Truth: Going off to college means lots of big firsts—like moving into a dorm or first apartment, your first roommate, and maybe even your first solo shopping trip. Kind of a big deal. Luckily, Target’s new stores are making it easier for many college students to shop and get everything they need, from move-in day to finals week.
This year, we’ve opened seven new small-format stores on or near college campuses, with three more set to open by the end of 2018. Our team tailors each new store with specially curated product assortments and experiences designed to serve the students and staff, as well as local professionals and residents of the surrounding community. It’s part of our plan to open more of our small-formats in areas where a full-size Target wouldn’t fit, to offer easy and inspiring shopping experiences for new guests across the country. Last year, we opened nearly 30 small-format stores—doubling the number we’d opened up to that point—and we plan to open about 30 more each year over the next few years.
Here’s a look at the Target stores we’ve opened near colleges so far.
These stores are like no other college-geared retail experience. Each one’s designed for quick and convenient trips, and stocked with locally relevant products at affordable prices. They also serve as convenient hubs where guests can go to pick up orders from Target.com. (Speaking of, don’t miss our full On to College assortment, along with this handy checklist, 360-degree shoppable dorm rooms for inspiration, and more.)
“Going off to college is a new life stage—students are making their own shopping decisions for the first time,” said Mark Schindele, senior vice president, Target Properties. “We want to help make students’ experiences fun and easy, serve up products and services they’ll love and show them the best that Target has to offer, so they become lifelong guests.”
What do college students shop for the most? Food tops the list, especially grab-and-go lunch and snack items like bananas, sandwich bread, Greek yogurt and apples. Essentials like toothpaste, toothbrushes and body wash are big too, along with dorm décor and apparel. Quick stops for school supplies and tech accessories are common—students often pick up notebooks, headphones, batteries, and cell phone adapters. And many students come for the brands they’ll only find at Target, from longtime favorites like our Room Essentials home products to stylish new brands like Heyday tech accessories.
“While all Target store teams strive to learn what local guests need and adapt accordingly, it’s particularly important for small-format stores near college campuses to get to know the unique needs of our student guests,” said Scott Timpani, store team leader at our University Center, University of California Irvine location. “For example, during the school year, about 10,000 students each day cross a pedestrian bridge that starts on campus and ends a few steps from our back entrance. Knowing these guests are often heading to class or simply in a hurry, we have four self-checkout kiosks next to the doors so they can quickly complete purchases and be on their way. And for guests who have more time to spend, we’ve created a cozy seating area near Starbucks complete with outlets for charging their devices.”