The Complete Guide to Target.com Advertising

Roundel Media

With so many new consumers adopting online shopping, several eCommerce marketplaces saw incredible growth in 2020. Target, in particular, went from a rising marketplace worth testing to a vital part of an eCommerce advertising strategy. Evidently, in the first half of 2020, Target.com saw 10 million new digital guests. Target made pivotal moves into omnichannel transformation and digital commerce leadership to help guide its growth and present new opportunities to advertisers.

You can reach millions of the right guests, through the right channels, at the right time. Through personalized targeting methods & robust segmenting capabilities, the Target Media Network team builds omnichannel experiences that reach guests at exactly the right time, whether they choose to shop online, on their mobile devices, or in their 1,900 stores.

Explore the broad range of products and tools for reaching guests during every stage of their journey. Target via their media outlets help you choose the best options for your campaign needs—and through their targeted ad & segmenting capabilities, they help you connect with the guests who are most likely to engage.

target advertising

Source: Target

target.com advertising

Target.com Advertising Placements

Home Page Placements: 

These are ads that appear on the Target.com home page, putting your brand front and center.

  • Drive guests straight to your custom brand page or offer on Target.com.
  • Maximum visibility on the Target.com home page.

Premium Placements Ads:

These ads are strategically placed to extend the reach of your brand on Target’s most trafficked and highly visible pages. 

  • IAB banners in high-impact, premium places across Target.com
  • Custom creative to help showcase your brand in a way that resonates with the Target.com guest.

IAB placements

This features ads that are strategically placed to extend the reach of your brand.

  • IAB Standard banners category—targeted across Target.com
  • Tested and proved custom creative to help showcase your brand in a way that resonates with the Target.com guest.

target advertising

Source: Target

Search Placements 

These ads appear in search results when guests look for specific products or category keywords.

  • Reach guests as they actively look for products like yours 
  • Help your brand stand out when guests are choosing among similar products.

Mobile Placements

This feature helps you leverages the power of Target’s robust mobile site and mobile apps to stand out wherever guests go

  • Put placements for your product right into guests’ hands
  • Placements include several variations: – homepage – product listing page – search listing page – product detail page – store locator page – category navigation page.

In-App Placements

These are premium ads that appear above the fold on the homepage of the Target App.

  • Connect with highly engaged guests to drive online and in-store sales
  • Placements link to product detail pages, product listing pages, and product listing pages with custom creative headers.

target.com advertising

Source: Target

Audience Extension

This feature extends your audience reach with a broad range of products and tools, scaling to fit your brand and your business objectives. Publish through the Bullseye Marketplace, the segment with Target’s first-party data, and discover omnichannel solutions designed to get your brand in front of the right people at the right time.

Channel Red

This displays your content on our in-store private TV network to help drive in-store sales.

  • Reach guests while they’re currently shopping 
  • Educate and inspire guests with your unique brand message.

Cooking.com Placements

The premium and IAB placements on Cooking.com is one of the newest addition to Target Media Network. 

  • Reach a highly engaged and affluent audience and make your brand a part of their new favorite recipe
  • Placements available on desktop and mobile recipe sites, including recipe browse pages, recipe collections, and in Cooking.com targeted email blasts.

target.com ads

Source: Target


Guest solutions


This feature showcases recipes with ingredients from brands the Target guest loves, integrated in the Target Recipe experience. 

  • Responsive site so recipes are viewable on mobile, tablet, and desktop 
  • Varying levels of integration from individual recipes to robust editorial pages—or feature your recipe on your custom landing page along with product information


This features ad placement that shows up on guest registry pages, giving their friends and family another great gift idea.

  • Establish your brand as a must-buy for newlyweds and expectant parents
  • Showcase your brand to these highly-engaged guests while they’re actively shopping.


This showcases your brand with a special seasonal tie-in or promotion. 

  • Capitalize on seasonal shopping, online and in-stores 
  • Keep your brand top-of-mind during seasonal moments.

Social integration

These are unique, inspiring, and conversational content showcased in Target’s social communities.

  • Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest stories drive brand love for products the guest loves to find at Target
  • Custom content and contextually appropriate products are designed to encourage sharing.

Interactive Experiences

This features a fun way for guests to interact with your brand in a way that generates repeat engagement, media buzz, and social sharing. 

  • Educate guests on products in a way they will remember 
  • Invites active engagement and repeat visits.

Online Brand Experience

This is a custom landing page built to showcase your brand and drive sales online and in stores. 

  • Uniquely created to meet your specific objectives 
  • Drive traffic to your brand’s product pages, coupons, recipes, and more on Target.com 
  • Custom creative that aligns with your brand’s campaign and showcases brand-specific content.

Source: Target

Mobile Brand Experience

This is a custom mobile landing page on Target’s mobile platform that puts your brand in front of a large number of Target’s mobile guests. 

  • Leverage Target’s mobile-optimized site to drive sales
  • Gain visibility with guests on mobile devices who intend to shop in-store.

