Target's Wonderland jingles RFID bells

Target's (NYSE:TGT) holiday pop-up shop in New York City is doing double duty as both a temporary location in a city where it has no stores, and as a showcase for new RFID-enabled cartless shopping.

The Target Wonderland is a 16,000 sq. ft. location in Manhattan's Meatpacking neighborhood. It has all the usual holiday merchandise, including toys and a Christmas tree. There are 10 "larger than life spectacles," according to the company.

But there is also a single larger than life technology display: RFID. Target began rolling out RFID price tags in stores earlier this year.

Upon entering, shoppers receive a custom lanyard with an RFID tag. All available merchandise has an RFID chip, so shoppers can scan the mini bullseye tag on any item to add it to a digital shopping list, then check out digitally.

"It will be a wonderful gift to our guests in New York during the holidays," Jeff Jones, Target's chief marketing officer, told the Star Tribune. "But strategically, it's a continued evolution for us to think about what physical shopping is like when we blur the lines with experience and digital layers."

Wonderland is yet another test for Target, which has been experimenting with technology in a variety of manners. In July, the company opened an interactive showroom for connected home devices in San Francisco and is experimenting with IoT products and displays. Target also opened a studio and office near the Wonderland pop-up earlier this year.

Cartless shopping and RFID are being used to help simplify omnichannel fulfillment and to create small store formats. Both initiatives have been identified as important growth strategies for Target.

For more:
-See the Target announcement
-Read the Star Tribune article

Related stories:
Target to open 9 small-format stores
Target scouts innovators in retail accelerator program
Target opens connected home showroom
Target releases fresh merchandise in rapid-fire 2015 overhaul
Target to roll out RFID price tags this year

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