Target Experiences Decline in Sales Following Controversial Pride Campaign

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Target has reported a decline in sales for the second quarter of this year, marking the first time in six years that the company has experie...

Alan Daniels

Alan Daniels

16 August 2023 9:13 am

Target Experiences Decline in Sales Following Controversial Pride Campaign

Target Reports Decline in Sales

Target has reported a decline in sales for the second quarter of this year, marking the first time in six years that the company has experienced a drop in quarterly sales. The sales decline is attributed to the backlash faced by Target earlier this year over its Pride Month collection. The company's sales fell by 5.4% compared to the same period last year.

Reasons for Sales Decline

Target reported a decline in online sales by 10.5% and a decrease in the number of transactions and average dollar amount per transaction. The company's total revenue for the quarter was $24.8 billion, a 4.9% decrease compared to the previous year.

Revising Sales and Profit Expectations

Target, the retail giant based in Minneapolis, has announced that it is revising its sales and profit expectations for the year due to recent sales trends. This comes after the company faced criticism in May for its "Pride" collection, specifically a kids swimsuit that was labeled as being suitable for multiple body types and gender expressions.

LGBT-Themed Books for Young Children

Target, a popular retail store, is now offering LGBT-themed books for young children. These books include titles like "The Pronoun Book" and "Bye Bye Binary," which tells the story of a happy baby who does not conform to traditional gender norms and instead chooses toys, colors, and clothes that bring them joy.

Controversial "Pride" Merchandise

Target recently released a collection of Pride merchandise, including items for adults. The collection included swimsuits designed for men who identify as women to tuck their genitals, a t-shirt with the word "Queer" repeated four times, and a hoodie with the phrase "Not A Phase." The release of this merchandise has led to calls for a boycott of Target on social media.

Adjustments and Backlash

Target has announced that it will be removing some of its "Pride" merchandise from its stores due to backlash that has put the safety of its employees at risk. The company has also decided to move the "Pride" displays to the back of some stores. Target spokesperson Kayla Castañeda stated that these adjustments are being made in response to the confrontational behavior that has occurred.

Boycott and Stock Price Drop

A company is facing troubles after it was revealed that the designer of their "Pride" collection items has also created products with Satanic imagery. This revelation has led to calls for a boycott of the company, causing its stock price to drop by almost 20% and not recover.

Target's Response and Future Plans

Target's sales were affected by the negative response to its Pride assortment this year, according to the company's chief growth officer, Christina Hennington. Hennington stated that the reaction has prompted Target to pause, adapt, and learn from the situation.

Target, a popular retail store, has announced plans to make changes to its "Pride" collection next year. These changes may involve altering the timing of the products, their placement in stores, and the brands that are available for sale. Despite the collection's poor sales performance, Target's recent earnings report revealed that the company achieved higher profit margins than anticipated. This was attributed to the company's strategy of offering fewer discounts and reducing inventory costs.

Backlash Faced by Other Companies

This summer, several companies faced backlash for their "Pride" merchandise. Anheuser-Busch, the parent company of Bud Light, suffered a loss of approximately $395 million in U.S. sales due to a boycott. The boycott was a result of the company's partnership with trans-identifying influencer Dylan Mulvaney. Additionally, Bud Light lost its position as the top-selling beer in the country, being surpassed by Modelo.

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