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Target announced that it is expanding its click-and-collect service from the San Francisco Bay Area to New York and New Jersey, with the rollout of 10 Target locations being serviced by the Curbside tech startup.

The announcement notes that "Curbside allows consumers to shop directly from their mobile phones and pick up right in front of the store without having to find items on shelves, wait in checkout lines or deal with the hassles of parking. The Curbside service is free, the app is free and the company does not mark up store prices." Curbside uses "proprietary location technology to provide a seamless and reliable handoff of goods in front of the store. The Curbside system notifies staff when shoppers are on approach."

“We know today’s consumers are looking for faster and more convenient ways to shop. That’s why Target is constantly exploring new ways to improve the shopping experience and save our guests time and money,” says Casey Carl, Target’s chief strategy and innovation officer, in a prepared statement. “Curbside has proven popular among our Bay Area guests, and we’re excited to expand the service to guests in New York and New Jersey.”
KC's View:
Curbside strikes me as a better alternative than Instacart, because Target is outsourcing less of the fulfillment experience, and seems to have more of a dedicated relationship with the tech company. The broader message is that Target is getting serious about competing in the online/mobile environment.

Which it must be.