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Target overcomes supply chain issues to see sales surge 13.2%

Target joins Walmart heading into the holiday shopping season with momentum, rerouting goods to less congested ports and even chartering their own shipping vessels.

BROOKLYN PARK, Minn. — Editor's note: The video above first aired on Sept. 23, 2021. 

Target delivered another quarter of strong results, overcoming a slew of challenges from inflationary pressures to congested ports. 

Third-quarter profits rose nearly 47%, while sales increased 13.2%, both exceeding expectations, and the Minneapolis company raised projections for fourth-quarter comparable store sales. 

Target joins Walmart heading into the holiday shopping season with momentum. The biggest U.S. retailers are rerouting goods to less congested ports, even chartering their own vessels.

Target and Walmart are using their scale to keep prices comparatively low and perhaps most importantly, keep shelves full when so many goods are in such short supply. 

“The consistently strong growth we’re seeing in our business, quarter after quarter, is a testament to the passion and commitment our team brings to serving our guests, and the trust we’ve built with them as a result,” said Brian Cornell, chairman and chief executive officer of Target Corporation.

Among the other third-quarter performance milestones:

  • Comparable sales growth was driven entirely by traffic.
  • Store comparable sales increased 9.7 percent, on top of 9.9 percent growth last year.
  • Digital comparable sales grew 29 percent, following growth of 155 percent last year.
  • Same-day services (Order Pickup, Drive Up and Shipt) grew nearly 60 percent this year, on top of more than 200 percent last year.
  • More than 95 percent of Target’s third quarter sales were fulfilled by its stores.

Not all is rosy, however. Target's margins are being pressured, and shares slipped early.