Target App Experience

This feature point guests to product detail pages and product listing pages inside the Target App. 

  • Improve sales and offer engagement with custom creative that speaks directly to Target shoppers 
  • Target App users are a highly dedicated segment of Target guests.

Source: Target

Shopping Made Easy


Here, target guests can subscribe to have their favorite products automatically delivered on the schedule they set.

  • Boosts repeat sales 
  • Drives brand loyalty—guests stick with your brand as they purchase your product over and over.

Store Pickup

With this feature, guests can order online and choose to have their product delivered, or they can pick it up at a Target store. 

  • The in-store pickup option drives additional in-store purchases from guests who shop online
  • Drives online shopping by offering a shipping method with no delivery charges to the guest.

Source: Target 


Cartwheel Leverage

This is Target’s unique deals app where guests can design their own sale and redeem via a barcode that’s scanned straight from their mobile device. 

  • Drive trial among guests who are actively looking for your particular product
  • Highly integrated with multiple social sharing platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and more.

Amplify your Cartwheel offers

With this, you can create brand awareness and expand your reach by boosting the amount of traffic to your Cartwheel offers. Amplify Cartwheel presence across mobile platforms, including Target.com mWeb, Bullseye Marketplace in-App, and mWeb, Facebook mobile, and search.

Online Coupons

These are printable coupons for in-store redemption and promo codes for online guests drive trial among brand-agnostic guests. 

  • Coupons drive purchases of your brand 
  • The time-sensitive nature of offers further incentivizes trial.

Source: Target


With this feature, you can talk to the most engaged Target guests. Emails with content targeted to specific segments such as Home, Baby, Style, Kids, Men and Electronics are sent to guests who have opted in to receive Target’s emails. 

  • Brings your brand to the guest’s inbox
  • Drives traffic to your products or landing page on Target.com

Weekly Ad

This is a weekly curated collection of deals and offers, in both print and online formats.

  • Increases visibility of your coupon by driving digital traffic to your ad 
  • Your offer is seen by guests who are actively seeking value.

Amplify your Weekly Ad

These are dynamic Weekly Ad creative that reflects real-time prices in Target stores near your audience and drives in-store sales, boosts awareness and improves offer engagement. It is available as Expandable Rich Media on desktop and on mobile as a 300×250 non-expandable unit.

Out-of-Home Sampling

This feature helps get the goods into the hands of our guests. Out-of-Home Sampling helps drive engagement and sales. 

  • Incent guest trial by offering product samples sent directly to the guest’s home
  • Sampling programs can be supported by additional efforts such as site placements, coupons and online brand experiences.

Source: Target

Leveraging Paid Media to Capture Target’s Online Growth

In “Leveraging Paid Media to Capture Target’s Online Growth,” this guide provides an overview of the media placements available on Target.com and the Target app, how to run and optimize Target Product Ads, and best practices for growing sales on Target with a full-funnel media strategy.

Target Paid Media Ecosystem

Roundel Media

Roundel, Target’s media solution, leverages Target’s shopper insights to create personalized ad campaigns that can run on Target.com, on social networks like Pinterest, and across hundreds of sites in their publisher network. Target Product Ads are available as sponsored product placements in search, browse, and detail page placements for products sold on Target.com and the Target App. Software like Pacvue enables programmatic campaign management for Target Product Ads, allowing advertisers to bid on a CPC basis to drive incremental sales.

Here’s how Roundel helps you cover all the bases:

  • Reach new potential customers searching or browsing on Google via Search Ads with Roundel.
  • Drive active shoppers on Target.com and the Target app to your product pages with Target Product Ads by Roundel. You can activate and manage your campaigns with end-to-end automation through the preferred partner platform of your choice, Criteo or Kenshoo.

The following are some benefits Roundel Media offers:

  • Target Display
  • Target Product Ads
  • Publisher Marketplace
  • Social
  • Google Search 

Source: Pacvue

Target.com Paid vs Organic

When comparing paid ads in Target.com to organic ads, there’s usually a significant difference as Target Product Ads are featured throughout search results.

Source: Pacvue

Target Display Ads

The Display by Roundel feature helps you get in front of real shoppers with standard and premium ad placements, on and off Target.com, at a near-zero fraud rate. Roundel helps you achieve your ad objective by:

  • Engaging with first-party audiences at scale, customized to who you want to reach, based on in-store and third-party data on millions of Target guests.
  • Proving the ROAS of your digital media with closed-loop measurement of display, video, and audio ads tied to Target’s in-store and online sales.
  • Delivering your brand message with ad placements in relevant, brand-positive environments, whether it’s on Target.com or our curated marketplace of 150+ premium published sites.


Target Product Ads

The performance of Target Product Ads in 2020 was commendable. It had over 10 Million new digital guests in the first half of that year where over 40% of the Target.com visitors use the search functionality. Also, from research, it is twice more likely for Target consumers to convert when there is an interaction with search.

