CINCINNATI -- You've heard about the tiny house trend, made popular on HGTV.
Welcome to the tiny department store trend, with a Target store like you've never seen.
We took a tour of the Target of the future: a 17,000-square-foot, small-format store now open next to the University of Cincinnati. It is one of 30 opening across the country this year.
The retail chain is making a $7 billion bet that younger millennials will flock to these smaller stores -- and they are very different from the Target your mom dragged you through while you rode in the cart.
What you will find there
Manager Kristy Warren, who formerly managed a full-service Target store in Colerain Township, says you'll find a little bit of everything: groceries, wine and beer, housewares, health supplies, even electronics.
"The thing about this one is even though its smaller, the assortment is amazing," Warren explained. "It is curated for this neighborhood."
The tiny stores next to college campuses will have a large selection of dorm accessories, for instance. Those in urban areas will have more hardware, so that people don't have to drive 20 minutes to a full-size Target or Walmart.
The selection will be flexible, Warren says, so if enough customers ask for something, they'll stock it.
"If 20 guests ask for the same item, I can send that up to headquarters and we can try to get that item in the store for the guest."
Imagine an extra-large convenience store, but with a lot more than snacks and cold drinks. Within 25 feet you can find clothing, vitamins, bedding and drapes, then go right across the aisle and get yourself a new smartphone or Apple watch.
Target admits prices will be slightly higher than suburban Targets, due to the higher cost of operating in urban areas. But it says prices will be very competitive with the area.
At a time when old-school department stores are closing, malls are downsizing, and entire mall chains are going bankrupt, Target is betting that smaller is bigger when it comes to the future of shopping.
As always, don't waste your money.
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