchase, you’ll get the difference back! Hang onto your receipts! I once got $60 back on a grill because of this great policy they offer their customers!

16. Make a Target Registry EVEN if you are not getting married! – When you make a registry, you get a 15% off coupon for your entire purchase. This is a great and not to mention creative way to get a lot of money off those big ticket items!

17. Target Circle – Formerly known as Target Cartwheel, Target Circle is Target’s online portal for digital coupons. Hundreds of coupons both manufacturer and store coupons are there at any given time. Store coupons STACK with manufacturer (digital OR printed/newspaper coupons) meaning you can use 2 coupons most of the time on the same item. Target Circle takes it one step further and works as a loyalty program. Look in the Wallet section of your Target app for Featured Offers. Often they offer a nice $15 back when you make 3 in store purchases each month!

18. Discounted Gift Cards – Once or twice year, Target gift cards are discounted. This year we saw 5% off around Amazon Prime day, where Digital Target Gift Cards were 5% off. The second occurrence is around Black Friday where you can save up to 10%! If you have a monthly Target budget, this is the time to put down your cash now and save 10%! Also, it’s a little known secret that Disney Gift cards are 5% off when you use your RedCard and buy at Target. I recently used this trick to save hundreds on a Disney World trip by buying the gift cards and using those gift cards to pay my reservation!

There you have it! I’m willing to bet there are at least a few of tricks on this list you didn’t know about. I hope this list is something you can refer back to again and again and it helps you really get the most for your money at Target.

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