Here is how it works:

  • The shopper searches or browses a product category on Target.com or Target app
  • The most relevant stock-keeping unit (SKU) will serve in the sponsored ad placement, based on search and browse behavior
  • The shopper clicks and is taken through to the product detail page for conversion.

Product Ads Bidding

  • First-price auction
  • Use bid scaling to incrementally increase bids and not waste budget
  • Use Share of Voice to see where you’re already ranking high, both organically & paid, to decrease bids.

Product Ads Placements

With regards to product ad placement, both click-through rate and Return On Advertising Spend (ROAS) are highest on Search placements, compared to Browse and Product Detail Page placements.

Source: Pacvue

Eligibility Requirements

  • Products must be currently part of the Target catalog
  • Ads will automatically pause for products out of stock with Target, and unpause when inventory is replenished

Launching & Optimizing a Campaign

Source: Pacvue

How does a Target advertising campaign differ from advertising on Amazon or Walmart? What are the best practices for launching and optimizing a Target ad campaign? Here are the key considerations:

  • Select Products: Group your campaigns by similar sub-categories and price.
  • Product Ads Placements: With a number of different placement options, choose the ones that best fit your goals and continue to test and optimize these based on cost per click (CPC) and ROAS key performance indicators (KPIs).
  • Set Bids and Daily Budget: Target uses a CPC pricing model for Sponsored Product Ads and keyword bidding is a first-price auction. Bid scaling is important to incrementally increase bids and minimize budget waste.
  • Adjust Bids and Budget: As you test and optimize, adjust your bids and budget at the product-level based on your goals. Share of Voice is a good metric to see where you’re already ranking high, in both organic and paid searches, to increase or decrease bids as necessary.
  • Publisher Marketplace

For information about Target’s Publisher Marketplace, check out Target’s publisher services. Relatedly, for order, account issues, or specific item inquiries, visit here

Source: Target


Social by Roundel offers an avenue for increased brand exposure and influence on purchasing behavior across Facebook, Pinterest, and Snapchat. By working with Roundel, your brand gains credibility and the ability to reach Target’s first-party guests.

With Social by Roundel, you can launch your omnichannel campaign with static, animated, or video ad placements on the social platforms that shoppers use every day, enabled by the scale and quality of Target’s first-party data. 

Google Search

As a business or brand, there is the need to engage high-intent shoppers as they actively search and drive more qualified traffic to your products online. Search offers an opportunity for advertisers to increase incremental sales during the e-commerce boom by helping customers make more informed decisions about relevant products as they search and shop online. In this ever-competitive eCommerce business, advertisers should evaluate their search programs, inclusive of a traditional search engine such as Google, as well as retail search sites like Target.com.

With more people searching and shopping online, search ads could be the difference-maker for advertisers. A creative way to attract new customers is to ensure your products appear for terms that aren’t directly associated with your brand or product. This is effectively done through Search by Roundel

Pacvue Media

Pacvue  is the enterprise platform for brands, sellers, and agencies to manage their eCommerce advertising by combining holistic performance data with recommended actions. It can be used to manage Target Product Ads. 

Pacvue’s features include:

  • Programmatic campaign
  • Detailed reporting
  • Automation tools, daypart bidding, and budget management
  • Pacvue’s proprietary Share of Voice monitoring.

Pacvue’s detailed reporting and Share of Voice monitoring allow you to keep an eye on these vital metrics. Programmatic campaign management, automation tools, daypart bidding, and budget management help adjust your bids and placement strategy in real-time to fully optimize your Target ad performance.  

Target.com and the Target app is a growing digital marketplace with massive potential for expanding your market and increasing sales. Follow these best practices to get the most of this opportunity.

 Early Adopter Advantage

  • Be the first to gain platform expertise and gain a competitive edge
  • Gain a greater Share of Voice for a lower investment; early tends to equal cheaper clicks
  • Increase the chances of repeated purchases when driving early conversion
  • Improve your organic relevance by driving sales.

KPIs and Insights from Brands Succeeding on Target

Brands are already finding tremendous success with Sponsored Products on Target. What ad performance can you expect fromTarget.com and the Target app? What benefits will you see as an early adopter? 

  • 13% CTR: Baby product manufacturer ran a 3-month program and saw over 1.5M impressions with a 13% CTR
  • 80k Units Sold: CPG snack food brand with a 3-month campaign saw over 14M impressions with a sustained ROAS over 1,300%
  • 100M+ Impressions: Audio brand achieved 4X their ROAS goals, with ROAS of >700% over a six-month period
  • 800% ROAS: Toy brand increased their investment across multiple SKU sets and exceeded 300k Ad Clicks.


To help brands reach this influx of digital shoppers, Target has invested heavily in its online marketing solutions, and brands are leaning in, with early adopters finding cost-effective advertising success. This guide has highlighted several ways and platforms through which brand owners, digital marketers, and advertisers can leverage to maximize their potential and ROAS.